Saturday, January 28, 2017


"Huh?  Why would you ask if there's something wrong with me?" Peter demanded.  "I was just minding my own business, chasing down post-run wheat bread toast slathered generously with creamy peanut butter by way of my trusty orange juice.  Then whoa Allie, you blinked into our entryway like a young Barbara Eden, only dressed in a terry cloth robe, not the famous genie costume she wore.  You should get one of those in my point of view.  Let me write that down.  Oh, and good job, by the way, almost sending me into orbit without the inconvenience of having to pack rocket fuel on my person.  You better watch it, Alyssa.  I bet NASA folk hereabouts would get crazy jealous if you managed to pull off a neat stunt of that caliber."

"Um, did you mix some Red Bull with your juice, honey?"


"Are you sure?  I ask because quite frankly, you're talking faster than my Uncle Bart, the auctioneer."

"Hey, don't you go trying to change my subject, Beautiful!  Maybe I'd like to know what your malfunction is.  What were you doing, sneaking around to get ready for your reprise role as a pretty cat burglar?  Do you have another drama group gig, or whatever they're called?  As I told you more than once last year, you've already got the 'pretty' character description locked down.  Done deal, it's a wrap."

"Rein yourself in a bit, Casanova.  Flattery won't always get you off the hook with me.  I vividly recall our conversation about this, mostly because I wore my black Victoria's Secret lingerie that always seems to pop your eyes when I model it, and you couldn't keep your hands off my body."  She winked at him seductively.  "As for my 'sneaking around,' you never heard me coming due to the fact you were too occupied chugging straight from the half gallon carton you've still got in your huge left paw."  Alyssa shook her head as she joined him in front of their fridge.  "Seriously, Pete, did you regress back to twelve?"

"Oh, it's like that, huh?  Well, you're regressing, too.  My point is proven, dear wife, by your wearing pink fuzzy bunny slippers at this very instant."

Peter figured he owed Alyssa a wink, all things considered.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017



"Yo, D-man, we've got to talk, hombre!"

Colt Dyce kept his back turned to hide his eye roll when he heard the nasal, high-pitched voice accompanied by the footfalls he dreaded the most.  He had spent more than half an hour swabbing the Resolved Rogue's deck, and was in no mood for any one-on-one discussion with a conceited young buffoon whose authority had gone to his simple-brained head.  Nevertheless, Colt stopped his work and patiently awaited his late night visitor's approach.  He snapped to attention.  The last thing he intended to endure was a lecture about posture, a favorite "motivational adjustment" the old freight vessel's most infamous loudmouth was known to reel in out of thin air when the mood struck his capricious fancy.

"Who were you waving at down there in the water?  Neptune?  Poseidon?  Or was it King Triton?" First Executive Officer Brent Taffney asked with a sneer.  Behind his back, the crew had derisively christened him Taffy Legs, because any weather conditions even slightly out of calm range sent him to his cabin as a general rule.  "You were hired aboard my dad's ship to get work done, not stand around like some tourist.  This ain't no pleasure cruiser, in case you've somehow lost sight of reality these last three months."

As if you're my go-to guy when I need reality explained to me, you snot-nosed little prick, Colt thought, well aware he had to maintain his neutral expression as he stood ramrod straight before a tiresome nemesis half his age.  Nah, the only answer you'll get to your flippant question is the one I deem necessary to get you out of my face in such a way you'll leave under the misconception you've pulled rank on me again.  Scuttlebutt has it the only reason you wound up wearing all those customized officer's uniforms is because your mega-rich pappy wants you doing something with your life other than trolling people on social media while you lounge around his house all day.  He gave you a commission on the oldest ship in his fleet so you can show him you've got the same fire in your belly he once had.  Will you prove able to validate the grand plan he's betting on?  Based on what I've seen so far, I highly doubt it.

Aloud, however, Colt adopted a meek, reasonable tone.

"You're absolutely right, XO.  But my 'waving' you saw was actually a stretching technique I learned during an ergonomics training session I attended once."

"Okay, so what's ergonomics training?" Brent asked with a mystified expression his subordinate privately found immensely satisfying to behold.  He who passed himself off as "The Man," the sole heir to Paul Taffney's vast shipping empire, was just a boy in the matters which counted most for a competitive business.

"It has to do with finding the most efficient method an individual can use for their own movement, or to set up an operating environment that helps teammates work as a unit to get a specific kind of task done over an extended period of time safely while minimizing the risks of sustaining overuse injuries.  What you saw as you got here was my way of stretching ligaments and muscles in my right forearm, wrist, and fingers.  Swabbing a deck is a job which requires a lot of repetitive motion, and I don't want chronic injuries to take me out of action somewhere down the line when I'm needed most.  I'm very grateful to be employed on this freighter, sir, so I'll do whatever it takes to remain productive."

"Yeah, well," Brent muttered as he attempted to find fault with his deckhand's reply and came up empty.  "You just better keep your attitude in line, hombre."  His rancorous personality came back as a thought struck when he looked at his employee's lined, weathered face.  "Wow, you're, like, the oldest crew member on the roster, Dyce!  I bet you've even got some years on this tub we're standing on!  You're so damn ancient, man!" he crowed, gleeful he had found some comedy to get some mileage out of.  He held up his right index finger to indicate he expected close attention paid to his next words.  "Hey, I may not be captain of the Resolved Rogue yet, but what I say can make or break your paychecks, buddy.  Well, I'm almost done wasting my time on you.  I have a, um, I have an appointment."  He spat on the deck and sneered again.  "Uh oh, it looks like you missed a spot, piss ant.  You're swabbing out the galley when you're done here, by the way.  The bottom line is, you're not just covering for Sawyer tonight, but Phillips, too.  No one knows where they are, and I'm sure as hell not going to be the one messing with tracking them down.  Tag, you're pulling extra duty."

"Aye, sir, understood."

The conceited young executive brayed his signature laugh as he strutted off, illuminated by a floodlight mounted to the ship bridge's exterior.

"If there was ever someone who has earned the reputation of being a useless jackass, it's you," Colt growled at the distant officer as he disappeared down an aft stairwell.  "Here I am, doing what responsible adults must, making ends meet with the hand I've been dealt.  That strikes you as funny?  But okay, I can see how your kind finds my circumstances amusing, Taffy Legs," Colt muttered angrily as he cleaned up the phlegm.  "I'm being a team player by filling in for guys who have gone missing, and you spit on the deck.  I suppose that's to be expected from an imbecile who's the antithesis of charming.  I bet if there was an officer awake now who actually earned their rank, Taffney, you wouldn't be as--"

Water pattered on Colt in the same moment he heard a cheerful feminine giggle, which prompted him to gasp as he whipped his line of sight upward.  Thoroughly startled, he barely had an opportunity to make sense of an impossible form as it dropped out of the clear night sky at him.  He discarded his mop out of sheer instinct, the same instinct which then enabled him to thrust both hands over his head.  A slender, blue-haired mermaid contorted her body to land her cool, firm midriff in his outstretched palms.  She shook her head with a friendly smile when he moved to put her down.

"No, please don't let go.  Keep me for a little while longer, Colt."  The mermaid giggled again as she deliberately glided her long, cool belly against his hands.  "If only you could see your own face!  Cassi's right, you are adorable."  Her pale green tail fins swung pendulum-like as she continued to muse aloud.  "You're so young, too, compared to us."

My hunch is she won't elaborate on her last remark anytime soon, but she meant it, he realized upon gazing back at her in equal measure to the earnest fascination with which she studied him.  I'm forty-four, so how old is Sea Seductress here and that Cassi she mentioned?  What's proper etiquette for talking to mermaids about their age?  Technically, they're not ladies, after all.  Oh, heck, I'll just leave the subject alone.

"Wow, here you are," he blurted while he carefully moved his hand positions to support the amused mermaid as if she was a new bride whom he intended to carry over his threshold.  He looked down at her, awestruck.  She was so petite.

His core temperature plummeted without warning as he experienced a vision in which he and the beautiful sea creature in his arms were in the presence of an entity, a being he interpreted as an evil female based upon the arrogant, smug laughter which chortled in his mind.  The being had no form except as a mist which transformed from dainty pink to a deep burgundy.  His fearful companion was tugged inexorably away from him by someone who possessed an ancient strength he could not hope to match.

Colt gulped as he mentally shoved the ominous, unwelcome image out of his thoughts with all the will he could summon.

Meanwhile, the bemusement which had sparkled in the mermaid's icy blue eyes disappeared.  She stifled another giggle in response to how he had bashfully shifted focus after his eyes skimmed her lavender clam shells she used in lieu of a bra.  But that levity gave way to maternal instinct being awakened on his behalf.  She frowned up at him, concerned.

That does it, time to lay off those wee hours vending machine runs somewhat, he scolded himself.  They're really messing with my head.  From the expression on this beauty's face, I'd say it's a fair bet she's wondering what size of straitjacket I 'll fit into.

He smiled in embarrassment to acknowledge his thoughts had veered off temporarily, but all was well and he was more or less okay.

"You're real enough," Colt nodded.  "That makes the gorgeous platinum blonde mermaid who I saw you with a few minutes before my boss showed up real too.  What am I talking about?  Of course she's real!  You used a name in reference to her, after all.  Please excuse me, I'm rather awkward in front of the other gender, always have been.

"It sure was a treat watching you two have fun so gracefully.  Oh, dolphins play in this ship's bow wave too, but they're not nearly as mesmerizing as you mermaids.  I'm just glad sleep deprivation didn't make me imagine your beauty."

He had not let loose a comparable gush of words since the first and last blind date he had attempted when he was nineteen.  Flustered, he was about excuse himself a second time when the mermaid gently put her webbed right hand over his mouth.

"Princess Cassandra and I were pleased you watched us so raptly, dear one.  Your friendly wave charmed us.  And now that you have passed your final character test with flying colors, she will surely greet you as only an elite royal of King Nathaniel's Atlantic Realm is capable of.  My name is Sasha.  I certainly hope you shall remember me, sweet Son of Adam."

With that, she deftly flipped herself up out of his hands and over the freighter's starboard guardrail.  He did not bother to listen for her splashed return into the Atlantic's choppy surface, since it was about 170 feet below the deck he stood upon.  Given the agility she possessed, he would have been shocked if Sasha had created much more than a ripple.

Before he could retrieve his mop, an "all hands respond" klaxon shrilled into the late stillness.

"Wonderful," Colt groaned, and sprinted for the nearest stairwell which would get him to the ship's hold.  "Wow, am I the only one who was topside?  Even after midnight, I should have backup on my heels.  Where is everybody?"




Wednesday, January 18, 2017

About What Happened Here Back On Monday..

Hi to all fiction readers visiting my Blog, welcome.

I've decided that the title for the first novel of my vampire mermaid series will be "Fangs, Fins, and Fortunes:  Book 1."  What I came up with on Monday (January 16) struck me as too boring, and I want my supernatural mermaids to make a splash!

To be honest, I don't even have an educated guess in regard to when this paranormal romance/fantasy hybrid story will be written in its entirety, much less published (I'm still working on my ghostly tale about a guy who finds himself drawn into a 1960 cold case with a haunted Studebaker rolling as his back up) but a Twitter friend got a "what if" idea sparked in my head, and it has caught fire within these last several days.  Since I've been a marathoner in my day, I just gotta run with it.

By this upcoming weekend, I intend to have a teaser page written here on my Blog, so if you and/or folks you know have an interest in reading about mermaids and vampires as they've never been depicted before, you're invited to come on back!

Remember, there's always more fiction.

Bye for now!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Brainstorming for "The Atlantic Advocate Chronicles: Book 1"

Note: My ability to type without errors may get compromised, but it's important for me to just start writing, so here I go.

This story will be told in third person narration.  It will begin hundreds of miles away from Miami, Florida in 1985, somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean.


Princess Cassandra, main protagonist, an elite royal mermaid. She is "elite" because her six sisters and their parents, in addition to 97% of King Nathaniel's secret underwater realm, can't walk on land as a human does, but she can on a whim.  (If his kingdom faces impending crisis, her father can grow a pair of legs too, but only for an hour.  Authorized to radically equip his special forces army of 500 volunteers,  he's required to get approval for such drastic action from a highly respected secret council known as the Enduring Seven, ancient mermaids so adverse to even the idea of being seen they render their decisions, which are non-negotiable, from behind an opaque curtain.)  

 In appearance, Cassandra can pass for a young woman, sporadically "carded" if she ventures into clubs or restaurants serving drinks, but she actually has been considered an adult mermaid since the mid 17th century.  Lean, slender, and split-second agile, she is as brilliant as she is beautiful, thanks to her insatiable tendency to read up on any subject.  Her favorite is world history.  If something big happened, whether it occurred on the continents or in her own realm, her family and friends lay heavy odds that Cassandra knows something about it.  Her parents trust her, although they frequently caution their intrepid daughter the human world, for all its appeal seen from its beaches, can hold dangers nothing her coveted Sea Scout rating has prepared their kind for.  She habitually listens attentively, with respectful manners, then goes off on another adventure, since nothing outside of isolated close calls wild blue whales couldn't drag out of her, has played a role in her frame of reference, anyway.  Since she is one of the elite denizens of the deep, Cassandra can dive to ocean depths that would crumple any submarine humanity has ever launched, exploring Earth's crust when the mood strikes her without a second thought.  Underwater, she's fast, but on land, she can be no more than a blur, waving with a friendly smile as she passes the ultra wealthy in their sports cars who speed down Germany's Autobahn.  She is an excellent judge of character of any living creature, sensing intention within milliseconds.  As a last resort, Cassandra is capable of letting loose a subsonic roar that can hurl an oil supertanker like a softball out of the water and see to it the landing is stuck with only a few ripples on the ocean's surface when she's made her point.  (Littering the waves with trash in front of her is a VERY BAD IDEA for those who don't care for heights and/or seasickness, which pretty much covers everyone.)  An idealistic optimist, Cassandra's well-known reputation for having a sunny disposition in equal measure to her supernatural strength has led her to have subtle windows of vulnerability that, thus far, have been slammed shut by those who look out for the princess while she remains ignorant of their intervention.  Her discreet security detail benefit from the fact she is easy to keep line of sight on, in most circumstances, because her waist length hair has a genetic mutation that makes it a continuous glowing alpine white, and she dwarfs her own father, measured with her willowy length from the crown of her head to her luminous green, stronger-than-they-look tail fins. Because Cassandra's royal family has variations of shining red hair, and the rest of their kingdom has periwinkle blue hair, she can usually be kept track of, unless she feels a "need for speed" in which case only three Shadow Security guards have sea sleds that can keep up.

Sasha, a commoner mermaid, best friend of Princess Cassandra, another main character.  Once a Shadow Security guard who couldn't bear the thought of her rotation ending and mercurial as the princess she developed a unique bond of sister-like concern for is gregarious, Sasha has the blessing of King Nathaniel and Queen Lenore to tag along with their daughter, provided there's not an abuse of such a privilege when Cassandra is sent on an assignment in which a pair of mermaids travelling together would be conspicuous.  While Sasha is pretty in her own right, she secretly envies the ethereal beauty of her king's youngest offspring.  However, in addition, the commoner feels pangs of guilt for once when Cassandra was once superficially injured.  A depth charge not built by any human combatant of the Second World War exploded at point blank range with Cassandra.  That concussive blast hurled the royal into a coral reef with such violence her soft but tougher-than-armor-plating skin on her belly was permanently scarred in one American quarter-sized spot.  Never forgiving herself for being too far away to render immediate protection, Sasha laughs along when the indefatigable princess giggles about her "party popper on steroids" incident in retrospect, but internally, the commoner is weeping beneath the facade of an occasionally abrasive confidant.  Sasha betrays  anxiety or discomfort by tugging on her own light blue hair, sometimes playing with Cassandra's too without realizing it, until the princess playfully smacks her hands away while rolling her eyes in mock exasperation.

Lorraine, a centuries-old vampire, antagonist.  Like citizens of the secluded mermaid realm, she remains perpetually in the long afternoon of adulthood, as she was turned at 30 years old during the Dark Ages, and she's so attractive no intelligent life form on Earth can resist her seduction.  Not satisfied with her feat of remaining undetected and unstopped by people regardless of their location, the ambitious vampire wants to be Mistress of Earth, above and below the waves.  She masterminded the development and deployment of that weapon which scarred, but didn't kill, her secondary objective, which turned out to be Cassandra.  Lorraine had wanted to stun, subdue, and kidnap King Nathaniel, but she realized his daughter was an even better "fruit to pluck."  Her lackeys, overconfident in their thug life prowess, bungled a crucial part of her master plan and got knocked temporarily senseless themselves, which gave an infuriated Sasha, who desperately made up the distance she had lagged behind, a narrow window big enough for rescuing her best friend.  After coldly destroying her inept hired mercenaries, Lorraine forced herself to regain control.  Time and vampires get along very well, she soothes herself.  Waiting is just one of the things she's excellent at, which complements having a gift for having a silver tongue many have fallen victim to over Earth's history.

Wilford Ponchello, known as "Thud" by any henchmen smart enough not to use the vampire's given name under any circumstances, secondary antagonist.  The only reasons Thud has been tolerated since he got turned by Lorraine's buffoon husband during the American Revolutionary War is because he's good, VERY good, at persuading the dregs of any society to get paid for crime under the table.  Plus he's Lorraine's convenient eye candy.  Almost 400 pounds with Adonis good looks and less than four percent body fat, Thud has enough street smarts to skulk around an urban area to get Lorraine's recruiting done without alerting law enforcement agencies of his presence.  Unfortunately for his cunning mistress, Thud's more stupid than a sack of aquarium gravel at virtually every other task she orders of him.  His inflated ego, combined with an abysmal record of successful plans carried out, is testing even her patience.    


Saturday, October 8, 2016

"Doors and Windows"

I don't know how many other authors this happens to, but with the three books of my R&R Trilogy written and sent to Captive Quill Press, I was compelled to make a hard, belated decision.

This weekend I asked for all three novels not to be published.

I called it a hard decision in the first sentence, I see, but that's what one would call "sugar coating."  The choice went against my grain in a massive way.  It took around seven years for me to write Resolve And Retribution, Returns And Reunions, and Response And Rewards.  But I won't even keep them saved in personal files now, because I abhor the idea of making those in my personal life uncomfortable.  (Scenarios got over-the-top intense as my lead characters Ben and his vampire girlfriend Tabitha took care of business.) Besides, as the title of my blog says, there's always more fiction.  I have "what if" zinging around in my head all the time.

Also, I'm reminding myself about that expression which goes something like "when a door closes, a window opens."

To be accurate about current events in my author's life, there are actually a couple of windows:  I've started the process of writing a series of ghost story novels, and adult science fiction is saved in three chapters, just waiting in the wings.  There's a WWI British tank involved, in addition to a pretty alien who has telekinetic ability.

Hey, runners have got to run, and writers have got to write.

Bring it on.


Friday, April 22, 2016

I need to report for my day job soon, so this will be short.

Captive Quill Press, which is part of The Book Nymph company, publishes "Resolve and Retribution: Book 1 of the R&R Trilogy" in addition to "Returns and Reunions: Book 2 of the R&R Trilogy".

"Response and Reward: Book 3 of the R&R Trilogy" is still in the process of being written, with only a few more chapters left before it's completed.  Captive Quill Press will publish the entire trilogy, vampire fans.

I've got to go for now.

Have a great day, everyone!


Friday, January 29, 2016

Big Things, They Have Happened

This won't actually be a work of fiction itself, rather an update about fiction I've already written.

First, Xlibris Corporation is no longer my publisher for my first two novels "Resolve And Retribution" and its sequel "Returns And Reunions."

Second, both of these books have been re-written (the respective core plots have not changed) which has made them each a bit longer, but they're easier to follow along with now, I've been told.

Third, I've decided this will be a paranormal romance trilogy, so I've started to write "Response And Reward."

Fourth, my new publisher is The Book Nymph, a small, well-thought-of publishing house whose CEO happens to be one of my Twitter friends and an author herself.

Last but not least, my re-written, re-branded "Resolve And Retribution" novel goes on sale Monday February 1, 2016 for Amazon patrons who have Kindle, Kindle Fire, and similar devices.  After 90 days have passed, my book will be available via other online vendors as well.

I hope many readers get well-acquainted with the primary characters of my R/R series, Ben (ordinary human guy) and Tabitha (beautiful 17th century young noblewoman turned vampire.)

That's all for now, I'll be back later.

Michael W. Holman