So, week one of the “factory type” job is almost done. No writing this week. Had two nights of overtime. Getting home at 1:30 AM doesn’t make the muse happy. Got some ideas for “work site scenes” though. The place is full of real characters! I had one of them (my trainer no less) laugh so hard he couldn’t stop and had to yell, “Retreat!” It’s a comedy scene that’ll keep my readers laughing for sure. Speaking of comedy scenes, if you haven’t read my novel of suspense, “The SEED”, you’ll get a kick out of Melvin. “The SEED” deals with the dangerous path we’re traveling on in regard to genetically modified foods. The hero is loosely based on my brother, a treasure hunter with a gold mine in Alaska. Here’s Mel in action . . . .
I ain’t involved in no kidnappin’, Melvin thought when he hung up the phone. “I gotta get away!” He collapsed onto his couch, slapped his palms together prayer fashion and tried to think. Sometimes, when he squeezed his eyes shut real tight, it helped.
He tried but no thoughts came.
“Okay, maybe I gotta move around a little. Was I movin’ the last time I got an idea?” He decided to give it a try. He lifted his corpulent torso off the couch and started to pace. With squinty eyes and bouncing belly he thumped back and forth across the room, hoping to come up with something. After several passes he was dizzy. “Nope. Nothing, darn it!”
Then he remembered, “Oh, yeah! I was eating! I think better when I eat!” He raced toward the kitchen, tugged at the refrigerator door and foraged behind two bottles and slimy lumps that once had been tomatoes. The only edible thing he could find was a chunk of cheese. he decided that it would be okay to eat it–as long as he avoided the fuzzy blue spots.
Melvin searched for the best angle to get a good bite and wondered if cheese was brain food. “Prob’ly not–mice ain’t too swift.” He carefully sunk his teeth into the good edge. “Gee, this ain’t too bad.” He decided it was worth the effort to stop and eat even if cheese was not brain food and reached for a beer to wash it down. After his hasty feast, Melvin was ready to try to think once again.
Want more? Check out “The SEED” at www.annrichduncan.com.
Working on Sequel to “The SEED”. Here’s the opening scene. Let me know what you think!
Suspense that takes place near Tucson, AZ.
Ginger Farraday loved cedar. She had a collection of cedar boxes, some plain, some decorative, many crafted by artisans from around the world. Several though, were made by her father. Mmm, the fresh, sweet yet spicy essence of cedar! It never failed to summon up pleasant memories for Ginger. Happy hours in her Dad’s wood shop. Soft mounds of sawdust. The profusion of curly wood chips . . . .
Usually the scent of cedar spelled security.
But now? It wrought terror.
A single tear slid down Ginger’s cheek. She screamed, but no one heard: she was 13 miles west of Tucson, 7 miles south of Williston, Arizona, and 3 feet below the ground–buried alive in a crude, splintery cedar box.
Dad, where are you?
Ginger wailed. Then she squeezed her eyes shut, determined to concentrate on good memories, her mind’s eye focusing on her Dad’s woodshop. She wished she were there now, watching him work. Listening to him hum. But, Burnham Farraday did not always hum as he worked. Sometimes he lectured. What I’d give to hear one of his lectures now, she thought. A wry sigh gurgled in her throat as she struggled to remember
Got lots of scenes done, mentioning endangered species, the Sonora Desert, etc. Might post a few if you ask!!! Don’t forget to comment! and Check out my website at www.annrichduncan.com!
So, I’m catching on. Really! Sure, I’ve been tweeting for a few months. Got over a hundred tweets now! And, duh . . . the other day I notice there’s a list of tweets that are trending. So, I check ’em out. What fun! One is: U know U hungry when (and then you fill in the blank). I wrote, “UknowUhungryWhen U stomach growls and it scares D cat.” Hey, I picked up two followers right away! So, I did it again. UKnowUHungryWhenUPressUFingerIntoDCrumbsAndLickEmOff.
Yum. And today? It’s “International Talk Like a Pirate Day”. So, I “talked” like a pirate: You haven’t read the Johnny Vic books? Sheet in the jib, then off to walk the plank with ya. Arrrrrrrr!
Better yet, was: You should be embarrassed because . . . (and I wrote: U Forgot 2 Choose God First.). Ah, yes. I finally got it!
Choose Him first . . . receive His promise.
Got a set of photos from “Johnny Vic” yesterday. He and his buddy (an 80-year-old bush pilot) were up at their Alaskan gold mine. The hole pictured here at the right? It was the last hole they dug on their trip in June, and it gave up a bit of the shiny stuff. Yep . . . gold. And, if you’ve read my books you know that Johnny Vic and John Victor are always on a quest for adventure and treasure, including that shiny yellow stuff.
In Johnny Vic’s Nautical Adventures, my young hero watches as a man dressed like a Jesuit priest hides bars of gold along the shore of Lake Champlain. And you know what? My brother, the “real” Johnny Vic has a friend who found a gold bar near the lake. It’s not that hard to believe; after all, French voyageurs have lugged gold throughout this country thru the centuries, from the Champlain basin to the Mississippi. Speaking of gold, wouldn’t it be great if there really was a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? And speaking of rainbows, here’s a photo of one that I shot last year at our place, the House of Angels. Want to see more beautiful shots? There are several at our House of Angels website, located at the web address below this picture.
Rainbows. Did you know that in order to see a rainbow there must be rain in the distance in front of you while the sun is shining low to the horizon behind you? There are seven colors in a rainbow, including red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. Christians believe that the rainbow is an example of God’s covenant not to destroy the world again by floodwaters. One famous oil on canvas was executed by Constantino Brumidi in 1866. It shows George Washington as he’s being propelled heavenward on a rainbow. And below him? It’s lady liberty as she tramples on the power of kings and tyrants. Hmmmm. Where’s lady liberty when you need her?
So, go to: www.ChristsHouseofAngels.org. And, after you finish there, you can click the “about Ann” button to learn about my books.
Johnny Vic sees Benedict Arnold in "Champlain Gold"
Looks like 2011 is going to be a great year for Johnny Vic. Like, what are the odds that your character is going to be the focus of an historical play, even as he’s being “immortalized” and mounted on the wall of Ticonderoga Elementary School? Even as you’ve been picked up by an exciting literary agent? (by the way, as a result of her advice, I’ve got a great new website: www.annrichduncan.com. ) But, before you go there, read on!
Whitehall, New York, is an historical town at the very southern end of Lake Champlain. Originally called Skenesborough, it’s the site of the first American naval shipyard: Benedict Arnold was commissioned by Congress to build 15 warships there! And while they lost the battle (of Valcour), those 15 little ships did succeed in turning the huge British fleet back toward Canada. I’m working with the Whitehall Rec Assn and Bridge Theatre to do Johnny Vic’s Whitehall Adventure. After all, Horace Greeley and Charles Dickens both visited Whitehall (they’re the inspiration for an opening song for the play!)
Vacationing this summer? Consider Whitehall, New York! And a hop and a skip away is East Poultney, VT, where Johnny Vic may just star in a second historical play. Jeepers. More on that later. Right now I should get to work. Two plays to work on. It’s definitely “play time”. Don’t forget to check out my recipes, art and Crafty Kitchen posts before you leave. And please! I welcome your comments! Learn more at my website: www.annrichduncan.com . . . including a puzzle page for JohnnyVic fans.
Found a visitor on our front porch. Couldn’t be more beautiful–a lunar moth. Pale green, flowing, delicate as can be, yet capable of tremendous aeron0tics. An air dancer. 8-inch wing span. Makes me want to revise William Blake’s quote about eagles, to wit: When thou seest a lunar moth, thou seest a portion of genius; lift up thy head!
As I walk thru our garden I see a butterfly and its buddies. They’re as pretty as the flowers. So I googled butterfly quotes and up popped one from a guy named Lebrun . . . “The butterfly is a flying flower.” Yup.
Well, I headed toward the front door and saw that the lunar was on the floor. Figured that wasn’t a good place. And while the advice I might receive from a friend who happens to be a zoologist (at the Pember Museum in Granville, New York) would be a resounding, “DON’T TOUCH!”, I decided I had to move the creature since it would not respond to any noise or movement I made. After all, we have two exuberant huskies (Ginger the sammy, and Gabriel the siberian). And we have two cats who love to chase anything with wings. So, I gently picked it up and tossed it into the air. As it fluttered away, I thought of that sleep commercial on TV, and of a quote I saw awhile ago by William Hazlett, the British writer from the 17/18-hundreds: “Gracefulness has been defined to be the outward expression of the inward harmony of the soul.” It’d be great if there were more grace and harmony in the world. www.annrichduncan.com.
What comes to your mind when you think about gardening? An aching back? Throbbing knees? Chipped nails? Or, do you think about the end result . . . the sweet fragrance of delicate white Margaret Merrill roses bordering a front
crisp, sweet carrots
walk, the flaming red petals of Caroline Testout roses as they scale a wall, or the crisp, thirst-quenching crunch of your favorite cucumbers, or crisp, sweet carrots? For some, it’s reality–probably even BOTH realities–from toiling in their personal gardens to sitting down to a satisfying home-grown meal at the dinner table.
And then, there’s us writers, who must help you to smell, taste, see and experience the gardens in our novels. For instance, on page 91 of my novel of suspense, The SEED (that can be found at www.annrichduncan.com) you get to “see” Dr. Bascomb’s gardens thru Evie’s eyes as she storms over the big hill: . . . the contrasting foliar effects were further evidence of the owner’s skills in working with plant life–from the bursts of tall, waggling grasses to the sheared conical evergreens, every inch had been coaxed alive with the colors and the mingling scents of flowers and herbs. An assortment of climbing roses laden with cream, pink and deep red buds spilled from the tops of stone walls in anticipation of a riotous blooming season. And to Evie’s far left? The delicate Japanese honeysuckle vines released their sweet fragrance into the fresh country air to blend with the heady scents of lemon verbena and golden sage. This scene takes place in Massachusetts, in the Berkshires, where you can see the tower on top of Mount Greylock (the highest peak in the state) in the distance.
Mount Greylock? Massachusetts? I spent twenty years in that area, working and raising my girls. We lived in Adams, North Adams, and finally in Williamstown, before I moved to Vermont in 1998. The Berkshires are beautiful and the Green Mountains of Vermont are gorgeous. And then, there’s the Adirondacks in New York (where I grew up). They’re amazing.