Thursday, November 19, 2015


First Chapter in Book I'm working on: "The Church Critic"

Since several have asked about my short story that won 2nd place in the Missouri Writer's Guild contest for short fiction, I'm going to share the first page here. Although I wrote it as a short story I really consider this the first chapter of a book and I'm working on more chapter.

Read the first page and you will get the idea of where this story is going. But don't be fooled, I've got plenty of surprises planned along with a climax and ending that you may not expect.

The Church Critic
My page one column for the Plano Herald was provocative and I didn’t care. The text was still making me laugh, even as I read it for the twentieth time.
"I was greeted warmly at the door of Scenic Avenue Christian Church, and then left to fend for myself. Once inside I was asked to move out of my cozy aisle seat by a member who had obviously sat in that seat for 50 years. The choir music was plentiful but missing male voices and rhythm. The offering plate was nearly empty by the time it reached me but by the time it did I was nearly asleep.
"The sermon was a neat 21 minutes. It might have been shorter if the reverend hadn't had to consult his notes so often after losing track of his thoughts. The actual message took two minutes, reinforcing its meaning took 18 minutes. In all fairness, the preacher dove into his sermon with personal anecdotes setting up his theme that -- well, I'm not sure what his theme was but I enjoyed the anecdotes."
When ink is in your veins, there is always something special about seeing text in print. But, I was surprised last week when Don Rigby had pointed his thick index finger and his fat cigar directly at my face and assigned me this new column.
"I'm adding this to your regular beat," coughed Rigby. "You can thank me later."
Rigby's thick fingers were crowded together on his hand. This helped explain why he typed with only his index fingers. His cigar was more chewed than smoked. He smoked one cigar a day but ate two a day.

“Since you are asking me to write a weekly review of local churches you should know, I’m agnostic.”

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