Making a Comeback – Written By Don Massenzio

Welcome back to the writing and blogging world, Don Massenzio!! You were sorely missed!!

Author Don Massenzio

Well, it’s been a while. I used to be a fairly active blogger and writer and, frankly, I’ve missed it.

It’s been months since I’ve made an original post. My job has been very intense and it prevented me from being the blogger and writer that I wanted to be.

What I’ve decided to do is to make a gradual comeback. I’ve got some announcements about audio books that are now available and upcoming writing ventures that I want to share.

I also miss reading some of my favorite blogs and passing them on to my followers.

I might not post every day, or every week for that matter, but i will be on here and I will be reading and sharing select blog posts when I can.

I hope all of you are doing well and I’m looking forward to some interaction, no matter how intermittent.

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Author Spotlight – Raymond Walker

Hello, please introduce yourself.

Hi, My name is Raymond Walker and I am a writer. I write under a few aliases as well as my own name so some of you may know me as “Ray T Walker”, Maeve O’Connell, Robert Anderson, June Rutherford and Elijah Plane but most of my books are written under my own name; Raymond Walker.

1. When did you start writing?

I started writing, way back in the mists of time, the seventies, little more than a child, I was raised on a farm in the middle of nowhere and there was little to do other than work study and read. A village lay close by; Peninver (Pro peneever) and it was there I attended school. As is the case with most writers they were raised a reader. I started reading for myself at a rather young age but no more so than many others. I was no savant, rather just a young boy with little other to do than read.
I remember reading Alan Garner’s, “Weirdstone of Brisingammen, Jack London’s “Call of the wild” and White Fang” My very first of the, sagas, “Njals saga”, “Lord of the Rings”, “Watership down” when I was barely into double figures.

I started writing in my teens but most of the tales told were not worthy of notice. A country boy from a farm in the middle of nowhere, I had to travel across the country to College and ended up in the capital. Beautiful, filled with history, the site of the new renaissance, the Athens of the North, I was only Fifteen when I picked up sticks and headed east. University took up some time, but I think that I learned more from the people and streets of Edinburgh than I did from my tutors. I was studying Polymer Process Technology under some of the luminaries of the age but the ancient hoariness, the Gothic spires and dreadful history of Scotland’s capital seeped into my lonely country bones. Already imbued with a taste for the “Horror” story, the dark and unusual, the environment, the dark wynds, the overwhelming mystery, could not help but fuel my taste for the macabre.

I qualified with no problem but was disappointed with the course even as I was studying it. Science was never to be for me I thought at the time.
Whilst in Edinburgh I found “The Science Fiction bookshop” and met some cool people and through them I started working for the magazine “Uncanny Tales” part time, whilst still studying Polymer process technology and later, Mechanical engineering.

My first published story “A Shiver” appeared in “Astounding stories, Amazing Tales” and “Wondrous Tales” in 1980. In 82’ “Nut Brown Eyes” was published as a novella and serialized in “Uncanny Tales”. A version of the same tale appeared later in the noted mystery magazine; “Tales of mystery and imagination”. I wrote for many mag’s at the time and was regularly published but only earned a little. Married, and then with children I put writing aside and looked to earn a living and so entered the business world. The less said about that the better.

2. What motivates you to write?

I have very little motivation to write. I enjoy the creation of something new and original but have not the impetus of those wishing to “make it” or “write the great novel” rather I just like telling a good tale that others appreciate. Generally I write because it is in my nature to do so. (be glad of a short answer) The idea sits in my head, it hatches and I try to write it. Sometimes that is easily done, at others it is a dreadful misery and I do not get it right.

3. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

I am never drawn to genres, I always think; that is to my detriment. My very first novel, as you may expect, was a tale of the unexpected. “Nut Brown Eyes” a narrative tale set around the wild woods of Northern Scotland. My Second “My Peculiar Guinevere” a fantastical historical piece done in snippets of each of the characters lives. I have written historical fact, historical fiction, fantasy, contemporary romance, faerie tales, generic fantasy, Ghost stories, Science fiction, horror and even political comment over the years. Genre matters little to me. I always think that a good story will be a good story wither it is of birds in the sky or dragons in the mist. I have never found a genre I do not enjoy reading in.

There are some genres I prefer more than others, as Is the case with all readers but I have read fantasy that has fascinated me, Erotica, that has aroused me, Science fiction that sent me in deep stasis, thinking, others that have bid me soar.
Crime fiction that has assaulted my senses, Philosophy that has made me understand a little more of what I am and so on. I shall pause there, I may be assaulting your senses and ability to be bothered listening to me for much longer. Lol- but I have much more to say. I shall just finish his by saying that there is little difference between Hard Sci-fi and a bodice ripper. The good writer will tell the tale well no matter what it is; the bad……..

4. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

Many of my peers have ambitions. once I also had the same dream, the great writer, the bestseller, the Nobel prize (lol), writing the perfect novel. To be honest, I am aware of my abilities, I am a good writer (not great) many enjoy my tales, and hopefully always will. I look to make each one better than the one before. I sell a few books here and there. I no longer look forward to the bestseller, the great book. I keep writing because it is now a habit like smoking or drinking, it courses through my blood and I suspect that it will until my blood and internal organs are replaced with formaldehyde. Something that I suspect will happen in the not too distant future.

 

5. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

I have never suffered from writers block, I cannot imagine anyone so afflicted. I have a large ring bound book into which I place ideas for new books, new stories, short or long, That book is not only filled but there are many other sheets of paper, folded and added with outlines and Ideas I will not live long enough to tell. It does not really matter wither your struggle is writing the next tale or deciding which tale to write next. Just get on with it. Others may disagree. The big thing is telling what tale you wish others to read. As often you will get this wrong. I know I have, Often.

Those that I wish others to read, may one day be written but I suspect that I will complete few of them, and perhaps not even the ones that I wish to before my demise.
Each day I come up with ideas for new books, still untold. Some I will write, others will die with me. I hope however, to tell many more tales over the years remaining to me.

6.  What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

To new Authors I would offer only two pieces of advice; Learn your trade.

Write short pieces first, write for newspapers, magazines, periodicals and even business papers. With a little ability and a great deal of reading even the most mundane of us can become great writers.

The Second piece of advice, I know, Seems to contradict the first. Spend time writing your best work, let the world pass by and do not rush. Wait for the right words at the right time. When those words are not coming, write something else. On Facebook, an article, a newspaper story, for the printed press, a column, a contradictory piece, a short tale for a magazine. It is difficult to make your living as a writer. You need to be hard-working, capable and clever. Of Course your cool novel may suddenly make you rich but In my experience it rarely does. So you spread yourself and work and if willing to put the effort in and talented enough (and I am not that good) you make a living.
Then you have the time to wait and see if people like your books.
Some will. Some will not. No book is wonderful to everyone.

7.  Please, tell us about your work. 

I enjoy writing, even when it is difficult and you review what you have just produced and decide that it is terrible, unworthy of what you imagined when you set out to write whatever, whichever tale you imagined.
Yet the opposite also applies.
I recently started putting together a collection of tales and realized that it was a little short. So I thought to add a tale from a little read book to complete the collection. This tale I found delightful, well written and approaching wondrous. So I know that I can produce a great work.

Thank you very much for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here. Please come back anytime!


Connect with Raymond:

Main author site; www.raytwalker.com

The new Novel website; http://sheweptblacktears.yolasite.com/

Another author site; http://www.raytwalker.wixsite.com/raymond-walker

Online Presence for the Wondrous Tales and Mercurial Tales magazines (under construction though visible); www.mercurialtales.com
For Horror tales only go to; http://raynayday.weebly.com
For Fantasy Tales only go to; http://raymondwalker.weebly.com
To read my blog go to; http://www.raytwalker.wixsite.com/stories

Amazon Authors page go to; https://www.amazon.co.uk/Raymond-Walker/e/B002CB59VA/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

E-mail; raytwalker@googlemail.com


Raymond’s books:

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5th Halloween Poem Contest – And The Winners Are…

Picture courtesy of https://northernnatalcourier.co.za

Picture courtesy of: http://preventioncdnndg.org/

The jury has decided!

Today I’m writing representing the Jury of the 5th Halloween Poem Contest 2019.

The winners of the contest are:

Halloween by Donna Matthews

Don’t let them in by MacKenzie Tastan

The Witching Hour by Valerie Cruz

(The winners are listed in order of their submissions)

Thank you so much for your amazing poems, winners! You will get an email today.
______________________________________________

Our three winners of the contest can choose one of the offered e-books.

Signed Paperbacks with a T-Shirt of Hiding from the Light – OR – Winter’s Ghost – OR – The Painting written by Raymond Walker
E-book of A Horse by Any Other Name: A Doctor Butterbaugh Mystery – OR – E-book of A Girl and Her Dog: A Short Story – OR – At the End of the Rainbow – OR – What you wished for, written by Sherry Perkins
E-book of “Soul Taker” – OR – ‘Sundance‘ written by Aurora Jean Alexander

CONGRATULATIONS!

It was a difficult decision for the jury. But we had a lot of fun and want to thank all poets for their wonderful poems.

______________________________________________

Thank you, Raymond Walker and Sherry Perkins for their jury work and offering one of their books to the winners. I appreciate your help and support!


Now, please permit me a word on my own account:

The Halloween-Poem Contest has brought us all a lot of work and fun and many wonderful Halloween poems, showing how much talent there is around.

However, it also showed us, with this year having the lowest number of participants, that our poets have shown all their skills within the Halloween theme. 

After five years of organizing the Annual Halloween-Poem Contest and hosting it on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest,’ I think it is time for something new.

It was five years of fun and I wanted to thank everyone, all participants, and in particular all jury members from the first to the last contest, for making this a wonderful experience for me! Thanks so much for all your work, your help, your support – and the wonderful books you offered as prizes in the five years! You all are amazing, not only as authors but also as wonderful friends!

Good Bye Halloween-Poem Contest. It was great.

A. J. Alexander

5th Halloween Poem Contest – 4th And Last Group Of Submitted Poems —

Picture courtesy of http://preventioncdnndg.org/

Please respect each authors’ and poets’ copyright. The rights remain with the writers. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from each of the poems author’s is strictly prohibited and violates copyright laws in the country you are reading this work in as well as in the country you are trying to re-publish this work in. – Aurora Jean Alexander


The Witching Hour

by

Valerie Cruz

When willows arch their backs in reverence,
bowing toward the earth below.
When evening breezes messenger the coming of the moon’s pale glow.

When night birds telegraph their omens,
fresh from lunar heights, foretold and hearth sides showcase flames emblazoned,
burnished embers edged in gold.

From deep in silent, grassy places sodden with late-evening air.
Ambivalent to strange embraces,
lilies bring their buds to bear.

Amidst the stony tributaries built to those no sound may reach.
To evidence impermanence,
engraved with lessons, yet to teach.

Here begets the Witching Hour, slivered apex of the night.
All at once, begun and ended,
metaphor for mortal plight.

Taunts all life with fear and splendor,
dreams of flying, long since lost.
Tempts the grave with memories tender.
Glimpse the light, whatever cost.

Coiled within the misty shadow,
serpentine and poised to strike, lay the horrid reckoning
feared by both chaste and foul alike.


Graveyard Speed Dating

by

Chris Meredith

The cold and misty air contains a deathly musk
A stench that hovers over the graves
Stirring from the ground of depth
Lost souls looking upwards to be saved

Bony hands clutch their invitation
Tight to their skeletal chest
They hope to attract a new dead mate
One they can touch and maybe caress

Darkness is their familiar friend
As they sit beside their first date
Beauty is in the socket of the beholder
As a specialty, their head rotates

Stripped of flesh and brains
They now judge on spirit alone
They talk about previous lives
And reminisce about earthly homes

The church bell sounds its tune
Its time to swap around
The truth is they will never find new love
While they all sleep six feet underground


NIGHTMARES

by

Agnieszka Filipek

1.

it’s night
the avenues burning
in moonlight
the death of a child
jumping
from a roof

horses with iron hooves
pulling the corpse
the skull slamming
on the curb
ghouls fighting
over the remains

dawn startled
escaping into the trees
and his coat
caught by rain
dragging
blooded

2.

finding
my mauled body
damp in a ditch
darkness
stretches its arms
threatens to embrace

even my kitten of hope
is falling off
the fence
and a roadside scarecrow
is gouging out
his eyes

3.

I cannot sleep
close my wet eyes
with your hand
with your lips cover
the gates of nightmares
sit beside me


 

5th Halloween Poem Contest – 1 Day Left – Hurry Up!

Picture courtesy of http://preventioncdnndg.org/

 

Deadline for the contest is

October 31, 2019 – 9 pm Pacific Time

Hurry up!

Every author and poet are invited to participate and deliver a “Halloween-Poem” to my email address:

aurorajean.alexander@aol.com

together with their picture and a link to their website, a social media account or blog

  • Your poem needs a Halloween theme.
  • Your poem needs a minimum of 99 words.
  • Your poem has to be delivered to my email address between October 10 and Halloween, October 31, 2019, at 9 pm Pacific Time.
  • Your poem has to be delivered together with your picture and a link to your blog/page.
  • Please avoid violence, bad language, and sexual content within the poems. It would be disqualified.

Thank you very much for participating and making it very hard for the jury to decide on the winners!

A possible new novella or novel. It’s up to you! – Written By Jack Eason

Jack Eason posted an excerpt of a possible novel or novella on his blog. He would like feedback on his writing and would like to hear if we want him to continue with this. Check it out, please – you won’t be disappointed. Then leave your comment! Thank you!


https://youtu.be/6n9EyT1R3l0

Have We Had Help?

The Instrument

~~~

Because of the hubbub in the stadium no one saw or heard the thumb of an insignificant elderly man’s left hand snap against his left forefinger, before sweeping both of his hands in front of him in an imperceptible way, close to his body. But, everyone there that day experienced the carnage that transpired.

As far as he was concerned the time to rid the nation of everyone who didn’t deserve to live had arrived! He sat at the back of the crowd in the stadium listening to Miserere mei, Deus (Agnus Dei) on his headphones, oblivious to the chaotic scene unfolding before him. Whenever circumstances appeared to be getting beyond his control, Allegri’s beautiful choral work always restored his inner peace. With his right hand he once more waved it from left to right in an almost dismissive gesture. Instantly peace returned to the stadium. Apart…

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How To Survive Being Married To A Writer #WritingCommunity – Written By Lucy Mitchell

Lucy Mitchell published a very helpful post on her ‘Blonde Write More’ blog. The post is mainly helpful to a writer’s better half and I think she gets a few points that not only made me smile but nodding enthusiastically. See for yourself. Thanks so much, Lucy!


It’s not easy being married to a writer. We are strange creatures.

Here are some useful tips on how to survive being married to a writer:

1. Accept the fact that you will spend a lot of your marriage talking about people, events and locations that don’t actually exist.

2. When your writer wakes you in the small hours with an amazing new idea for their next story you need to wake up, switch on the light and let them talk it through. Moaning about what time it is, how tired you are and what you have on at work is not going to help your writer. This is a big moment for them, it’s the birth of something wonderful. Your support is needed 24-7.

3. Marital relations and their writing ‘ups and downs’ will become interlinked. When their writing is going well you can expect good times, kisses and smiles. When their writing is not going so well you can expect tension, tears and tantrums.

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