Books I Read in 2014

Books I read in 2014

1. American Gods by Neil Gaiman

2. Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

3. The Rum Diary by Hunter S. Thompson

4. Omega by Jack McDevitt

5. On The Road by Jack Kerouac

6. Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth by Reza Aslan

7. Odyssey by Jack McDevitt

8. The Pelican Brief by John Grisham

9. Cauldron by Jack McDevitt

10. Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

11. The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan

12. Batman: The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb

13. A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle

14. The Immortal Iron Fist, Vol. 1: The Last Iron Fist Story by Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction

15. The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan

16. The Wake by Scott Snyder

Line of Departure

“This line is not moving,” Marcy complained.

All of the people ahead of her and behind her in line grumbled in agreement. Marcy left work early hoping to get to the toy store and get in line before everyone else, but everyone else had the same idea.

At the front of the line, the store manager stood on top of the counter. “We have plenty of the Rocket Man Deluxe toys left so everyone stay in an orderly line and we’ll make sure you get one,” he said.

Marcy could see the pile of Rocket Man toys behind the counter. Five employees worked the counter, handing out the toys and collecting the “Toy Reserved” tickets, but it was taking too long. Two hours until she needed to board a plane. Her son would be waiting.

She was thinking about pleading her case with the people in front of her when the building started to shake. Toys fell off their shelves and people started yelling. “Remain calm,” the manager yelled. “It’s a minor earthquake.”

While the shaking intensified, a high pitched squeal pierced the air forcing everyone in the building to cover their ears. Over the noise, the manager mouthed something, but no one could hear him. Even if they could, their eyes and their focus were on the roof crumbling above them and being sucked away into the sky.

A dark shadow loomed above the store in the open sky, blocking out the sun and casting them into darkness. Only the emergency lights remained. As Marcy and everyone else in the store turned to run, a translucent wall of orange appeared over the exit, blocking anyone from leaving.
A single point of light shone in the center of the black mass and flashed like a strobe light. Slowly, but steadily, creatures emerged from the light. They descended one by one until the store was filled with feathery monsters with three legs and gnarled hooves.

“Stay calm,” Marcy tried to tell the people around her. “We’ll get through this and… oh no.”

She watched as each monster hopped over the counter to grab a Rocket Man Deluxe. As soon as one of the toys was in one of their claws, the light above blinked and the monster disappeared.

The shoppers around her tried to stop her, but she ran through their hands towards the counter. Only a handful of toys remained and the monsters were eagerly fighting over each other to get to the pile. “Get away from those,” she screamed. The piercing noise masked her words, allowing her to throw an elbow into the back of the head of the nearest creature.

It collapsed before her and she managed to land solid kicks and forceful punches on three others before the light above blinked wildly. In an instant, the noise disappeared, the blockade vanished and the monsters were gone.

She grabbed her toy and ran through the cheering and applauding crowd. “Move! I’ve got a flight to catch,” she said.

NaNoWriMo 2014

The temperature has come down. The leaves have changed color and are beginning to fall from their trees. Football is in full swing and mustaches are sprouting up everywhere. It is November and it’s once again time for National Novel Writing Month.

Last year was a massive failure. I’ll do my best not to break my hand again, but no promises! As I write this blog post at 12:36 am, I sit at roughly 9,700 words which is slightly behind where I should be on the 7th day to reach the target. I’ve had a productive day today and I plan to try and catch up this weekend. If I don’t, I’ll be in trouble.

I wanted to use the accelerated schedule but you need to write 3,300 words on the very first day which I find very difficult. I don’t know how I did it in the past with the amount of stuff that happens at the beginning of the month (mainly Halloween, Birthday). If anything, I should modify the schedule to have the heaviest days of writing happen in the middle of the month. The beginning of the month is tough, but the end of the mouth is brutal with Thanksgiving and the beginnings of holiday shopping.

Whatever ends up happening, I’ve been enjoying it immensely. I’ve been writing short stories non-stop for a while now so writing a full novel is both tons of fun, but extremely challenging. It’s going to be really nice getting to know these characters and taking them on a long journey.

I wish I had planned a little more. I’ve got one bone in a skeleton outline and it’s not even a very big bone. I’m “pantsing” this one as they say so we’ll see what happens.