Story #9 is a historical cozy mystery with the same characters from Story #8, called Death at the Fair. It resulted from a small piece of research that didn’t make it into Story 8.

No cover yet. I’m having trouble finding an image that’ll work. You’d think county fair would have images of people walking through a fair, but no. They’re all of advertisements. So I’m still looking. It’ll go indie once I find one, hopefully by next week.

What went right:

I’m glad I made another round with these characters. I really like them, and like the format of not having any violence. And I really like having dogs in the story. I didn’t realize it would be so fun having them as a character.

This story also came out at about 4,000 words, so a longer story for me.

What could be improved:

I didn’t listen to myself initially. I thought I should write another story with the characters. Then I said, no, it should be science fiction.

So I spent Monday and Tuesday trying to write this scene and it just wasn’t going anywhere.

So I jumped to the cozy. Like the other one, a lot of character, not a lot of plot. When I hit scene two, inner critic jumped in, unhappy and pounding its fist for more plot. So I backtracked a bit, stopped, and then added a placeholder.

That’s not a placeholder in the traditional sense, like when someone puts one in to fix something later. This was a note where I left off saying MORE CHARACTER. DON’T LET THE INNER CRITIC ADD PLOT.

Then I walked away for a few hours. Once I got some distance, which turned out to be Sunday morning, the rest of the story came together.

Also some exciting news! Challenge Story #2, Teddy Bear Man, received a Silver Honorable Mention from Writers of the Future.