Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Eye-Dancers by Michael S. Fedison - Book Tour and Giveaway

BBT The Eye-Dancers Banner copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Michael will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour, so leave a comment or ask him a question. You can click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

MEDIA KIT eye_dancers_lowres3Seventh-grader Mitchell Brant and three of his classmates inexplicably wake up at the back edge of a softball field to the sounds of a game, the cheering of the crowd. None of them remembers coming here. And as they soon learn, “here” is like no place they’ve ever seen. Cars resemble antiques from the 1950s. There are no cell phones, no PCs. Even the spelling of words is slightly off.

A compulsive liar, constantly telling fantastic stories to garner attention and approval, Mitchell can only wish this were just one more of his tall tales. But it isn’t. It’s all too real. Together, as they confront unexpected and life-threatening dangers, Mitchell and his friends must overcome their bickering and insecurities to learn what happened, where they are, and how to get back home.

The answers can be found only in the mysterious little girl with the blue, hypnotic eyes. The one they had each dreamed of three nights in a row before arriving here. She is their only hope. And, as they eventually discover, they are her only hope.

And time is running out.

Enjoy an excerpt:

He heard the others, still talking behind them. Ryan was telling another of his dumb-blonde jokes. Crickets played their fiddles from hidden places in the grass. A hoot owl called out, and another, farther away, answered. Duss, now a vague form in the dark, still stood at the fence, looking through the gap at the now dormant grill. And he knew, he was certain, that he could talk to Heather, this beautiful girl from a place so far away. She would understand the way he felt about his parents. Maybe she would understand the way he felt about a lot of things.

But it didn’t matter. Because he didn’t want to stumble over his words, his tongue like sandpaper, tripping over syllables. He didn’t need to. Just being with her was enough. He sat there, holding her hand. He no longer felt rushed, no longer desired to leave. Joe would end up making that decision for them, anyway. For right now, he just enjoyed the sensation of her fingers laced through his, the heady fragrance of her perfume, the easy, comfortable silence that hung between them.

He looked up, at the infinite black canvas of the sky, at the stars, which shimmered like precious jewels. She had said that maybe our dreams lived up there, among those stars. All we needed to do was believe, and remember.

And reach.

MEDIA KIT Author PhotoMichael S. Fedison was born in Rochester, New York, and now lives with his wife, Sarah, and regal cat, Luke, in the green hills of central Vermont. Michael has been writing creatively for as long as he can remember, and has had short fiction published in several literary magazines, including Iconoclast and The Written Word. He works as a full-time technical writer and also is a freelance proofreader and copy editor.

Michael has been a lover of imaginative stories his entire life. He enjoys any story that takes you by the hand, lifts you up, and transports you to another place, a new and creative way of looking at the world around us.

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, or Kobo

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Love, God, and Tattoes by Aleshia Robinson - Blurb Blitz and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions.

Aleshia will be awarding a print copy of the Love, God & Tattoos Bundle (US and Canada only) to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

Then, click on the tour banner to see the other places you can enter!

Love, God & Tattoos is a series of young adult novels written by American author Aleshia Robinson. The story chronicles the spiritual journey of 21 year old Alcatraz, a troubled tattoo artist, and her struggle to have a positive relationship with God and herself.


Fifteen year old Alcatraz is being chased. Born and raised in a loving family, she suddenly finds herself fending for her life on the streets of Los Angeles. Consumed with anger, hurt and confusion, Alcatraz turns to the spiritual realm to find life’s answers. While experimenting with pagan spells, Buddhist chants, and yoga sutras, she continually encounters a spirit who claims He is God. The Truth she learns from this spiritual quest introduces her to the unexpected world of divine healing, acceptance and unconditional love.

ALCATRAZ THE RIGHTEOUS PEARL After two years of spiritual searching, Alcatraz has finally decided who the One true God is for her life. But trouble soon follows. Being rejected by her new found religious organization because of her appearance and discharged from the tattoo shop for her beliefs, Alcatraz is forced to enter the Hollywood adult entertainment life with her best friend Kuriko. The nightmares she experiences living on the dubious streets of Los Angeles causes her to struggle to keep her faith.

KURIKO THE DAMAGED PEARL Alcatraz has desperately wanted to learn more about the mysterious past of her street-smart Japanese best friend, Kuriko. Now her wish has come true, but not in the way she expected. Kuriko handed Alcatraz a black bamboo box before the tragic accident. Inside, Alcatraz finds the diary of a nineteen-year-old girl's struggle with sex trafficking, powerful men, abuse, betrayal, and surprisingly, a burning desire to know God. After two years of living with the secretive, over- protective high-dollar prostitute, Alcatraz learns the dark truth of Kuriko's inhumane journey. Now she wishes the past could have been buried with her best friend.



Unfulfillment, boredom and anxiety overcame me every time I wasn’t tattooing someone. While I was in creative mode I was fine but as soon as I stopped it was like life wasn’t worth living anymore. My mood could change instantly. I masked my pain very well with alcohol. If it wasn’t pomegranate margaritas from The Geisha Room then I drank hard liquor at the Roxy or wherever we were that night. On the outside girls envied me for my mad abilities, but on the inside I cried myself to sleep at night like a little, insecure baby. No matter how hard I tried to party and tattoo my way out of my problems, I couldn’t let go of the pain of my parent’s death, my rape and being plucked from Valeo Academy into this Hollywood life on my own. All of those seeds were ever present in the soil of my heart waiting to be tended to. I didn’’t know how to process the pain except to pretend like it wasn’t there. Alcohol allowed me to flee from my problems gracefully and to fit in with people who made me feel loved, accepted and worthwhile.

About the Author
Aleshia Robinson was born in Chicago, Illinois and enjoys writing edgy inspirational fiction, traveling, decoupaging, empowering women in the sex trade and providing clean water for mankind.

TWITTER: @lovegodtattoos


Monday, May 26, 2014

So, You Want to Write a Novel? by KD Van Brunt - guest blog and giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Somebody will win a $50 Amazon/BN gift card-- it might as well be you. Check out the Rafflecopter below the post to find out how. Then, click on the tour banner to see the other places you can enter!

My Six Recommendations
K.D. Van Brunt

You’ve decided you want to write a novel and get it published. That probably means you already have some experience writing, and maybe you even have a story inside you that you’re desperate to tell. What are the things you should be doing to put yourself on the path to success. Here are my recommendations:

1. Write every day. This sounds obvious, but it’s not always easy to do. You need to arrange your life so that you can write on a regular basis. If you write only when the mood strikes you or you’re feeling particularly creative, you’ll never finish. Find a time and a place that works for you and set daily goals.

2. Learn the craft. None of us are born good writers, but all of us can become good writers. For most, this means getting feedback on our writing—from teachers, critique groups, writing partners, etc. There may be some people who can teach themselves through stylebooks and guides, but for most of us we learn and improve by having someone point out our mistakes. In today’s online world, there’s no excuse for not getting feedback. Finally, it’s an ongoing process; there’s always room for your writing to improve.

3. Read, read, read. Everybody says it, and that’s because it’s true. Reading inspires and teaches. We often write what we like to read, and the more you read, the bigger the universe you have to draw on. On a more practical level, if you want to write in a particular genre, to be successful you need to know that genre backwards and forwards.

4. Write about what you care about. Write a story you feel passionate about; write about characters that matter to you. That’s what readers want, and if you don’t really care, they won’t either.

5. Recognize that all first drafts are crap. So, you just finished the first draft of your 100,000 word sci-fi novel, complete with your dazzling climax where the aliens are defeated and the hero gets the girl. Go ahead and celebrate; you should feel exhilarated. However, the marathon is only half way done. Now, you have to go back and rewrite what you just wrote, stem-to-stern. As good as that first draft may be, it ain’t nearly good enough. You need to put on your editor glasses and be absolutely ruthless—your mantras: (1) if it isn’t truly necessary, delete it, and (2) can say this better? Editing can be a tough, boring slog, but you have to do it. Editing and revising is where you take your diamond in the rough and turn it in to something nice and sparkly. While you need to be able to edit your own work, get others to read your draft too (a good beta reader can be a godsend).

6. Stay the course. As sure as there are peeps at Easter, your novel is going to be rejected by someone and that rejection is going to sting. Everyone gets rejected. The difference between the successful novelist and the unsuccessful one is that the former didn’t give up. So, stock your mental toolbox with whatever tools you need to cope with rejection, learn whatever lessons there are to be learned from the experience, and then keep on trying.

Jace has been the property of the U.S. Army since they found out about her when she was five, and now she has become one of its most valuable weapons. But Jace is not the only one of her kind. Gray is one too, but with the help of his sister, he has spent most of his sixteen years hiding from the Army.

Now, the Army has found out about Gray and they cannot allow him to roam free. Operating on the theory that it takes one to catch one, Jace is send out with a special ops squad to hunt Gray down. But Jace is not the only one pursuing Gray, and the competition is after her too. What ensues is a desperate chase through city after city as duty and honor collide with love and sacrifice.

About the Author: K.D. Van Brunt has been writing professionally his entire career and has published an extensive list of nonfiction works. Win the Rings is his first fiction book. When not writing, he reads and listens to audiobooks during his daily drive through the sea of gridlock that is commuting in and out of Washington, DC. A long time resident of Maryland, he can often be found tromping around the many civil war battle sites in the area. To find out more about K.D. Van Brunt, including bonus content relating to Win the Rings, check out his website and follow him on Twitter- 

Video trailer:
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Friday, May 23, 2014

Against the Darkness by A.M. Griffin - Blurb Blitz and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions.

The author will be awarding a t-shirt, a wire bookmark, and a $20 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn winner via the rafflecopter at the end of this post.  Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Seventeen year old Sinta Allen has one objective, to get from Tallahassee, Florida to her mother in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Seems simple enough right? Wrong. Hostile aliens have invaded Earth—and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that we’re losing the fight. While the aliens bring devastation and destruction and take people away to God knows where in their spaceships, Sinta, along with some of her classmates must rely on their survival instincts, a little luck and each other if they want to survive the venture across the country. The last thing she needs is for Wade, her school friend and Jason, her rescuer, to distract her along the way.

Enjoy an excerpt:

He snaps his fingers, bringing my attention back to his face.

He mouths something that I can’t make out. I shake my head.

He creeps closer. I notice a few other things about him. Like the gun that he’s holding in one hand and some kind of knife in the other.

My eyes widen in understanding.

He’s here to save us.

I peer to my right and left. No one else is paying attention to him. I turn back to him.

“Where are they?” he mouths again.

I nod toward the cabin where Ms. Burgess is screaming.

“How many?” he mouths.

“Three,” I mouth back to him.

He nods and goes back into the woods.

No, I want to yell. Come back, don’t leave us here.

I’m about to do just that when he returns with another man, this one older, but similar looking. They creep closer to us, their eyes scanning everything around them. As they come closer I see the rifles strapped across their backs, the guns in shoulder holsters, the knives strapped around their legs and pistols in their hands. I want to cry.

If anybody can save us from the Tanners it’s them.

The tickle of a tear is on my cheek. I use a shoulder to wipe it away.

I don’t say a word as the younger one crouches behind me and uses his knife to cut through the ropes that bind my wrists. The other man goes behind MJ to do the same. I see him whispering something to MJ and MJ nodding in response. Once my hands are free, he moves down to my ankles and begins to saw away at the ropes there.

He glances up to me, his eyes focused squarely on mine. I have a hard time looking away and I think that’s his intention. “What’s your name?”

Instead of my name a cry escapes my lips.

“It’s going to be okay,” he says, still sawing away at the ropes. He takes a quick peek to his right, where the other man is working to free MJ’s feet. “My name is Jason, but all my fraternity brothers call me JC.” He attempts a smile. “You can call me JC.”

“I…I’m not your frat brother,” I say, in a stutter, as confusion clouds my mind. “I’m a girl.”

Why did I point that out?

“Really? I hadn’t noticed.”

“Huh?” I’m as confused as ever.

With my feet free, he crawls quickly up to my side.

“Are you still with me? You look like you’re about to freak out and bolt.”

I nod. Yes I’m okay and yes, I’m going to run.

“Stay with me sweetheart,” he says, in a rush. “I’m going to give you this knife and you’re going to free the other girls. After they’re free, I want you to take them where you first saw me, okay? Behind those trees are some backpacks, you wait there for us. Do you hear me?”


“Answer me. Do you understand what I want you to do?”

“But what if you don’t make it. They can kill you,” I whisper. I can’t cover up the fear that is smothering me.

The smile he gives me this time is genuine, not at all forced, and all I notice are the deep dimples in his cheeks. “We got this.”

And for some reason I believe him. “Okay.”

A. M. Griffin is a wife who rarely cooks, mother of three, dog owner (and sometimes dog owned), a daughter, sister, aunt and friend. She’s a hard worker whose two favorite outlets are reading and writing. She enjoys reading everything from mystery novels to historical romances and of course fantasy romance. She is a believer in the unbelievable, open to all possibilities from mermaids in our oceans and seas, angels in the skies and intelligent life forms in distant galaxies.

Now available from Ellora’s Cave:

You can find out what else I’m working on by visiting my website:

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday - Ten Books I Almost Put Down But Didn't

Ten Books I Almost Put Down But Didn't
10. Generation Dead by Daniel Waters - I was having a hard time getting through these supposedly "dead" was confusing and a little overwhelming.
9. Allegiant by Veronica Roth - I had the end somewhat spoiled, and I was uncertain if I wanted to keep on reading...but I did. Then I cried.
8. Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake - I was really sad when *insert spoiler here* happened...I had to stop reading for a while because I was just okay.
7. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen - I love classics (to some extent) and I wanted to read them, but the way that they were written is very difficult to get through, and I had a hard time actually understanding what they were talking about.
6. The War Inside by M. Kircher - the beginning was draggy, so I basically read a chapter and then I was like....Okay, I'm done for the day. BUT, the story line picked up considerably, and I was hooked until the end.
5. The City of Bones by Cassandra Clare - I turned this book down three times before I actually read it because I was so hooked on another book series, I didn't want to get distracted. BUT, I did end up reading them (after my best friend spoiled the whole series for me :P )
4. Boys Like You by Juliana Stone - I'm sensitive to swearing, and there was a lot of it in here (enough to make me annoyed) that I had a very difficult time finishing.
3. Goddess Legacy by M.W. Muse - It was just never super amazingly awesome,  but the plot never slowed (nor did it pick up)
2. Hidden by M. Lathan - The story was good, the editing was really bad. I read it, but the process of doing so was very slow. And painful. But somewhat enjoyable.
1. The Fault in our Star by John Green - if there was one word to sum up this book, it was (actually, four words) Feels, heartbreak, and most of all, NOT OKAY.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Severed Ties by Angie Skelhorn - Spotlight and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Angie will be awarding a Bronze Tone charm bracelet with a pentagram charm and witch riding a broom to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour, a second prize of a key chain with pentagram and witch riding a broom to another randomly drawn commenter and a third prize of a free copy of Severed Ties will be awarded to another randomly drawn commenter during the tour (Canada, U.S.A. and the United Kingdom). Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Severed Ties is a story of close friendships, addiction and magic.

Severed Ties - By the use of divination and magic, some ties can never be severed

Consulting tarot, ordinary playing cards, astrology, and spell-casting—Frankie and Sandra set forth to free Candice from the dangerous situation she is in.

Now enjoy an excerpt:

Frankie sat on the stoop and looked around. Across the street, a woman only a couple of years older than her had two infants in a playpen and was chain-smoking. An old man, his lined face showing the evidence of his hard life, pushed a shopping cart full of empty beer bottles past her. Kids too young to be on their own played out front, in the streets.

“I’m Calvin. Who are you?” a young man asked, walking past her down the stairs. She gave a quick glance in his direction before turning away.

He had medium brown hair cut close to his scalp, brown puppy-dog eyes, a stocky build, and a sweet smile. The tattoos around his neck, arms, and hands surprised her. She read “love” on one set of his knuckles and “hate” on the other.

“Doesn’t that say it all,” she said.

“This one I fight with,” the young man explained his hand in a fist. “This one, I love with.”

She smiled at his answer.

“Are you moving in?”

“I’m Frankie. I think so. I’m waiting here for my friend,” she said, pointing to the front door. “She’s inside, making the arrangements.”

“I live here on the second floor. Have now for a couple of years. You’ll like it here. The tenants mind their own business. Well, they mostly keep to themselves. Do you have a job, yet?”

“No, I’m going to start looking tomorrow. I think Sandra wants to spend tonight settling in.”

Calvin lit a cigarette. He blew the smoke out of his nostrils.

“I’ve got to go. I’m in room 203 if you need anything. Just knock.”

“Okay,” she giggled, giving him a quick once over without being obvious. She found him quite interesting. She hoped to know him better. She didn’t know why, but she did.

Calvin disappeared down the street and rounded the corner before Sandra reappeared.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  My name is Angie Skelhorn and I live in Canada. My interests include tarot, and other forms of divination, astrology, spirituality, mythology and harness racing. I gear my writing toward Witchcraft and Spiritualism. I've been published in Circle Sanctuary Magazine and online at Witchvox, and

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday - Top Ten Book Covers

Today's top ten is...Top Ten Book Covers...that I would frame as works of art.
So, let the games begin!
10. Rotters by Daniel Kraus 
9. Hidden by M. Lathan
8. The Fallen Novels by Lauren Kate
7. Halo  and Hades by Alexandra Adornetto
6. Shine by Lauren Myracle
5. Willful Impropriety by Leanna Renee Hieber, Karen Healey, Stephanie Burgis, and more...
4. Crewel by Gennifer Albin
3. Flitter by Melissa Andrea
2. Delirium by Lauren Oliver
1. Whispers in Autumn by Trisha Leigh

Monday, May 5, 2014

Revelation by Rayna Noire - Virtual Tour and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Bewitching Book Tours. Rayna will be awarding a $60 Amazon Gift Card - Tour Wide Giveaway!

Pagan Eyes
Book Two
Rayna Noire
Genre: Paranormal YA

Nora’s impending college graduation is a triumph over the dark incident in her past that changed her life and stopped her best friend’s. Balancing school, work and her demented admirer at the diner is tough. All she has is six more months, but it similar to walking a tightrope blindfolded.

Life-like dreams pull her into the 19th century world of Clayton. A man who declares he’s her soul mate. Even though, she’s decided against romance, the young witch finds hers elf drawn to the Irish healer, even hearing his voice in her head.

This would make most people question their sanity. Nora needs to find out if Clayton is real and if she’s crossing over into another w orld in her sleep. If she is, will she end up stuck in the past? Can magick bring them to gether?

Enjoy an Excerpt:

Brandon, the night cook, came in around seven to hang out a nd eat before his shift. The bald- headed cook was a former Marine, sporting several patri otic tattoos. Nora imagined if someone made the mistake of sneaking in the back door when Brandon w as working, he’d leave quickly once he saw the muscle-bound man.

Business had slowed enough that after she fixed him food, she left the kitchen to talk to him.

Oddly, she felt at ease with the intimidating man. Ther e was no aura of evil around him.

“Thanks for the omelet.” Brandon delivered the praise af ter his first bite. “You have a nice light hand with the eggs. Know when to fold before it br owns too much.”

Her face flushed a little. People didn’t normally com pliment her cooking. They only griped when they thought it wasn’t fast enough. “Thanks. It’s just eggs, ya know.”

He shoveled in another mouthful, chewed then swallowed be fore speaking. “Yeah, but you’d be surprised how the average person can’t make a decent egg. Either they break the yolk or end up burning it.”

Nora found herself smiling at his simple praise. In anothe r man, she might have thought he was flirting with her, but this was Brandon. She felt s he’d known him forever, as opposed to just the last three years. “I think you’re just saying it to make me feel good.”

He grinned. The simple gesture made him look younger. How ol d was he? Maybe in his thirties, hard to know with his shaved head. He’s not for you.

Blinking, Nora looked around to see if anyone else had enter ed the diner. Nope, it was still just her, Brandon, and Bonnie. That meant the voice had be en in her head.

About the Author:

Rayna Noire is an author and a historian. The desire to uncover the truth behind the original fear of witches led her to the surprising discovery that people believed in magick in some form up to 150 year s ago. A world that believed the impossible could hap pen and often did must have been amazing. With this in mind, Ms. Noire taps into this dimension, shapes it into stories about Pagan families who really aren’t that different from most people. They do go on the occasional time travel adventures and magick happens.

Amazon Page:
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Thursday, May 1, 2014

Careful by Randy Anderson - Virtual Tour and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Randy will be awarding an eCopy of Careful and a $25 Starbucks GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

For two decades Tyler Gibbons has been keeping a secret from his family. At the tender age of sixteen, Tyler embarks on a student exchange program. Sent to the Andean city of Ambato, Ecuador, he finds daily adventure as he tries to fit in at school, connect with his host family, and navigate through a world of beaches, volcanoes, and jungles. But tucked deep inside this year are events so profound, so unexpected, they forever shape the man he will become.

Now, 25 years later, his mother pulls these soaring tales from her son, exposing, for the first time, the source of a deep unhappiness. While these memories contain the wounds of an unresolved past, they also possess the power to heal his painful present.

Thoughtfully crafted and boldly told, Tyler’s journey takes the reader on a wild South American adventure, while illuminating a mother’s unyielding power to heal her child.

Now enjoy an excerpt:

The boat came to a stop at a shallow riverbank. We were greeted by an olive-skinned man in his forties with shoulder-length hair and an unruly beard. He resembled a castaway, but with more muscle.

“Welcome to the Amazon,” he said, helping the ladies off the boat. “My name is Xavier. I will be your guide for the next two days. Please take only what you need for one night and leave the rest with the boatsman. He will take your things to camp by boat.”

“From here we will hike two hours to camp. There you can relax in the hammock, go swimming, and enjoy a nice dinner in the evening.” Xavier was very welcoming with his choppy English. We’d learn later that he was born in Bolivia and educated in Germany. His love for the study of biology would take him to exotic places all around the world. He was a charismatic free spirit.

“First thing first,” Xavier said. “Everyone needs to put on these boots.” He pointed to a line of knee-high rubber boots. “They are not the most ideal for hiking, but it’s been very wet, so the ground is soft. Do not be surprised if you sink one half . . . maybe one meter into the earth.” We were looking around in disbelief. “If this happens, do not panic. Just relax. Don’t wiggle. Signal for my attention. I will come and help you free.”

“Help us free?” I whispered to Peter.

“Yes, help you free.” Xavier’s ears were keen. “It is sometimes very difficult to free yourself from this earth, so use caution. Now we go.” He began walking up the bank and suddenly stopped.

“Also, you will see me eat things. Do not eat things unless I give them. If you do, you may die. I’m very sorry for this but it is your own fault. Don’t eat anything unless I give you,” he repeated. “I won’t give you everything I eat. Why? Because not all are good. Eating plant is not about good plant and bad plant. It is about good plant at good time. Not good plant at bad time. And there is never good time to eat bad plant. So no eating unless I give it. Okay? Now we go.” We all nodded and started following him up the hill. Once again he suddenly stopped.

“Also, do not touch things. Sometimes, plants have defenses that will make you very sick, or will make you die. Sometimes plants have insects on them that will sting or bite you. This can also make you very sick or die. Sometimes plant isn’t plant but insect. These are very cool and most won’t sting or bite you. If you see this, do not touch but alert me so that I can show you. Okay?” I was relieved that at least one thing wasn’t going to kill me.

“It’s like we’re marching into certain death,” Peter said as we laughed.

“Also,” Xavier said, “one last thing, and then we go. Sometimes, plants or bug touch you. This happens. Plants grow over trail, bugs fly through air and hit you. This will happen. Mostly you’ll be okay. Maybe, once in a while, this makes you sick or kills you. It’s very sad and I’m sorry. This is not your fault.” He paused for a second. “Oh, the animals. I almost forgot the animals! The jungle is full of many animals. Do not touch the animals. Some are very dangerous. Not as dangerous as the plants and bugs, but there is still danger. Watch where you step. The snakes and rodents will sometimes use our trail. The snakes are dangerous. The rodents are unpleasant. Either way, try not to step on them. Sometimes a snake will drop from the tree. This is bad. But not very often. If you feel pee, don’t look up. Monkey pee stings the eyes. Very bad. Okay, now we go.”

Finally Xavier’s disclaimer was over and we were off on our certain-death march. Whatever fear of the forest he’d put into our hearts vanished under the beauty of the canopy. The sounds of life we’d been hearing beneath the rumble of the bus amplified tenfold. The jungle was electrifying. Sunlight filtered down to the ground in ever-changing locations, spotlighting endless shades of green.

Randy Anderson is a novelist and playwright. His first book was published in 2011. On Making Off recounted his adventures running The Beggars Group, a downtown theater company that produced over two dozen productions at the turn of the millennium. He is also the author of several plays including; Kill the President, The Dwelling, and Yippie! Randy currently lives in Brooklyn where he writes, reasons, and reacts. You can contact him at, or on twitter @onmakingoff.


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