June 2021

As the world fights to regain a sense of normalcy, we’re watching as some states begin opening up again, including my own. It’s exciting and terrifying at the same time. People are enjoying the freedom of facial expressions while sharing the slight suspicion of anyone they’re near. And as others watch the crazy Americans, I wish I was on the opposite side of the monitor with them.

My writing time took a back seat for a few weeks while I focused on the joys in life and took a vacation. While I stayed in an apartment along the coast with my family, I ignored the desire to work on my multiple projects.

I did however bring my finished project to life leaving the remains available for everyone to read. I hope those who take to purchase it loves the story about three individuals who fight for the fate of their city.

Thank you,

Raymond

Short Story

I finished this not long ago and wanted to share it with everyone. My lack of interaction has come with concentrating hard on the projects I have in different stages. So without further delay:

Reconcile

Peter Mince knew the world held nothing back when it came to life. High school proved to be one of those times. As one of the shortest members of his year, he gained the nickname Mince Meat from a bully who made him his favorite target. Four years of fights left him wary of others throughout college then beyond.

He hoped that the experience would remain with his hometown and past. Peter did not plan to ever return to the place he received endless torment. That was his inspiration to push through his personal limits to keep the life he built. He kept his distance from those at work living alone. After all, who wants to make pointless small talk?

One Friday evening, Peter wrapped up at work early heading home for a quiet weekend. He chose to stand on the bus avoiding unnecessary questions about his seat. He kept telling himself that it was better this way. His eyes locked onto his feet without wavering until he stepped off the bus in front of his building.

Someone stepped out as he reached the door allowing him to slip inside. Few people used the stairs leaving him in his preferred silence. He climbed the three stories to his apartment slipping the key in the lock before noticing the package by the door. Who would send him a package? Peter picked it up searching for a return address on his couch.

A simple shake revealed the weight of whatever it was in the plain, cardboard box with his name being thing written on it. Peter opened it to find a black briefcase. On top of the lid a scrap piece of paper with a code. He considered what could be going on, but nothing seemed likely. Peter’s brows pressed together.

He walked away toward the kitchen contemplating what to do. The bottle of whiskey sloshed as its amber liquid poured into the glass. Splash. Splash. A couple of ice cubes floated to the surface after their initial submersion. Peter packed his drink on his return to the briefcase contemplating whether to enter the code. With a sip of courage, he gave in to his curiosity spinning the dials until he heard a click.

Ten bundles labeled two thousand dollars littered the interior. Peter gasped at the amount of money. He fell back against the couch never have seen that much at one time in his life. The room spun. He felt nauseous. Where did it come from? Then he remembered the little black notebook he tossed to the side. Peter picked it up reading the words written inside.

“I am offering you this twenty thousand dollars as a gift. However, only half belongs to you. The other half I wish that you would share with the person who tormented you most in life. I know I don’t have the right to ask such a thing but doing so ensures your right to keep ten thousand dollars. Once you hand over the second half, get the person’s signature and deliver this notebook to this address: The bus stop at the corner of Fifth Street and Elm of your Hometown of Colfield. You have two days to deliver the money or forfeit the gift. Thank you.” Peter could not process the words flicking through the pages to find the remainder was blank.

I wish you would share with the person who tormented you most in life.

Every moment of his life flashed in his mind returning over and over to the tumultuous years he spent in high school. He remembered that person, Ronald Blythe (Ron to his friends). The moments of pain that that man caused could not be erased.

He tossed the notebook into the briefcase closing the lid. “No amount of money is worth seeing him.”

Peter downed the rest of his drink and went to bed. It would be an understatement to say he got any sleep thinking about the contents of his package. He had until Sunday to deliver half of the money to Ron Blythe or lose his half. After all, ten thousand dollars was a lot of money for anyone to receive. He sighed accepting the fact he could not pass up the gift. Peter had to return home to Colfield for the first time since he graduated.

The next morning he caught a bus home with a duffle bag holding his personal items and the briefcase. Peter wore a pair of wireless headphones while reading a book to avoid conversation. Even the prospect of facing the one person who haunted him most had not given Peter the motivation to openly interact with others. He was still a prisoner of his previous trauma.

Colfield came into view on the horizon growing like the dread knotting in his stomach. Peter regretted the plan exponentially as the bus approached its station. The Welcome to Colfield sign left a bad taste in his mouth. He wondered if he had the actual strength to follow through with the plan. He left everyone behind to escape the embarrassment he felt as Mincemeat.

He circled the block where Ron used to live hoping to find him. One lap turned to five leaving Peter unsure whether he used the track as an excuse. A couple of times he saw movement inside of the house although he refused to knock on the door. He gave up for the day settling on finding a hotel for the night.

Peter considered one other problem of being in Colfield. The phone taunted him from its place on the bedside table. A deep breath and he lifted the receiver dialing the number. Two rings played before the other end connected.

“Hi Mom, it’s Peter. Yeah, I’m in town on business. I was wondering if I come by tomorrow? I can be there as soon as I finish up. Oh, it’s a special assignment I received on Friday. I’ll see you tomorrow. And Mom, I love you.” He disconnected the call.

The duffle bag lay hidden in a drawer zipped closed. His clothes were laid in a disorganized manner in an effort to disguise the fact that the bag contained a large amount of money. Peter left the DO NOT DISTURB sign hanging on the door on his way out of the hotel with the briefcase and notebook.

Knock. Knock. Knock.

Peter stood on Ron Blythe’s doorstep taking a deep breath. This was the moment of truth. He heard someone approaching from further in the house. It was too late to run as he had been for close to a decade. Ron opened up.

“Can I help you?” Ron asked.

“It might be strange but I was sent here to see you.”

Ron cocked his head to one side. “Do I know you?”

“My name is Peter Mince. We used to go to high school together.”

The name caught him by surprise. “Pete? Is it really you?”

“For the longest time, I refused to return to Colfield. I was afraid of running into you and facing you. After four years of the hell you put me through, I couldn’t even find the courage to come to see my family. But now I’m back here.”

“Listen, Pete, I’m sorry for the stuff I did to you. My dad took off right after my mom became sick. I didn’t know how to handle it. You became the target of my pain and anger. I know it doesn’t even come close to making up for what I did.”

“I was told to give you this, Ron.” Pete handed him the briefcase. He wanted to get far away from this doorstep.

“What is it?”

“Open it when I leave, Ron. I just need you to sign your name in this notebook. Don’t ask why it was just part of the instructions.”

“Yeah sure,” Ron said signing the same page as the instructions. He gave it back and hesitated with the door. “Pete, it was good to see you.”

“Yeah, you too, Ron,” Pete waved goodbye and walked away toward the bus stop at Fifth and Elm.

The five-minute walk allowed him to clear his head not able to wrap it around what passed between him and Ron. Pete found the bus stop sitting down on the bench. He clutched the black booklet in his hand not noticing the man in the suit settle beside him.

“I believe that belongs to me, Mr. Mince,” the lawyer said.

“Why was it given to me? Why was I told to give that money to Ron Blythe?” Pete stared at his feet.

“It was part of the inheritance left to him by his mother. He’ll receive the remainder now that you gave him that amount. It was at her request. She wanted him to have the opportunity to reconcile with you. He told her that what he did to you was the biggest regret of his life. She felt that you both needed the chance knowing that you had not even returned to see your family.” The lawyer slid the notebook from Peter Mince’s fingers. “I hope you come home more often, Mr. Mince.”

Pete was left sitting alone on the bench until he got on the bus that rode to the stop closest to his mother’s house. Finally, he understood why all the pieces were placed before him leading him home.

2021

When do we give up on the year that 2020 began drinking? I guess an obvious choice is to drink along with it. I could follow Hemingway’s advice. Write drunk, edit sober. (I’ll save it for another project.)

As I finally grow closer to the end of my current project, I can’t help but start reflecting on which project should gain my focus. Perhaps I’ll begin my typical rotation of multiple projects at one time, at least for the time being.

Demons and killers and monsters, oh my! So many choices. I’m beginning to doubt that I’ll ever catch up with my growing list of ideas. Perhaps I mix up my plan of release depending on the story since not every story needs to be a novel. Right?

With less twelve thousand words left to finish this current and writing a thousand words a night, I hope my next update does offer some light into what I’m working on next. A wonderful and safe year to you all!

Raymond Newsome

October

So I love October and Halloween and everything spooky and creepy. For some that season ends with November first, however, in my head and life it never does. I’ve studied the supernatural, the occult, serial killers, and any horrifying instance available. It’s been a fascination since I was a kid. Naturally, I would want to write about these things.

Write what you know. Write what you would want to read.

“If I killed them, you know, they couldn’t reject me as a man. It was more or less making a doll out of a human being . . . and carrying out my fantasies with a doll, a living human doll.” – Edmund Kemper

“We serial killers are your sons, we are your husbands, we are everywhere. And there will be more of your children dead tomorrow” – Ted Bundy

Since the governments are in the pockets of businesses, who’s going to control this most powerful institution? Business is more powerful than politics, and it’s more powerful than religion. So it’s going to have to be the vigilante consumer. – Anita Roddick

A lot of these types of films – the vigilante or revenge drama – were so popular in the ’70s because there was a feeling in the culture of loss of control. – James Wan

Popular culture no longer craves archangels and new dawns. Pop culture traffics in vampires and deads of night. – James Wolcott

Have a wonderful and safe haunting season!

Raymond

The Fall of 2020

Oh tis the year of Covid and riots and pure chaos. I’ve witnessed rise of so many emotions that I have trouble processing everything as an individual. There is so much heartache, anger, and pain I can only hope the light at the end of the tunnel is not a train.

As a healthcare worker, I became essential to the area where I live. I’m thankful for being able to continue working, but there’s a lot pressure placed on your shoulders to keep those around you healthy and safe.

It became a struggle to write. My anxiety reached an all-time high. I thought what sanity I have was slipping through my fingers. But I’m recovering, the world is trying to recover. Well, most of the world.

In light of the craziness of 2020, I created a new beginning for myself as author and with my books. I will update everything soon. Thanks everyone!

Love and light,

Raymond

Memorial Day

As  everyone hopes to loved ones and sharing stories of those we miss, my personal wish is that everyone stays safe while everything reopens during the pandemic. I’ve been quiet for several months trying to write, support family, and work my day job (healthcare). It’s not been easy.

My stress and depression have reached new levels. I had to reach out for help, but I’m getting there. I’m easing the push to finish my current projects on any certain schedule right now. It’s a day-to-day process.

On the positive side, audiobooks for my current releases are in the works. I released new versions of I am Brian, Rise of the Fallen, and The Adventures of Pipsqueak and Bob. They’re available through expanded distribution, including Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, etc. New paperbacks are coming for those three as well!

You’re all beautiful!

Love and light,

Raymond

Children’s Books and Other Adventures

It has been a busy and stressful time in the last few months. I feel like I’m trapped in a constant spiral of projects slowly tightening around my neck. Despite the stress of life, I will be publishing my next children’s book, The Adventures of Pipsqueak and Bob: Return to the Dark Forest, by the end of March.

The children face their biggest adventure in a battle for the Dark Forest with their new friend, Silver, and the challenge of growing up.

In other news, I’ve been reading more. Since the beginning of the year, I finished Doctor Sleep by Stephen King and American Gods and Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman. I’m currently reading my third book by John Douglas. This one is titled, Journey into Darkness. It’s an informative read for anyone interested in True Crime.

I continue working on other writing projects and will try to update more! You are all beautiful!

Love and Light,

Raymond

Rise of the Fallen: The Complete Saga

To follow up the release of Harbor of Lost Souls, I present to you, Rise of the Fallen: The Complete Saga. I created this edition for readers who prefer box sets and the opportunity to read an entire series in succession.

Thank you all so much for the support I’ve received. Next year is shaping up to be an exciting time! I’m planning public appearances that I cannot wait to share when they’re solidified! I hope you enjoy the new novel! Thank you!

Raymond