So you can read my books

Friday, May 13, 2011


Life is never certain. Yesterday proved that for all of us.

What we take for granted can be suddenly snatched away from us without warning.

How do we respond?

With fear?

With anger?

With love and forgiveness?

My DIRE MOMENT post for Denise and Francine :

My entry is an excerpt from my Kindle Single, LET THE WIND BLOW THROUGH YOU,
seen through the eyes of a disgraced Lakota psychologist back in his home town.

The woman he has loved all his life has become the feared donna of the crime family which controls the state. She has mastered all her enemies but one --

the disease that is now killing her. As she fights rival crime bosses sensing her weakness, can the psychologist save her from herself? And at what cost to himself?

(677 not 400 words_Give a man an inch, and he'll take a mile, right?)

Her eyes. I had tried to forget them my whole life. They were giving me a look that would have set driftwood on fire.

Luckily, I was more dense than driftwood. Yes, that was a joke. At my expense. Story of my life.

The dark quiet of her office seemed a shroud. “You’re a fraud.”

“You talking me being a red man in a white man's world or the Psychic Reader sign on my door?”

“Psychic? You don’t believe in the supernatural any more than I do.”

“My clients do. That’s all that counts.”

“You don’t remember, do you?”

I arched my right eyebrow in a question. Not exactly a lie. Just not the truth.

“First, you were in all my elective classes in high school. Then there you were in all my classes at the University of Houston. Harvard was the same story. Were you following me?”

“I was following the money.”

“Like all the other men in my life.”

“Not you. The scholarships.”

“But then you stayed in Boston. And I -- I had family obligations.”

She meant family in two ways. Blood. And crime. Yes, that was another joke. At everyone's expense.

The “family” she ruled dealt in both blood and crime. She just dealt it out with more elegance than had her father -- as she had for nearly a decade and a half.

Her face became a map of old hurts. “When we are young, we try for it all and so lose what is right before our eyes.”

Her wet eyes saw me again. “What all did you want, Mr. Winters?”

“Very little. Not to be alone. To be loved. To finally belong.”

Her lips curled. “And you did not get even that.”

“No. No, I didn’t.”

“Nor did I.”

I said, “You have to learn to let the wind blow through you.”


“You can’t forget the consequences of your choices any more than you can stop feeling the wind blowing upon you.”

“Is this leading anywhere?”

“Depends upon your resolve.”

Her face hardened. “I have filled graveyards with my resolve.”

“If you learn to let the wind blow through you, you will take away its power to knock you down.”

Her eyes hollowed even more. “How do I do that?”

“If you let the memories of your mistakes blow through you without letting them catch on your anger or your pride, you will not feel them. You will learn from them.”

I smiled sad. “Perhaps you might even start down a new path toward a better tomorrow.”

Her voice became a husk. “Tomorrow? How many of those do I have left, psychic?”

She thrust out her palm. I had spent years counseling the dying. I knew the pallor to the skin, the shadow to the eyes. Victoria was just beginning to show the signs.

I couldn’t resist doing what I had dreamed of doing for years. I took her
hand gently. It trembled in my fingers. I traced the irony of her long, long

“Victoria, the doctors have already told you the answer to that question.”

She tried for a smile, almost making it. “But you have a better bedside manner.”

She gently pulled her hand away. “I am throwing a party at the Country Club tonight.”

Her smile flashed death-cold. “Repaying old debts.”

It became almost human as she said, “Luke, my car will pick you up at Eight O’ Clock sharp.”

Her eyebrow arched. “You do still have a decent tuxedo from your days as a respected Boston psychologist, don’t you?”

“I was never respected, only tolerated. The token Native American.”

“Yet you insisted on acting like some Frank Capra hero. I hear it finally did you in.”

I smiled sadder. Did me in? It had brought me back to the town of my birth to hold the hand of the woman I had loved all my life and could never have.

“I’ll be ready.”

Her eyes went to the shadows and within her fears. “Are any of us ever ready?”

“We Frank Capra heroes are.”
Accompany Luke Winters into a night of revenge, death, madness, and a mystery revealed. Price of admission 99 cents.


  1. That's a wonderful excerpt! I loved it!


  2. Thanks, Justine :
    After yesterday, I was feeling rather cut-off from friends like you. I'm so glad you loved my excerpt. Roland

  3. Hi, and thanks for starting the RFW ball rolling with a touch of romance! ;) You never fail to touch the heart, one way or another, and that's half the battle of an author's lot to tug at reader heartstrings.


  4. Great snippet- I always love your character voices!

  5. Another excellent piece of writing. I like this very much!

    Yes, Blogger was down. And that got me setting up a WordPress blog. I've been wanting to do this for a long time but didn't think I could. I want to have more flexibility. I also want to do a newsletter, I hope, with my oldest daughter.

    But I don't want to lose my loyal followers, or the ones like you that "I" don't want to lose ME. I'm going to get together a list of addresses, and I'll continue to comment.

    One thing I like about WordPress is the way the comments widget is set up. You can dialogue the way you do on Facebook: right beneath the comment. I find the Blogger way frustrating. It doesn't encourage people to come back to the post and read the comments. It's difficult for the host blogger to respond. If this makes sense...

    But whatever, I'm with you all the way!
    Ann Best, Memoir Writer

  6. Francine :
    Thanks for the kind words. I "have your back" as they say in the states. I'm glad you liked my excerpt. I try to touch the heart. To me that is what separates great prose from lackluster words.

    Summer :
    Thanks for the praise. As for voices, Luke Winter's is close to my own. Have a great weekend, Roland

    Ann :
    You will never lose me. My day and night are work-packed, but tomorrow I will seek out your WordPress site. Don't forget me back here in Blogger. Roland

  7. Hi Roland, well, wasn't blogger frustrating! I was just pleased to wake up this morning and find I still had my blogs, even if most of my comments have gone from my last post.

    Well, I was looking forward to seeing what you could do in 400 words, my friend, but of course, ever the rebel! I'll forgive you seeing you acqitted yourself so well - as always. What a great excerpt, certainly fits the dire moment theme.

    As I said to Ann Best. Who can write like you?


    Romantic Friday Writers Second Challenge - Lost.

  8. Denise :
    Blogger wiped my entire last post plus the comments that went with it!

    I believe Blogger had to go to an earlier set-point in their system to where everyone was 24 hours before --

    just like we do when we've so messed up computer, we have to go back to an earlier moment in our computer's existence to undo what was unwittingly done.

    Thanks for forgiving me splashing over, Denise. We males -- always bending the rules. And thanks even more for the very kind words about my writing, Roland

  9. Your excerpt does make me want to read on to find out just how she managed her world and the price for the book is more than reasonable.

    It was different seeing things through the eyes and thoughts of a man in love with someone whose faults (including crimes) he knows.

  10. J.L. :
    Luke Winters views life, love, and death as a Lakota Sioux -- which gives him an outsider's view of civilized world and an insider's view of life and nature.

    LET THE WIND BLOW THROUGH YOU is a novella, long enough to flesh out the crisis and characters, but short enough to read enjoyably in one sitting. I hope you enjoy Luke's world. Let me know, Roland

  11. I'm also emerging back into Bloggerland!

    Roland, this is wonderful, I really felt the history between these two doomed souls. The writing is awesome, as always, and I was lost completely into the tale. Fabulous.

  12. Wow...nicely done and you are continuing to publish to kindle. Way to go. I'm impressed.
    N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium

  13. Margo :
    Welcome back! I've missed you. Luke and Victoria became dear to me. The second part of LET THE WIND BLOW THROUGH YOU is part sequel, part prequel, letting you see Luke and Victoria right after high school graduation.

    Nancy :
    Thanks for the kind words. Yes, it occurred to me that to have a body of work available to read on Kindle could possibly be a way to gather a following and the attention of an agent.

  14. Great job, Roland, as always! Those doomed souls truly had a dire moment!

    I saw Wendy's button your sidebar - thanks for sharing; you're ever the gentleman!! My holiday story will be a self-pub this summer. Sometimes I have to pinch myself - never thought I'd be doing this. Blogging has been/is such a positive, encouraging, nurturing experience.

    I hope there isn't a mad dash to WordPress. It clogs up e-mail and is time-consuming.

  15. Kitty :
    The publishing market is running scared as incomes twindle and the technology re-shapes the print landscape.

    Novels like mine and holiday stories like yours are lost in the hunt for the sure-fire bestseller (re-treads of what has been selling well.)

    I try to be a gentleman. Graditude is one of the hallmarks of manhood in the Lakota mind-set.

    Like you, I hope there isn't a mad dash to WordPress either. The way they force you to make your comments is irksome and cumbersome. Don't be a stranger, hear? Roland

  16. Ah the tragedy of long lost love. These two seem like they have a lot of history between them.


  17. Hi again Roland. Don't forget the other RFWers would like to have you read their stories and comment - eg Kittie, Francine, JL Campbell, Margo...Thank you for reading mine but the work's not over yet friend!


  18. I've been called out twice on emergencies for the blood center for which I worked. Sorry. I've visited Margo before the fiasco started for me. My job demands are draining me, Roland

  19. Fabulous excerpt - really love the taste of this story - when I have forced my geriatric Mac into submission or finally succumbed to a kindle, this one is at the top of my TBR list

  20. Thanks, Laura :
    There is an free official "Kindle for MAC" now available.

    And thanks so much for the nice words about my excerpt. Have a beautiful Sunday, Roland