Saturday, February 07, 2015

Sample Saturday-2015/02/07-I'm Back!

It's been a while since I've posted on my blog. Life has been an adventure: I've been trying to heal on several fronts, while at the same time, endeavoring to write on a project that's a tad bit overdue.

Learning to use Dragon NaturallySpeaking has been an adventure in remembering the correct commands. I haven't mastered that process yet, but it was very helpful when I could not turn my arm enough to type, let alone without causing intense pain. I'm back to typing, but very carefully. There are positions that cause pain and possibly, damage, so I'm trying to be cautious.

I've been working on a series of short stories. Here's the opening of one called New Blood:

Wesley Haught opened a barrel of beans, set the wooden top aside, and prepared to sack up ten pounds for his waiting customer, Mrs. Slonaker. The bell over the door of the store jangled, and he looked up. A tall, bearded man came through the door. Wes was sure he hadn't visited Haught's General Store and Commercial Emporium before. Perhaps he was just passing through town. Wes appraised the dark suit the man wore, made of expensive fabric and nicely cut. He must have money. Maybe he’ll spend some of it today. He smiled at the thought.

“Morning,” Wes said. “I'll be with you shortly.”

“Take your time,” the stranger replied, but with a terseness to his voice that indicated he was not in the habit of waiting his turn. He stroked a nicely trimmed yellow beard that had two streaks of gray. His hair—that is, what Wes could see below the man’s bowler hat—was a lighter color of yellow, as though it had faded over the years.

Wes bagged and weighed the beans, then tied the sack closed with a bit of twine. He'd just turned to add the beans to Mrs. Slonaker's order, piled on the counter, when the door's bell jangled again.

“Lonnie,” he called over his shoulder into the back room. Lazy lay-about, he thought, his mood turning a bit sour. At nineteen, Lonnie was three years younger than Wes, and he was the worst brother in town. In his mind's eye, he saw Lonnie sitting at the work table, feet propped on the top. Playing with a pistol. As usual. The fact that Dad didn’t seem to see Lonnie’s shiftlessness was like a knife in Wes’s guts.

“Lonnie! Get out here. Folks are lining up.” He hated using a brusque tone of voice in front of customers, but Lonnie wouldn't move unless he thought Wes meant it.

“In a minute,” Lonnie hollered. From the sounds, Wes knew he was fitting cartridges into the cylinder.

Thank you for visiting. I hope you enjoyed the sample. I appreciate your support of my work.

Author Marsha Ward wrote the novella, Faith and the Foreman, in the best-selling Timeless Romance Anthology Old West Collection. She is the author of an acclaimed novel series featuring the Owen family. Book 4, Spinster's Folly, won the 2013 USA Best Book Award for Western Fiction, and recently was named Finalist in Western Fiction in the 2014 International Book Awards. A former journalist, Ward has published over 900 articles, columns, poems and short stories. She is the founder of American Night Writers Association, a.k.a. ANWA.

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