Name: A Relative Matter
When: The 2005/2006 winter edition.
About: The owner and boss of a manufacturing plant is disliked by all the employees. They feel the same about his family who keeps showing up to stir up trouble. The owner is found brutally murdered and everyone in the workplace seems to have motive. The police are investigating a number of employees. The plant manager and human resources manager don’t think the killer is an employee. After all, this is a relative matter.
Name of Work: Hurricanes Don’t Lie
When: Won second place in the 2007 annual short story contest and published in the November/December 2007 edition.
About: The story takes place in August 2005. Jack and Lois are in the witness protection program hidden in Biloxi, Mississippi. They’ve learned to love it there, but the gangster that put them in this program is worming his way onto the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The FBI work with Jack and Lois to create a sting operation at the Biloxi Yacht Club. They feel certain they’ll get this guy, but since he belongs to a whole family of gangsters, Jack and Lois know the U.S. Marshalls will move them away from the Gulf Coast they’ve come to love. In the background, big screen TVs are tuned in on Hurricane Katrina. Her trajectory has turned toward Biloxi.
When: Won second place in the 2007 annual romance story contest and published in the January/February 2008 edition.
About: JoAnne falls head over heels for Garret and his little dog, Buffy. Her best friend warns her off because Garret is on the rebound from his old girlfriend, Sarah. Sure enough, Sarah returns and JoAnne has not only lost the only man she ever wanted to marry and have kids with, she’s lost the dog, Buffy, as well. But the dog likes JoAnne better than Sarah, and digs a hole under the fence and runs to JoAnne’s apartment. JoAnne needs to return Buffy to Garret. When she does, things change for the better.
Name: Bridesmaid Blues
When: Won honorable mention in the 2008 annual romance contest. Publication in the
January/February 2010 edition.
About: Amanda is on her sixth stint as bridesmaid. Her sister tries to get Amanda to go on a blind date with a man she works with, but Amanda’s been burned by her sister’s prior fix-ups, and refuses. At the wedding she meets Rick who’s a really nice guy. She doesn’t realize he’s searched her out. Rick is the man her sister wanted Amanda to go out with. He’s also friends with the bride and groom. Her sister told Rick that Amanda would be at the same wedding he was going to. He surprises Amanda with the background information only after he senses she likes him. Amanda pictures another wedding; only at this one, the bridesmaid stands behind her.
Name: Purr . . . fect Encounter
When: Won second place in the 2009 annual romance contest and published in the
January/February 2010 edition.
About: While jogging, a young woman who’s done with romance passes a handsome man, new to the neighborhood. She sees a poster for a missing cat. She recognizes the cat as the one who has visited her cat. She swears the two had been communicating. The next time the missing cat shows up, she calls the owner. When he arrives, she recognizes him as the handsome new neighbor. The two conniving cats look pleased.
Crime and Suspense.com
Name: A Relative Matter published a 2nd time in the ezine magazine.
When: August 2007
I submitted a few stories to Valley Writers Read in Fresno, California and two were selected and read by an actress, Kate Wipern, on KVPR, the public radio station for the San Joaquin Valley of California.They are archived on the Valley Writers Read website under my name.
Name: Shots in the Dark
When: March 2007
About: After a quarter of a century in the same home, married to the same man with family and friends nearby, Darlene is in for a change. Her husband has a career opportunity which requires a move across country. Problem is she’s turning fifty and she hates change about as much as she hates getting her allergy shots and waiting the thirty supervised minutes. She can’t stop her husband’s career move, but she has concocted a scheme to give herself the allergy shots without medical supervision. Her annoying allergy doctor bores her with his sermons on the dangers of anaphylactic shock. She shares this with her husband. Unfortunately, her husband passes the information on to his mistress who Darlene doesn’t know about. Darlene learns the hard way that the doctor knows best.
Name: A Toast to Leona
When: June 2008
About: Human resources manager, Rhonda Polanco, is about to have a night that will change her life forever. She walks down the hall of the Piccadilly Inn in Fresno, California prepared for the Christmas party she’s organized for her employer. But Rhonda knows too much about what her employer has in mind to even think about having a good time. The first name of her boss is A. Noel. Written backwards that spells Leona. The management team uses the term to talk about him without getting caught. What the boss does spins the party into turmoil, but then he’s murdered, a note pinned to his chest that says, “Here’s to you, Leona.” Rhonda works at all kinds of damage control, but in the end she discovers something no one else does. She has choices and that worries her. She’s compromised on what to do. She makes a decision.