Tall Stories: An Anthology of Short fiction

‘Tall Stories’ is the result of a writing group that came together to share story telling within the same fictional environment. The group was set up to allow its members to tell stories that intertwine; sharing and developing their characters and locations every time a story is told.

In this first anthology of short fiction you will find seven stories about the inhabitants of a residential tower block. Written by Chris Raven, Peter John, Connie Dalhart and Adam Bigden, these stories cover a wide range of genres and styles and will take you on a journey where you will see the same characters through different eyes, each story adding a further layer to life to Musevary Towers.

Contents:
Ernie: an Upstanding Member of Society by Peter John.
The Visitor by Chris Raven.
A Latté to Go by Chris Raven.
The Globe and Compass by Connie Dalhart.
Marley and the Nose Gnome by Chris Raven.
The Case of the Shiny Red Gift Box by Chris Raven.
The Letter by Adam Bigden.7b0e69cd6fe3d76b8cf5adc74e619905c43d65d8

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Seth & The Mockingbirds

The sun was shining brightly and not a cloud hung in the sky. The flowers were in full bloom and the birds sung in the tree tops.

“Bloody birds and their bloody singing.” Seth Johnson stood outside his kitchen door looking out into the garden. His favourite burgundy bathrobe was old and becoming threadbare but, over his eighty-five years on this earth, Seth had learnt not to discard things while they still served their purpose. Even if it did smell stale and look like an old dog’s blanket, he still found comfort and warmth in its embrace.
“Bloody noisy birds.” Seth raised his double barrel shotgun and trained it on the nearest tree top.
“Bloody birds and their bloody chirping.” He gently exhaled and pulled the trigger. There was a single hollow click as the hammer struck, followed by a brief flutter of wings from the surrounding trees. He pulled the second trigger but was awarded the same result.

Seth lowered his gun and snapped open the breach. Pulling out the first cartridge, he examined it closely. Holding it up to his nose, he took a deep sniff, it smelt neither damp nor discharged. He dropped it on the floor by his feet and pulled out the second cartridge. He repeated his inspection before letting it fall next to the first. Shrugging his shoulders, Seth fumbled around in the pockets of his bathrobe, finally pulling out two fresh cartridges. He slotted them into the barrels of his gun before snapping it closed. He lifted it up again and trained it on the treetop. Click… Click.

“Bugger it.” He cracked the shotgun open and flicked the two cartridges out. They fell to the floor, where a small pile was beginning to form. A moment of fumbling within his pockets produced another two fresh cartridges. He hastily slotted then into his gun and slammed the breach shut.

“Bugger it, bugger it. God damn and bugger it!” Seth swore as he heard the two hollow clicks. He snapped his gun open a third time and shook the cartridges from his gun. They fell to the floor, landed amongst the first four and scattered them like bowling balls. With his gun hooked over his arm, he stomped back into his house, slamming the kitchen door closed behind him. The Sun continued to shine and the birds were still singing.

As night fell, the treetop began to rustle. Six sparrows swooped down from the highest branches. Each one took a tight hold of a discarded shotgun cartridge with their tiny claws. One by one the flew through the open kitchen window. Gently gliding through the hallway and up the stairs, the convoy of small birds squeezed through the small gap beneath Seth’s bedroom door. In his bed, Seth slept soundly, his favourite burgundy bathrobe was hooked to the back of his bedroom door. The little sparrows hovered above the bed momentarily, as if mocking the sleeper within, before gliding to the door. One by one, they dropped the cartridges into the deep, gaping pockets of Seth’s bathrobe, before swooping away through the crack beneath the door.

The following morning the sun was shining brightly and not a cloud hung in the sky. The flowers were in full bloom and the birds sung in the tree tops.
“Bloody birds!” Seth grumbled as he raised his shotgun.

©2014 Peter John

Suicide Ride: The Platinum Man by E. Llewellyn

“ Loved the book can’t wait until the next one be released!! ”

“ The storyline is captivating and keeps your nose stuck in the book til the end. ”

“ Loved everything about it so much that I need to go back and start over just in case I missed anything! ”

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Read the racy bi-erotic M/M rock ‘n roll romance that one critic hails as “FIFTY SHADES OF GAY – ON POPPERS!”

SUICIDE RIDE is Sunset Boulevard revisited, revamped, and on steroids. If you liked Sunset Boulevard, you’ll love SUICIDE RIDE, a wicked contemporary twist on this age-old Hollywood noir tale of love, lust, money, ambition, sex, and power.

Are you straight? Are you sure? What would you do if you were down-and-out and desperate? What would you do—how far would you go—for FAME?

Find out just how far, and just how low, Johnny Gellis is willing to go in SUICIDE RIDE: THE PLATINUM MAN (Book 1 of the SUICIDE RIDE fiction series).

You hitch your lift with this man
You’ll have your blood on your hand …

AN OLDER MAN WITH NO FUTURE, AND NOTHING TO LIVE FOR …

Norman Dimond is the Silver Man, an over-the-hill LA-based rock ‘n roll record producer who has seen better days. A set-for-life bisexual with a hard spot for younger men, he squanders his nights hustling cash-strapped gay-for-pay desperadoes who swagger into his den on the Sunset Strip, looking for drive-by love in all the right places. Lonely and at loose ends, he longs for a worthy dance partner, but despairs of finding him … Until one night, when he least expects it, in waltzes …

A YOUNGER MAN WITH A PAST, AND A DEATH WISH …

Johnny Gellis is the Platinum Man, a beautiful straight wreck who needs fixing—and who wants exactly what Norman Dimond has to give: a platform, a stage. But does he want it badly enough? Desperate to outrun his demons, he’s driving himself crazy, and is heading straight for the edge. Can Norman save him, before it’s too late?

TWO LIVES ABOUT TO COLLIDE IN A SUICIDE RIDE …

When Norman meets Johnny, their heavy-metal fenders bend, sending the male-on-male sparks flying. Johnny’s number-one-with-a-bullet hit “Suicide Ride” blows Norman’s mind, while his number-99-with-an-anchor tattoo pricks up more than just his ears. And though this hell-bent, cliff-hanging headbanger is the man-boy of his dreams, keeping him on course turns out to be a waking nightmare. Can Norman do it? Can he put him on top while stopping him from breaking down and destroying them both? The deeper Dimond digs, the darker it gets; and as the secrets and suspense multiply, so, too, do the lies. Johnny is hiding something, that much Norman is sure of; and what’s worse, he begins to feel the tug of even darker and ever more violent undertows—sinister, malevolent drags that Gellis himself cannot spin-rinse away.

SUICIDE RIDE is at once a profound work of literature and a neo-noir Hollywood bromance for the ages. Gay fiction as well as literary fiction, it’s one fast-paced rock ‘n roll romance novel you won’t be able to put down, a gritty, realistic, eye-poppingly pimped-out Ride, flush with all the car parts for a runaway success. Switching genres like lanes, SUICIDE RIDE: THE PLATINUM MAN is a total head spin—an ebullient, erudite, yet racy exploration of the ancient themes that obsess us, by way of the pop culture freeway.

Whether you’re male or female, gay or straight—if you get off on bisexual sex stories about masculine gay men seeking gay sex with straight men; if character-driven literary fiction makes you drool; if you’re a bad-ass rocking roller looking to holler; if all you dream about is getting away for awhile—then this book is your ticket to paradise.

Download him onto your Kindle or other device using the FREE KINDLE READING APPS, and for less than the price of a cheap trick, Johnny Gellis will roll right into your Car-port. Pick him up now—and you’ll live to tell the tale.

But buyer beware: better buckle up. You’re in for one hell of a HARD Ride!

“E. Llewellyn does for Gay literature what Kubrick did for cinema—redefines and elevates, and constantly undercuts your expectations of the genre. Unfettered, unflinching, bristling with emotion, SUICIDE RIDE rocks your world.” ~ Mark Peter Krasselt

Bus Driving and Book Writing In London.

The Pros and Cons Of Being A London Bus Driver and Author.

DM PB3

After reading my novel ‘Dead Medium’, many people have asked me just what hat I pull my characters out of to make them feel so real and lifelike.
“Peter has a brilliant voice as and author and he brought each character to life from the moment they stepped onto the page”. Amazon reviewer -Future Slayer Girl.
“Colourful characters, brilliant one-liners and an imaginative and captivating story”. Amazon reviewer – Busby.
“The plot thickens and you are taken into a unique story filled with memorable characters and lots of humor”. Amazon reviewer – Donna Johnson.
“This is a very entertaining and original story peopled with such well-drawn characters, I felt like I got to know them personally”. Amazon reviewer – DragonOne.
“This is a fun read where the characters came to life along with their surroundings”. Amazon reviewer – Sheryl.
I always tell them that I take inspiration from day to day life and, when you drive a bus through London, there is plenty of life to choose from. In an attempt to expand of this answer I have written this article about the pros & cons of being a writing bus driver.

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The Pros

I consider myself lucky in many respects. I have a certain advantage as I perform a frontline job in such a diverse city. I find inspiration in the quirkiness of the various people who I meet on a day to day basis. Take for example “The Stickman”. A man in his fifties who always boards the bus with a thickly varnished, wooden walking stick. He is generally late to the bus stop and I have to wait while he slowly hobbles up to the bus. Now you may consider this to be nothing remarkable, however, on a Monday and Tuesday he holds the stick in his left hand and favours his left leg. On Wednesday, Thursday and Friday he holds it with his right hand and favours his right leg. I have yet to see him board the bus at all during a weekend. However, I often see him with both his legs pumping away, as if he were treading grapes, on his old Raleigh Arena, dressed in bright yellow, skin tight lycra shorts and matching t-shirt. Now I can’t help but think that there is a story in there somewhere. Even though I have yet to hear him utter a single word, he has given me a firm foundation to a great character. Now all I need to do is build on that and “Grizzly Adams” would make for an interesting merge. Grizzly has a big, black beard and a mop of thick, curly, black hair. He boards the bus in the late morning and also in the early afternoon, usually just before the local schools kick out and the bus becomes like a moving playground. Grizzly is normally on the bus for between 20 and 30 minutes and he spends this time telling anyone he can get to listen about the time he spent as a minicab driver.
“You wouldn’t believe who used to get into my cab!” I have often found myself silently agreeing with his assumption. He would then ramble on about all the celebrities that had climbed into his taxi cab and also the strange and unlikely places from which he had to pick them up from. My personal favourite yarn he often strings is about how he was once propositioned by an Egyptian princess, due to his striking good looks and irresistible charm. I myself cannot comment on the ascetic quality of his face as it is always covered by thick, black hair. As for his charm, however, he does have a knack for getting people to listen to him and on some days he attracts quite a crowd.

Vic is a relatively new patron of my bus, having only been travelling on my particular route for about two months. For most of the first month he wore a neck brace. He was obviously suffering from some kind of injury the cause of which is a mystery to me. Vic always wears the same brown tweed jacket with leather patches on the elbows. His trousers, however, vary often and they are always of a colour that not only fails to match his jacket but seem to dramatically clash. For example: his baby blue chinos or his bright orange polyester slacks, which have such sharp creases running down the front that, if he were to walk through an overgrown field, he’d end up cutting the grass with each and every stride. Each and every time Vic boards my bus he is in mid conversation on his mobile phone. He swipes his pass and barely registers my existence before taking a seat at the back of the bus where he continues with his telephone conversation. Now Vic doesn’t have a quiet voice; it bellows down the bus like a gust of strong wind and is generally littered with profanities. I have often asked him to curb his language, especially when there were children on board, but all my requests are usually met by various obscene hand gestures. Now I only started referring to this particular gentleman as Vic after I first saw him minus his neck brace and first set eyes on his dog collar.

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The Cons

The most difficult setback to bus driving, where writing is concerned, is the shift work. Instead of setting a regular time to sit back in peace and quiet to put pen to paper I have to fit it in whenever and wherever I can. I am never without a notebook and a pen and I try my best to keep my little 10” net-book handy whenever possible. The stress levels can also cause a hindrance and be pretty much counter productive. After a particularly difficult run my mind can lock up and my brain ends up feeling like a clenched fist. Not a great deal of writing takes place at times like these but, if it does, it tends to end up as no more than a penned rant.

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Further Thought

All in all, I would be lying if I said that I didn’t want to find myself in a position where I could write full time and give up bus driving permanently. Writing for a living is my dream and I am constantly striving to make that dream come true. However, I am certain that I would miss the inspiration I gain through working with life buzzing around me and I would probably ride few buses whenever I felt in need of a muse.

TRKA NEW

“I’ll See You Out There!”

If you have a funny story about buses or a quirky character that you frequently cross paths with I would love to hear about it. If you suspect that you yourself might be either The Stickman, Grizzly or Vic I would be thrilled to hear from you. You may have even unknowingly photographed me at one time or another, I am always being dazzled by the flash of a camera as I drive down the road.

Out of the hundreds of people who board my bus on a day to day basis, any one of them could be you.

All the best. The dreamer of words and worlds (and the driver of buses).

Peter John.

“I’ll see you out there!”

Wheels

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