When I quit the oil fields, I told myself I would write two books (in addition to posting Mon-Fri) and that they would be on sale by March 1st. Well, without a moment to spare, my new (and second) short novel Buried Within is now available in paperback for purchase on Amazon (kindle version within the day). Here is the back cover text. Hope you enjoy.
Rick and Mark are friends, but they have lots of friends. After Mark’s wife Rebecca is murdered, he does the unthinkable–twice. Would you? Could you?
Pete Deakon lightens the mood, at least a shade, with his second short novel, Buried Within. The story explores friendship, hope, guilt, and ultimately, love.
At times laugh-out-loud funny, through an easy-going style and brisk pace, this contemporary thriller pleasantly affirms and challenges some of Mid-America’s most cherished notions.
If you’d like to do a review of the book (that you’d post on your blog and Amazon at least), I’ll email you a pdf. Just let me know. Glenn of Glenn Hates Books has it in his queue already. I’m skerred. Ha.
Okay. Here it is. The Author’s Preface and Chapter One are below. Tomorrow’s post will be Chapter Two, but then you gotta buy it. Enjoy! (Click on the image to go to Amazon. Or here.)
Looking back, I am certain that in his last months with us Simon Pastor was aware that his journey’s end was nearing. Those of us closest to him have since discussed the sadness his eyes betrayed no matter how large his smile during those last few months. And I, especially, feel a heavy burden because he once told me that when I tell his story (“and tell it you must!” he’d implore) that I need to get it right, that I need to share everything. In honor, then, of Simon Pastor’s wishes I have chosen to write this book. His will granted me access to everything of his, including his laptop and phone. I have, of course, taken dramatic license with some parts of his story, but when you read a text exchange or email exchange, know that it is verbatim, typos and all.
Men get stuck. Simon Pastor was no different. Like every man he reached a turning point which defined all actions thereafter. Unlike some men, however, Simon fell prey to this moment. It overwhelmed him. It consumed him. And eventually it killed him.
Trauma is usually found within these turning points. I say trauma to emphasize the sheer shock of the event and its aftermath. Combat is the trigger for some, the senseless unexpected death of a loved one for others. For Simon, the event was his divorce.
When men are confronted by these moments, they respond in one of two ways. Either they grow or they get stuck. And I don’t mean to imply that men have an equal chance of responding in either of the two ways, not at all. Most men get stuck. Most are not equipped with the skills and tools necessary to deal with the trauma. Poor Simon wasn’t.
“Simon, here, is a virgin,” said Brian. “He’s holding out for his one true love.”
Simon was, in fact, a virgin. But this did not make him any different from the rest of the eighteen year old college freshmen in the dorm room. The dorm room’s dominant feature was the two twin beds lofted into the air by homemade wooden stands, which made the shape of an L in the corner. The room’s current tenants each hung bed sheets from the ceiling in order to conceal any co-ed sports that may or may not occur on the beds. This was standard practice among the dorm’s residents. The beds being in the air also created more space for the young men to come together for intimate conversations. In the case of Brian’s room, this room, a love seat was under one of the beds. Two more 1950s style wooden desk chairs and one crummy bean bag chair completed the room’s seating arrangement.
“You laugh,” Simon replied, “but I actually did sign a ‘True Love Waits’ card once. With others, I walked it up to the front of the church during a special service and everything. A public vow between God and I. You ever made a commitment to anything higher than yourself before? Any of you?”
It’s what we loved about Simon. He was honest to a fault and all heart.
“That depends on your definition of high, Simon,” Chris offered to a general laughter among the guys.
Rolling his eyes and shaking his head, Simon took a breath.
“Is it on my back? My forehead?” he asked, pretending to wipe off a mark. “Why is it everywhere I go this is the most frequently discussed thing? No, I haven’t had sex. Yes, I’d like to save myself for marriage. And yes, I’m proud of this and could not care less who knows. But I do hope that we can someday talk about something, anything, else,” he lamented. “How about Josh? He was so drunk he pissed on his own computer the other night. Isn’t that interesting?”
General merriment accompanied Josh’s inadequate rebuttal.
For Simon, college was infinitely better than high school in every way save this one. In high school, while every boy talked about having sex, only a select few had actually gained carnal knowledge. In college, however, Simon soon found himself in the minority. And given the general lack of responsibilities that come with attending American universities, everyone soon knew.
He once shared with me, though, that almost to a man, when in a one-on-one conversation, the guys would admit that they respected him for his decision. I knew I did. It was not difficult to see why. Simon believed in principles. He believed in virtue. And that is rare.
Buy it today. Chapter Two tomorrow.
So. Another month of pay after just two weeks. And I’m still alive.
Here’s the scoop. Book sales have stalled out. At six. That’s cool, I didn’t do it to get rich, well, not in money–knowledge rich. And to prove it to you, I’m going to give it to you. I really am proud of the book/blog and want it to be read. So if money is the barrier between the paperback version of this blog and your hands, I’m removing that barrier. Just email me at email@example.com. Tell me where to send it. I’ll send it. And then you’ll have it. Want a couple? Order away. This is a popularity contest after all people. Read it and tell others!
On a wholly different note, I have written a post that contains the most vulgar language I have ever heard spoken whether in person or film or books or whatever. It is still written by me (though not invented by me) and in the end has my voice/style, but seriously it is trash. No one should read it. By no one, I mean Grandma and Grandpa. Mom. Kate. Dad. Well, all family members. (Scratch that. Sam, you’ll likely chuckle in disbelief.) Friends, please consider proceeding carefully. I am going to password protect the post. But the password will be available on a page at the top of the blog called “password”.
Why did I write it? Because Tolstoy came close. He came really close to sharing locker room talk. But he never did. Maybe other fellas have, I can’t say I’ve ever searched for it. But I am frequently confronted by a feeling of shock when I listen to other people’s conversations, and the conversation that this post records takes the cake. I’m ashamed of it. I’m nervous about being associated with it. I’m embarrassed to have been in the group that witnessed it. But I loved writing it. Just don’t read it. And if you do, remember you’re the one who typed in the password.
For practice with independent publishing, and because I wanted my own tangible copy of everything I’ve written in the last two years, I published a paperback version of this blog. You can click here to buy it from CreateSpace. Click here to buy it from Amazon. There is no ebook available, as that format just seems wrong for this project for some reason.
I’ve asked myself why anyone would buy something that they can read for free, and there’s only one acceptable reason: because they want to. For me, it was a need more than a want, but I think you get the picture. Buy it because you want (need) to. It begins with “Why a log?” and ends with “A Jaw Dropping Woman.”
Now that this little experiment is complete, expect new books in the future. And, of course, I’ll still be publishing as many posts as I can while I’m not away at work.
Oh, and the book makes a great gift. (I’m pretty sure H- would’ve been mad if I didn’t include that last little bit.)