Experimental Fiction and Feeling Human

FVP Featured Author, Sheri J Kennedy, is the guest blogger over at Jacqui Murray’s Word Dreams today, writing about Experimental Fiction. There’s also a 99 cent Kindle deal running on her book, Feeling Human, from the Reality with a Twist books series. Check it out! Part of the article and a preview of the book are below…

I’m honored to be here to share with you today. As I told our host, Jacqui Murray, I’m not an expert on Experimental fiction. I’m not certain anyone is, since it’s always changing. But I’m happy to illuminate some of the features of this unusual classification. I believe I’ve written an Experimental novel, and Jacqui asked if I might give you some tips on writing one. So, I’ll also share my writing process with you.

What is Experimental Fiction?

This genre is hard to define since its basic definition is it’s fictional writing that’s falls outside of current conventions and standard genres. But let’s consider some characteristics and examples to get a sense of what Experimental fiction is all about. READ MORE…


Terrible Poetry Reprise for Burning Cat

Sheri's Giant Gingebread Man 2017FVP Books or at least some of our featured authors are hoping to be part of @BurningCatCon in Portland in May 2020. As part of our quest for a table, I’m sending this digital offering to Catleesi, the massive Cat Sculpture that will preside over the event. #BurningCat Fitting to the season, here’s a reprise of my entry into a Holiday Terrible Poetry contest run by blogger, Chelsea Owens. I didn’t win since the rhyme and rhythm was critiqued as ‘too good,’ but I’m hoping it’s also good for a laugh. Hohoho…

‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the office

The peeps were all fluey and all full of coughses

Their eyes hung in bags with bulging lids droopy

Their answers to emails were all nincompoopy

They swallowed more syrup and dreamed of their beds

While blurred visions of monitors multiplied in their heads

The holiday was coming, they leaned upon that

While doing their darndest not to barf in their hats

A bottle of OJ, another pain pill

They pushed around paper, just an hour to kill

Away to the door they stumbled in stupors

A stop at the party and boy were they poopers

At last up their driveways they wove their way home.

And fell in their beddi-byes to spend Christmas alone.

-by Sheri J. Kennedy, yes that’s the entity All Rights Reserved (though hardly deserved)


Literary Open Mic Tonight!

Don’t miss this chance to hear works by talented local writers tonight – Jan 26. 7:00-9:30. Poetry, short stories and novel excerpts to entertain and move you. You’re welcome to bring a couple short pieces to read too. Food, Desserts, Espresso, Beer, Wine. Click on the image for more details about the event. Or check out Black Dog Arts Cafe’.

Black Dog Lit Open Mic

Snoqualmie Valley Block Party Photos and Free Kindle Offers!

We had a great time at the Snoqualmie Valley Block Party yesterday. Here are some photos of the FVP authors who were at the booth, and some images showing the flavor of the event on The Ridge.

At One's Beast coverBarnardAlso, in connection with the Event, author, Rachel Barnard is offering free Kindle copies of her poetry collection Wandering Imagination and her new release YA Novel AT ONE’S BEAST. They will be free September 19-21st so hurry and get yours today!

Dawn of Steam Gods of the Sun coverAlso watch for the .99 Kindle sale on author Jeffrey Cook‘s DAWN OF STEAM: FIRST LIGHT from September 24-31st in celebration of the release of his new novel in the series, DAWN OF STEAM: GODS OF THE SUN. Get the reduced price 1st book to prepare for the 2nd, officially released at the party on September 27th!

Wandering Imagination

Featured Author, Rachel Barnard, has a new publication, Wandering Imagination available. Check out the poetry collection by this talented young author…


Also, here’s a story to enjoy from Rachel:


There was a young girl. She was small and timid but wanted to be brave. She lived in the desert with her younger sister. She was even smaller and more timid than the elder one was.

One day, as they were cooking dinner together, like they did every night, there came a knock on the door. They both froze, waiting. The knock became a bang. The bang became a shout as the door was kicked in and three men entered. They grabbed the young girl and took her outside.

The older sister was very scared of these men. They were bad men. One of them approached her and she scooted back toward her cooking pot. She was very scared but she needed to be brave for her sister. She gritted her teeth and grabbed the pot and chucked it at the man. He screamed and clutched at his face, dripping with hot stew. The older sister grabbed the stirring spoon on the counter and ran outside, brandishing her weapon and yelling wildly.

The other two men were saddling up their horses, one of them holding the younger sibling by the upper arm. The older sibling ran toward the man holding her sister and hit him on the shin with the spoon. He buckled and let go of the other girl. They both turned to look at the final man who leered menacingly in his leathers at the two. He was rummaging through some of their stuff and picked up a pickax.

The two girls’ eyes widened in fright but the older sister gritted her teeth again and picked up her younger sister and placed her on one of the horses. She shouted ‘go!’ and swatted the horse so that it took off into the distance. She ran quickly over to one of the other horses and shouted at it and swatted that one so that it took off as well. She ran to the final horse and tried to mount but the third man had caught up to her and raised the pickax. She screamed and kicked the man. He fell and lay still.

She finally mounted the horse, with the help of an abandoned stump in the yard. The older sister galloped, trying to catch up with her younger sister, who was far off in the distance, headed northwards. She caught up and pointed to the cliffs. They trotted together to the edge. There was a gnarled and bent tree overlooking the valley and a racing river that looked like a shoelace because it was so far below.

The two sisters got off the horses. The older sister walked to the edge of the cliff and looked down. The height made her dizzy but she gritted her teeth and turned to face her younger sister as she delicately placed her foot on a rock below. Foot over foot she made it several feet down to a ledge and then she beckoned to her sister to do the same. Her younger sister was very scared but looked back at the house, small in the distance and saw two thin specks. Her mind made up, she gritted her teeth, much like her older sister and followed onto the ledge three feet below. The two sisters put their feet around the ledge and felt another ledge. Another ledge below that waited. And another. Step by step, they made their way down and deeper into the cliff face until they were upright in a hidden cave.

Unpublished excerpt cut from YA Novel, ATAXIA AND THE RAVINE OF LOST DREAMS by Rachel Barnard, Featured Author Ataxia and the Ravine of Lost Dreams

On the aisland

Autónomo at its most arduous

makes me consider islas.

A haven or retreat for the aislado

or solamente a solitary must?

Some islands desaparecidos dear distractions

aún, I sit alone, pondering la situación

solely myself, la es mía

is it self-creación or deprivación?

Without one to articulate

estoy como un soul separado

desperately trying for refuge unfound,

Stuck inside secretos construidos.

The unclear cosas that I brought

useless crumble, como rena por mis dedos.

determine my enclave, jail enclosed

mi aislamiento, more thoughts of my credos.

When haya terminado con mis pensativos

perhaps I would build un puente

partitions to place me in society

a resolution, no man es una isla, en la mente.

Source of my confusions

conocido con clear torment

distant no longer, porque

con ambos I am fluent.

by Rachel Barnard – Author, Poet & Dreamer  Posted with Permission

Rachel-barnard.blogspot.com Learn more about Rachel Barnard, Featured Author

Nick, Knack, Knock

Sharon walked along the same old path, quietly computing meaningless math,
Beginning with the ill-born logic that traveling by air would do the trick.
Add to that a trip to some place she didn’t want to go
To some other state to talk to someone she didn’t know.
Multiplied by nothing that had changed in the last few years,
Except a few oft repeated foolish family fears.
As far as Sharon Nicholas was concerned, the request to be left alone was unlearned.

She continued her mid-day walk alone, pausing to trace names etched in stone.
The taps of the cane against the concreted knocked as she heard dogs barking down the block.
She was enjoying the cool breezy day, until a strong gust blew her way
Several leaves went to and fro, forcing Sharon towards the gazebo.
Laughing aloud at the change of pace, she adjusted the sunglasses on her face.

A lanky fellow made her jump, when quite by accident into her bumped.
She couldn’t recall hearing him on the trail,
Wondering what else slipped by her as she leaned on the rail.
Most folks wouldn’t consider this the best place to stroll –
The final resting place after the bells doth toll.

His name was Ramon and he had kin. Visiting them properly, he hadn’t been.
She noted an accent ever so slight and noticed he was just above average height.
He talked about the power of the air. She smiled and nodded as she pulled leaves from her hair.
He flew his own craft and explained the knack of trusting the wind having his back.
Like a leaf on the wind, that’s how he’d soar. Sharon listened entranced, waiting for more.
Ramon told her he wished the beauty of the skies could be adequately described or seen with one’s own eyes.

When the winds died down, they talked a while, could have been they walked a mile.
With each step taken, he was so kind, and of the various topics shared, they were of like mind.
How families loved interfering, yet still at times could be endearing.
How often times they’d want what’s best, even if that meant traveling east from west.
Returning to the beginning, Ramon made his plea, when they reached the curbside so she could hail a taxi.
‘Remember what I said about flying, I mean the knack. Up in the skies imagine I’ve got your back.
And here is where I bid you adieu. During your flight’s end, wait for the skyline to come into view.’

Without further delay, Sharon Nicholas made her way to the airport for her first fretful flight.
Yet all day long, she knew she wasn’t alone, replaying the earlier chat she had with Ramon.
Glancing out the window just before twilight, she sensed something wasn’t right.
Just above the water, a small aircraft was about to crash—hopefully, maybe, possibly ending with a splash.
But no one else on the flight believed the woman with limited sight.

She left the plane in a great deal of pain. Not knowing if what she saw was what she saw at all.
With heavy heart, Sharon did her part, so off to the specialist to see what her optical fate would be.
The doctor said the odds couldn’t be better if they tried, but matching corneas came from one who recently died.
Sharon Nicholas thought of Ramon as she debated whether to reach for the phone. Pacing the equivalent of a block, she was startled by a tentative knock.
What it was the officer said filled Sharon’s heart with sadness and dread.
For in the pocket of the pilot, Ramon, was a snapshot of Sharon taken at the gazebo.
The officer said the back of the photo read the exact location of the woman on vacation.

I suppose you think what’s been told is just a lark—the way they met that day in the park.
Between Sharon’s future and Ramon’s past, a bond was made to ever last.
For the hands of Fate arranged it, you see, their meeting was meant to be.
Even though they lived their lives on opposite coasts, they connected when it mattered most.
Between what he had and what she needed, that was one of the reasons Ramon earnestly pleaded.
If you chance to take a stroll, through that final resting place after the bells doth toll,
Look towards the gazebo by the moon’s glow. There you might see Sharon and Ramon.Gazebo Bright

by T. Tommia Wright  Published with Permission.  From literary journal FALL INTO STORY.

Photo credit:  T. Tommia Wright

Learn more about T. Tommia Wright, Featured Author

Please Don’t Lock Us Away Again

Please Don’t Lock us Away Againplease-dont-lock-us-away

Here in the dark

Since who knows when

Lid closed tight

Tucked securely in

Wrapped in tissue

To keep us free of dust

It mint condition

Not mussed or fussed

Day after day together inside

You couldn’t possibly imagine our vicious fights

I’m enclosed with an absolute fiend

My dear evil sister can be so very mean

Now that you’ve opened our nightmarish sarcophagus

There shall be no way of stopping us

We will rule the demented world of men

No please we beg you

Don’t lock us away again…

Excerpt from ALLEGORY OF THE DOLLS by Jackie Fedyk  Published with permission.   Learn More about Jackie Fedyk, Featured Author

Photo Credit: Jackie Fedyk