Tag Archives: Mystery

Excerpt from “Remember Me?

My collection of short stories, Something Special, was released last week. It includes tales of fantasy, horror and mystery, and it’s available at the Kindle store in ebook form. A paperback version is forthcoming.

The “Peek Inside” feature lets you read the first story, “Lizzy and Me”, and a good chunk of the next story, “Don’t Ever Change.” The cover is based on a scene from another story called “Remember Me?” What follows is the introduction and a brief excerpt from a few pages in. Hope you enjoy it.

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The way in which Will meets Sam (the cat) is similar to something that happened to me. I was walking by the waterfront in Kingston and a cat came out of the darkness. It walked alongside of me, slowing when I slowed, picking up the pace when I did. Finally, I knelt down and said to the cat, “I can’t take you home with me.” Which I couldn’t. The cat’s eyes widened, and then it turned and disappeared into the darkness.

“Oh, this is good,” you said, sipping your dark roast. I’d chosen my favourite, an Americano, which was an indulgence, but it seemed like that kind of day.

As usual, the shop was bustling with patrons coming and going, and the tables were jammed with people talking or working on laptops. Throughout the space, the delicious smell of coffee mingled with the sweet odour of chocolate.

“You said you were looking for someone,” I reminded you.

“Right. Yes, I am. And you’re the link, but I’m not sure how.”

I was probably looking at you expectantly, waiting for you to say more. After taking a couple more sips of coffee, you did.

“Have you heard of the multiverse theory?”

I smiled. I was getting the sense that keeping you fixed on one topic at a time was going to be a challenge.

“Changing the subject?”

“Not really, no. Have you?”

“Yes,” I said.

“Great. So somewhere out there, there are other places, other realities, reflecting different choices, different events, and even different laws of physics.”

“Okay, sure.”

“And sometimes, there are cracks between the realities. And sometimes, people can fall into them.”

You seemed quite serious, so I went along. “So, people literally fall through the cracks. From one reality to another?”

“Exactly! Well done. The person I’m looking for has done just that. I’m here to help them get back to their own reality.”

“And you think I can help?” I said.

“I’m fairly sure, yes.”

“So what happened, exactly?” I said, deciding to suspend my disbelief for the moment. “How did you end up here?”

“I came upon a crack in reality. It was closing. And the way it was humming, I could tell that somebody had passed through. The only way that I’d be able to help bring them back was to follow them before the crack closed, so that’s what I did, and I barely made it. Half a minute later and it would have been too late.”

“So that’s why you said ‘that was close’ earlier.”

You nodded. “Sometimes, the crack, the doorway, whatever you want to call it, it takes me right to the person who crossed over. Other times, not so much, and some detective work is called for. I’ve done this enough times now that I’m turning into a regular Sexton Blake.”

“Sorry, who?”

“Ah. Never mind. Just me showing my age.”

We were both quiet for a time. “Well,” I said, resting my head on my hand, “I’m not sure what to say to all that.”

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End of excerpt.

Introducing Something Special

My collection of short fiction, Something Special, is now available on the Kindle store. A print copy will be available in the near future. Once, that is, when I’ve worked out how to make that happen… The book includes 14 short stories and one flash fiction tale, in the fantasy, horror, and mystery genres. From the introduction to the book…

I wrote the oldest of these stories, “Where the Dragons Sleep,” in 2002, back when my plan was to focus on children’s stories. Plans change. Using the pseudonym selimpensfiction, I began to write fan fiction in 2011 and continued to do so through 2016. Along the way came “The Right Time” (2014) and “Protagonist Purgatory” (2015). Thank goodness for fan fiction, as it gave me the opportunity to grow as a writer in a friendly, encouraging environment. By the time I posted my last fan fiction story, I felt ready to take the next step in my writing journey.

In 2017, my Doctor Who story “Landbound” was selected by Big Finish Productions as the year’s Paul Spragg Memorial Short Trip. It’s available for free if you care to give it a listen. Big Finish released my second Doctor Who story, “Battle Scars,” in 2019.

The stories in this collection are my original works. The fantasies are mostly of the urban variety, set in our world, except for “Protagonist Purgatory” and “Where the Dragons Sleep.” Of the horror stories, “Too Close” and “Under the Sand” are Lovecraftian; the others are not. Then there are the mystery yarns, or “weird mystery,” by which I mean mysteries that may or may not contain an element of fantasy, depending upon your interpretation. However, “A Question of Judgment” has nothing weird, with the possible exception of the detective.

A few stories are sequels to or are set in the same world as previous stories. Sometimes I’m just not ready to leave characters behind. The following stories are pairs: “Laura Wilcox” and “Truth to Power,” “Too Close” and “Under the Sand”, and “The Right Time” and “Protagonist Purgatory.”

The collection is not organized by genre, but if you prefer to focus on one genre at a time, you can make use of the list below.

Horror
Don’t Ever Change
Something Special
The Knife
Too Close
Under the Sand

Fantasy
Lizzy and Me
Remember Me?
Protagonist Purgatory
Laura Wilcox
Truth to Power
The Right Time
Where the Dragons Sleep

Weird Mystery
A Voice
A Question of Judgment
Unfinished Business: A White Rose Mystery

If you’re in the mood for something light-hearted, try “A Question of Judgment” and “Protagonist Purgatory.”

I hope you enjoy reading these stories. If you do, look me up on Twitter @selimpensfctn and let me know.