Friday, August 24, 2012

Authors, Why Death Scenes Often Suck!

Welcome Guest blogger Daniel C Chamberlain today!

Available at Amazon!

Authors, Why Death Scenes Often Suck!


I’m no longer a cop. I’ve retired.  Instead of rushing to a death scene and investigating it, now as a nurse with a close association with Hospice, I often watch people die, literally before my eyes.  I suppose it’s a curse that now, when I watch television or read a novel, I’m highly critical about how death is portrayed in those media.  It’s so seldom based on reality, that I fear even our most popular writers and directors have a fairy-tale romance with the fantasy of death.

Let’s talk about violent death first.  With the exception of perpetrators who are shot by police (a stunningly rare occurrence), seldom do police officers actually witness the death of a person from violence; only the aftermath. Most victims of violent crime have expired long before the police arrive, or they manage to survive until placed in an ambulance or taken to a medical facility. However, in several cases where I was present when people who were fatally injured just happened to expire, I was struck by how slow the process actually was in relation to how it’s often artistically portrayed.  

The human organism goes through various stages between being conscious and talking, to being unconscious and “circling the drain.”  One thing is nearly universal, short of being blown into tiny pieces; the process of death is seldom instantaneous and hardly ever simply “momentary”.  Be it gunshot to the head, heart, or lungs, or blunt trauma, knives drowning or flame-thrower, the dying more often than not take their own sweet time exanguinating!  That time can seem like interminable minutes to literally hours as in the case of our own President Abraham Lincoln.

Since many of our literary protagonists are also killers, either by profession or incidentally, we have to wonder how it is, each and every one of their victims manage to dutifully expire on cue since it is not the spirit that lingers on, but rather the organism that is determined to survive at all costs!

I once watched a film from WWII about Marines defeating Japanese machine gun emplacements.  They were using flame-throwers to roast the defenders alive.  Let me recreate the scene.

After the concrete bunker was inundated with a flaming jellied gasoline mixture the defenders exited one by one, only to be shot down each in turn.  One; however, was not shot, exiting looking much like a grilled hot dog, no longer clothed, skin blackened, grossly split and peeling.  His lungs, internally roasted from breathing super-heated air within the bunker were no longer exchanging carbon dioxide for oxygen in amounts necessary for survival.  

At first, he stood there trembling amongst the Marines, but slowly, inexorably, strength left his limbs and he was forced to sit, quivering uncontrollably.  As the Marines gathered around smoking and talking, his eyes went from man to man, I suppose hoping for assistance or perhaps in simple resignation, until – due to oxygen deprivation – his eyes began to lose focus and mercifully, consciousness began to ebb.

Toward the end, his body began to list like a stricken ship, with only his left elbow supporting his flame-ruined torso. His head, too heavy to be supported any longer by his oxygen-starved muscles, searched for a place to rest.  

The man’s dying took nearly ten “agonized” minutes.  In the end, agonal breathing hinted that his moment had arrived. Still, the organism struggled to live.

I’ve seen similar things up close where major trauma or catastrophic illness has made further life-saving efforts moot.  The dying, whether or not they are ready to go, can’t stop the organism from clinging to life, often long minutes after the last breath is drawn.  People do not simply sigh, close their eyes and die.  Occasions where last words are uttered, whether intelligible or not are so rare as to be nearly statistically irrelevant. 

So, if you’re going to write it, understand that if it’s not realistic, it will always be total “fiction!”
More About "The Long Shooters"
In the grinding death mill of the trenches of Petersburg, Virginia, in the closing days of the Civil War, a Union sharpshooter – a “long-shooter” named Ballou – emerges as the best sniper in a war where wholesale slaughter became the norm. Ballou perfected the art of the judicious killer. His ability with his cherished Stephens target rifle is legendary, making a nearly miraculous shot that no one else – North or South – could accomplish. After the war, he disappears…

Samuel Roark is a small-time rancher and part-time lawyer. One personal tragedy after another leaves Samuel gripped by periodic bouts of depression. When a hidden marksman of uncommon skill murders his son, the death leaves Samuel on the brink of total madness.
Roark’s wife Sarah, a woman of strength, grace and startling beauty is now both emotionally and physically exhausted by the tragic circumstances that have beset her family. After discovering her husband’s quest for revenge, she does everything in her power to prevent what she fears will ultimately destroy him.

Matthew Shaw is a known manhunter and soldier of fortune that people call on when they’re willing to pay someone else to deal with obstacles in their lives. When required, Shaw reluctantly uses his considerable marksmanship to achieve those ends. Now Shaw finds himself caught between a job he truly believes in, and a very good reason to walk away when he realizes he’s falling in love with Sarah, the wife of the man who hired him.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Guest Blogger: Angela Renee

Five Things You Don’t Know About Angela Renee

·         I’m a huge introvert so was an extremely late comer to social media. I’m a web developer so know how to make my way around the Internet, but just chose not to. Social media has been a good thing for us introverts. We can come out of our little hole and be social without coming out of our little hole. Many people mistake my being an introvert with being shy, but I just prefer to do things alone or with immediate family.

·         I wrote my current title You Are Mine, in the 90s and two agents wanted to represent me, but I said no thanks and decided not to go into the publishing industry at that time. My children were still children and I wanted to focus on my family, but looking back, I wonder if my being an introvert had anything to do with my decision to hold off on publishing. Back then authors needed more of a real presence than virtual world presence. Yeah, now that I think back, I think my being an introvert also kept me from pursuing publishing earlier.

·         I live in the desert and LOVE it. When it’s 105° F, I like to sit in the shade and soak in the heat. I literally get upset when it gets down to 60° F. My threshold for the heat is 112° F. My family thinks I’m crazy, but… well, maybe they are correct and the heat has fried my brain.

·         I am a sci-fi geek. I literally have everything Isaac Asimov has ever written, even his non sci-fi works. He was the greatest! At least I think I have everything. Let’s say I have everything I could find.

·         I’m worried about the release of You Are Mine. I’m a debut author and know people are leery of new authors. I’ve studied the industry and know that the more high quality novels you put out the larger your fan base will grow and they will go back and purchase your earlier titles. This is a long endurance race, not a sprint, but my ego wants You Are Mine, to take off. Don’t worry, even if it takes a while, I’m in this for the long haul.

Here’s a little about my debut Sci-Fi Romance novel, You Are Mine. Enjoy

In the hundreds of special assignments Erica Morgan has worked, there was nothing that prepared her for waking one morning on an alien spaceship. More surprisingly, her captor and adversary, the leader of this mission, is the one man who could make her want to leave her home planet and embrace a different life.

D’Jarus Commodore doesn’t want a wife, but his planet is slowly dying, and their salvation lies in the people of Earth. As leader of Darien, he chooses to make a sacrifice and be the first to marry a terran. His captive bride, Erica, is like no other being he has ever met. At first sight he knows he must have her, but for obvious reasons—he did kidnap her after all—she resists him every step of the way.

Buy links: Purchase the Print Version ($9.99) or the electronic version Nook, Kindle ($3.99)

Lizzy, thank you for having me on your blog today. I appreciate it and you.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Once Upon A Time Marketing

Hi Everyone,

I had to share with you this new company.

Once Upon A Time Marketing

They are new but they are really affordable. If you need some help promoting your books check out there site. You can add your book reviews to their site, links, free reads.

They will set up blog tours for  you and get book reviews.

The site is full of all kinds of things that you can do there.