“AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT: INTERVIEW WITH JOSEPH CARRABIS” now on JustineManzano.com

I met Joseph Carrabis through his former publisher. He’s a fun guy with a wonderful imagination, and a very interesting past in marketing. Today, we’re going to talk all about that, and he’s going to introduce you to his work.

 
The great and glorious (and everwise. mustn’t forget everwise) Justine Manzano, author of The Order of the Key and other novels, interviewed me on her blog.

We talked about The Augmented Man, my writing process, music I write by, my publishing plan (currently in phase III of IV), examples of good publishers and an example of a bad publisher, blogging about wildlife, and more.

Give it a read.

And comment. It’s always nice when you comment.

Writing Short Stories – Live at SciFi Scarborough (Six Duckmans Live)

What can be better than six #weareallharvey writers getting together? How about them talking about how one writes fiction?

Specifically, science fiction, horror, fantasy, steampunk, historic romance, novels, short stories, flash, …

And even better, they’re all published! Some self, some indie, some small press. Some in the Harvey Duckman Presents series, some in other venues.

That’s what Kate @KateBaucherel Baucherel, Mark @darrackmark Hayes, Alexandrina @Caelestia_Flora Brant, myself and others did for #Scarborough Live this past weeked.

So give a listen (and let them know what you think).

(and yes, i’m one of them).

Search Chapter 4 – Tuesday, 25 December 73

Search is loosely based on a real incident. The incident remains, the story is greatly different.

Enjoy. And remember, it’s still a work in progress. These chapters are rough drafts. I’ve completed twenty chapters so far and it seems I’ll complete the novel this time. We’ll see.

Read Search Chapter 3


 

Search Chapter 4 – Tuesday, 25 December 73

Christmas.

Where were her children?

Pam drove her Marquis Brougham down to the coast, took US Route 1 for a while, then cut down to 1A, the coast road, looking for a place to forget things for a while, a coffee shop or knickyknacky tickytacky tourist shop open out of season, a place she could laugh at what brought people to Maine, people who summered there, what the locals called “Leave your money and go home” people.

She left Bill standing on their front walk. He thinks I didn’t see him, waving his hands to get her attention.

It was his fault. He said things he shouldn’t’ve. About her. And the church. And Dave. And their boys.

All of which was true.

But that didn’t matter. He didn’t have to say them. She wanted to call the police. Demand an update. She wanted details. What were they doing to find her boys?

Bill laughed. “Why, Pam? You going to give them a piece of your mind? You going to yell at them? Demand action? Ooh, scary, scary Pam.”

She planted her hands on her hips and looked him in the eyes. “You smell of drink, Bill Thompson. Are you a drunk?”

“Are you a bitch?”

Her eyes went wide and her head snapped back. “Why, I never – ”

“Say shit even if you have a mouthful. Try it, Pam. Say it. Say shit. You’ll feel a lot better if you do.”

She passed a small strip mall, three of the five stores closed for the season, and saw a blinking “Homemade Jelly Donuts!” sign. She turned around and pulled in. “I’ll bet their coffee tastes like shit, Bill. Shit. See? I can say it. I’ll bet their coffee tastes like shit. Shit, shit, shit.”

The sign stopped blinking as she got out of the car. “Damn.” She laughed. “How about that, Bill? I can say shit, I can say damn. How about we throw in a couple of good old ‘fucks’ for good measure?”

“You can’t get rid of your guilt by swearing at it.”

Pam spun towards the voice. She placed a hand over her heart to hold it in.

A middle-aged Penobscot woman, dark skin, long braided hair, wearing some kind of ceremonial costume complete with beaded earrings and necklace, held a coffee cup out to her.

“You startled me.”

“Didn’t want to interrupt you.”

Pam looked at the coffee. The woman held it up to her. Pam took it hesitantly, her eyes dancing back and forth from the cup to the woman and back. “Thank you.”

“No milk or sugar in it. Didn’t know how you take it.”

Pam nodded towards the coffee shop. “You work here?”

The woman pointed one store down. “I work there.”

Pam turned and looked at a sign in the window; Running Water’s Native Crafts and Keepsakes.

“Saw you pull up to the coffee shop. It’s been closed a few weeks now. Damn sign has a short in it. Keeps flickering. I called the owner to fix it. They haven’t done a thing yet. You got to stop swearing at your guilt. You got to own it to get rid of it.”

Pam shook her head. “Sorry?”

“Your guilt. You blame yourself for your boys going missing. You say it’s grief but it’s not. It’s guilt. You brought that boy into your house, bullied your husband and your church to let you have him. That’s what you said, wasn’t it? ‘Let me have him. I’ll put the love of God into him.’? Now he’s missing with your boys and you think it’s your fault.”

“I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

The woman nodded. “Uh-huh.” She smiled and walked past Pam back to her store. “Keep the cup. A gift. Someone needs to see it. To stir a memory.” She locked the door behind her, switched the OPEN sign to CLOSED, turned off the lights, and was gone.

Pam peered through the windows. Nothing and no one. No sound of a car starting up and no second story for an apartment above the store. She tossed the rest of the coffee and looked for a trash can to get rid of the cup.

Running Water stood in the parking lot. “Keep it.”

Pam looked at the cup. Handmade. “Ha. Native crafts.” No writing, only a picture of a stream in a woods on the side. The stream burbled as she watched. She blinked and looked again. Just a picture of a stream in a woods. “How do you get the picture to do that?”

She looked up. The woman was gone.


Greetings! I’m your friendly, neighborhood Threshold Guardian. This is a protected post. Protected posts in the My Work category require a subscription (starting at 1$US/month) to access. Protected posts outside that category require a General (free) membership.
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Search Chapter 3 – Tuesday, 2 October 73

Search is loosely based on a real incident. The incident remains, the story is greatly different.

Enjoy. And remember, it’s still a work in progress. These chapters are rough drafts. I’ve completed twenty chapters so far and it seems I’ll complete the novel this time. We’ll see.

Read Search Chapter 2


 

Search Chapter 3 – Tuesday, 2 October 73

Todd shook out the double-bed sheet and reached up into the oak’s lower branches. Behind him the Kennebec River’s lower rapids splashed. He wrapped the sheet’s end over the limb and clothespinned it so the sheet fell open like a film projector screen. He stepped back, making sure it was secure, then turned and trampled a path through fallen leaves and brush to the river, making sure the bed sheet could be clearly seen.

He shook a spray can and sprayed a barely noticeable “2” on the sheet. Leaves rustled at ground level and he lowered the can.

“What’d you do with the boys, Andersen?”

“Sergeant Dyksta, how good of you to come. What boys?”

“Don’t bullshit me, you sick fuck. The Thompson boys. What’d you do with them?”

“Not a thing. Has something happened to them?”

“You drive the Hershey highway with Dave LaVerne, don’t you?”

“Why whatever do what you mean, Sergeant Dykstra?”

Dykstra’s hand went to his nightstick.

“Oh, Sergeant Dykstra. I had no idea you were into brutality. Doesn’t surprise me, though. I’ve seen your wife. Or wait. No, that would be bestiality, wouldn’t it?”

Dykstra pulled his nightstick. “I’m gonna – ”

“Not get paid? Whatever you do to me, make sure you don’t hurt my hands. It’d be horrible if I couldn’t hand you your take every week, don’t you think? How could you afford that pretty little lady up in Bangor you visit twice a week?”

Dykstra’s grip weakened. The nightstick slid back into its belt ring. “How do you know about that?”

“I know about that because I, unlike you, make it a point to know everything I can about the people I do business with.”

“What are you doing with those sheets?”

“Making highway markers. Wouldn’t you like to help?”

Dykstra turned and walked up the path from the river to the picnic area.

“Don’t go to far, Sergeant. You can help me put the rest of these up along both sides of the river.”

Dykstra paused, his back to Andersen, and clenched his fists.

“Beat me if you must, but do it with a smile, that way I know we’re both getting pleasure out of it.”


Greetings! I’m your friendly, neighborhood Threshold Guardian. This is a protected post. Protected posts in the My Work category require a subscription (starting at 1$US/month) to access. Protected posts outside that category require a General (free) membership.
Members and Subscribers can LogIn. Non members can join. Non-protected posts (there are several) are available to everyone. Enjoy!

Search Chapter 2 – Sunday, 30 September 73

Search is loosely based on a real incident. The incident remains, the story is greatly different.

Enjoy. And remember, it’s still a work in progress. These chapters rough drafts. I’ve completed seventeen chapters so far and it seems I’ll complete the novel this time. We’ll see.

Read Search Chapter 1


 

Search Chapter 2 – Sunday, 30 September 73

Raised in northern Maine trailer-trash poverty, petite, dark complexioned, wide-eyed Pam Rigaux met tall, strapping, nordic blond Bill Thompson in an UMO freshman English class and visited his family once to make sure his claims were true. She quickly got herself pregnant because she realized he, a good Christian boy, would do the right thing. Marrying into the upper-middle class, she quit school and insisted on a small home on French Island, just ten minutes away from classes if he hurried, so she could raise their daughter, Stephanie, while he completed his degree, which he did in double-quick time, three years.

Now in Gardiner, Pam Thompson spread herself onto her living room settee as if spreading her robes when ascending her throne. Pam made it a point to fill whatever space she could find; she appropriated church committees, civic groups, PTA, tennis, and golf clubs she joined whether she was chair or not, and did it graciously, with a smile, assuming entitlements she did not possess and keeping track of who was with her and who wasn’t in a tiny black book she kept in her petite, tightly held purse. A pair of long knitting needles waved like some monstrous insect’s antennae in her hands. Balls of yarn jostled around her.

Bill pulled a hardwood kitchen chair into the living room and set it by the big picture window overlooking their two-hundred foot long front yard, the two lane driveway beside it, the white picket fence demarcating the Thompsons from the rest of the world, and the country road beyond.

A bit too tall for the chair, he slid forward no matter how he sat. He got a throw-pillow from the couch and used it as a chair pad to keep himself seated. It didn’t work. He gave up and stood by the window, arms folded, leaning into it every time a car came down the road.

He checked his watch, checked the shadow of their house and backyard elms stretch across their lawn as the sun set behind their house, checked the grandfather clock standing opposite their broadwall fireplace, watched its pendulum slowly sway back.

And forth. Tick. Tick. Tick.

“We should call the police.”

Pam focused on the knitting in her hands. A slight French accent emerged when she tensed. “No, they’re fine.” She snapped the needles and the balls of yarn bounced around her.

“I’m calling the police.”

“No. They stayed late. They got good fishing. Wait.”

Bill went into the kitchen and picked up the phone.

“You made me drop a stitch. I have to rip the entire thing out now.”

Bill shook his head and dialed the Gardiner Police.

“My boys are fine.”


Greetings! I’m your friendly, neighborhood Threshold Guardian. This is a protected post. Protected posts in the My Work category require a subscription (starting at 1$US/month) to access. Protected posts outside that category require a General (free) membership.
Members and Subscribers can LogIn. Non members can join. Non-protected posts (there are several) are available to everyone. Enjoy!