Thursday, December 18, 2014

Happy Holidays! Lots Of Good News To Report!

First things first (but not necessarily in that order) ~ With this being the holiday season, (and with you guys celebrating all kinds of different things wherever you are in the world) -

I want to say to you and your family - Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Kwanzaa, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year (and whatever else you celebrate around this time of year.) I am so appreciative of all of you and I'm glad you enjoy reading my books. It is a labor of love and I love hearing from all of you. You guys are awesome and without you, I wouldn't be here today writing. Thanks!

On December 7th, my best friend and I got engaged while on a cruise in the Pacific Ocean :-)

No word yet on when the big day is, but we're excited!


The beta-readers of my new book Self-Aware LOVED it and I'm happy to report that it's in the hands of editors to make sure it's as perfect as can be. I'm expecting the book back by December 24th (Christmas eve) and I'm going to launch it Christmas day (Dec 25th) on Amazon. It will be available on the Kindle Unlimited, KDP, and KOLL - world wide, with free promotions too - but not sure when the free week will be. Those who buy it Christmas day will have the Limited-Edition Nighttime Cover for only one day as seen below:
It will be exclusive for 90 days to Amazon, but after March 25th, 2015 I will release it on my website and on Smashwords, Google Play, Itunes, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, etc. I'm also working on the audio book that I will read and voice-act the different characters. This book will also be available for print-on-demand (POD) so if you love the feel of a book in your hands - you'll have this option too.

Depending on sales, reviews, etc. I will decide if I'm going to work on Anica Storm (Book 2) or Self-Aware (Book 2) throughout the 2015 year.

My goal for the new year is to finish writing my book a lot faster, with the same level of quality. This book came short of just under two years to make. (Keep in mind this is also balancing a full time job, a relationship, friendships, etc.) ~ It's doable, so my hopes are to get the next book done by Christmas!

So lots to look forward to! I hope you guys have a safe and happy holidays and a wonderful new year! Here's hoping 2015 will be a better year for all. I'll talk to you again after the new year!  :-D

Steven W.

QUESTION OF THE DAY:  Which would you rather see come out? A new Anica Storm book or another Self-Aware book? Leave your creative or interesting comments in the comment section below. Don't forget to bookmark this link and if you've read my books - please take one minute to leave a review. Every review matters! Thanks!

Friday, October 24, 2014

The Good... The Bad.... and The Ugly...

First, we'll start off with the ugly and get that out of the way...

Self-Aware (A Zombie Series With A Fresh Twist!) will not be released on Halloween, or anytime this October. Bummer, I know.

It sucks, which leads to what's Bad... I was hoping to release it this month, but the polishing/editing is taking longer than expected. I rather wait and hold off, then to release this incredible book that has such potential to be a best seller.

The Good? I'm happy to say that it's polishing very nicely, meaning that there's a lot going into this book... character development, dialog, proper emotional responses, following all the steps of the Hero's Journey, and lots and lots of zombies! I've come so far in my writing over the last five years and this book is going to show the difference/contrast from when I wrote Anica Storm & The Wand of Time to now. What's changed is I've learned how to show, more than to tell in the writing.

Example, in my old book, I would say something like: 

Anica was afraid to open the door.

(This is telling... kind of a no, no. You want to have about 90% showing and about 10% telling because sometimes you just have to say it.)

Now I would write something like:

Anica reached her hand out to turn the rustic, old door knob, but noticed her hand was trembling at the thought of what might be behind the door.

What's behind the door?!? Yikes... can you feel the tension? All I threw in there was a door knob and Anica reaching for it. It makes you want to know now, doesn't it?  :-)

Well I'm happy to say that I'm very excited to release Self-Aware to the world soon. While I'm disappointed it didn't hit the target date, I rather wait and release it when it's ready, then to half-ass it. After all, so much has gone into this book... it needs to be as perfect as possible because I'm counting on your honest reviews to let the world know Hey, check out this book! You won't be disappointed!

So that's where I'm at. If I don't talk to you before next week, I hope you guys have a great Halloween and know that Self-Aware will definitely come out in either November or December, in time for the holidays so you can cozy up next to the fire with your new kindle you got for Christmas!  :-)

PS ~ In case you're wondering what's on the other side of the door, here it is...

Anica took a deep breath and slowly let it out, as she gathered the courage to turn the handle. Using the sleeve of her shirt, she wiped off the old spiderweb and then turned the knob... but it didn't turn. Suddenly the door squeaks open as Anica's eyes widen at what's opening the door. All she can see is a dark room!


I just made that up. If you do want to read more of Anica Storm & The Wand of Time, you can find my book at ~ The first part is free, so enjoy!

Steven W.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Autumn is around the corner... and you know what that means!

It's been a busy summer for me. I've done a few Author Take Over events and had a blast! Attended a lot of Summer BBQ's and get together's, attended a very beautiful lesbian wedding and this past labor day, celebrated the end of Summer (even though it's not official until the 21st of this month).

With September being here, it also means my deadline for my new book is fast approaching. Everyday this month, as best I can, I'm going to be writing/polishing my book so that the final copy can go to the editors to glance over before giving me their thumbs up or thumbs down.

Once the book is edited, it will be formatted first for Kindle and will be released on the Kindle Unlimited Program - so many people can gain access to this book early on, thus helping the reviews. This will go on for approximately three months, taking it through October, November & December in which I will be working on reading and recording my voice for the Audible - audio book version of Self-Aware (A Zombie Series with a Fresh Twist!) for those of you who love listening on the go!

After January, I will be releasing the book through Smashwords who will distribute it to Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Apple and I will also upload it to the Google Play store!

As you can see... there's lots to do, and this is just one book. I've still got to market the book via social media (Twitter, Facebook, G+, etc.) in hopes it goes viral. I've poured my heart into this book, on so many levels to give you the reader, the best experience, best story and best adventure possible. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't forget that you help make my dream of being a writer a reality. Writers need readers, and readers need writers. That's an awesome combination and I can't wait to show you next month what I've been working on for the last year.

Until then,
Stay crunchy... even in milk.  ;-)

Steven W.  

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Self-Aware (A Zombie Series With A Fresh Twist) Chapter ONE - SNEAK PEEK!!!

(Copyright 2014 - Steven Wolff)

Warning: Contains Graphic Scenes & Regular Stuff Found in Zombie Movies/Shows. Not suitable for those under 17 years of age.
This is an un-professionally edited sneak peak at my new Zombie series called Self Aware (A Zombie Series with a Fresh Twist!) If you read this, please take a few moments and leave your thoughts in the comment section below for a chance to win a free early edition copy before it's released to the world.

(And to give valuable feedback to the author.)


To the west of Eugene, Oregon on a large ten acre pasture of land, sits an old two story house next to a tall oak tree. Underneath the tree is a tire swing that gently sways in the breeze; Its hung there for many generations, entertaining young and old alike. Some say when you look at it, you can almost hear kids laughing in the wind.

Just on the other side of the house is an old weathered barn that has stood the test of time. Built in the 1880s, it has survived everything Mother Nature, and man has thrown at it. Sure, it could use a fresh coat of red paint and a couple of nails here and there, but it still stands strong to this day.Out in front of the house an old man with a long white beard stands high up on a ladder.

Dag nabit, he yells while yanking up and down on a tangled string of holiday lights. On the ground below, a giant ball of wires and lights bounce in and out of an old cardboard box as the old man tries to untangle it from above.

Off in the distance, he hears the familiar squeal of brakes being applied so he turns his head in curiosity. Along the edge of his property, a car turns off the pavement and onto the dirt road leading up to a gate. A person gets out, opens the gate and drives through. Then they get out again and close the gate behind them before driving up towards the house. The squealing sound of the brakes is now replaced with the distinct sound of tiny rocks and pebbles hitting the under carriage of a car.

The old man steps down off the ladder and faces the direction of the car. He quickly grooms his long white beard with his hand and glances down at his blue overalls, brushing off any dust or hay before resuming his correct posture.

The car drives up slowly and comes to a stop with ten feet of the old man. The engine knocks for a second before going silent. A few seconds pass and the driver side door clicks open.

A woman wearing business casual clothing and large dark sunglasses steps out of the car in a serious manner. The old man squint
s his eyes and leans his head forward, If youre trying to sell me something, Im not interested.

Thats too bad, the brunette woman said taking off her sunglasses. The old man tilts his ear towards her direction.

Stephanie? he asks unsure.

Hi Daddy,She smiles wide. Miss me?

Oh my goodness, Stephanie!!! What a surprise! Of course we missed you! Come here and give your old man a hug!

Without hesitation Stephanie closes her eyes and dives into his warm embracing arms.

Ooooo! Its so good to see you, She says smiling cheek to cheek. Love the blue overalls toovery old McDonald-ish.

Ill show you old McDonald. He says tickling her ribs as she tries to get away but cant.

Okay! Okay! Ha ha ha ha. I take it back, I take it BACK! Stephanie says giggling.

My eyesight might be going, but I can still move swiftly.

Why arent you wearing your new glasses?

You know me I cant stand anything on my face.

But Dad, they help you see.

I can see just fine as long as its just a few feet in front of me. Heck, I even knew it was you when you pulled up.

Oh really? I parked ten feet away because I knew you couldnt see me clearly.

It was your brakes that gave you away. Youre the only person I know whose breaks squeal like a newborn pig.

Stephanie laughs, Darn ityou got me again.

What brings you from so far away? Shouldnt you be in class right now?

Normally yes, but were on Christmas vacation until the third of January and Portland isnt that far away Dad, its only a two hour drive. Since Im off for two weeks, and its been a while since we last seen each other, I figured Ill swing down and spend the holiday with you and mom if thats okay with you both?

Of course it is! You know that. Your mother and I were just wondering if youd come around.

Speaking of mom, hows she doing?

Shes doing good moving a little slower these days, but still stubborn as a mule.

And grandma, still opinionated and crass?

Oh dont you know it She broke her Give-A-Damn meter long ago.

Shes how old now, ninety three?

Lord knows how old she is she stopped counting after her seventies.

I hope to live as long as she does. Stephanie says looking towards the house.

Careful what you wish for getting old isnt all that its cracked up to be. Trust me, I know.
There is a short pause where neither of them say anything.

Want me to go get your mom or grandma?

Theres no rush Im here for two weeks; Im sure Ill get my fill of them. Right now I want to look at you. Stephanie says glancing over her dad. Your white beard, its getting so long!

Wha? This old thing? He lifts the bottom of his beard up to see it. I call it my soup catcher, cause its always ending up in my soup or on my plate.

Ewww gross, Dad!

He lets out a hearty laugh that brings a giant smile to her face. She loves seeing her dad happy. Thats the one thing Ive always loved about you daddy.

Whats that?

Youve always had a way to make me laugh. Ive really missed that. And this beautiful farmso alive and green, all thanks to you.

Yeah, I guess youre right. I thought retirement was supposed to be all relaxing and drinking tea. Its not, theres always something to do. Work work work.

Would you rather be doing this, or go back to truck driving?

As much as I miss it, I rather be doing this. Twenty five years on the road is long enough. Now the only thing I drive is my John Deer lawn mower.

I know what Im getting you for Christmas then.

Oh yeah? Whats that?

A C.B. radio so you can talk to all your trucker buddies while mowing the lawn.

Your mother would have a cow if she found out I was talking on the C.B. again.

Im kidding, dad.

Speaking of Christmas, if you dont mind,He lifts up on the string of lights to show Stephanie. I could sure use a hand with these darn Christmas lights. They keep getting tangled.

I cant believe you still have theseDidnt you buy them before I was even born?

Something like that.

Dont you think it might be time to upgrade, Dad.

I know, I know, Lord knows I tried, but youre mother likes em and heaven forbid I try to get rid of them. And theres no use in arguing with her She wins every time.

I know these run up your electricity bill and that breaks my heartI know you guys have a limited income and cant afford to have this.

Youre right, but well deal with it after the holidays, like we always do. Besides, we cant afford to get new ones.

Hold that thought. Stephanie says pointing her index finger upwards to signal her dad to stay put. She unlocks the trunk of her car.

I got you something I think youll like.


No Dad, not beer something even better.


DAD! Eeeewwww No dont put that thought in my head!

He scratches the back of his head in confusion, looking down at the ground.

Then what could it be?

Stephanie slams the hood down and walks back towards her dad.

I cant believe you. Viagra sheesh. Here, take this.

Stephanie hands her dad a wrapped present with a shiny bow on it.

Whats this?

A present.

Ill go put it under the tree.

No, Dadits for you to open now.

You sure?

Yes, go ahead, open it. I think youll like it.

He starts to slide his finger along the edge of the paper where it
s taped, being careful not to ruin the wrapping.

Just tear into it were not going to reuse it.

But its good paper.

Geesh Dadhere let me help. Stephanie uses one of her long fingernails to slash the paper from one corner to another.

There, now you cant reuse it. Now look inside.
He holds the package at arms length away and squints his eyes.

Whats this?

Well, whats it say on the box? Stephanie asks smiling.

Lead lights? Never heard of those. They dont feel heavy like lead.

Not lead lights, Dad. L.E.D. lights theyre Christmas lights that are very energy efficient. They wont use up so much electricity and risk burning down your house.

Dont you think with all the crap we have that maybe a good burnin might be welcomed?

I know you dont mean that.

Im just saying maybe if the house went up it might be a good thing.

Well now you dont have to worry about that any more these are cool to the touch and will last forever.

Thank you Stephanie, but do they twinkle? You know your mother likes them to twinkle.
Stephanie laughs, Yes Dad, they twinkle. In fact, if you look here, it says on the package that not only do they flash, but they have eight different settings.

Sounds complicated.

Trust me, its not. Wait till night fall and Ill show you how easy it is. Its just a press of a button.
He looks at them closely, These sure are tiny. Will people be able to see it?

They will, I promise all the way to the road. Stephanie says walking over to the old box of lights.

What are you doing? He asks watching her reel in the string of lights back into the box.

Im retiring these for good. She says carrying the box to her car.

Retiring? What do you mean?

Im going to recycle them, Dad.She says popping open the trunk on her car.

Those are still good. I can use them for something else!

No Dad, these have got to go. Remember what we talked about something called hording.

Are you sure? Theyve been in our family a long time.

I know Dad, and theyve ran their course. Youll like the new ones, I promise.

I might, but what about your mother or grandmother. They can be finicky about change. 
Stephanie slams the trunk shut and presses the alarm remote.  The car chirps and the lights flash once to show its armed.

Ill explain to mom and grandma that this needed to happen. In fact, Ill be happy to go talk to them now. Any idea where they might be?

Your mothers probably watching her soap operas, sitting in her favorite chair; Grandma is probably upstairs in her room, cutting out newspaper articles to pin them on the wall, just like she always does.
Stephanie makes her way to the porch and stops in her tracks, I almost forgot something.

She walks back briskly to her car and opens the passenger side door to grab something. She stands up and puts a white square box on the roof of the car before closing the door. She clicks the lock button and walks back with a big smile on her face, holding a white box with both hands.

Whats that youre holding?

What? This lets open it and find out…”

Stephanie looks down and pops the lid open slowly for her dad to see. Inside is a fresh baked apple pie; its crust flaky golden brown with steam radiating from the inside.

Doesnt it smell good? She asks smiling.

He closes his eyes and takes a big whiff of the fragrance escaping the box.

My oh my  it smells so delicious! He then leans his head in and looks in both directions to see if anyone can hear. Speaking softly, he says You knowwe can both take this to the barn and enjoy it ourselves.

Dadthis is for all three of you!

Are you sure? Because this can be our little secret.

Dad! No.Stephanie says smiling.

Oh, all right. You know me I just dont like sharin’”

Come onlets go put this inside so itll stay warm. Stephanie says walking back to the front porch. She stops at the old screen door and waits for her dad to step up the three wooden steps. Im coming, Im coming.He says leaning his weight on the arm rail, taking it one step at a time.

No rush. Im not going anywhere.

He pulls the screen door open and waits to walk in behind her. Stephanie places the pie near the garden window so the gentle breeze carries the fragrance throughout the house. Moments later, her mother leans forward in her chair with a confused look on her face. She sniffs the air several times.

John, are you cooking something in the kitchen?

Stephanie smiles and puts her index finger over her lips, signaling for her dad not to say anything. He nods in agreement.

Since theres no answer, her mom gets up and puts her quilt down so she can investigate.

Surprise Mom!  Stephanie says popping around the corner.

Stephanie! What a nice surprise! she says hugging her daughter.

Hi Mom, I missed you.

I missed you too. How have you been? What brings you to this neck of the woods?
Im good! Im on my Christmas break and thought I would come down and spend the holidays with you guys if thats okay?

Of course it is. Your dad and I had a little bet you would show up.She says looking at John. He frowns and reaches in his pocket to pull out a wadded up ten dollar bill. He hesitantly puts it in her waiting hand.

Thank you, honey. She smiles lovingly.

From atop of the stairs an old raspy voice yells, Whos down there?
Stephanie moves to the bottom of the stairs and looks up at her grandma. Shes hunched over, leaning her weight on a silver walker with two tennis balls on the front. Her glasses are so thick that the lenses cause her eyes to look like an owl.

Its me grandma, Stephanie. She says projecting her voice so she can hear.

Stephanie? Do I know you?

Stephanie looks back at her grandma and responds, Yes grandma, you know me. Im the one in vet school.

Vet school? You mean youre in the military?

No grandma, not veteran; Im in a Veterinarian school you know, someone who helps animals get better.

Shouldnt you be in school then? Is it because ya playinhookie?

No grandma, Im on Christmas vacation. I figured I would spend it with you, ma and dad.
Christmas? Oh my Is it that time again? I better go find my black Friday coupons.

She lifts and turns her walker to the left, shuffling slowly out of sight.
Stephanie turns and whispers to her parents, Should she be at the top of the stairs?

Of course not. John says.

Then why is she up there? She could fall down the stairs!

We know. Its because shes stubborn as a mule, thats why. Shes lived upstairs all her life and is insistent on keeping things the way they are. Everything has its place and dont you dare think of changing it or well never hear the end of it.

Someone her age shouldnt be living on the second floor. Those stairs are steep and dangerous, especially with her eye sight being so bad.

Youre preaching to the choir. Your mom and I have tried everything to keep her from going up them stairs. Weve tried boards, baby gates, rope, you name it, but she just grabs on and starts a rockin back and forth until they come off the wall.

Has she fallen yet?

Are you kidding? John looks at Stephanie in disbelief. If it wasnt for that big hump on her back, she would probably be in the hospital with multiple hip fractures.

John!Stephanies mom slaps him on the shoulder.

What? Its true shes a turtle and you know it. Every time she falls on her back, she flails her arms in every direction until she grabs onto something and rights herself up.

Thats your mother in law!

More like tortoise in law. He jokes playfully.


John laughs raising his arm up to block any more hits.

Dont listen to your dad. Hes been out in the sun too long.

Whats up there thats so important? Stephanie asks.

Her clipping room four giant corkboard walls lined with hundreds of newspaper clippings, magazine cut outs, you name it. She loves cutting things out with her scissors and pinning them up on the wall since before you were born. I cant tell you how many of my favorite magazines have been destroyed.

Or my morning newspaper. John adds.

Yeah, well we need to remember this is her house and shes been kind enough to let us move in with her. A little clipping here and there is not much to ask for living rent free.

Show your mom whats in the box.  John says.

Is it what I think it is? She says smiling.
Stephanie reaches over and presents the apple pie with the golden crust.

My lord, would you look at that crust! It looks so delicious; I cant wait to have some.

I know its your favorite and I wanted to surprise you both.

You did! Do you know what would go great with this?

What?Stephanie asks.

Homemade vanilla ice cream! Weve made some the other day from the left over milk we had from milking the cows. 

I cant remember when the last time I had fresh from the farm ice cream. Are you still using the old fashioned crank bucket too?

Oh yes, we still use it. Her mom says as she walks over to the freezer and grabs a metal canister. She carries it back and puts it in front of Stephanie who lifts the lid to see the vanilla ice cream inside.

Wow. This is really old fashioned. Stephanie says while swiping her index finger through the ice cream, but before she could lick her finger, her mom swats her hand like a fly.
Speaking of some things never changing. She looks at Stephanie with both hands on her hips.

Stephanie looks at her mom with a sheepish grin on her face.
I love you!

Ill give you an I love you in a minute Go grab some plates and silverware and help set the table. Silly girl…”

Yes mom,Stephanie giggles and gets up fast.

Her dad starts scooping ice cream from the container as her mother serves up the apple pie on the plates. 

After the plates and silverware are set, everyone sits down and starts to enjoy the yummy dessert. Stephanie looks at her apple pie melting the cold cream, causing it to pool on her plate. She quickly scoops it with her spoon and closes her eyes.

Oh my gawd Im in heaven. Stephanie blurts out.

Good stuff huh? Her dad says, not paying attention to his beard catching some of the ice cream and pie filling.

Dadyoure doing it again! Stephanie points and laughs.
He looks down and starts wiping his frizzled white beard with his napkin.

JohnI swear one of these nights when you least expect it, Im going to cut your beard with my mothers clipping scissors.

Sorry…”He says paying better attention to his plate. Stephanies mom looks at Stephanie, nodding her head left and right. I thought you were still at the University of Oregon? What happened?

I was but I had a change of heart. I hated my business classes because in order to compete in todays business world you have to be aggressive and cut throat... thats not who I am.

Thats because youre too nice Stephanie. Lord knows how many Girl Scout cookies I had to pay for out of pocket because you kept giving them away. Do you remember that?
Stephanie smiles, Yes, its because most of my friends had no money.

Well nothings free in this world. Everything comes at a price.

I know. Im stuck with two student loans now.Stephanie says regretfully.

So do you like working with animals better?

I do. Ive always loved animals and enjoy being around them.

Her dad looks up and says Your mother and I took that into consideration when we decided to buy the old place, so you could be surrounded by them.

Im so appreciative of that. I think this might be my calling.

Well good, He says. If ever my horses or cows get sick, I might need ya to make a house call.

Dealonly if you have some more vanilla ice cream waiting for me in the freezer.

Tell medo you have to dress up like a secretary to be in vet school?

Stephanie looks down at what shes wearing and then back up at her dad, You mean what Ive got on? No, this isnt what we normally wear. In class were usually in scrubs, but today Im dressed formally because I attended a fund raising event for our local animal shelter.

Ah, I see.

Ohand Dad, they dont call them secretaries any more.

Well what do you call them, then?

Theyre administrative assistants. Its more gender neutral.

You mean there are men who are secretaries?

Ugh, yes dad, there are male administrative assistants.

Lord I cant keep up with all your new lingo. He says pushing his empty plate away from him. He wipes his mouth with a checkered red and white napkin before throwing it down on his plate.

That was delicious apple pie, or whatever you kids call it these days.John says as he stands up and takes his plate to the sink.

Its still apple pie, silly. Stephanie says smiling.

Stephanies mom reaches out to John as he walks by to get his attention. Will you go check on Tommy? Hes awfully quiet.

Yes dear.John says leaning over to kiss the top of her head before walking out of the room.

I didnt know Tommy is here. Is Lorraine here too?

Shes at work right now, till four.

Wheres Jack, why isnt he watching the kids?

Oh, you dont know?

Know what?

Your sister Lorraine and Jack had a nasty fight. They broke up a few months ago.

Im sorry to hear that. Stephanie says.

Jack, as you know, has a serious drinking problem and when hes drunk, hes very abusive. He hit Rusty, whos only 7 years old and that was the last straw. Lorraine took Tommy and Rusty and came here to live with us until she can get back on her feet.

Thats terrible. Is Rusty okay?

Rustys fine. Hes outside playin in the back like all little boys his age do. Probably catchin frogs or grasshoppers. Tommy is in the other room, taking a nap.
Im glad the kids are okay and out of that abusive environment. So I take it they are getting a divorce?

Your dad and I want her too, but she thinks that they can work things out. Im like Lorraine, you cant fix this. Its a slippery slope that goes downhill. It wont be long before hell be sleepin around and then the next thing you know, youre scratchin your cookie like a hound has fleas.

Stephanie laughs, Im sorry, She tries to cover her smile. Ha, ha, ha I know this isnt funny subject, but I havent heard that word in a long time.

What, cookie or hound has fleas?

Cookie. Youre the only person I know who calls it that.

Its true. Once a cheater, always a cheater, and it wont be funny when shes pissinfire.
Stephanie takes a moment to regain her composure, wiping the tear from the corner of her eye.

So. Hows dad taking retirement? Stephanie asks using her fork to cut a piece of pie.

Ohokay, I guess. He really wishes he was on back on the road driving, or that you would follow in his footsteps and become a truck driver like your daddy.

I know mom, but we both know thats not going to happen.

Her mom takes a deep breath and lets out a quiet sigh.

You should have seen his face the day you were born. He was hoping you were a boy.

Mom, can we not talk about this, please? I know me being a truck driver or not being a boy was a big disappointment to dad. Im sorry, but that will never change.

He still loves you, even if youre not a boy.

Can we talk about more upbeat things? Did Dad tell you I got you guys some L.E.D. Christmas lights?

Not yet. Why did you do that? We have perfectly good Christmas lights.

You and Dad sound so alike, do you know that?

Did you save the receipt?

No, MomIm not taking them back. The reason I got them is because they are energy efficient and wont run up your electric bill.

Yeah, but I like my lights to twinkle.

I knowand these have eight different twinkle settings. Darn it, now you have me saying it. These have eight different flash settings. After the sun sets in a few hours, Ill plug them in and show you guys.

You didnt have to but thank you.

Youre welcome, and yes, it needed to happen.

Outside along the edge of the property is a long wooden fence that separates the property line. Rusty, who is bored of chasing bugs, finds a long skinny branch on the ground. He picks it up and examines it, before swinging it left and right like a sword. He looks at the fence and decides to hold the branch out to his side, letting the branch tap every fence post along the way.

Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap.

Across the street just beyond the dense tree line, a tall boney man in his mid-twenties shuffles slowly through the woods. It suddenly stops in place when it hears tapping off in the distance. His head swings forward and quickly to the left, as it listens intently.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

A piece of flesh slowly starts to dangle from his grayish blue face as a fly lands on it. His decayed teeth are now exposed to the air as drool starts to seep out of the new opening. It jerks its body towards the sound, changing direction towards the tapping. Rusty continues walking and then suddenly stops when he sees the man walk out of the treeline.

The man walks across the road and up to the wooden fence that holds him back. He reaches out to grab the young boy, but hes out of arms reach. He swings his head left and right, as if looking at the barrier keeping him from what he wants most.

Rusty catches a whiff of the guys decaying body so he pinches his nose, Pew wee, mister You smell like rotting garbage!


The creature leans in, causing the fence to buckle, but it still holds him back.

Marrgh? You sure do talk funny. Do you have a cold or something?

Garrrrgghhhhhhhhhh! The creature says pacing back and forth along the fence, trying to get in.

Are you wanting someone to play with?


Thats great! Im looking for someone to play with too. How about we play Tag, youre it!


Okay, Ill go first! Tag,Rusty quickly slaps the top of the mans hand, knocking a layer of skin onto the ground.

Eeeeewwwww, thats gross. Does your hand hurt?

Murrrraggggghhhhhhhh! the creature lunges at Rusty, but again the fence holds him back.

Okay, now youre it. I cant play outside the fence so youre gonna have to come inside with me. Rusty says lifting the handle up on the gate.

From inside the house, everyone hears an ear piercing scream.

What was that? Stephanie says alarmed. Her mom rushes over to the garden window and looks out towards the edge of the property.

Oh my god. No.Noooo!!!Her mom covers her mouth with both hands as tears start streaming from her eyes, unable to look away. Stephanie looks at her and then out the window to see what she sees. In the distance, she sees the bony man attacking Rusty.
Call 911! CALL 911!!! Stephanie shoves her phone in her moms chest before bolting out the front door as fast as she can. The screen door slams shut behind her as she runs as fast as she can go.

Get off of him, get away, GET AWAY!!! Stephanie yells frantically, almost out of breath. The man looks up and growls, showing his decaying teeth with chunks of flesh stuck between them.

He reaches into the chest and rips the childs organs out, one hand at a time before shoving them in his mouth. After a few bites, he spits them out to make room for more. Stephanie slows down running and starts to throw up in disgust. 

Unable to look away, she watches in horror as the creature bites into his heart, causing red blood to shoot in several directions. As shes hunched over, rage starts to course through her veins as she clenches her fist tight. With a mighty war cry, Stephanie starts running full speed towards him delivering a kick into its ribs hard enough to lift him a few feet off of Rusty. The creature falls to his side unfazed by a kick that would have regular men wallowing in pain.

Stephanies eyes widen in fear when she realizes it didnt bother him. In desperation, she scans the ground looking for anything that can be used as a weapon. She grabs a thick broken branch from a nearby tree and swoops down to grab it. She winds up and swings it with all her might, connecting with the side of the mans face, sending hundreds of pieces of wood, splinters and teeth flying in all directions. The whack was so loud it echoed off the barn house several hundred feet away.

The bony man looks at the ground dazed, as he crawls on his hands and knees; his lower jaw barely hanging from a small piece of flesh. He looks up at Stephanie and then starts crawling back towards Rusty.
Stephanie grabs him by the back of the shirt and struggles to keep him away, but for a skinny guy, hes incredibly strong. Stephanie grabs onto the fence and hangs on with one arm, holding the man by the collar with the other. 

One of the fence boards dislodges and the man starts pulling Stephanie. She gets up and grabs the fence board with both hands, raising it high above her head. She swings it down with all her might, bashing the mans head in, over and over until he stops moving and she feels the ground on the other side.
She looks at her nephews lifeless body, and begins to sob.

Where his heart, liver and lungs should be is now an empty chest cavity, with just a piece of spinal cord sticking up through a dark pool of red blood. Stephanies mouth trembles uncontrollably as she drops the fence board next to her, as she falls to her knees crying.

She looks up towards the sky, pleading in vain. God. me. Please, someone help me…” She lifts his lifeless body in her arms, softly caressing his hair with her trembling fingers.

John makes his way to Stephanie as fast as he can, holding a loaded shot gun. When he sees that hes too late, he lowers his head and takes off his hat.  
Stephanie looks up at him with tears streaming down, Help usDaddy. Please?

It breaks his heart to see his daughter soaked in blood, holding Rusty
s lifeless body. Moments later, Stephanies mom rushes up, out of breath. John grabs her and quickly turns her away, but not before she catches a glimpse of Rustys arm dangling lifeless.

My grandbaby my grandbaby what has he done?!? What kind of person would do such a thing?  She squirms in Johns arms, sobbing uncontrollably as he escorts her back to the house. Sirens can be heard off in the distance as Stephanie rocks Rustys lifeless body back and forth.

OUCH!Stephanie yells out in pain as she quickly pushes him off of her. She glances down and sees blood oozing from tiny teeth marks on her breast.


Stephanie puts her hand over her breast and holds it there. With her free arm, she rolls Rusty off of his side so she can see his face. It
s still the same little boy shes always known, his eyelids closed as if asleep. She looks at his lifeless body for a good minute and tries to rationalize what just happened.

Maybe it was an involuntary twitchshe thinks.

She looks at his sweet, innocent face and those distinct little red freckles. She reaches her fingers towards his eyelids, but hesitates. Something inside her wants to lift them and see what
s underneath, but something else in her tells her not to. After a few moments of self reflection, she reaches her hand towards his eyes. 

Suddenly Rustys eyes shoot open and stare back at Stephanie, causing her to gasp and retract her hand.
His eyes are pitch black and reflective in the center, almost like a cats eyes.

Stephanie feels the pain in her breast radiating to other parts of her body.
Aaaarrrgghhhh. She yells out in agony, pulling on her shirt so she can see whats happening. 

Black veins shoot outward in every direction from the bite marks, extending down her arms and up her neck.

Stephanie slumps over in pain, losing consciousness; her last thought

So this is how I die.


So... what do you think? I'm interested in hearing your thoughts so please a comment below. Please keep in mind this is raw and still unedited. (Still need to get a professional to clean it up). On the content alone, the creativity, the people... the story... did it paint a picture? Did you feel emotion, laughter, sadness? Did you get grossed out?

Leave a comment below and you'll be entered to receive a free copy of my book Self Aware before it's released to the world. Let me know if you're interested in reading more.

Steven Wolff