Effing Feline Does It Tail-First

Space cat-backwards

I, Fart-Fueled Flying Feline (Effing for short), have a confession to make. I’m doing everything backward today…or as we cats say, tail-first.

Today’s eight sentences from Edward Hoornaert’s new science fiction romance, Alien Contact for Idiots, are from the beginning of the book, even though previous excerpts have been from the middle. Moving backward, see?

The sentences describe the chaotic scene after our heroine, Seattle biologist Ell Harmon, has been chosen to investigate the middle-of-the-night arrival of a new, 280-mile long island off the coast of Washington. The government sends a helicopter to pick her up at a beach near her apartment.


Oh no, Mr Valentine caught me! He doesn’t like me presenting his work backwards and has threatened to give all my cat food to Garfield…who’s already rich, famous, and FAT. Personally I thought I had a cute idea, and my sense of humor is infinitely better than Mr. V’s.  Here’s the excerpt the boring way:

This beach had been used in her favorite romantic comedy, Sleepless in Seattle—the scene where Meg Ryan watches Tom Hanks play with his son, but flees before introducing herself. Now, though, it resembled something out of a horror flick.

Across Elliot Bay, downtown’s lights were shrouded in fog and menace. Onlookers milled around Alki Avenue like a herd of hapless extras destined to become victims. On the sand, a female sergeant with rumpled hair and a nasty vocabulary bellowed into a bullhorn, directing a motley crew of firefighters, police, and assorted military as they positioned flares to make a huge circle of light in the sand. What with the shouting, the flickering shadows, and the flares’ acrid smoke, the circle resembled a satanic ritual—and its summoning worked.  The devil himself, wearing the skin of a Coast Guard helicopter, snarled demonically as he descended toward the circle of flares.

Alien Contact for Idiots is available on Amazon. Be sure to visit the other writers who’ve posted snippets for eight sentence Sunday, too!



  1. Wow Ed! I really enjoyed the imagery- especially the phrase “with rumpled hair and a nasty vocabulary”. The chaos comes across brilliantly. Excellent excerpt.

    1. Thanks very much, Kim. It was time to show something other than humorous passages!

      1. I look forward to reading lots more like this.

  2. Wow, what fantastic imagery! The Coast Guard helicopter at the center of the satanic ritual. I could see it. And tell that effing cat to behave himself. Sheesh. 🙂

    1. If you know how to make a cat behave, you’re a better person than I am, Christina!

      1. I would also quickly become a gazillionaire! Alas, I have not yet cracked the code. 😺

  3. It’s become edgy with this segment. Good to change it up a bit. Keeps us on our toes.

    1. I was aiming for the feel I sometimes get in the middle of the night when I’m overtired and the world seems surreal.

  4. Wow, that’s quite a scene and very well described. I could visualize the whole thing. I liked the use of an existing, real place to start and then build your action on that. Excellent excerpt!

    1. This scene is a good example of using media for research. Although I lived in Vancouver when young, I don’t know Seattle at all. I rented Sleepless in Seattle and paused the beach scene at a split second that street signs appeared in the background. Once I knew where the scene occurred I Googled Alki Point Beach and got plenty of background material for Ell’s neighborhood…even though I’ve never been there. I couldn’t have done this 20 years ago!

  5. Bring it on, Ed. Wonderful writing. Egad, the man is really an author, like super WOW!

  6. Movie extras do have terrible luck, don’t they? Hopefully these bystanders won’t end up dead or worse.

    1. Yep–especially extras in horror movies, which is how Ell views the transformation of her peaceful neighborhood beach.

  7. I’m so glad the effing cat posted it the boring way too. 😉

    I’m currently reading this book. 🙂 I recall this scene. Nicely done, Ed. 🙂

    1. Thanks very much for the kind words, Teresa!

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