The Promo is Back in Town by Free Range Oyster and Sunday Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike

The Promo is Back in Town by Free Range Oyster

J.M. Ney-Grimm

Sarvet’s Wanderyar

Running away leads right back home—or does it?

Sarvet walks with a grinding limp, and her mountain culture keeps girls close to home. Worse, her mother emphasizes all the things Sarvet can’t do. No matter how gutsy her spirit or bold her defiance, staying put means growing weaker. Yet only boys get wanderyars. Lacking their supplies and training, how can Sarvet escape?

Can dreams—even big dreams—and inner certainty transform impossible barricades into a way out?

Ken Lizzi

Thick as Thieves

Fantasy makes crime no less shabby and thieves no less thick. Brick, ex-soldier turned tavern bouncer, lets loyalty and a woman involve him in a caper. Glum Arent, alcoholic poet, needs only greed and wine-addled imagination. Magic, treachery, and bad decisions drive a simple heist from farce to tragedy. Can any of the thieves survive the mishaps and double-crosses?

Cyn Bagley

She Called It, Wolf

EJ Hunter, Book 1

When her uncle calls EJ back home to Felony Flats, a tiny reservation community in Nevada, she is unaware that werewolves and other werekin roam this desert.

Plus she is already in trouble for transforming into a werewolf and saving her teammates from an assassin. This soldier is coming home after early retirement to a world filled with werecats, supersoldiers, and wildfires.

Then she meets the Alpha, Sheriff Adam.

Hans G. Schantz

A Rambling Wreck

Book 2 of The Hidden Truth

He’s a Ramblin’ Wreck from Georgia Tech!

Off to college for the education he’ll need to defeat the guardians of the hidden truth, Peter must infiltrate a deadly conspiracy, thwart an attempted social justice takeover of the school, save his professors from assassination, and somehow find time to study for finals.

The stakes are now higher than ever. To succeed, Peter must discover who burned down the Tolliver Library, find new allies in his fight, and secure the assistance of the legendary George P. Burdell himself.


Sunday Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike

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: tremendous

50 thoughts on “The Promo is Back in Town by Free Range Oyster and Sunday Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike

  1. Nick and Martin stood on the roof of the building looking up at the night sky. The bright star that had been steadily growing brighter over the past week was almost there. As they watched it went from a dot and started to streak as it rushed overhead. Nick turned to Martin, “Best get down below kid. The shockwave when it hits is going to be tremendous.”

  2. Mirren jumped, taken unawares by a tremendous crash as the Hall’s outer doors were unexpectedly flung open. His sword hissed from its scabbard as he leapt between Clodin and whomever was entering unannounced. ‘Peace, Mirren’ said Clodin. ‘I know this man – he used to have your position and is welcome.’

  3. Today’s promo items are an impressive array of tales told well. A superb array of genre-benders for the discriminating reader. These books offer a stimulating variety of viewpoints and worlds to view from them. Some fantasy, some SF, some mysteries as well.

    These selections are not simply stupendous, they’re tremendous!

  4. Arthur quickly looked at the damaged hull, making an array of swift calculations as to what had happened and what needed to happen now in consequence. Grabbing the crew leader’s sleeve he pointed and ordered, “Get repair crew working, now!”

    “A repair crew? How many? On what???”

    “T’ree men. Dis!”

  5. Guess what just got back today
    Them wild-eyed books that had been away
    Haven’t changed, haven’t much to say
    But man, I still think them stories are crazy

    They were askin’ if you were around
    How you was, where you could be found?
    Told them you maybe writing downtown
    Driving all the old men crazy

    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    I said the promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town

    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in

    You know that chick that used to read a lot
    Every night, she’d be on the floor readin’ what she’d got
    Man, when I tell ya she was cool, she was red hot
    I mean steaming

    And that time over at Johnny’s place
    Well, this chick got up and she slapped Johnny’s face
    Man, we fell about the place
    If that chick don’t wanna read, forget her

    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    I said the promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town

    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in

    Friday night dressed to kill
    Down at Dino’s bar and grill
    Tales will flow blood will spill
    If the boys wanna read you better let ’em

    That Kindle in the corner
    Shining out my favorite story
    These nights are gettin’ warmer and it won’t be glory
    Won’t be glory ’til the summer comes

    Now the promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    I said the promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town

    The promo’s back in town
    The promo’s back in town
    Spread the word around
    The promo’s back in town
    Joining us now

      1. Shucks. That’s the t’anks I get for not using the Bus Boys’ version (as heard in 48 Hours?

        To be honest, I couldn’t rewrite the lyric.

  6. “I don’t know,” said Rick. “It’s a tremendous responsibility. I’m just out of vet school.”

    “I wouldn’t give it to you if I didn’t think you could handle the responsibility. You’re the only one I trust. Will you do it?”

    Rick nodded and took the cage of the last jackalope.

  7. “This, a place of healing? Not a hospital, clinic, or spa?”
    “This is the place, yes. Sylvan Health…”
    “Would have a forest, not some lone thing making Charlie Brown’s choice look great.”
    “Do not mock, looks deceive. Say goodbye to the crutches. Now, the incantation. Be quiet.”

    “Tree, mend us.”

    1. This last line is what popped into my mind as soon as I saw the prompt. Thank you for writing it for me. 🙂

        1. I think some of it depends on local dialect. For myself, the word sounds, in my head, like “truh-mendous”, so it would take a little twisting to come up with this one.

          1. I can see that, but I have this fondness for twists of language and such. I like playing with language, just not quite enough to endure learning another one. At least not that way I’ve encountered them taught. I have no idea about tenses and verb classes – and I just plain don’t give a damn about them by name.

            Uncle used to teach 3rd/4th grade (bolted when WI Gov. started repairing state gov’t.) Once upon a time he researched (for his own education requirements) the formal teaching of grammar (sentence diagrams, etc.). The reason it was done? Because it was annoying/hard and it was to “build character.”

  8. Jack looked over at his spotter, “Are you sure this is going to work?”
    Mike shrugged, “Beats the hell outta me. Gunny said it should…”
    Getting a good sight picture, he said, “Target.”
    Mike replied, “Send it.”
    The explosion from the 50 BMG Raufoss round striking the ISIS fuel tanker was tremendous…

  9. “Tremendous,” the student repeated back. She lifted one hand and began spelling, “T-r-e-e-m-e-n-d-o-u-s, tremendous.”

    Before the teachers had time to block the casting, a Sequoiah appeared in front of the judges.

    And that’s why pre-emptive shields are now required at all spelling contests for grades eight and below.

  10. The tremors were increasing exponentially, and the bluff began to collapse. Ye Olde Bookshoppe slid toward the void. The roof caved in, covering Lizzie with debris, and she screamed, hysterically. I took her arm and led her across the chasm. A tremendous sonic boom thundered up the valley behind us.

  11. Dust. Dust everywhere, turning all to shades of drab. Walls tossed about like children’s toys, and some of them stone walls. People pinned beneath. She bit her lip at the patches of blood red. All her striving for light and all it did was reveal how little she could do.

  12. Wind stirred from behind her, where no wind should be coming from. The effect of their success would have to be tremendous, to lure seven chaos wizards. Perhaps if she stayed with them, the champions could come to where she was; they might have difficulty finding them.
    She ran after.

  13. Carolus closed the door after them, and said, his voice low, “Should we eat the fruit?”
    Lilac sighed. That could be a question of tremendous import. What question could not, when they were in the Wilde Wood?
    “I think,” she said, “that we do not want to refuse their hospitality.”

  14. “O, it will be tremendous! Just imagine! No one’s been cast up on the shore for years and years! Centuries! What a wonder and marvel!” Lucie danced about. “It’s a sign of something!”
    “At the moment,” said Astra, “it’s a sign of your silliness, that you dance instead of help.”

  15. “Tremendous hair re-growth from the first application. We promise stupendous results or your money back.”

    Yanchi Siloan rubbed his scalp and chuckled at the hyperbolic promises. He’d been peeled-egg bald even before the usurper Archon’s dark-magic attack. Now fine silvery scales covered his pate, just like the rest of his skin. He rather doubted the ad man’s nostrum would restore the hair of his youth to it.

    Yanchi had always wondered why Codylanders were so cynical, so resistant to propaganda. Three months after Ligonier Rafferty’s people rescued him and brought him here, he had no doubts why. Daily doses of advertising had thoroughly inoculated them.

  16. Penton raised his hand, thumb and forefinger together. “American has tremendous -”

    Before Penton was frozen, he imitated him for laughs. Now, centuries later, he played it straight, an inspirational speech by history’s most revered US president.

    But to give it here. Who’d thought Trump would be “yuge” at Berkley?

  17. The ocean started pulling back from the shore.
    We jumped into the balloon basket and released the ropes.
    John yanked the ignition and the propane burner roared.
    Neither of us knew if we could get enough altitude to escape the tremendous tsunami that was sweeping in on the beach underneath.

  18. ‘Let me check the lists. Yes, here it is. There’s a shelter that should be virus free, set up by a oncologist and a cancer patient who realized there would be the need.’ she told the caller, ‘Do you want the contact information?’

    ‘Tremendous! Yes, I do’ answered the caller.

  19. Treeeeeemendous!

    Slavery and Freedom
    The dangerous writings of Robert A. Heinlein
    By Sarah Hoyt

    “Lot ninety-seven,” the auctioneer announced. “A boy.” The boy was dizzy and half sick from the feel of the ground underfoot. The slave ship had come more than forty light years; it carried in its holds the stink of all slave ships, a reek of crowded, unwashed bodies, of fear, and vomit and ancient grief.

    This is the opening to Robert A. Heinlein’s Citizen of the Galaxy.

    “Slavery and freedom” ar a thread that runs through Heinlein’s work, sometimes openly, sometimes unobtrusively, and sometimes as a point of character development, but I can think of only two of his books that have a slave main character. Both (all of his books, really) are dangerous books, particularly dangerous to today’s ethos of “victimhood makes you valued.”

    Sure that opening grips, but at least if you are my young self when I first encountered the story, you read it not so much for the boy, but for the intriguing figure of the maimed beggar who buys the boy and eventually sets him free, not just of the chains of legal slavery but the chains on his mind, the ones that make him, truly a slave.

    There is never a hint that having been a slave makes the character noble, though there is a feeling of repulsion and disgust at the institution of slavery. And opprobrium and disgust on those who engage in the trade.

    The slavery of Citizen of the Galaxy is “traditional slavery” — the original sin of mankind, of making chattel out of our fellow humans and trading them and using them as objects. It’s existed since the world was world, and been present in every civilization in the world.

    The other slave character is of course Friday.


    1. Good article.
      You [our host] forgot Farnham’s Freehold as one having a slave as a main character (Farnham’s wife, after the big blowup). And, ironically, she ADOPTS a slave mentality willingly.

            1. Very, very true.
              The “moment” Farnham’s wife enslaves herself is entirely from Farnham’s viewpoint.

  20. For all the power of the starliner’s massive pulse drive engines, it didn’t have the delta-V necessary to out-accelerate even a normal Firewing-class fighter, let alone the specially-modified model flown by Branwen and her wingmen — and the notion of outmanoeuvring either was simply a joke. Branwen slotted in neatly behind and above the other vessel’s fusion wake and signaled to the other two fighters. “Kestrel, Condor, this is Peregrine, are you on vector?”

    “Peregrine, Condor; vector confirmed,” said a gleeful young male voice.

    “Peregrine, Kestrel; I’d like to reiterate my reservations at this point?” The lilt of his Kenyan accent notwithstanding, Ensign Olowaye sounded a great deal less happy than Ensign Hardcastle had. “I signed up hoping to splash Overlords one day. Not Earth ships.”

    “Reservations understood, Kestrel,” said Branwen grimly. “But if you’d read the dossier on the megacorp who owns this one, you might not feel so squeamish.”

    “Too right, Kestrel,” Condor chimed in. “I mean, look at the ship’s fricking name, for Pete’s sake. You telling me that guy can’t use a dose or two of humility?”

    “Cut the chatter, Starfalcons,” Branwen ordered, doing her best to keep her smile out of her voice. “Stand by to accelerate to attack vector if she runs.” She switched channels and hailed the target vessel. “RMS Tremendous, this is the Sixth Special Detachment Omega Squadron, Republican Interstellar Forces Space Service. You are ordered to heave to and allow boarding immediately.”

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