This was a fascinating and insightful interview that I know you will enjoy! Meet RRBC Author, Robert Kimbrell – up close and personal!
Shared from Fiction by Rachael Ritchey!
Please welcome Jan Sikes! Jan has written several award-winning stories based on her own life experiences with her husband Rick Sikes. James Richard “Rick” Sikes was born in Texas and at a young age fell in love with writing and performing music.
Here’s a fantastic article/interview from 2001 that you should definitely check out: Outlaw Country from Texas Monthly. He made some poor choices that led him down a path that would forever change his future. But I’ll let Jan tell you more while she talks about one of the inspiring books she’s compiled that highlights the beautiful things that came out of his life:
What makes this poetry and art book different from thousands of others in print?
- It was written entirely by hand behind the walls of Leavenworth Prison over a span of fifteen years.
- The artwork is made up of millions of tiny…
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I am honored to have a short story, MOUNTAIN LAUREL, published within the covers of this book along with other talented Texas authors!
Reviews are starting to come in. Here are a few.
“Johnny shook the doorknob and when it did not turn, he put his shoulder to the door.
And then he was filling the space between them and reaching for her arm.
The soft flesh yielded so easily. She watched it swell between his fingers.
When her eyes flashed up at him, she was smiling.”
~ from A Private War by Mary Bryan Stafford (First Place for Fiction/Suspense)
I wasn’t sure what I was getting into when I picked A Private War to read for a bonus review, but wowza! I don’t want to give anything away, so I’ll just say that when a woman has had enough, she’s had enough! Domestic violence and living in fear of someone who is supposed to have your back is horrifying and unfortunately all too real for many people. But what happens when the abuser goes off to war, providing you with some much-needed peace? What happens when the one who actually has your back is a German Shepherd that followed you home one day? What happens when the abuser returns from war drunk and full of demands?
A Private War by Mary Bryan Stafford is just one of the amazing stories in this book.
I chose one of the short stories to read just to get a flair for what might be included in this book. As they are all short stories I don’t think they will take long to read, in fact the story I chose, Homecoming Queen (YA) took maybe 5 minutes to read. Great when you just need a little something and don’t have a lot of time.
Homecoming Queen is about a young woman, Pam, that loses her life in an auto accident and is learning how to cross others over when it is their time. In this story, there are two older ladies in a hospital room and one is ready to go and the other is not…and of course it is the one that is not ready to go that is being called home. As is with most people that are younger, they do not understand there is a method to all the madness and why one person is chosen over another. While the story is short, it is also poignant and has a lesson for us.
I can’t wait to read the other stories!
“Night pounced hungrily upon the woods, gobbling up all remaining glimmers of light the sun had left behind.”
— from John Sleeps by David Hughes
Hall Ways Review: I just had to take a peek — just one story — inside Short Stories by Texas Authors, and I scored! John Sleeps, winning story in the horror category, is super creepy and conjures up thoughts of spooky stories told around the campfire. Hughes makes his words count and does an amazing job of building up dread, doom, and gloom as the main character seeks safety from . . . well, you’ll just have to read it to find out.
If this story is any indicator of the caliber of stories and quality of writing in Short Stories by Texas Authors, readers are going to be doing a major happy dance. I can’t wait to read more.
Chapter Break Blog reviewed “Todd”
Here’s quick review of one of the short stories in this collection, Todd by Fern Brady. This selection won First Prize in the Fiction/Science category. And it was a wild ride for being a short story! Toddtakes place in an unspecified “future” time. A time where Big Brother watches every aspect of daily life, and all the fun things have been banned. Todd is on an illegal quest for some cigarettes. The story had my heart racing while we follow Todd, wondering if he’ll succeed or not. And the very abrupt, but also very clear-cut ending was a stunner. One that works really well as social commentary for both no smoking, and not letting Big Brother take over our lives.
Got your interest? Grab your copy and enjoy all of the stories! Click here to order. Also available on Amazon
ALL proceeds go to support DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) Texas literacy programs.
The Texas Association of Authors is a progressive and innovative non-profit organization created to help Texas authors market their books. I invite you to take a look at the many programs offered through TxAuthors.
This is the day #RRBC members purchase the book and show support to lift up the author chosen.
Larry is the author of “How to Reach For the American Dream (And Not Get it)”
How to Reach for the American Dream… (and not get it), is the fictional, comedic account of the life of an entertainer who from childhood had what it took to “make it.” You’ll laugh, cry, and cheer him on as he struggles to achieve what only a select few can, through his television kid show debut, glee clubs, remedial college studies, gaining weight as a “starving” artist, dating women out of his league, nightclub entertainer, and romps through radio, television, and publishing.
So, if you’re looking for an entertaining new read, this is it!!
Since the age of five Larry has been a performer. He’s written radio comedy, sketch comedy and plays, produced television and radio, worked as a creative director for an arts and entertainment magazine, and published numerous humorous articles and essays. Add appearing in operas, musicals, and a movie, and one would wonder how someone who has entertained so much, has so little. Well, he’ll tell you…but wait, that would be stupid, because he wrote the book on having what it takes, and now want you to buy the book on knowing what it doesn’t.
Purchase Larry’s book on AMAZON
Learning how to describe eyes in a story without resorting to cliché helps set your writing apart from amateurish fiction. Many beginning authors over-rely on eye descriptions and eye colour to create an impression of their characters. Here are 7 tips for talking about your characters’ eyes creatively:
1. Avoid fixating on eye colour.
2. Make characters’ eyes a source of contrast or incongruity.
3. Use eye description to support story development.
4. Describe the eye area rather than just eye colour.
5. Think about how eyes can communicate psychological states.
6. Read examples of great eye descriptions from literature.
7. Move beyond learning how to describe eyes in a story.
Let’s unpack these points a little:
1. Avoid fixating on eye colour