Tag Archives: short stories

Guest Interview with Lisa Burton, Personal Assistant to Author C.S. Boyack, on Quantum Wanderlust

Lisa got an invitation to Michele Jones’ site today to talk about Quantum Wanderlust. This one is more like a coffee chat about my story and Michele’s story. Please visit her site and see how it turned out.

***

“Hi everyone. I’ve got radio personality and interviewer, Lisa Burton here with us today. Let’s give her a warm welcome.”

“Hi, Lisa and welcome. I’m super excited to have you stop by today.”

“Hi, Michele, so glad to finally meet you. I’m here today to talk about Quantum Wanderlust.This is a collection of short stories by thirteen awesome authors, and all of them deal with time travel.”

Keep reading here. We explore a couple of the stories in the anthology.

Lisa Burton

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Smells like victory


I fiddled with stuff yesterday and today. I managed to write and send out one more post about Quantum Wanderlust, the free anthology I get the honor of appearing in. If you still haven’t gotten your copy, it’s available for free at this link.

I also wrote up, sent out, and scheduled the coming Lisa Burton Radio post. Beyond that, I responded to some new applicants and got them some materials to get things started.

One more friend has a new book dropping soon, and I got his announcement post assembled and scheduled. I have a review all ready to go for him too, because I was one of the beta readers on this project.

My favorite beta reader has an opening, and I sent her a copy of The Yak Guy Project, along with some general conversation.

Aside from that, I added a bunch of things to my calendar so I can keep up with the guest posts I have coming up for October. I can usually remember, but there are too many coming up for me to trust my memory. Some of the sites are new to me, so I don’t want to drop the ball and fail to show up on someone.

Speaking of which, I have a habit of picking a random day and tweeting out the most recent five Lisa Burton Radio posts every week. I like to deliver a bit of extra support, and while Twitter doesn’t amount to much, it can help the authors. I never promised to do this for anyone, it’s just my extra effort. I went back through the list, and I have several authors who never even bothered to show up. Some of my regulars reblogged, tweeted, facebooked, etc. They never even got a thank you. Today I skipped over those posts in my retweeting. Does that make me a bad host? I kind of feel like it, but why should I put in an extra effort when the author didn’t put in a first effort?

To all of you who use the sharing buttons, or reblog my posts, I appreciate you. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I’ll be there when you need me. All you have to do is ask. Reference the new book posts that have been appearing on this blog.

Macabre Macaroni will be every Tuesday in October. People seemed to enjoy my Halloween stories, so I’m doing it again this year. I always worry about these, because they don’t go to beta readers, they’re micro-fiction. I guess the comments will let me know what everyone thought. The first one of those is all scheduled and will post this Tuesday. It seems like one of them is always a big hit and I can’t predict which one it will be. I honestly have no idea.

I got a bunch of reading done today, and a bit of video gaming too. I really need to use the calm morning hours for reading, but when everyone starts stirring I can dedicate myself to other things.

My baseball team anchored home field advantage for the MLB wildcard game. This is a one-game playoff to see who moves on. I kind of want to do something with The Enhanced League to celebrate, but have no idea what. I have some free days available, but those are hit and miss. Any ideas here? Win or lose, I’m excited my team made it this far and it’s been a long time. You can bet I’ll be watching the game on Wednesday.

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Quantum Wanderlust, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa BurtonWelcome to a very special edition of Lisa Burton Radio. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and we have something fun going on today. Thirteen outstanding authors have teamed together to bring you an anthology of short stories called Quantum Wanderlust.

In the interest of full disclosure, Craig has a story in the collection too.

Today, we’re chatting with Alberta who is an aerospace engineer. “Welcome to the show, Alberta.”

“Thank you, Lisa. I’m excited to be on your show. I’ve never been on the radio before. And call me Abbi, please. Alberta makes me think of my mother when she is angry with me.”

“What led you to working in the aerospace industry?”

“I’ve always been quite the science geek. When my schoolmates were playing with Barbie and plastic jewelry, I was building spaceships with my brother’s Lego. I never really had to decide what to do after high school, Polytech in Turin sounded like the only viable option. After that I applied to ESA, the European Space Agency, for an internship and the rest is history. There are so many possibilities in space, you can’t even imagine. Or maybe you can. But what really attracted me was the travel itself. The challenge is covering unimaginable distances as fast as possible, bringing astronauts as near as possible to the speed of light. Actually, getting there would change our perception of space but also of time.”

“Of time? How so?”

“You need to think about time as another kind of dimension, just like space. Einstein taught us that everything constantly travels through space-time at the speed of light. This motion is usually ‘spread’ on these two dimensions and it can be distributed differently. If an object is still in space, it’s only moving through time. When it moves in space too, its motion through time gets slower. This slowing down is infinitesimal in day-to-day life, so we don’t feel it. But when the speed of an object gets near to the speed of light, its motion in time slows down significantly. Are you still with me?”

“I think so. You’re saying that when your speed increases, the flow of time slows down.”

“Exactly! The point is time is going at the usual speed at your starting point, so if you go back after a while, time would have passed much faster for those who stayed behind. It would be like going into the future. And this is amazing! If we can reverse the process too, we could go back and forth in time. I can’t stop thinking about the possibilities. We should devote so much more to this kind of research.”

“Abbi, that sounds like it’s almost an obsession. What caused you to dedicate your entire career to time travel and all it could bring?”

“Well, it’s– Usually I don’t talk about this. People tend to regard me as a mad person when I do, but the fact is I actually travelled in time once. I was only five years old. My brother and I were playing in the garden at my parent’s house in Italy. We went into my father’s shack and, when we came out, boom! We were in the future. My memories are a bit foggy and I discovered what really happened only recently, but it was life-changing for me. I had a glimpse of the future, my future. I know what was bound to happen, I knew what I was destined for. How many people can say the same? From then on, all I had to do was work to make that future real. And that’s what I did.”

“My bio indicates that Pietro didn’t handle this quite the way you did. He seems to think you shouldn’t interfere in the process. Does this cause any stress between the two of you?”

“My brother is – how can I put it – quite unscientific in his approach to life. I work with facts and figures, he prefers to deal with feelings and purpose. Pete wasn’t as curious as I was to understand the how, he was more preoccupied with the why. He doesn’t approve of my work and tried over and over to talk me out of this. I want to make time travel real, he is sure the chance to go back and forth through time shouldn’t be accessible to everyone. He says it could be incredibly dangerous in the wrong hands. But who are we to decide for everyone? Needless to say, Pete wasn’t happy to discover I was working on a prototype of the time machine.”

“Wait… You already have a time machine?”

“Well, sort of. ESTEC is a great place for an aerospace engineer to work, but time travel isn’t exactly their priority. So I started working with a group of colleagues who were interested in my ideas. We borrowed a place and some equipment–“

“Borrowed?”

“There is a lot of unused space in the basement under ESTEC exhibition, you know. And there is a lot of scrap material unsuitable for the main projects. Let’s say we hate wasting. When things became bigger we found a… sponsor. I can’t reveal his name but I can tell you, he sees the potential in our research and he is passionate about this kind of science.”

“You’ve really put a lot into this, and I hope it works out for you, and for childhood Alberta too. Don’t you find it interesting that you’re creating a loop for yourself? Childhood Alberta shows up, adult Abbi has to help her return to her own time. This fuels the interest in time travel research and starts all over again.”

“We made great strides in this field, but we still know very little. I’d like to make further tests on this, to see if this loop thing is something we can change or if it’s beyond our control. Would it have changed anything had I stayed in Amsterdam that day, had I never met my child-self? Or space-time continuum would have found a way to bring me here anyway? I know this sounds a lot like talking about fate, and it doesn’t sound a lot like a scientist, but great discoveries require something like a leap of faith. Just think about what time travel could mean for future generations. We could have a look at the past and learn from our mistakes or see the outcome of our decisions in the future. I’m not saying everyone should have this chance, but small groups of selected people sent at the right time in the right place could work wonders.”

“It’s an exciting discovery, no doubt. Whatever the ramifications, the world just changed and I, for one, can’t wait to see what develops. Any closing remarks for our guests today?”

“Oh, well. I’m not… I don’t know… My brother is the one to go to for motivational speeches.”

“Don’t worry about it, Abbi. You can always come back in time and redo the show so you can leave some awesome remarks.

“Please use those sharing buttons on your way out today. Quantum Wanderlust is a free book, and all the authors would appreciate you helping spread the word. I’ll include a purchase link on the website, but since it’s free it would really help if you could pick your copy up today. Clusters of downloads really help with Amazon’s rankings.

“If you’re feeling extra generous, you could add it to your reading list on Goodreads too.

“For Quantum Wanderlust, and Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Quantum WanderlustWhat if you had all the time in the world?

Thirteen authors answer that question with short stories about time travel. Go back in time to right a wrong, forward to see the future. No jump is too large, no method unfeasible, no lesson beyond learning.

• Visit the past to learn a family secret.

• See the formation of a future dictatorship.

• Assume responsibility for weaving the fabric of time.

• Travel back in time to WWII.

• Use a family heirloom to solve problems.

• Wear an inheritance to visit ancestors.

• Leave a dystopian future for the hope of something better.

• Make history come true in an unexpected way.

• Fight evil fairies to protect a chosen angel.

• Live with the childhood memory of visitors until the day they arrive.

• Seek medical help for a memory issue and get way more than bargained for.

• Discover that with great power comes great responsibility.

• Uncover the secrets of a pharaoh’s tomb and curse.

Do the characters observe or interact? Is the outcome better or worse than the original timeline? Read these stories to learn how far they go, how they get there, and what happens when they return.

The scope is virtually limitless, definitely timeless.

Irene’s story in Quantum Wanderlust is called Children of Time.

Irene Aprile has been writing since she was a child, but she decided to pursue her passion only recently. During her detour from writing, she read tons of novels, took a degree in Chemistry and got married to an amazing patient man who puts up with all her notebooks and papers scattered all around their house.

Now she lives a double life: chemist by day, writer at night. She loves many kinds of stories and works with multiple genres. Her chick-lit Secrets of a Handbag is due later this year. In the meantime, she is working on Undercover, the first volume in her science-fiction/spy story series.

When she isn’t chained to a laboratory counter or her laptop, she loves spending time with her family, shopping for books, handbags and shoes (more than she can read, use and wear), and falling in love with TV series.

You can get in touch with her through her website http://ireneaprile.com or through these social media links:

E-mail | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

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Lisa Burton talks about Quantum Wanderlust


Hi, everyone! As you probably read, I recently participated in another anthology published by AIW Press. Today, I’m delighted to welcome back Lisa Burton the robot girl. Personal assistant to author C. S. Boyack, etc. Spokesmodel for his books, etc. Read more here

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Try out a FREE anthology

I’m proud to be part of this anthology with a talented collection of authors. This time the theme is all about time travel, which is a science fiction standard. How could I not say yes?

I’d never tackled the subject before, and was a bit apprehensive. The publisher didn’t put any restrictions on me as far as travelling into the future or past. As long as time travel was the basis, I was left to my own devices.

I struggled with coming up with a cowboy story, but it just never came together for me. Then the Muse visited, and I changed directions. I hope you’ll enjoy Quantum Wanderlust, and I already have my copy.

The best part for you is this is a free collection. It is available everywhere, and this Universal Link will let you choose the vendor of your choice.

My story involved a lot of research, and I was at risk of becoming a victim of the Research Sirens. I have the dates right, the real people who appear in the story, specific locations, and even some of the research into the discovery.

Our book rankings depend upon a strange algorithm. My experience is that a cluster of downloads all at once will rank a book higher than the same number spread over a couple of weeks. I encourage you to pick up your copy right away, even if you wait for a snowy afternoon to read it. I already have mine.

Other things that help us are those sharing buttons at the bottom of this post. A few tweets and Facebook shares really mean a lot.

Of course, reviews matter too, and I would appreciate if you would leave one. This helps me garner more invitations to participate in future anthologies.

Now this wouldn’t be a C. S. Boyack project without some participation from my spokesmodel, Lisa Burton. Feel free to use Lisa’s poster as your telephone background or wherever you like. From Lisa’s poster, see if you can guess which story is mine.

Lisa Burton

Spring forward, fall back.

That reminds you of changing the clocks, right? When we talk about the passage of time, it’s usually in short bursts (seconds, minutes, hours) or slightly longer chunks (weeks, months, years).

What if it was limitless? What if you could go forward or back, in any size segment you wanted? Decades, centuries, eons? Would you go back and change your life? Go forward and see your future?

That’s the challenge thirteen writers faced.

Quantum Wanderlust is a time travel short story anthology. Characters travel forward and back—how far they go and how they get there make fascinating tales. Do they observe or interact? Is the outcome better or worse than the original timeline?

You’ve got to read the stories and see for yourself. The scope is virtually limitless, definitely timeless.

 

What if you had all the time in the world?

 

Thirteen authors answer that question with short stories about time travel. Go back in time to right a wrong, forward to see the future. No jump is too large, no method unfeasible, no lesson beyond learning.

 

  • Visit the past to learn a family secret.
  • See the formation of a future dictatorship.
  • Assume responsibility for weaving the fabric of time.
  • Travel back in time to WWII.
  • Use a family heirloom to solve problems.
  • Wear an inheritance to visit ancestors.
  • Leave a dystopian future for the hope of something better.
  • Make history come true in an unexpected way.
  • Fight evil fairies to protect a chosen angel.
  • Live with the childhood memory of visitors until the day they arrive.
  • Seek medical help for a memory issue and get way more than bargained for.
  • Discover that with great power comes great responsibility.
  • Uncover the secrets of a pharaoh’s tomb and curse.

Do the characters observe or interact? Is the outcome better or worse than the original timeline? Read these stories to learn how far they go, how they get there, and what happens when they return.

The scope is virtually limitless, definitely timeless.

Dang that is a good looking sphinx. One more time, in case you missed the Universal Purchase Link.

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Darla of Deodanth, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Welcome to this week’s edition of Lisa Burton Radio. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and I’m pretty excited to bring you this week’s guest. Darla is someone a bit different in that she’s a regularly occurring short story character. Many famous characters got their start this way, but it’s kind of an old school method. “Welcome to the show, Darla.”

“Hi. Thank you for having me.”

“Darla, my bio says you live in a South American city, high in the mountains, that was actually founded by the Elder Gods. What can you tell me about that?”

“I wouldn’t exactly call it South America, Lisa. It’s not exactly in your world. But that’s a long story. Yes, we live in a beautiful mountain city, Deodanth, in the part of our world that would translate to your South America. My people call these creatures The Elders, and most believe they’re gods, but lately I’ve gotten to know one very well, and they are not gods.”

“Wait, so you guys are walking around with these Cthulhu type things in your city? What’s that like? ”

“I’m not sure what a Cthulhu is. You people have great smelly buses and trains chugging around your city. What’s that like? Our Elders are simply The Elders. They’ve been around forever. They brought The People to Deodanth. They have many tentacles they slither around on, leathery wings, in case they need to fly somewhere fast, and huge big eyes that see right into your soul. They’re sort of a combination Kraken, dragon, and Cocker Spaniel. The Cocker Spaniel part would be the soul gaze.”

“Uh… We don’t have dragons in our world. Dragons aren’t real.”

“Oh… Okay. Well you do have giant creatures that fly, don’t you? I saw one in the sky as I was coming to the studio.”

“That was probably an airplane. You mentioned you had trouble with one of the Elders? What’s his name…”

“I can’t tell you his name. Names are very powerful, and I’d get into trouble. What happened was, a woman hired me as a Finder, to find her dog. ”

“Okay… What does a Finder do?

“Just like it sounds, a Finder finds things. You find a lost dog, lost key, lost child. Anything that’s lost. Much like what your detectives do. A Finder finds out what caused a fire, who stole a warehouse full of grain, who killed someone. So the woman with the lost dog had a little of The Sight, and put a weird clause in the contract. If the dog was tortured or killed, she wanted me to kill the one who did it. I was born into an Assassin House, and trained as one, so that clause didn’t bother me. But I didn’t like the work, and was trying different jobs. That was why I was working as a Finder. Finding a lost dog sounded like a simple job and I couldn’t see how it could possibly lead to killing anyone, so I took it. My own dog Rageth is a superb scent hound, and we simply followed the trail of the lost dog. It led us to the house of an Elder. I didn’t want to go in, it’s a great breach of courtesy, but Rageth insisted the trail led there, so … so I sneaked in. I’m not proud of it, but I wanted to find that dog, and it seemed the only way. I guess I can tell you this, because all of Deodanth probably knows by now. The Elder caught me snooping and threw me into his fungus garden. It’s in a cavern many storeys beneath his house. That’s where I found the lost dog.”

“Wait a minute here. The Elder God was feeding a live doggie to his fungus garden? That would piss me off to the point of being a dangerous robot.”

“The Elder had been secretly capturing people and creatures from Deodanth, and feeding them to his garden. The place was full of mounds of soft dead bodies. The smell was overpowering, the air full of fungus spores. The lost dog, Brevert, and I both became infected, and barely got out alive. It got under our skin and was itchy and painful. It would have eventually filled our bodies completely and been a terrible way to die. We lost all our hair. Assassins don’t lose their hair over a job, and my mother never let me hear the end of it. The treatment was almost worse than the disease. When we finally recovered, I was very angry, and vowed to kill The Elder. Which in fact I did. It was not easy. It felt strange working as a Finder, and killing someone, but I least I didn’t have to find out who did it. But killing an Elder brought the attention of the other Elders. Never a good thing. If we know anything in Deodanth, it’s to keep a low profile.”

“That sounds to me like a good time to get out of town. What did you do?”

“I needed to wait till the uproar died down, so I made nice with my mother and cooled it in the Assassin’s House for the winter. Grew my hair. The valleys below Deodanth are full of ancient ruins, and I guided an expedition in the spring to explore the ruins of Machu Hampacchu. Legends persisted of spirits dwelling there, and there was no telling what we might find. And we found them. The Toads of Machu Hampacchu. It was an incredible experience.”

“Sounds exciting.”

“Yes. When I’m not terrified out of my mind, I’m excited.”

“That sounds like a nice segue to another story. I’ve got to tell you, Darla, I’m incredibly attracted to a story titled The Toads of Manchu Hampacchu. There’s so much intrigue in the title. So what’s that one all about?”

“It’s hard to describe. I realize now that there’s more to our worlds than I ever knew or could imagine. For one thing, The Toads are real. But you wouldn’t want to visit them. They’re old, and they’re cranky, and enjoy snacking on humans as much as the next guy. They’re more or less retired and into gardening now. But before the toads and I reached an understanding, the expedition was in big trouble. And on top of that, I found out that the Elder I killed wasn’t quite as dead as I had thought. If it weren’t for the Toads, the people on the expedition and I wouldn’t be alive today.”

“You have such an interesting life, Darla. Do you think your mother will ever let you leave the assassin’s life behind, or is it like a source of side money for you? I mean, you could try being an Uber driver.”

“The Elders are Uber enough for me, thank you. Being an assassin pays well, and you get to wear cool clothing, but not everyone’s cut out for it. My mother must learn this. I need to get away from Deodanth for a while and let her cool off. The next thing I know, she’ll be pressuring me to find a husband and start a family, and I’m not ready for that. First, I want to find out what I’m good at, and what I really want to do with my life. Part of an expedition guide’s duties is to resupply the camp sites, so I’m going to go to the Cirque of Ponies, round some up for carrying supplies, and go down to the coast to buy firewood. That should be a simple task, and I’m going to have a vacation and see the sights. I hear they have great food, many exotic wares in their markets, and snails big as houses. I’m really looking forward to it.”

“It all sounds so interesting. Any closing comments for our listeners today?”

“Hmm. Yes. No matter how much you want to, don’t kill an Elder.”

“If you want to read all about Darla’s ongoing adventures, they can be found in the pages of Cirsova Magazine #5. I’ll post all the deets on the website.

“Help a robot girl out. This show functions by spreading the word about characters and the stories they appear in. It helps me keep the lights on around her when you use those sharing buttons. Tell your peeps about Darla of Deodanth on Facebook, Google Plus, and Twitter. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Purchase your copy of Cirsova #5 here: https://www.amazon.com/Cirsova-Fantasy-Science-Fiction-Magazine-ebook/dp/B06XHJMSS3

Louise Sorensen:

My whole life I painted pictures, until we had a really bad Ice Storm, January 1998. No electricity for nine days in the worst of the Canadian winter. Woodstove burning 24/7 to keep the house from freezing. After that I couldn’t paint anymore. But my muse wouldn’t leave me alone, so I started writing. Been at it ever since. Live on a farm in eastern Ontario, with one dog, two cats, five equines and a wonderful husband.
Social media:

Twitter: @louise3anne

Facebook: Louise Sorensen

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With a Little Help from my Friends

It feels like it's been a long time coming, but The Enhanced League is a genuine book now. I played the usual games with my Mac before uploading it. It generally works like this:

“You've been logged out. Please enter your iCloud password.”

I loaded my password.

“You have upgrades.”

I start downloading the newest and greatest to the operating system.

“Your upgrades have just been upgraded.”

I start over. Looks like it will take about thirty minutes. I check back in half an hour. Twenty seven minutes remaining.

Play with he dogs and talk to my daughter before checking back.

“You've successfully upgraded your operating system. Please enter your iCloud password.”

When I clicked the keys, nothing happened. Replace the batteries in everything.

“Something went wrong. You have upgrades.”

Start all over again. Repeat the waiting times, and password entry.

“Do you want to activate Siri on this machine?”

“Whatever! Just get on with it already.”

“Please enter your messenger password.”

“I don't even want messenger on this machine!!!” I click the red dot to close the window.

“Please enter you messenger password.”

“FINE!”

Anyway, after about three hours I was allowed to do the only thing I need the Mac for. Everything else can be done on my iPad.

I just got the email from Amazon that I am live right now.

I'm not the best blurb writer, but here's what I wrote:

The Enhanced league is a collection of short stories and anthems centered around a year in a fictional baseball league. It has a slight science fiction background. This league has a lot more pomp than you might be used to, and nobody seems to care if the players use performance enhancing drugs.

Stories involve existing heroes, up and comers, and falling stars. While there are the obvious stories that take place on the field of play, there are also human interest stories that take place around the baseball gyrations. These stories involve scouting, trades, ruthless business decisions, and even relationships.

I enjoyed researching and bringing you The Enhanced League, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. — CB

***

This is where I ask for a little help from my friends. There are a few things you can do to help, if you're willing.

First is to reach down inside the couch and find ninety-nine cents (99¢), then go to Amazon and pick up a copy of The Enhanced League. This is the link. The widget on my sidebar is also linked. If you need an e-reader, there is a link for one of those on the side too. Grab a hotdog and a beer and have some fun with it.

Second, I need some blog hosts. I have several different posts already written. Let me know in the comments if you'd like to participate. You can request me, or a visit from Lisa Burton, and Lisa has some awesome new posters to share with a baseball theme to them. Let me know in the comments.

I also have a couple of posts I've written by request, and need to get them out to the hosts.

Third, don't be afraid to share the news, reblog one of the posts that pops up online, and tell your friends. I'll be doing the same on your new releases.

Finally, to the awesome group of volunteers who served as beta readers. I used many of your suggestions to improve this book. There is no expectation whatsoever, but if you'd like to post a review I'd really appreciate it.

I'm off to do a whole list of things next. These involve Goodreads, pinned tweets, my book club and more. I'll surf through and keep up with the comments.

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