A Whimper…a short story tease

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Well, Dead Sight has been out for a week and a half now. It has been a fantastic week and a half and if you haven’t yet picked up your copy for Kindle, it’s on sale for 99 cents for another few days. 

To celebrate, I wanted to give you guys the first 500 words or so of a short story I’m working on. I don’t have a time-table for it, but you never know when it may show up in the Kindle store. The story is called “A Whimper,” and without further ado, here ya go: 

 

YOUR INTERNET CONNECTION IS UNSTABLE

To tell you the truth, I don’t remember the first time those words flashed across my eyes. Like any of my notifications, I just cleared it and went about my business. Notifications were handy for some things, like when your friend was posting vacation photos from Hawaii or when your favorite author was retweeting you. A lot of the notifications, though…

Frankly, they tended to be ignored.

Three years ago, my sister Kit had to go into the doctor. She didn’t know what the problem was, but her nervous system was sluggish. When she decided to move, her legs would always be a half-second behind her impulses. I LOLed when she told me what the doctor said.

“Miss Anderson, do you ever update your apps?” he asked incredulously.

“Sure, I mean they just update themselves, right?” Kit said. (Seriously – what an idiot. I can say that. She’s my sister.)

“Umm…no. They are built in with safeguards so you have to manually update them, Miss Anderson. The diagnostic is showing you need to update 31 apps. Some of your apps are at least four generations behind where they should be,” the doctor just shook his head. “I’ll get a tech nurse in here in a few minutes, but you’ve got to pay closer attention when you get notifications. Some of them could be vital.”

It took over an hour, but eventually Kit’s system was refreshed.  All 31 of the offending apps were updated – some multiple times. In fact, before she even left the doctor another app requested an update and the tech nurse wouldn’t let her out of the waiting room until she updated the app herself.

I told her if she wouldn’t play Assassin Chicken so much, she wouldn’t have these problems, but who listens to their little brother, right?

Nobody ever said just cuz you had tech in your head that you were smart.

But, the apps were only a part of the problem, really.

I haven’t heard from Kit in over a year. I think she’s dead.

Frankly, I’m not totally sure. Even if she was alive, I have no idea how I would even get to her.

YOUR INTERNET CONNECTION IS UNSTABLE

Right. The notification. It’s been popping up on our viewers for probably a year and a half or so. Maybe longer for some people, but like I said, no one really pays attention to those things. We should have.

If this was a Hollywood movie, the end of the world would be a whole lot more exciting. I can picture it now – me, Cam Anderson, struggling against the computer-generated effects of volcanoes, earthquakes, tidal waves, aliens, Mayan prophecies or any number of post-apocalyptic scenarios. I just need to shave my head like Bruce Willis and we’ll be good to go.

Too bad Bruce Willis has been dead for a long time now. Almost everyone has been dead for a long time.

The movies were one thing, but I liked to think about the Dylan Thomas poem. You know the one. You may not know that you know it, but you do. Here’s the first part:

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Thomas was wrong. The human race didn’t rage against anything in the end. 

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Done.

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I’m finished. 

This is the one of the worst parts. Waiting. Seeing if anyone will buy the sucker and what kind of reviews it’ll get. 

ImageI officially released DEAD SIGHT today with much fanfare. (all true, except the fanfare bit)

I’m really excited for this one on a number of levels. First, it’s my second novel. I’d written DEAD SLEEP last year and got some pretty good reviews on it. I knew I was going to follow it up, I just didn’t know how soon. I didn’t even get the physical edition of DEAD SLEEP out until October, so it was still fairly fresh in my mind when I started on the sequel for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in November. 

That’s the next aspect that thrills me — this was a NaNo book. It ended up right at 68,000 words, but nearly 55,000 came during November or in the days immediately following. I finished it up in January and added the finishing touches in February, but the bulk of this book was written in a 30-day time span. If you ask me, it makes for a better book. More consistency and better flow. Definitely convinced me to try it again this fall. 

What also gets me excited about this book is family. I suppose these first three novels (DEAD SLEEP, DEAD SIGHT, and the last, DEAD SEARCH <—- what’s that, a title spoiler?!) are all in some way a dedication to my wonderful family. Not only my wife and children, but also to my mom, dad, brothers, sister, aunts and uncles and grandparents. DEAD SIGHT takes place in South Dakota, which is where my dad’s mother spent the latter part of her life. We traveled through many times (as well as North Dakota, where my mom’s family lives) and it became a very familiar place. You can see me in the main character, Jack, but you can also see bits and pieces of my other family members in the other characters as well. What this book has also done is bring me and my brothers and sister closer together. I’ll probably save the bulk of that for another blog sometime, but the interaction between me and my siblings has been fantastic ever since I started writing. 

I’m also excited because I decided to give my readers a break. I priced both DEAD SLEEP and DEAD SIGHT at just 99 cents for the next couple weeks. If you haven’t gotten the first one, you can get both for cheaper than one cost yesterday. Go get them now!

Thanks so much for reading and for following my adventures. This book is for you, my readers. 

DEAD SIGHT Photobook – Corn Palace

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DEAD SIGHT Photobook

First in a series of pictures to preview the upcoming novel, DEAD SIGHT. This is the Mitchell Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota. Each year the community decorates the outside of the palace with everything corn — kernels, cobs, husks, etc…
You can find gift shops across the street for any corn souvenirs you may want.