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Page & Paragraph


Key West Story by Rick Skwiot

Posted on May 6, 2012 at 6:00 PM Comments comments (2)
Key West Story by Rick Skwiot
If the adage, write what you know, holds true for Key West Story then author, Rick Skwiot, leads a life of sun, surf, and sex in the Florida Keys. Yet, it’s more than that. It’s the story of a man trying to find what makes him happy. It’s also a story of creativity and the writing process.
Writer, Con Marten, made it big in the world of books by letting go of his integrity in order to reach for the cash. To get the contract, to make the sale, to rise on the New York Times Bestseller List, he compromised his talent by writing a “soulless page-turner” full of gimmicky commercial crap—crap that sold, and sold well. Now, the money’s gone, the bills are unpaid, the women in his life are out-of-control, and he has writer’s block.
Faced with being shot by one lover or marrying another for pay, Con chooses for a third option when an Ernest Hemingway look-a-like going by the name of Nick Adams appears with an offer to make five grand in a few days. Con meets Nick’s claims to be Hemingway with a healthy dose of skepticism, but as they head to Cuba on a clandestine adventure, the lines between reality and reincarnation blur.
Between women, guns, alcohol, sunken treasure, hurricanes, writing, and the ever-present question of Nick Adam’s true identity, Key West Story is a page-turner for which Rick Skwiot did not have to compromise.

Blogging and Tweeting and Writing, Oh my!

Posted on April 22, 2012 at 4:38 PM Comments comments (13)
This has been a busy week!

I've managed to write three out of the four articles I need for my website content gig. It's really tough to get those keyword density numbers up without compromising your writing style.

I did a re-write and an edit for a flash fiction story that I will be submitting in a few weeks. I'll keep you posted as to where you can read it when it's accepted. (I'm thinking positive.)

This weekend was the Missouri Writer's Conference. I couldn't make it, but have several friends who attended and I have every intention of picking their brains clean for new info and insights.

A special congratulations to my writer friend, Amanda, who took 1st place in the On The Spot writing contest at the conference. I can't wait to read her winning entry.

Another special congratulations goes to another writing friend, MaryAnn, who took 2nd place in the same contest. I'm anxious to read her winner as well.  She also pitched her novel, Killing Rabbits, and was asked to send the first chapter to an agent based on the first page only. It's a thrilling, dark, sad, twisted, and redeeming story. I know it's hard to get all that into one novel, but she did it.

It's been a week, but I'm still reeling from my short story, Macchiato Memoirs, being selected as the story of the day at Every Day Fiction on April 15th. You can still read, comment, and vote on it by following this link: Macchiato Memoirs. I promise I won't rave about it after this week, but please indulge me in a little more afterglow.

I've surpassed 100 followers on Twitter and have Tweeted 99 times. I'm also closing in on a short-term goal of 100 Blog  Posts by the end of the month. I'm confident I'll make it, but want to make certain that the content is worthy of my readers.

This was also Prom weekend in my town, so I got the opportunity to do a photo shoot of one of my favorite people and his girlfriend. I know many people think it very odd that a 19 year old and a 52 year old can be friends, but he loves literature and has a very unique mind. I expect he will be a published poet before long.

Last but not least, my daughter-in-law's ultrasound confirmed that my next grandchild is a girl! Of course this led to a pink power shopping trip and a depleted bank account, but she will be a very stylish little girl.

I hope everyone has had as productive and happy a week as I've had. Here's to hoping that next week is the same or better! Keep Writing!

Short Story Published, April 15, 2012

Posted on April 16, 2012 at 11:04 PM Comments comments (4)
My short story, Macchiato Memoirs, was published at Every Day Fiction. It was the Story of the Day on Sunday, April 15th. I hope everyone will check it out and consider having Every Day Fiction delivered to your email every day.

Every Day Fiction is a magazine that specializes in bringing you fine fiction in bite-sized doses. Every day, they publish a new short story of 1000 words or fewer that can be read during your lunch hour, on transit, or even over breakfast.

It's an amazing feeling to see my fiction published. I've been in the clouds ever since Every Day Fiction contacted me. While I've published essays, web content, letters, Op Ed pieces, and academic works, this is the first fiction that has seen the light of day. It has given me almost as much a rush as the main character in the story gets from his habit!

I am loving the comments and feedback. Keep it coming!

Writing Updates & Recommended Reading

Posted on April 7, 2012 at 12:56 AM Comments comments (20)
My last blog post ended up somewhere in cyberspace. I wonder if in an alternate universe there is another me wondering when and how I wrote that post and why I don't remember it.

Anyway, since this is the universe I'm in, I'll give it another shot.

I finished two articles for the website I've been writing for. One will go to an e-zine.  I also finished making minor edits to my short story, Macchiato Memoirs, which will be published in Every Day Fiction later this month or next.

On the reading front, I've finished:

Final Truth; the Autobiography of a Serial Killerby Donald Gaskins and Wilton Earle.

Review: This was a chilling, graphic story about a man whom I am glad is dead. I can't say that about a lot of people, but he killed so many and had no intention of stopping. The police never found a body that someone else didn't lead them to. Some of PeeWee Gaskins' final words still linger in my mind, "I'll die knowing that there are others coming along to take my place--and most of them won't never get caught."

Ghosts: Washington's Most Famous Ghost Stories by John Alexander.

Review: This provided a peek into D.C.'s early years. Unfortunately, many of the buildings which were claimed to be haunted have been torn down due to neglect or urban renewal. Still it was interesting enough to read through before making a trip to the capital.

Cross Bones by Kathy Reichs

Review: I think I enjoyed this book more so than others by Kathy Reichs. There was less talk about Tempe's alcoholism and an interesting take on the whole Jesus Family Tomb that was debated so heavily a few years back.

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

Review: Typically I don't read YA novels or anything about math, but this one caught my eye. It's a fairly typical road trip/coming-of-age with a mathematical twist. I especially enjoyed the math notes at the end. Finally, someone who put functions in language I could understand.

There was another and I can't even remember the title which is not a good sign.

Last but not least, Nathan Bransford had a great link to Identifying Your Novel's Genre which he in turn got from Rachel Gardner.

I'm Published (In April or May)

Posted on March 31, 2012 at 4:22 PM Comments comments (2)
Good news on the writing front. My short story, Macchiato Memoirs, is going to be published in Every Day Fiction! It should appear sometime during April or May, so be on the look out.

Every Day Fiction is an online flash fiction for works of less than a 1000 words. I encourage everyone to check them out and sign up for their daily fiction.I've read some really good, eye-opening short stories from their site. Almost everyone has time to read a 1000 words, but it really takes some effort to tell a complete story with a beginning, middle, and end with such a limited number of words.

They accept all genres, so I'm certain everyone can find something they like. Also if you submit, they give great feedback.

I'm soooooo excited! Can you tell?