Friday, July 1, 2016

The Midnight Trail - Part Eight

Part Eight

Even though the sun was now down behind the tree line, sweat beaded at my temples and ran down my back. The weight from the full sled pulled on my arms. Every rock on the ground jarred the wooden poles and radiated up my arms. I was beginning to lose the feeling in my fingers, but I had to go on. It only strengthened my resolve.

The trail along the water bank took a sharp turn and headed up a slight incline. I stopped at the bottom, looking up the twenty or so feet that I had to pull my unconscious ward up. “You’ve got to be kidding me?”

The light was nearly gone and the path up the hill was narrow. The right side of the trail dropped away sharply as the left side met a wall of hard dirt and debris on the other side. There would be no room for error. If for some reason one of the poles of the sled slipped off the side of the trail, Chris would fall into the swift moving river and I would be unable to save him.

“Ok. I can do this. I can do this.” I spoke to myself, but it didn’t help my nerves from taking me over. My arms shook as I took the first steps up the hill, pulling with all my strength on the sled. “You need to lose some weight, Chris. This would be so much easier if you were one hundred and fifty pounds lighter.”

My breath came in heavy puffs and my injured leg threatened to give out. Rocks crumbled away from the weight of the sled on the edge of the trail. I didn’t want to look back, fearing that if I stopped moving up the hill for even a split second, my momentum would be lost and I wouldn’t be able to pull it the rest of the way up the hill.

Step by step we ascended, the light all but gone by the time my feet touched the sold trail at the top of the incline. I carefully set the sled down in the dirt and dropped to my knees and rolled onto my back to catch my breath. Even in the dim light I recognized The Midnight Trail. It was twice as wide as the sled and smooth enough to pull it easily. I couldn’t help but laugh from the joy of finding my way back to something familiar.

I swung my backpack off my back and pulled a bottle of water from the inside, taking a large swig of the cool liquid. There was still a long way back to the parking area, but at least I knew where I was. Stuffing the bottle back inside my pack, I rummaged around the bottom for the head mounted flashlight that I had taken from Chris’s pack. Placing it snugly over my head, I turned on the light to illuminate the trail.

It was bright in the nearly dark world around me. The trail was clear as it cut through the night like a beacon of hope. “Well, buddy. It’s going to be a long night. We should probably get going.”

I spoke to Chris like he could speak back to me, but it was the only thing keeping me from freaking out in the silence of the forest. Lifting the poles back up to my waist, I set off again into the night, but I didn’t make ten steps before the quiet was pierced with a long howl off in the distance. My heart began to race and my hands were shaking as I listened. The howl was followed by a growl that was closer. Something was out there and I didn’t know what it was.

What is in the forest and do you think it’s coming for Shelby and Chris? Make sure you come back next week to find out if our characters will survive The Midnight Trail.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

3 Tips for Beginner Freelance Writers

Over the last couple of years, I've had some amazing opportunities to write for blogs, web pages and publications. I'm not saying I'm an expert by all means, but there is something about sharing your writing with the world that draws me closer to freelancing and away from the normal mainstream jobs. Freelancing comes in all shapes and forms, writing styles and opportunities, but today I wanted to share a few tips with you that helped me over come my fears of putting myself out there.

1. There is always fear - Its the truest statement that anyone can ever say. Putting yourself out in the world for everyone to see, being vulnerable with your craft is hard. Not everyone will give you the support you will need and want. Not everyone will like your style of writing. It's going to happen and the best thing you can do is jump in feet first and worry about the fear later.

2. Find yourself a community - I've been lucky enough to find a community of writers online that share my same goals and struggles. When that fear starts to settle into the back of my mind, gnawing at my self esteem and pushing its way into the front of my mind, I reach out to my community for support and words of encouragement. They've all been there. They know what I'm going through and they will help me through it.

3. Tools are just as important - Every writer knows that without a pen and paper, a thought will never become a story. You need the tools of the trade to help your business grow. I never leave home without my laptop, Dropbox to keep me attached to my writing anywhere I go, Tweetdeck so I can make sure my readers know that there is a new post on my blog even when I'm busy, and Invoice2go so I can send invoices to all my clients from my mobile phone. This last one is a big one because you want to get paid don't you? Invoice2go has all the services you need to keep track of your finances.

Freelancing is not going to be for everyone. I love being an author just as much, but to keep my skills sharp and well rounded I write as much as possible and so should you.

Monday, June 27, 2016

June Movies - Part Three

Back again with some more movies that you may or may not want to see. Read on to find out how I rated these titles...

A Good Day to Die Hard (2013) - I have to say that I love all the Die Hard movies and that I own them all except this one on DVD. You just can't go wrong with Bruce Willis and then to add Jai Courtney who could potentially carry on the series since he plays John McClane Jr. 

If you want action, this movie has it. If you want an awkward reunion between father and son, this movie has it. Do you want betrayal and lies, well guess what, this movies has it.

To get your Die Hard fix, click here for the trailer.

I can't say enough about this movie and I will gladly give it a 5 out of 5 stars for pure awesomeness!

The Scorch Trials (2015) - So I thought the first Maze Runner movie was good. It left me hanging but in a good way and I wanted to see this movie as soon as it came out. This movie though, it really didn't live up to its name. The kids didn't spend much time in The Scorch even though they made a bg deal out of it in the beginning.

That all being said, if you can look past the weirdness of the kids supposedly being immune to this virus and then they come down with it (I might have missed something in the movie about this, but it wasn't clear,) then this is a great YA thriller that you should see.

You probably already watched the trailer, but here it is again.

I'll give it a 4 out of 5 stars only because I'm confused about the immunity thing.

The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond (2008) - I have been on a quest to watch every single Chris Evans movie he has ever been in and I'm starting to get into the lesser known movies on the list. I've never even heard of this movie until now, but it does have some big name actors in it like Bryce Dallas Howard.

The movie is based 1957 screen play written by Tennessee Williams. The characters in the movie have these ridiculous gone with the wind kind of accents that make you shiver every time they open their mouths. I think the acting itself is great but the story is just too terrible for me to like.

Its all about a girl named Fisher who hires Evans character to take her to parties. A long story short, she promises to help Evans crazy mother get out of a mental hospital if he marries her because she has alienated everyone else and no one will love her. I'm not going to spoil the end and tell you what Evans character does, but this is one messed up movie.

If you want to watch the trailer and their bad accents, click here.

If you are trying to finish your Chris Evans movie list then you have to see it, but I will give this movie a 3 out of 5 stars for the actors commitment to those ridiculous accents.

Sunshine (2007) - Ok, so this was another movie on my Chris Evans list but I really do like a good Armageddon thriller. Especially ones set in space.

The whole premise of this movie is a crew of eight people are sent hurtling toward the sun where they will detonate a bomb inside of the star to try and reactivate it since it is dying. They aren't the first ship that was sent into space though. The first crew dispersed seven years earlier without a trace. When they pick up the distress call from the first ship, they deiced to investigate (First mistake) and all heal starts break loose.

Now, I was good with this movie up until they introduced this weird space/time shifting character from out of now where. I almost got sick with the blurry vision on the screen. Granted I was streaming the movie on youtube, but still. (Yes, you can currently watch the whole movie on youtube.)

Check out the trailer here.

I will give this move 4 out of 5 stars for epic space travel and all around bad decision making.  

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