Saturday, January 23, 2016

Sample Saturday: The Zion Trail

Welcome to Sample Saturday!

Before I get started with a tidbit from The Zion Trail, I'd like to report that I've finished writing the novel and the editing is complete. That means the production work, that is, ebook formatting, is underway. All you have to do is go over to that box at the top of the right column and sign up for my Readers Mailing List so you will know the exact date on which a shiny new ebook will be available. (Enjoy the special bonus novel you get for subscribing, while you wait for the new one.)

You may notice there's a Contact Form below that. If you prefer to hold a book in your hands for reading, it's a good idea for you to also use that form to tell me you'll buy a print edition, because unless I know there is a demand for a physical book, it won't happen, folks. Use one or both of those forms today!

Back to the Sample. In this tidbit, Lije Marshall's mother has sent him to the barn to retrieve his little sister, Mary Eliza, because it's lunch time (called "dinner," according to the naming-of-meals at the time, which is 1843 in rural Pennsylvania).

“Mary Eliza, Ma wants you,” I called into the vastness of the barn. My voice echoed a bit, then I heard my name whispered. The sound came from above me. I went toward the ladder that led upward and into the loft, fear blending with anger. Mary Eliza was forbidden to climb the ladder, for she was only three years old, and the height was dangerous if she fell.

I started up the ladder. When my head came level with the loft floor, I saw my sister a foot away, arms clasped around a beam, hugging it for all she was worth.

The sight of my plump sister clutching the beam cleansed the anger and the fear in my heart. In the midst of the instantaneous wash of relief, I asked, “Pumpkin, what are you doing? It's time for dinner. Come over here and Lije will give you a horsey ride.”

“Lije, I scared.” Her voice shook so that I hardly recognized it. “I scared,” she repeated, remaining frozen to the beam.

“Here, now,” I said, climbing slowly up the rest of the ladder. “Lije will come up and get you out of this dusty old loft.”

I put out my hand to lift myself over the lip of the loft, and she closed her eyes and screamed.


What on earth is the matter with that girl? What do you think has alarmed her? Comment below.

As you wait for next week's Sample, go ahead and buy one of my short stories. The Usual Game takes a look at a working man in the early days of the State of Arizona, who does something unusual one night after work. Get it from one of the vendors below:

The Usual Game (An Arizona Short Story) is available at the following online retailers: Smashwords all formats | Kindle | nook | Kobo | iTunes Bookstore

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