Sunday Promo for Monday by Freerange Oyster and Monday Vignettes by Luke, ‘Nother Mike and Mary Catelli

*This week is going to be a little weird.  Dan and I will be flying to Ohio on family business. However this is just because I didn’t get it on time.  Considering I don’t pay the mollusc, I’m just grateful he gets them to me, whenever.- SAH*

Vignettes by Luke, ‘Nother Mike and Mary Catelli

So what’s a vignette? You might know them as flash fiction, or even just sketches. We will provide a prompt each Sunday that you can use directly (including it in your work) or just as an inspiration. You, in turn, will write about 50 words (yes, we are going for short shorts! Not even a Drabble 100 words, just half that!). Then post it!  For an additional challenge, you can aim to make it exactly 50 words, if you like.

We recommend that if you have an original vignette, you post that as a new reply. If you are commenting on someone’s vignette, then post that as a reply to the vignette. Comments — this is writing practice, so comments should be aimed at helping someone be a better writer, not at crushing them. And since these are likely to be drafts, don’t jump up and down too hard on typos and grammar.

If you have questions, feel free to ask.

Your writing prompt this week is:


Sunday Promo for Monday by Freerange Oyster

Allene R. Lowrey

Advent of Ruin

The Qaehl Cycle Book 1

An Age ends in blood and darkness…

For untold generations, the peoples of the Qaehl have prospered—trading and warring as they expanded across the great desert. Mighty city-states rise unassailable above the sands, centers of commerce in a great web of humanity. Messengers and nomads, tradesmen and bandits, cross the burning wastes with each rising of the sun.

A change is coming. Strange creatures have been sighted in the deep desert. Rumors whisper of horrors begotten out of legend. But there is yet hope: a brave courier, an innocent young dancer, a compassionate warrior – each holding a fragment of the truth, each seeking the future. Each adrift in the desert, trying to survive the advent of ruin.

C.J. Carella

In Dread Silence

Warp Marine Corps Book 4

(WARNING: Contains violence, strong language and adult content)

A mission to a forgotten planet. A disgraced admiral facing an implacable foe. And on the forefront of battle, the dreaded Warp Marines.

As the greatest power in the galaxy launches a major offensive into human space, a small expedition ventures into the unknown, searching for a weapon that may turn the tide for the beleaguered United Stars of America. But will digging around the lost ruins of an ancient – and evil – civilization provide the answers the US needs, or bring destruction to the entire galaxy?

Laura Montgomery

Far Flung

In the very near future a seastead offers consumers a choice in governing systems. Navy Capt. Adam Tenney’s daughter takes that offer, but what can he do for her when pirates threaten the seastead, the U.S. refuses to recognize it, and he is trapped in a desk job on land?

Peter Grant

Rocky Mountain Retribution

In the post-Civil War West, the railroads are expanding, the big money men are moving in, and the politicians they are buying make it difficult for a man to stand alone on his own. So, Walt Ames moves his wife, his home and his business from Denver to Pueblo. The railroads are bringing new opportunities to Colorado Territory, and he’s going to take full advantage of them.

Ambushed on their way south, Walt and his men uncover a web of corruption and crime to rival anything in the big city. And rough justice, Western-style, sparks a private war between Walt and some of the most dangerous killers he’s ever encountered, a deadly war in which neither friends nor family are spared.

Across the mountains and valleys of the southern Rocky Mountains, Walt and his men hunt for the ruthless man at the center of the web. Retribution won’t be long delayed… and it cannot be denied.

Amie Gibbons

Psycho (and Psychic) Games

The SDF Paranormal Mysteries Book 2

And they thought catching the serial killer was difficult…

Psychic Ariana Ryder just completed her probationary year and is now a full agent in the FBI’s Special Division Force, a semi-secret branch that investigates paranormal crimes.

The director, in a bid to score political points, puts Ariana on interrogating famous serial killer, JB Truck, aka The Puzzle Master. Truck’s been in prison two years and the authorities still can’t figure out who all his victims were or where his vast resources came from.

Ariana’s mission is simple, get visions off the psycho until they get the information they need.

But nothing’s ever simple when there’s magic afoot. The vampire queen’s gunning for Ariana, there’s a new shifter in town who needs a psychic’s help, and Truck’s got a few tricks of his own.

And he didn’t end up in Nashville by accident.

38 thoughts on “Sunday Promo for Monday by Freerange Oyster and Monday Vignettes by Luke, ‘Nother Mike and Mary Catelli

  1. “Come on Drak! Let’s Dance”.

    “I only dance when I’m drunk and you don’t want a drunk dragon dancing”.

    1. No, I don’t.

      So, I must remember, if I am in charge of the dance, that you do not serve fire water to the dragon. Whether or not I am not in charge I shall keep a wary eye in case someone decides to spike the punch.

  2. Thad scanned ahead. In the sky the birds were shifting to and fro, looking for food. They were graceful. He wished he could fly. He watched them dance in the air a moment more. He checked the horizon again, before clucking to his horse and moving on. Everything seemed calm.

  3. “Dance? With you? I couldn’t! No way! It just isn’t possible. You know I have two left feet.”

    “Once we’re in the crowd out on the dance floor it won’t matter, nobody will notice. It will be fun! Besides, I’m sure the other hexapods won’t mind you being short one.”

  4. Step, step, spin.
    He had potential, before the accident. An Astaire; a Kelly; a Bolger.
    Step, slide, leap, kick.
    He felt like Bolger’s Scarecrow. Limbs loose, burning, burning.
    “Stop! Please! The thirst! The flames!” He’d given everything to dance again, but not like this!
    Step, step, spin. Again. Eternally again.

  5. At her smile, the high columns began to sway gracefully yet precipitously. The ceiling dissolved into the brilliant night of the galactic core. The floor writhed and swam in patterns too complex to follow. He was lifted and slowly spun. A choir of angels sang.

    “A dance would be charming.”

  6. “Come on man! Or ain’t you got the guts?”
    George turned on the stool and looked up and down at the reaver.
    “Sir, I think you have me mistaken for someone else.”
    The reaver stepped in close and slapped George in the face.
    “Now whatcha gonna do?”
    “Now? We dance.”

  7. The incoming swarm wove and darted, weaving a pattern of brilliant, beautiful trails across the crepuscular sky, as it defeated his measures and countermeasures and counter-countermeasures one after another. After all these years, all his toil and blood, he and the millions he watched were about to be reduced to plasma by this danse macabre.

    Is this what it means to die beautifully?

  8. “DANCE BOY!” The colt rapidly spat fire.
    Unfortunately, the deck plating of a space station bar doesn’t absorb bullets the way the wood and dirt of a saloon floor does.
    “This explains the warning signs on the time machine,” Angelou thought to himself as he was struck by a ricochet.

    Fifty, on the dot!

  9. “So he tells me to dance. Really? My left leg doesn’t bend and my right foot’s a stump. Really?”

    Lerano shook his head. “Look, I get it. Hunting cyborgs for fun and profit has ruined my body, but damn. Give a man a break. Me. Dance. Really! Moron.”

  10. The basement chamber was filled with couples in their stocking feet moving to somewhat dated songs and dance. Malinconico caught the eyes of Courier One and Miss Nadoghy. They both froze in their steps and eyes grew in astonishment.
    “He won’t stop crying,” Malinconico blurted, on the verge of tears in frustration…

  11. “Oh. Oh, dear.” Sonja tapped her control tattoo, broadcasting her datanode’s nerve display through to Kyle’s; a graphic of complicated movements appeared in his visual field. “Is this how you were moving to get out of the T’corax Queen’s way, Kyle?”

    “I don’t know! Might have been, I suppose. Why?!”

    Sonja swallowed audibly. “The T’corax are like any insectoid species, Kyle; they communicate by ritualized dance movements as well as by sounds and pheromones. This particular choreography is a, well, er, it’s, um . . . well, it’s a wedding vow. I think you may now be the Queen’s lawfully married consort.”


    Sonja mustered a feeble smile. “Well, the Federation did send us to establish treaties with the Starhive. Not our fault they didn’t say how.”

  12. “Come on, Mike, dance with me!”
    “You know I can’t dance.”
    “Why not?”
    Mike looked down at his legs, which ended just above the knee.
    “Is that all? We’re in zero gee!” Grabbing his hand, she kicked off the wall, using her folding fans to stop among the other dancers.

    Fifty on the nose.

    1. A lovely moment indeed! (Though it does get me wondering: can you do the Moonwalk in zero-g?)

      1. It would take some practice to get just close enough to the floor, then push off against the wall perfectly horizontal, then move your feet in a forward walk while floating backwards, but I think it would be quite visually convincing.

  13. I stumbled on In Dread Silence at Amazon, Sunday. While surprised that I hadn’t seen it yet, I still did a happy dance whilst pressing the “Buy with 1-click” button.

    That universe is getting strange. It will be interesting to see how it comes together (you can’t just kill all the humans – that’s too easy).

    1. I also did a happy dance upon finding “In Dread Silence” finally out, having read Carella’s three previous “Warp Marines” novels (and his excellent “Shadowfall: Las Vegas). The series reads like the love child of John Ringo and H.P. Lovecraft . . . and I fully expect to use that line in my upcoming Amazon review of “In Dread Silence.” Which will have to wait until I’ve finished “Rocky Mountain Retribution.”

  14. Music moves. The sorcery, ancient. The heart beats. Foot taps. Hips sway.

    What lives, moves. Growing, laughing, singing, the ritual of life remains the same. But different, every time.

    Subtly arhythmic, is life. A step dragged. A quick spin, a gasp. The beat continues. Now slow, now fast. A twist, jump.

    Point seven seconds to self destruct, disarmed. Darn.

    A smidge over. Eh, AI’s may be precise, but humans are not. *grin*

  15. Kara’s stomach and arms undulated minusculy to the Moon music. “He’s late!”

    Steve frowned, “I’m sure the representative from Earth’s rebellion will arrive shortly.”

    A man in a dress suit flew across the dance floor, crashing into their group and bowling Kara over.

    “See,” Steve said, “Here he is now.”

  16. Radio, live transmission
    Radio, live transmission

    Listen to the silence, let it ring on
    Eyes, dark grey lenses frightened of the sun
    We would have a fine time living in the night
    Left to blind destruction, waiting for our sight

    We would go on as though nothing was wrong
    Hide from these days, we remained all alone
    Staying in the same place, just staying out the time
    Touching from a distance, further all the time

    Dance, dance, dance, dance, dance, to the radio
    Dance, dance, dance, dance, dance, to the radio
    Dance, dance, dance, dance, dance, to the radio
    Dance, dance, dance, dance, dance, to the radio

    What? no one else likes Joy Division?

  17. Corwin bowed. “I can not escort you to a dance, my lady, but I can show you the roses.”
    I curtseyed. “I do not think the princess and the other ladies wish to remain here, when there is hope.”
    “Of course not,” said Rosalind. Belsante nodded before Arabella could protest.

  18. “You’ll see her in time,” said Artos. “Muttering when crouched among the roots of some uprooted oak. Dancing with milkweed seed as if it were a flock of pixies. Cursing a dandelion with blight, not that it works. She used up all her powers forcing fae and mortals apart. Imperfectly.”

      1. I’m having fun with this one. an urban fantasy where the first ideas were about how to make the masquerade plausible.

  19. On such a pleasant day, she didn’t have to think about that. Anyway, she had enough work, and time enough for days like this. She pirouetted under the trees before walking on. Dancing all the way would be wearisome, but a pleasant walk would not be. She climbed up the hill.

  20. The lights danced in sky, brilliant, filled with jewel-like colors. Edmund told himself it was his imagination, that the airplane landed as steadily as ever.
    Though when the pilot descended, looking green, Edmund swallowed hard before offering to see her to home. “I may as well finish what I started.”

  21. They met in the door, bowed to each other, then sidestepped past each other. One going in one going out. Thus went the eternal movement of the pages and ministers.

      1. I quite liked it. Very evocative of that particular kind of stately court which is either immensely dignified or immensely dangerous. Or both.

  22. The protoplanetary disk churned, molecular dust clouds slowly collapsing into molten masses that might one day become planetesimals, a billion years hence.

    “Nataraja,” breathed Captain Rao, gazing at the sight in his ship’s main holotank. “The Dance of Shiva.”

  23. Twist. Turn. Step step shuffle. Twirl, arms out, then in, then stop arms held high. All to the relentless beat.

    Bob was almost there – a few more moves and he would be logged in to his computer. It might be tricky, but the new dance-based login protocols sure got your heart racing first thing in the morning.

    1. I’m pretty sure that would be more than I could handle. I’m trying to imagine what the EMTs would say when they found me!

    2. That’s what you get when your sysop admins are Dance Dance Revolution gamers in their spare time.

  24. The freezing rain pounded on the inn’s roof and windows, demanding admittance. The howling of the wind and the wolves blended into a single, eerie cry. Inside, she searched for a cheerful face, but theirs were as grim as hers was terrified. Yet they danced and sang even so.

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