As I work on "Lovefall" from Ashland's Asylum, I find myself hooked on the main character's ability to predict death. For Robert Strife, seeing death is rarely a gift. He sees it when it is near--and at times he can prevent or alter it--but there aren't too many patterns. It's not like he can see death exactly 5-10 minutes before it happens or anything--it can actually be days out.
When you create a character with a special gift--or a dark power for the more nefarious--you wonder if the heart of the character's concept is believable. Quite honestly, if Lovefall suspends too much disbelief, to the point it's no longer enjoyable, then it's only my fault as the writer. However, I feel a little bit better after doing some research about 3 other folks who have claimed to have insight into death.
I might be introducing a new story called "Cult, Inc." featuring a brand-new, heroically insane character named DICK FERRARI. Check out the snippet below, an feel free to let me know if it's intriguing or not.
Ashland's Asylum : a Novel in Stories by C.M. Humphries
As I continue to work on my upcoming novel in stories Ashland's Asylum, I struggle to decide what I want in the Asylum itself. There's a South Wing to the Asylum, in which some antiquated medical equipment hides. The Asylum big-wigs need to remove the equipment before Inspection Day [See Strife], but maybe not quite all of it.
I've constructed the a list of the Top 6 Insane Ways of Treating Insanity--in my whatever opinion--and perhaps some of you might enjoy helping me decide which pieces of equipment to include in the story ? Hey, hey?
FIRST PREVIEW OF ASHLAND'S ASYLUM
from No-Injury Policy by C. M. Humphries
(C) 2012 - 2014
Nauseating strobes flash through the packed night club and break everyone down into static. My head spins as I try to focus on a blurred blond woman across from me on a curved leather bench. I watch her tap her neon-painted fingernails along the table.
With one hand running along the side of my head, she makes me recoil even before she flashes her cracked grin. This ghost of a woman digs her nails into her face and peels down her flesh. Rather than cartilage or tissue, underneath her skin is a deep blackness with only her eyes and bone structure to reveal.
"Psychopaths make up 1 to 2 percent of the American population. That’s around 6,278,000 psychopaths who live among us and use intimidation and manipulation to lord over others."
One thing you might not realize is that most killers are not psychopathic, according to James Fallon, a neurobiologist at UC Irvine. In fact, he argues most of them like their lives too much to want to destroy it. Instead, they would rather bring you into their world through coy seduction. These are people all around you. In fact, there's about 1 psychopath for every work environment with around 35 people or more.
Continuing reading to see how the psychopath slips into our everyday lives - or to see if there might be one close to you.
The last shot for Chance Black to save his family . . .
Chance Black, while not the writer he hoped to be, was a pretty damn good photographer. With his skills, Chance turned a dollar or two--enough for him, his wife, and his son to get by on. One day, a comparatively sizable paycheck came along. An opportunity arose to photograph an event for the Long Brooke Sync, a local tabloid publication, but Chance had no idea what would come along with the cash. By coincidence, one of his photographs captured suspicious behavior in the background, and unfortunately for Chance, the man committing the act figured it out first. In order to take the photograph back from Chance, the man in the photo decided he needed some major collateral.
It's been awhile since I wrote the popular "5 Elements of a Good Horror Story", which made me wonder if there was anything more I could add to the list. As I worked a bit more on Ashland's Asylum, I realized there is a great concept I completely missed - the concept of false antagonists and allies. After all, shouldn't any good horror story keep you guessing who's the bad guy and who's the hero?
I'm working at getting back to the blog more often. Not that it's an excuse, but I've been pretty busy working on the follow-up novel in stories to No-Injury Policy called Ashland's Asylum.
As always, I've bitten off a bit more than I'm meant to chew. So it'll be until around winter 2014/2015 before this one hits the shelves.
However, I thought you might like to know what has made this book so difficult and what I've been up to lately. Enjoy!
If you're in the Plains or Midwest, maybe this is a good thing for you. Maybe not. Who knows?
All I know is that I'd almost forgotten to keep this short story going until I had an email inquiring about it. Well, the email itself wasn't performing any such action, but the emailer (Thanks, Jenny!) actually liked this story. It's another oldie from my first waves as a writer that I hope you enjoy.
To catch you up, Chance Black, freelance photographer working for the Long Brooke Sync, a tabloid publication of all goings-on around downtown Long Brooke, accidentally snaps a photo of someone and something he should have. Now he has to return the photos to a madman who cannot afford the risk of having another set of eyes on them. He either does that, or he loses his family.
WANNA START FROM THE TOP?
PART I - PART II - PART III - PART IV - PART V
Enjoy a quick read about two old ladies fighting & a man's 90th birthday surprise.
But it sure is a lot to me!
We're only 6 away from breaking 100 likes on the C.M. Humphries facebook Author Page!
You're already getting the free story in 2014, but I've challenged my self as a sort of early New Year's Resolution.
Recently Neil Gaiman, most famous for his book & animated film Coraline, explored the importance of reading. His focus was how we estimated the number of prison and jail cells we will need in the future. He concluded that the formula was quite simple: figure out how many 11-year-olds were illiterate.
My natural disposition is to jump ahead of the present and continue towards the future. I have this terrific rock band I've been working with, some brand-new novels and short stories on the well, future blog hops, interview, etc. Things are good. But that's only now.
For awhile I had to take a little hiatus and get myself back together. For the first, I experience a shortage in the good ol' noggin', or an anxiety attack. A close friend of mine suggested it might be worth writing about, so here we are. If you've had a similiar experience yourself, make sure to check it out. If not, maybe it's worth exploring for the sake of understanding.
I'm finally back at it. In the next blog entry, I'll explain a little bit more about my recent hiatus, but for now all I want to talk about is what's to come. Since I've had a bit of time to myself, I reviewed No-Injury Policy and decided I had to follow the short story collection up somehow, or at least the end-tale.
With that in mind, I'm working on a novel in stories called Ashland's Asylum, which takes place almost twenty years after the end of "No-Injury Policy."
Find out about my new book and more in the newest entry in The Forbidden Blog. Also make sure to check around the site periodically, as things are getting better.
Do you have a favorite fall memory linked to a train? What do you imagine you would see if you were riding a train in the fall? Join the authors of Wild Child publishing and Freya’s Bower as we Take an Autumn Train Ride through our blogs.
Prizes will include
Please visit these sites for more chances to win, the more you visit the more chances you have to win. We have 46 participating authors. You can stop at as many or as little blogs as you wish. At each stop, you will find two chances to enter per blog to win some awesome prizes. If you visit all, that’s 92 chances to win! There will be five, lucky winners.
Take the Blog Train and Visit These Blogs for more chances to win
Marci Baun/Kit Wylde
Critters at the Keyboard
Judith Leger, Fantasy and Contemporary Romance Author
Highland Rogue Writing
The Fictional World of Jaime Samms
Follow Where the Path will Take You
The Wandering Mind of Lizzy P. Bellows
Where Love and Magic Meet
The Shadow Portal
The Blog Zone
Blog By iMagine
Ardyth DeBruyn Author Blog
Shadows of the Past
Cassie Exline -- Mystery and Romance
Sarcastic Rambling & Writing
That’s What I Think
Sue’s Random Ramblings
Make Old Bones
Elements of Mystery
Molly Dean's Blog
The Forbidden Blog
Fiddleeebod -- land of stories
Nita Wick’s Blog
Ruth G. Zavitsanos
Too Poor for Texas
City of Thieves
Musings and Doodles
The Western Writer
Bike Cop Blog
The Character Depot
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Lately there's been a major buzz about print publications, copyright infringement, our education rate, and what role literature will have in the future. Luckily, it seems many people are acting out to insure a better tomorrow. The times have changed, so have publishers, news sources, print and digital technologies, as well as our educational systems. All of these things combined show three signs of hope for the future.
Sorry for the wait, but here's Part V of "Lucky Shot," a story from the lost archives.
I'm not sure what my recent obsession with King of the Hill is, so I apologize for the headline. However, I have been up to something rather cool since I've been gone. Oh, and I started a band again. (The teen me is revved up.)
More relevant at this moment is the fact I'm going to be part of a blog hop with the good folks and authors of Wild Child Publishing. (Remember Excluded?) There are two things I need to figure out here, so maybe you can decide for me.
The last few days you might've noticed I sort of fell off the map. Reason 1 is that I'm currently work on some music, which takes some time. Reason 2 is because I had the great fortune of having my computer malfunction.
After a few days without access to my main writing device, I found myself diving deeper into music and writing out a new version of His Daughter by hand, and that's when I realized there were even more benefits than I previously mentioned.
"Ideas, ideas are just as real as the neurons they inhabit. They leap from brain to brain." - Concept from the "What is Meme?" essay by James Gleick &Richard Dawkins
More so than genetics, ideas over the years evolved in nature. The basic concept here is that ideas transcend, generation to generation, which often times results in a more-informed and creative society. As ideas mature, they can even lead to progression. While these ideas might seem ever-lasting, I do believe there are a few threats stopping us from becoming a more productive specie.
Some of us have wild dreams we'll never let go. We hope this stamina and this resilience will lead to the fruition of those goals. We ignore criticism & doubt. We feel lost without the pursuit of such happiness.
However, if you're like most of us, there's this achievement we haven't quite snatched. Until we do, everything around us is grey-scaled --you know, between black & white, which aren't even colors.
And if you're also like us, perhaps you believe you defined the phrase "been in a funk." We might also believe ourselves to be the very ones who started labeling almost everything else "menial." But after a transition from dread to research, I believe there are few things I have learned about the pursuit of happiness.
I've touched on this subject before: The need for fiction in everyday life. In other posts I've discussed how it can help your sex-life, open your eyes to new subjects, benefit video games & pornography, and the benefits reading has towards sleep & how you can read in your sleep.
The general trend between almost all of those topics is that reading, particularly fiction, can help make you a better person. That is, if you desire such a thing. As usual, I was reading and stumbled upon a great article focusing on a study that might have proven that indulging in a good fiction story can make you a better learner, a better thinker, and consequently, a better person.
Like most people, though, I was a bit skeptical. I can see the easy argument that all writers would want you to keep reading, right? We make money that way (sometimes). However, I wouldn't write with the intent on a making a profit, unless it was in the intrinsic sense. So . . .
Does fiction really help you learn?
Fear, focus, and the future. C.M. Humphries talks about writing, horror, and whatever.