Easter Sunday – I miss you Mam

“Hi Mam. I am sitting out on my deck having a glass of red wine. It’s a lovely day. I learned to relax a little more”

Silence.

“Mam, its peaceful here. I can’t hear traffic or music or people. I am looking at the mountains and the blue cloudless sky”

Silence.

“We took Joanna and Christian for Easter brunch today. It was lovely. I remember the Easter picnics we used to enjoy in the Yorkshire Dales. It was always cold but so much fun. We used to take Grandma, she would always misplace her dentures. I miss you Mam, I wish you were here”

Silence.

“Mam, thanks for listening. I know you are there, I feel you”

A soft breeze from nowhere brushed past my cheek and I smelled ‘Lilly of the Valley” my mother’s favorite perfume.

Lilly of the Valley“Love you Mam, miss you”

 

Dead of July – A German Ghost Story

My book ‘Dead of July’ took me a little over a year to write. I was extremely proud of myself when I finished it in April of last year. I found an editor who took my money and promised, that it would be ready to publish in October. The promise was not kept, so I rescheduled for March. You guessed, the promise was not kept. “Okay” I said “Lets get it ready for July, after all it’s called ‘Dead of July'” You guessed, the promise was not kept.

What was supposed to be one of the happiest times in my life was spoiled by someone who was paid to edit a book, but decided, after she took my money, that she couldn’t produce the goods. Someone I trusted, and paid, let me down.

My book will still be published, and it will be a great book to read, but I have learned a valuable lesson about editing. An editor should be able to produce the goods in around three or possibly four months. Not give excuse after excuse as to why it’s not published for a year. Hopefully ‘Dead of July’ will be published by September after being edited by someone who keeps their promises and cares about their reputation.

Keep following and learn from my mistakes. I haven’t given up on my book, but I have given up on the editor who promised me the world, but never gave me one finished chapter.

Preview Dead of July

Dead of July (Small)[4] Color 1

Alice in Wonderland or Fringe Science – The Flight!

Now I really dislike flying, but when my precious red Audi left the road and banked into the clouds it was both exciting and exhilarating. Bullets flew past me on either side, leaving trails like small comets, but none of them hit me.

Audi-A7-2010I knew nothing about flying but I certainly knew how to drive, so that’s what I did. When I could no longer see bullets, I leveled and drove exactly the way I would on the road, checking my mirrors for cops, because I wasn’t sure if what I was doing was strictly legal. I chuckled to myself, wondering if cop cars could fly too….I doubted it. Then I laughed a little insanely. What the hell was I doing? I was flying to work in my car. I had no idea where I was. The ground was way below me. It only took me a few seconds to activated the Sat Nav and the confident pushy lady started to guide me, opening the conversation with”You are cruising at two thousand feet and ninety-five miles an hour”

I didn’t know those words were in her vocabulary.

It certainly wouldn’t take me long to get to work. I worried a little about landing, never having done it before. “You are approaching 5251 DTC Boulevard, would you like to use your automatic pilot to land?” Automatic Pilot? The car manual never mentioned I had one of those. “Yes Please” I said.

The car started to descend and with no help from me. In no time at all I felt the car hovering above the top of the building, inching slowly to the ground. The landing was smooth. I jumped as the driver side door opened and an image that had been locked away in my brain since childhood stood there beckoning me. “Dr. Who I presume” I said giggling a little as he took my hand.

dr-who-2“I have been expecting you, we need to get inside quickly. Trouble is approaching”

“My car, what about my car?” I asked, worried something would happen to my beautiful red Audi. I watched in amazement as it folded in on itself, transforming into the size of a matchbox toy. I grabbed it quickly and put it safely in my purse.

“Run” The good Doctor said as he looked up to the sky. I followed the direction of his gaze. My heart stood still as I saw huge space ship hovering a few hundred feet above me. Its massive door was already open and a line of Daleks were making ready to descend. I Fled. These things have terrified me since I was five years old.

EXTERMINATE!

daleks1

This mini series of blogs is a little different from my usual writing style. I like to experiment and this is exactly what I am doing. Hopefully you are enjoying it. My stories are usually about ghosts and the paranormal. My new novel ‘Dead of July’ is a paranormal thriller based on true events that happened in July 1982. Check out the preview below.

 

Fourth of July 1982

Do you remember what you were doing on July 4th 1982?

4th Space Shuttle Mission-Columbia 4 lands at Edwards AFB
96th Wimbledon Mens Tennis: J Connors beats J McEnroe (36 63 67 76 64)

We watched ET, and loved it.

e.t._the_extra-terrestrial__1982__henry_thomas__dee_wallace-stone__directed_by_steven_spielberg

We all loved Michael Jackson

MJ-in-1982-michael-jackson-13049827-1190-1200

 

 

The FIFA World Cup was played in Barcelona.

180px-1982FIFAWorldCup

A young British Army wife called Sheila, met a badly beaten German girl in a park, and saves her life.

Dead of July will be released in July 2013. Watch out for it.

Dead of July (Small)[4] Color 1

Preview Dead of July

I KILLED HIM!

I am remembering the very first story I ever wrote. I was thirteen and a troubled teen (aren’t all teens troubled from time to time). This story was written with big loopy writing scrawling across the pages, no computers in the late sixties. As the story got more and more exciting, my pen raced across the pages, my hand hurt, but I continued. eager to get the pain and hurt festering inside me, onto paper. It was a kind of exorcism. It worked too.

What was that story about?

Me!

I had a crush on boy who was of course very handsome, about five years older than me and completely out of my league. He didn’t know I even existed. Can you remember your early teens, and what that was like? It hurt didn’t it. When hormones took over your body, nothing or no one made sense. I don’t know how teenagers even survive, so difficult are those days. Writing was the only thing that got me through it. What was the story about……? You could say it was a train wreck.

Underground

When I look back on what I wrote, I realised I was writing this boy out of my life because I knew he would never even notice me. He was an exotic handsome looking creature, always surrounded by pretty girls. He didn’t even know my name and would never have time for anyone as average and ordinary as me, so I killed him with my pen.

In my story we were an item and very much in love. He lived in London and I lived in the far north of England. I would go and visit him every weekend. He was a musician and I was a journalist. As I write about it now I remember it vividly. Lets call him Matt for the sake of giving him a name.

Matt and I were on the London tube with a group of friends, on our way to a party. Suddenly our carriage shuddered and we heard the wheels screaming on the track as the brakes vainly tried to stop the speeding train.  There was an explosion and we were throw around like matchsticks.  We felt the impact as the train crashed head on into something, crushing the first carriage and mangling several more. I thought I was going to die as the carriages ahead of me seemed to be rushing backwards. Matt was in front of me. He put his arms around me and I waited to die. Next came the fire and smoke, then nothing. Was I dead?

I opened my eyes expecting to see the devil and the fires of hell (never expecting to go to heaven because I had dabbled with pot and LSD), but instead I saw the grimy face of my friend Julie looking down at me. I was lying on the platform surrounded by casualties. People were crying and moaning. The air we breathed was filled with smoke. I raised my head to look at the train, or what was left of it. “Where’s Matt? Is he okay?” I said to Julie. She didn’t answer me, but looked away. She was crying. I pushed myself up on my elbows weakly, my head spinning, trying to breathe oxygen and not smoke. A fireman came over to check on me. “Be still, you have had a nasty shock, and a lump on the back of your head. We will get you out as soon as possible”

“Matt, Matt Matt where are you? Julie where is he?” I managed to get to my feet. “Matt, Matt, can you hear me?” I collapsed into the arms of the fireman, who placed me gently back down on the ground, putting something under my head to make me more comfortable. I felt a prick in my arm. People faded in and out of my vision, voices came and went. At last I saw Matt leaning over me. He kissed me gently on my forehead. “It’s going to be alright” he said. “Look after the baby” Then he was gone.

When I opened my eyes again I was in a hospital bed. My head and back hurt badly. Julie was sitting next to me again, looking a little cleaner now. Sun shone through the windows. “How long have I been out?” I asked.

“About ten hours” she replied, smiling weakly. “They gave you something to calm you down. Do you remember anything?”                                                                        

“Not much. Is Matt here? I remember seeing Matt, thank god he’s okay.” Julie took my hand and started crying “Matt didn’t make it. He was killed instantly when he threw himself in front of you. He saved your life.”

“No, I saw him. He kissed me and spoke to me, I SAW HIM.”

The doctor, probably alarmed my cries, came into the room. “Shhh, calm down. Don’t upset yourself. Your parents just called, they are on their way, they will be able to take you home in a couple of days. You will feel better soon, you have to think of the baby now.”

“Baby?” I said.

The doctor looked a me puzzled. “You didn’t know? You are almost three months pregnant.”

Then I remembered what Matt said “It’s going to be alright, look after the baby.”

Yes, that is what I remember of my very first story. I wrote about three hundred pages, all in long hand. It was my therapy and got me over my crush, preserving my sanity and allowing me to get on with my life. Seems a fairly healthy way of doing things to me. Better than drugs, or getting into trouble. I wish someone had encouraged me to continue with my writing, but they didn’t. Now, over thirty years later, I am writing again.

‘Dead of July’ my first full length novel will be released in July  Preview Dead of July

My first short story, rough around the edges, but still a fun short read is still available from the links below:

If you want to keep up with my exploits, adventures and updates Follow me on Facebook and like my page. If nothing else, it will make me feel famous.

Thanks for stopping by.

A Girl Abroad – Germany 1982

In 1982, when I was 25, I moved to Dortmund , West Germany with my husband. He was a British Soldier in the Royal Army Pay Corps and was attached to the Royal Highland Gunners (19 Field Regiment) stationed in Ubique Barracks.

It was a great adventure for me. After staying with friends for a few weeks, we managed to find an apartment in an area called Borsigplatz. I loved that area, it reminded me of Italy, probably because of the amount of Italians who favored it too. When we first moved I didn’t have a job, and spent long days wandering aroung the streets, shopping, taking photos and learning the German language from the locals. I was a born traveller and living in a Foreign country was like a dream come true.

Borzigplatz

Borzigplatz 2

This is Borsigplatz, a large round-a-bout where six roads met. One of the roads was called Osterholtzstrasse. The trams ran along Osterholzstrasse and right past RobertStrasse, the street on which I lived. They were happy days, I was young and full of hope. 1982 was a good year, made even better by the World Cup which was played in Barcelona. The World Cup final was between Italy and West Germany. What a battle that was! I have wonderful memories of that game, along with the parties afterwards.

Why am I telling you about this? Because it is what inspired me to write ‘Dead of July’, my first full length novel, which will be released in July of this year (2013). It is thirty-one years since I lived in Germany, but the memories are still with me. I hope you enjoy my story. Preview Dead of July

dead-of-july-small4-color-13.jpg

I have written a couple of short stories, one of which is currently being edited. ‘Girl on the Beach’ is still available for $0.99 from the links below. It is a little rough around the edges, but it has received some great reviews. It is a simple story about a little girl who has a premonition. It is set in Blackpool in the early sixties. Give it a try.

I am very excited about the upcoming release of ‘Dead of July’. Follow my blog and my Facebook page for release details.

Follow me on Facebook

I also have another blog TRAVEL TALES AND MISHAPS which was originally about travel, but now is about life in general.

Saturday Darkness

I woke up suddenly gasping for breath. Was I late for work? I pulled my thoughts together and realized it was Saturday. Darkness still enveloped the room so I tried to drift back into sleep, but sleep eluded me. I was wide awake in the darkness. Something was wrong. I cold feel danger. I sensed that I was not alone. Slowly I slid out of bed, hardly daring to breathe, and looked out of the window.

dark-wallpaper

Something glowed in the mist. Low deep sounds reached my ears. Unexplainable noises I didn’t recognize. Noises that sounded like conversations between some strange beings. Was my overactive imagination getting the better of me again? Something I couldn’t make out slithered quickly across the ground, disturbing the mist. Another sound, hollow and echoing terrified me and I jumped back into bed, burying my head deeply under the covers.

The house was silent and still so I plucked up courage to look. Oh God who is that? Standing in the doorway was a tall dark shadow, reminding me of the dark man from a Stephen King novel. Was I dreaming?

Shadow

The figure was still and silent. I froze, too scared to breathe. Who was he and how did he get here? Nebulous images swirled around his feet, but he remain still.

I prayed silently as I held my breath. I needed to breath. My oxygen starved brain was playing tricks with me as I watched the mist creep across the ceiling, eye looking down at me hungrily.

Why did I take my eyes off the shape in the doorway, the shape that was now standing beside my bed, leaning over me. No breath came from his thin dark lips as his face came close to mine. His eyes blinked open, red evil eyes that reflected the fires of hell.

I didn’t have time to scream. There was no one to hear me anyway.

I hope you enjoyed my burst of imagination, every once in a while, I have to write a very short story to make room for new ones to form in the dark place at the back of my brain. Headaches persist if I don’t open the door and allow these to escape. 

Check out my first short story – rough around the edges, but it got some good reviews. 

In July, my first full length novel ‘Dead of July’ will be released. It is currently with my editor Amy Eye, who is doing a fabulous job of  turning it into a first class read.

If you enjoyed this short story Follow me on Facebook and if you do visit my page, it would be lovely if you hit the ‘like’ button. I am trying to get as many followers as possible so help a new author feel famous.

Thanks for Stopping by!

ZombieTown

Let me take you to Zombie Town……..

Zombie Town - by Laura Barbosa

 Illustration  by Laura Barbosa

Roxy and Laurie were about to descend on the parking attendant as he waited for the security guard. They were hungry and ready to taste human flesh for the second time. They were ready to FEAST. They had, after all, only nibbled on each other. The inhuman noise that came from their mouths as the lurched forward was bone chilling, but it alerted their victim of their intention. He jumped out-of-the-way and pushed past them, locking the door behind him.

“Ron, where are you, I have two newbies in my office, and they are hungry. First ones I have seen in some time, they are just kids too. Shame, but too late to be saved.”

Ted, the parking attendant screamed and jumped as someone tapped him on his shoulder.

“Here I am, did I scare you?”

Ted mopped his brow. “No I enjoy a good scream in the afternoon, and jumping is good for my heart. Yes you scared me you fool. I have two hungry teenagers locked in my office and I am more than a little jumpy”

Ron laughed and pulled something that looked a little like a stun gun from his belt. He pressed a button, making sure it was charged. Ted pulled a face. “Does that thing hurt them?” he asked.

Ron rolled his eyes “Hello, they are already dead, next stop Zombie Town”.

Ted’s phone rang. “Almost there Ted, is everyone OK”

“Yes, apart from the two young kids in my office.”

“Kids, what a shame. Kids adapt quickly though” the voice on the phone said.

Adapt, how could you adapt to being the walking dead? Ted shrugged his shoulders and looked across the parking lot at the approaching van. It was a heavy armor-plated military style vehicle. Ted and Ron stood aside as it backed up to the office door.

Ron rapped on the office door “I’m coming in girls, ready or not.”

He pushed the door open quickly and the two young girls blinked as bright light flooded the dark office. Ron shot his Zombie taser at them, making them both shudder and appear to go into some sort of trance. He eased behind them and prodded at them, pushing them forward. Docile, they climbed into the back of the van. Ted closed the door quickly, shuddering as he did so. “Such a shame, so young”

The van driver laughed “Don’t feel sorry for them, they live the life of Riley in Zombie Town.”

He got back into the van, singing as he did so.

ZombieVan

Let me take you to Zombie Town, Let me take you to Zombie Town. 

Ron and Ted watched as the van pulled away. Two sad, hungry teenage faces looked back at them.

“Is there really a Zombie Town?” Ted asked.

“I doubt it. If they aren’t too far gone they will go to the lab for research. Better for them to be fully turned because incineration is quicker and much less painful than research.”

Ted went back into his office, where he shut and locked the door, before opening a bottle of scotch. He hated the Zombie disease. How long until it took over the world. With that thought, he began to drown his sorrows.

I hope you enjoyed my Zombie series. It was something different for me. Zombies seem to be the ‘in thing’ right now, but I’m over it. This was fun, but I’m done.

Dead of July, my first novel will be released in a couple of months. I can’t wait to see it on the shelves. Watch out for it on Amazon and Smashwords  Preview Dead of July

My first short story ‘Girl on the Beach’ is still available on Amazon and Smashwords. This story started my writing career, and I still enjoy reading it. Although I have received some great reviews, I am going to take it down for a re-edit. I strive for perfection and want to make my first book as good as my second.