C Beale

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Hi Mark,

I confess I usually skim intros in my haste to get to the good stuff. Occasionally one resonates. That said, my personal take would be to cut to the gist of the situation and begin with paragraph 4. Like you, I enjoy and sometimes write about those experiences that resonate and beg to be remembered. 

Here's my edited version of paragraph 4 (which to me is enough said....though others may, and probably will, differ):

 When reading fiction, I tend to reach for stories that feel real, feel possible; stories that, as tumultuous as they may be, could easily be happening down the road. The setting and the protagonists may be what we call ordinary, but the events are often extraordinary. New beginnings, loves, deaths happen every day. All of them unique, all of them deeply moving, at least to the people involved. As we walk through life we sometimes catch glimpses of other lives: couples waving their arms at each other silently in a car while stuck in traffic, people limping home at seven in the morning in full evening attire, little old ladies doing their shopping dressed entirely in black. These are the things worth noticing. These are the things that remind us of our humanity. And these are the situations, at times, where we might be called upon to help. 

You intrigue me with the people limping home and the ladies dressed in black. I want to get to those stories. The babies not so much.  You might suggest the efforts to 'help' often turn into situations that are possibly otherwise.

I'm just 'less is more' mindset, especially as I get older. Hope these  comments help.


These look good! Others have already voiced any comments I might add. My preference for your name is the first one.

In a post on men's fiction, I am receiving replies to comments that I did not make. The posts are shown as 'unknown' on my screen. If someone is impersonating me, I'd like to know who it is. This is unprofessional. Jericho, please be advised of the problem!!!!

All I know is 'Lolita'. Guess I'll have to brush up on my Nabokov! Reading 'The Gold Coast' by Nelson DeMille right now. His characterization is spot on.

I got Vladimir Nabokov.....I don't know what to say......

Sons of Gods is my fav.

Ancient Genes? Genesis of the Gods? Awakening of the Gods? Ancient Gods Arise?  

This is like a word game!

Added a comment to Cover impact 

Hi Rob,

How to choose? My only comment is that the series title is so much larger than the book title. I would reverse that so people don't think they're reading the same book but with a newly released cover. "A Voice at Culloden" is more appealing to me than "When Gods Clash". When quickly glancing across your post, I thought they were all the same book. 

Typeface comments by others seem legit. Is 'clash' the word you want to use?

You're close, but tweak it to be fabulous!

Thank you. Life is a series of short stories, wouldn't you say?

When I had my interior design business, we had a show biz couple. Both were recognizable names in their own right but the wife always identified herself as 'her name, Mrs. his name'. Using their real names, of course. We always thought it funny.

Sharing my short story from today. There was a post a few days ago about writing humor. I haven't been writing much lately but my experience in the paint store this afternoon inspired me to put a few words to paper. Wanted to share how humor sometimes finds you when you least expect it to.

Twenty Minutes at the Paint Store    by Connie Estes Beale

“I don’t think that’s a color.” The sales woman shakes her head at the receiver in her hand.

“What color’s he want?” A salesman peers over her shoulder at the chart in her hand. She puts her hand over the phone and whispers, “Westin, Westin Cedar.”

“Stain or paint?”

“Is that a stain or a paint?” she asks the caller. “Stain”, she mouths to her associate. He shakes his head and goes back to the guy sitting on a stool at the other end of the counter. 

“You were sayin’, Gus?”

“They look good but don’t reproduce well.”

I look over, perhaps raise an eyebrow.

“Show goats,” Gus explains. “Show goats just aren’t good breeders.”

“That so?” the salesman asks.

Gus nods, turns my direction to possibly check for interest in his subject. I look down at my phone.

“Did you see that color at the resort?” the saleswoman asks the phone. “No? But it’s a stain?”

“If they’re pretty, they just don’t produce much offspring,” Gus offers. “They look good but not worth the money if you’re trying to build a herd.”

“A stain. Okay. Transparent or solid? I still don’t see that color.”

“I went up to a breeder near Chicago for some goat sperm. They wouldn’t guarantee it.” 

“Western?” I offer.

The salesclerk’s eyes light up as understanding dawns. “Western, Western Cedar? Like out west, not like the hotel?”

“Western!” her associate says.

“You misunderstood? No problem. I found it on the chart.”

“You just can’t have pretty and productive. It’s one or the other.”

I begin to giggle.

“Here’s your paint,” another saleslady says as she puts my gallon on the counter.

“Brushes, rollers?” 

“No, I’m good.”

“Sorry for the wait.”

“Worth every penny,” I say with a smile.

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