Today I am thrilled to welcome Cyn Ley as a guest blogger! Cyn not only is an amazing author, she also was my Solstice editor on The Phone Call and More Than I Can Say, and I have so enjoyed working with her, and getting to know her.
Cyn takes much of her inspiration from the part of the beautiful Pacific Northwest she calls home, where fire (the active volcanoes) and water (the many rivers and the Pacific Ocean) actually do mix. Among her many interests are history, embroidery, folklore, and things that are generally rather strange. And she is a top-reviewed author on amazon.com.
The best of her earlier writings (2014-2016) were revised and given new life in the collection Encounters Tales Recounted and Reborn, published in spring 2017. A number of them had made previous appearances in various Solstice seasonal anthologies and smaller collections. This was followed in early fall with an anthology of all new stories, entitled The Ossuary Playground and Other Unexpected Tales. Shortly after, the story Plot Twist found its way into the annual Solstice fright fest anthology Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep Volume 5. It is now available as a stand-alone story on Kindle.
In addition to her writings, she was named the 6th top book editor in the 2016 Preditors & Editors poll, and advanced to 4th place in 2017.
Pink Flamingos & Other Follies is her latest anthology, released in March 2018.
All of Cyn’s titles are available on Amazon.com.
Thank you for the opportunity!
My latest release is PINK FLAMINGOS & OTHER FOLLIES, a collection of five short stories. It follows THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND AND OTHER UNEXPECTED TALES, and an anthology of older stories which have been in some cases reimagined entitled ENCOUNTERS TALES RECOUNTED AND REBORN. All of these are available on amazon in print and Kindle venues. I also currently have a short story single out on Kindle, entitled PLOT TWIST.
ENCOUNTERS grew out of a challenge from a writer friend. I’ve always loved to write, but never had the courage to do anything with it. She explained what flash fiction was, gave me a topic, and the rest is history. From the very beginning to the present, I discovered I was a top-reviewed author on amazon.com!
I like to experiment with various genres, pushing myself in directions I haven’t gone before. It’s an excellent way to learn the craft behind the types of stories. I write general fiction, humor, horror, paranormal, mystery, social satire—stories designed to entertain, but that will hopefully also make readers sit back and think.
I take much of my inspiration from the place where I live. A town with the motto “Keep Portland Weird” is surely a good location to hunt down the quirks and quarks for many a tale.
A writer’s life is based on language, and what is language but sound? To me, words sing—they have tone, volume, pitch, and nuance, and they have to be right before hitting the page.
I love the challenge of conveying much in few words. A short story can be huge in scope, compressed down to a couple of pages. It’s all about how the words are used. One of the adages for any writer is “Don’t use words because you can. Use words because you should.”
PINK FLAMINGOS & OTHER FOLLIES is my third short story anthology, just released. The stories here are engaging, funny, and frequently quirky. The collection also introduces a new series—a cozy mystery entitled “It’s A Mystery I: The Lost Boys.”
The stories are:
“Charlotte Plays God”—Take three physics proteges, one adventurous professor, and a cross dimensional portal constructed out of a coffee maker.
“Prickly Weather”—Groundhog’s Day in West Coast Portland. Bring on the hedgehogs!
“’Randa’s Wrath”—It’s Pledge Week, and a favorite late night coffee house is ready for it with a challenge guaranteed to burn.
“It’s A Mystery I: The Lost Boys”—Introducing the first of a series, two bookshop owners find themselves surrounded by clues and conundrums in a case where time is of the essence.
“Bored Laureen & Wally”—Even the most serene of marriages needs a little shaking up from time to time!
Is there a pink flamingo in your future? There could be…
THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND AND OTHER UNEXPECTED TALES
All tales are built from bones, the reminders of lives present and past, of lives walking the edge between this world and the ones beyond.
“Remains”—A lonely and forgotten battlefield bears the spirits of those who linger there.
“Calling You Out”—Many a historic house has its ghosts, but for one spirit, all he yearns to hear is his own name.
“Stilts”—A house up in Portland’s West Hills bears a terrible stain and a terrifying manifestation.
“The Ossuary Playground”—It remains to children to recall the past, as only children can.
Praise for THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND:
“Superb, highly recommended”
“The stories are crafted like jewels”
“Classic ghost stories written in elegant prose. A book well worth reading.”
ENCOUNTERS TALES RECOUNTED AND REBORN
These are the best of the early tales, some as originally published, some expanded and reimagined. Ranging from social satire to the paranormal, from fight to flight to friendship, they touch base on the encounters of the human experience.
“Benefits”—A new home development is all about location. And what you dig up.
“Food Chain”—Wildlife documentarians Owen and Nate are in search of a new challenge. But sometimes the largest challenges turn out to be very small.
“The Logo Men”—What if the Seven Deadly Sins walked into a bar, and nobody noticed?
“Rinse, Repeat”—All the days are the same now. All because of one date.
“Perfect”—Sometimes life is as transformative, and as simple, as a holiday gingerbread cookie.
“The Tin Foil Hat Society”—It’s time for the millennial alien visitation! What could possibly go wrong?
…and other tales of wonder and terror
Praise for ENCOUNTERS:
“Magical, charming, original, and captivating”
“Thought-provoking and soul-searching”
“A satisfying and interesting reading experience”
A humorous and horrific little romp about what happens when a demon on assignment shows up at a sci-fi convention.
Find me under “Cyn Ley” at www.amazon.com