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Big Kid at Heart

My wife often suggests that I am just a big kid and I agree. However, I sometimes wonder if we are on the same page with that idea. Is she suggesting that I am immature, spoiled, aggravating and always have to have things my way? I hope she is talking about my sense of excitement about new things, about my desire to learn and to experience new adventures. My childlike exuberance.

People suggest that as we get older (old) we experience a second childhood. I do not think I have truly left my first one, yet. I get excited so easily and pursue a new idea with an all-consuming eagerness. Writing is this way.

Last weekend was the Book ‘em book festival in Lumberton, NC. I was a panelist in the suspense genre. One of the questions the moderator asked was to describe our writing habits. How often do you write? My answer was “Every day I set aside two or three hours to write. This is what I consider my minimum.” Now if you asked my wife that same question about me, her answer would be something like, “All the time. If he’s awake and not at work, he’s either writing or thinking about what he is going to write. He even gets up in the middle of the night to write if an idea hits him.”

When writing my first book, Extinction, I did obsess. I spent two months writing the first draft. After going back and fleshing out the draft, I found I had enough material for four books. These characters became my invisible friends and playmates. Of course, I had to tell my wife the things they said and did, and before long, they were her invisible friends as well. (She is very understanding about the obsession and is one of my biggest fans.)

To illustrate how involved I get with my invisible friends, my wife and I were in one of those stores which has some of everything. I stopped at the mattresses, stood there and stared at them. When she asked me what I was doing, I told her that someone I knew needed several mattresses. Then I realized that the characters in my book were setting up a safe house for other survivors. She thought that was hilarious.

Let me encourage you to let your inner child loose. Give in to the urge to explore new worlds and play with imaginary friends. People might think you are crazy, but your invisible friends will stay true.

H.V. Purvis
Author of “Extinction, Survival, Death in a Small Town and coming soon, Shadow Knight: Dark Justice.
http://www.hvpurvis.com,@hvpurvis and FB page H.V. Purvis

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Survival

As the day approaches for the release of my third book, Survival, I find the tension building. In this sequel to Extinction, the Roberts family still strives to survive and to find other survivors, but are they winning? Every effort brings victory…and defeat.

The jagged knife wound across Nicole’s right palm left her in no shape for fighting. She needed a chance to heal before trying to fight again. She could move all her fingers. She was lucky. Eventually the gash would heal. In the meantime, it hurt badly. She could live with it. What other choice did she have? A few aspirin were the strongest painkillers in the shelter’s first aid kit. She would ration them and hope the cut did not become infected. She chuckled at the irony. She was stuck inside one of the best hospitals in the country, and could not access any of the drugs located just on the other side of the double doors.

Nicole lay on her cot, thinking about the events of the last several days. The thought of the second Link scream that she had heard the day she yelled into the duct preyed on her mind. The only explanation was that someone uninfected yelled back to her. Other survivors could be nearby, but they would have to survive on their own for a while longer. Her hand had to heal.

Two days before, she and Danny had secured the hallway outside the fallout shelter, a significant step forward. They could have lived safely inside the medical center shelter; however, as days turned to weeks, the confinement of the windowless space took a toll on their nerves and dispositions. Laura cried most of the time. Danny became despondent and withdrawn. She realized they must do something.

With makeshift spears and a few rounds from her pistol, they attacked the Links in the hallway. The deadly gamble paid off. The claustrophobic atmosphere of the institutional green walls faded away. Gone was the trapped feeling of being in a windowless box. Sunlight flooded through the windows in the security doors at the end of the hallway. More importantly, she could see outside.

After the fight, she and Danny had escorted Laura into the hall and showed her the bodies of the dead Links before dragging them off the loading dock. They dared not try to move the bodies further.

Danny had mopped the pools of drying blood. At least her wounded hand exempted her from cleaning the bloody mess covering the floor. They had discussed the fight with Laura, explaining what had happened and how dangerous it had been, in hopes it would help her understand the seriousness of the situation. If it gave her nightmares, then that was a regrettable but a necessary price for her realizing just how dangerous her world had become.

H.V. Purvis
Author of Extinction and Death in a Small Town

http://www.hvpurvis.com, @hvpurvis, FB page H.V. Purvis

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Excerpt – Death in a Small Town by H.V. Purvis

This is an excerpt from chapter 2 of my new murder mystery, released September 6.

 

John slowed the airport rental car to a stop in front of the building. He did not get out. He was not sure he could. He sat there. The motor running. His heart raced. It was cool inside the car, but beads of sweat covered his brow. He flexed his fingers. Make a fist. Then straightened his fingers. He did this over and over. It was an exercise his shrink had given him to regain control of his nerves. He took a deep breath and let it out slowly through his mouth. He had flown from DC. Driving still tied his guts in knots. He rarely drove anymore. He rarely even left his apartment anymore. Now that he was here, he did not know if he could make himself go inside.

He knew before he left that this trip was going to be difficult, but it was something he had to do. He owed it to Stan. Now he sat in the car, his hands shaking, his heart racing, feeling sick to his stomach. His leg throbbed, even though the doctors said it should not. He cursed at himself and stared out the side window at the hundred year old southern colonial which loomed over the business end of a street of impressive older houses.

John had grown up further down this street. All the lawns were immaculate. He remembered that on Saturday mornings the older ladies, in their “working in the yard” clothes which looked just as nice as their “going to the store” clothes, would put on their straw hats and tend their roses and flower gardens. His hands shook as he raised the soda he bought after leaving the airport. It was warm, but he took another swallow, trying to work up the courage to turn off the engine and go inside.

He smacked the steering wheel with his hand. This is stupid! I’m a grown man, for God’s sake! He stared at the double front doors of the colonial building. A gut wrenching dread knifed through him. He looked away. There were too many ghosts in this town and particularly inside that building. He had spent the last five years avoiding those ghosts. He reached for the keys. His hand stopped short.

Horrible memories of his last visit to this town ripped him apart, but he owed Stan. They had been best friends since first grade, played football together, double dated together. When John went off to college, Stan joined the Parkwood police department. After college, John joined the bureau and moved to DC. Stan was always the one who reached out to make sure they did not lose touch. After the wreck, he called John in the hospital every day to check on him. At least once a week he drove the two-hour round trip Chapel Hill to visit and sit with him. Now Stan was dead. John leaned his head back on the headrest and closed his eyes.

Someone tapped on the window. John jerked upright. He had been lost, drifting in numbness land, and the tap startled him. His heart pounded harder. He looked over and saw his sister, Helen, standing in the street. Traffic moved slowly to go around safely. No one honked a horn. No one stared angrily at her. No one raised a fist or middle finger. Most of the people did throw up their hand, but it was a friendly wave. This was the way people were here.

Hoyle Purvis

Author of Extinction            http://www.hvpurvis.com, facebook page H.V. Purvis, twitter @hvpurvis

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