A Stranger Upstairs

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As I lay in bed, staring at the wooden ceiling, I can’t help but think of the old decor. The rustic windows, the floorboards weak from overuse. That smell of dust and dry air. I cling to the soft plushness of my comforter. My head burrows itself into the pillow as my feet bunch up the ends of the covers for warmth. It is particularly cloudy tonight, so there is little natural moon light. The room seems so dark and full of question. My mind races with the thought of what could be. I can barely see anything, so here I wait for sleep to come.

As I drift away to a solemn slumber, a noise stirs my body into consciousness. A bit annoyed, I soon delve into fear as I remember my entire family is on this floor, and not above. With my skin breaking into gooseflesh beneath the covers, I try to establish some reality. The house is old and at times, will create noise from the wood and worn out places.

I try to convince myself of this, and close my eyes to fall asleep. Then, I hear another sound, a breath. Try as I might to convince myself it is only my mind, I open my eyes to see a pair of dark ones staring back at me!

I scream, loud, until it screams too. It is my younger sister. She is covered in darkness, while begging me to let her stay. I sit up, and tell her to leave, but I must admit, I would like the company. 

So here we are, one adult and almost adult sharing a bed. Tucked in close, so close that I feel her quivering flesh. I too must feel the same. I tell her to stop shaking, but she can’t. 

She asks me if I can hear it. I ask her hear what? She tells me it is whispering. I don’t bother to ask what it is. I turn my body over and ball myself up like a small child. She still shakes, but soon my eyes become heavy, and I awake in a room bathed in sunlight. 

It is daytime, finally. After getting dressed, and going down stairs, I see our maids, Hilda, and Beatrice. The cook, Rose, prepares a variety of egg omelets. I ask them if they’ve seen my sister. When I awoke, she wasn’t in bed with me. But they say they haven’t seen her since yesterday. 

During breakfast, my parents eat while their eyes dig through their phones. It is a regular morning, silent and impersonal. I ask them if they’ve seen her. Who, they ask. My sister, I say. With their eyes firmly on their devices, they simply say, no.

She is seventeen, and has a habit of doing what she wants. But we are at a summer retreat in our grandparents home. I didn’t think she would be so eager to break free with all her friends being so far away. Yet, regardless of this, my parents do nothing, but make excuses. She is simply a brat doing rebellious teenage things, they say.

After eating, I go upstairs to see if she went back to her room. Why I didn’t think of this first is beyond me. Upon entering her room, I see nothing but a messy bed, and not much else. I don’t even smell her perfume, something she would put on before leaving, or anything out of place. I close the door and walk out to see an empty hallway. At one end, a window, from the right, a stairway leading down. To the left, a stairway leading up. On the other end of the hallway, a door. 

I go towards the window and to the right downstairs. As I leave, I do so with the ache in my mind that something is not quite right…


The following is a short story. Part two coming soon!

Author is Jasmine Clark. The work is fiction, and shall not be published, or sampled without the author’s permission.

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Journey’s End available on Barnes and Noble Website!

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Hello Groovy People!

I am so excited to announce that my book is now on the Barnes and Noble website!  So there are three big places you can purchase your copy.  Click on the link below and enjoy!

Barnes and Noble Website!

 

Writer’s Struggle

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Hello Groovy People!

It has been a month since I released my self published second novel, Journey’s End.  As happy as I am, I cannot help but feel the struggle.  I have only sold 4 books and marketing my book is very difficult.  Self publishing can be very freeing for free spirits like myself.  It allows me to get my thoughts out there, but that doesn’t mean it will be received at all.  The comments from some of the readers have been positive.  The issue is that I am unable to reach more readers.

The old Jasmine would have gone into a corner in her mind and wept, but I believe that anything is possible if you truly want something.  I have reached out to local libraries and even a book expo for next year.  I am not certain that it will help me become famous or known, but exposure is better than no exposure.  I hope that the next few months and following year will allow me to broaden my horizons.

Until then, be sure to check out my sample chapters on this site.  If you want to read more, please go to Amazon to purchase your kindle or physical copy!

….

Update: Still Going Strong

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Hello fellow readers.  I have been working on my novel for three months now and it’s going well!  I am currently on Chapter 10 and feel energized every week.  Every Sunday I wake up at 8am and go to my local bookstore.  There, I order a matcha frappuccino venti!  Yes, it is quite yummy.  Most of the time I just have that all morning.  I find a seat in the large seating area and get my things ready.  I put on my playlist to get into the mood for writing.  Then I let my imagination take me where it wants to go.  From 9am to 12pm I zone out and type away.

When I first thought about publishing my second novel, I procrastinated.  I always thought too much and made excuses as to why I couldn’t finish.  There was school, I had no drive, I had no money, blah blah blah.  Yet, now that I kicked myself into gear, I can’t stop myself.  I think all week about Sundays and what the future holds for my book.  I feel this surge of energy in writing.  As stated before, I am re-writing this book.  It is somewhat different than the first draft.

The very original idea for this book stemmed from a thought I had eleven years ago while I was a camp counselor sitting in the most boring class.  I was not particularly needed in this, reading class, so I let my mind drift.  The idea was a young girl running though the woods.  She was draped in long flowing fabric.  The idea then kept sprouting and did its own thing.  It actually built itself around that one thought.  That is how most of my stories begin.  A thought, a dream, or even a song can influence my work.

I am happy that I am re-writing my book.  It is stronger than it was before.  I am not saying it’s a best-seller, although that would be pretty sweet!  I am just saying that I have grown as a writer, albeit just a tad.  I am eager to finish in January so that I can copyright it and send it to an editor.   From there I’ll either self publish or find an agent.  Either way, 2017 is going to be my year!

 

Feeling Motivated! On Chapter 7

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Setting of new book?

the planes of my creativity is endless

So in the past month, I’ve been writing in my novel.  I hope that my new found motivation to write weekly continues.  I have been inspired by listening to a playlist in my ipod.  It comprises of artists such as Kelis, Michael Jackson, Childish Gambino, BoA, Foo Fighters, Sade, Clipse, and a few others.

Music inspires me because it creates this feeling much like nostalgia.  It pushes my creativity and makes it flow.  I have been going to this wonderful place called Tsutaya in my town.  I get there early like 9am to beat the rush of people.  I get me a matcha frappuccino and sit in bliss.  The goal is 3 hours.  Last week I did two days back to back with 2 and a half hours each.  Today, I did 3 full hours!

The downside of this is sitting for so long.  If it weren’t for nerve issues within my back due to sitting too long then I would do about 5 hours!  I was really going today and felt great!  I notice that if I do this every week, then I could complete many chapters and make my goal of finishing by January!

I don’t want to push too hard as I don’t want garbage.  Quality is key and re-writing my novel proves to be beneficial to fleshing out the story and characters.

I’m eager to have it published by April of next year.  Then I can go back to my science fiction novel I started in 2005.  I also have a horror novel and science horror novel I want to write.  However, they must be on the shelf in my mind while I work on the current book.

I feel really good and unstoppable in my quest to accomplish my goals.  Please stay tuned! Once I finish my current book and copyrite it, you bet your bottom dollar that I will have a few chapter samples for you to read before the finished product comes out!

My First Book Launch! Amazons of the Myst

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In April 2013 I had my first book launch at the Hilton Branch Library in Maplewood New Jersey.

I was explaining the story of my book Amazons of the Myst. I also answered questions from the audience.

The gathering was small but still pretty good. That night I sold 30 copies of my book. Not bad for a self published writer with no connections. 🙂

Of course I had to sign my copies. The first editions!

I was all smiles that night. It may not be easy being a self published author, but it’s not impossible.

Amazons of the Myst

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published in 2013

published in 2013

This is my first published novel.  I started writing it in 2005 at the age of 17. I didn’t finish writing it until early 2013 and published it a few months after that.

It is truly my baby and I have to say it wasn’t easy getting it out there.  I self published without any help.  Now that I look back on it, I can say that I am very proud of myself for sticking with my goal of being an author.  No I’m not famous, but to hold a physical representation of something I had in my head several years ago… it makes me pretty darn accomplished!

I encourage all authors out there who don’t have an agent or publisher to not give up.  Even if it’s not the best work you can put out there, it is something. Don’t let anyone, not even yourself, stop you from accomplishing your goals!

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/amazons-of-the-myst-jasmine-clark/1116242706?ean=9780578119090

This link shows you what your own will can accomplish without any help! So what’s stopping you??