Effing Feline apologizes

Photos: DepositPhotos

Fart-Fueled Flying Feline, Effing for short, writes the Weekend Writing Warrior / Sunday Snippet posts on Mr. V’s behalf. Click the pic for info.

I, Effing Feline, must apologize. Not that I’m at fault, of course.  Mr. V is. Several weeks ago, Ed Hoornaert (i.e., Mr V) had me write “Since Sunday’s a travel day, Mr. V will be late getting to your posts. But he’ll get there!

Unfortunately, that was a lie. Instead, after taking two days, not one, to get home from Amsterdam, he went into hospital for a week, and since he got home he hasn’t written a single word or visited a single weekend warrior.  He told me to promise he’d get around to you so this week, but I don’t know if you can trust him.  He’s only human, after all.

Another excerpt today from Newborn, Mr V’s newest science fiction romance, Newborn. The narrator is a clone designed to kill her alien nation’s number one fugitive, then kill herself. When she accidentally outlives her expected lifespan, the gaps in her mind grow more and more puzzling.

Darby wrapped his hand around my elbow and helped me sit. I liked his touch. Not everyone’s hands sent the same feelings through me: Hen’s touch made me wary, Mary’s did nothing, but Darby’s…

You don’t know ‘ho, ho, ho,’ do you?” he said. “Santa Claus? Christmas? Or are you Jewish, like the good doctor?”

My mind spewed a wealth of details about Judaism and Christmas, supplying details but nothing of how people felt about, say, Christmas. Yet Darby looked at me expectantly, watching for my emotional response.

I tried smiling; it seemed to satisfy him, and because of that, my smile became genuine.

Effing Feline here again.  Be sure to visit the other Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday posts.


Effing Feline divider


She was born to kill

newborn-final-2Jo Beaverpaw is born fully grown, well-armed, and impatient to tackle her Destiny … which is to kill her alien nation’s most wanted fugitive. Her life is pre-programmed and straightforward – until she meets the sexy bodyguard of her intended target.

Newborn is the 3rd exciting book in Edward Hoornaert’s near-future romance series, Alien Contact for Idiots. If you The Terminator would’ve been better starring a bad-assed (yet petite) female, don’t miss Newborn.



  1. Author Jessica E. Subject · · Reply

    Oh, Ed, I hope you are okay now, doing better.

    I love this excerpt, how the clone is learning about simple things, like the holidays, and more complex, unexplainable things like feelings. Great snippet!

    1. Emotional ignorance is a big part of Jo’s makeup. She has to learn all the hard stuff, like emotions, in order to become fully human.

  2. I’m reading this now. Wonderful story. Excellent writing, as usual.

    I hope you’re okay! A week in the hospital is a long time. Sounds serious.

    I’d like to say Effing took care of things while you were on vacation and in the hospital, but I don’t think he did.

    1. Thanks so much, Cara. I hope you enjoy all of Newborn.

      After three weeks, I think I can finally see the light of wellness at the end of the tunnel. Yay!

  3. Hope that your recovery continues.

    1. I’m getting better, finally.

  4. Diane Burton · · Reply

    Sure hope you’re feeling better, Ed. Great snippet. I like how she’s absorbing info and figuring out how to respond.

    1. She’s learning how to fake things, which is a big part of becoming human.

  5. Hope you’re feeling better, Ed. Take it easy, please! Effing will take care of you–well, sort of, if I know anything about felines.

    Another great snippet from this story. I wondered if she’d know what Christmas was, and you’re exactly right, you can “know” about Christmas without knowing what it is. She’s got a lot to learn!

    1. So much of the knowledge that comes from her what she calls her ‘mind’ (but which turns out to be merely a computer implant) is strictly intellectual, with no emotional underpinning.

  6. Hope you’re doing better, Ed. After all, who’ll clean Effing’s litter box? Really enjoyed the snippet, as usual.

    1. Effing’s litter box …. I hadn’t thought about that. What, exactly, would a virtual cat’s litter consist of? Something similar to the online comments about a political news story, I suspect!

  7. Such a fascinating story and all the ramifications of her being a clone are well handled. sorry to hear you were under the weather, hope all is getting better fast! Take care of you…

    1. The theme of this tale is a very familiar one in science fiction: what it means to be human, which is what this clone has to learn.

  8. angelicadawson · · Reply

    Unusual characters, as expected in SciFi. Great scene.

    1. Fairly often manufactured people such as clones or cyborgs are treated merely as supermen. I wanted to get into the psychology of what such an experience might be like, which results in unusual characters.

  9. Ed, I hope you are better now!
    Poor Newborn is learning – her smile becomes genuine.

    1. Yes, Jo has it within her to become fully human, though it’ll be long slog to get there.

  10. You are as Newborn as your story, dear Ed. I begged you not to fall down and you didn’t listen. Best thoughts to my friend.
    After my fall, I was told I’d never walk or think clearly again. Now I can walk and the fog has cleared. Yippee!

    1. I kind of wish I hadn’t Googled septicemia. While I’m well on the road to recovery, it’s darned scary to read that 31% of sufferers die and recovery can take 18 months. Yuck!

  11. Sorry to hear you were so ill! Happy you’re on the mend. Do take care!
    Love her reaction in this snippet, trying to research the correct response to holidays and in the end, being smart enough to just smile. A well-timed curve of the lips can ease a wealth of social faux paus.

    1. Although subtle, this incident reveals Jo’s growth in dealing with social demands, in just the ways you mentioned.

  12. Andrea R Huelsenbeck · · Reply

    Jo is such an interesting character. It’s fun to watch her grow.
    I’m glad you’re starting to feel better.

    1. I’m glad you find her interesting, because although there’s plenty of action later when she tackles defeating her enemy, the story revolves very much around her growth as a character.

  13. Darby is very caring to help like that. Great snippet

    1. He’s a nice guy. That’s my favorite kind of hero.

  14. Feel better!

    You know what they say, ‘fake it ’til you make it!’ It makes sense an assassin would have facts and not emotions–you only need one to kill, after all.

    1. I haven’t heard that saying, “‘fake it ’til you make it”. I like it!

  15. I’m intrigued about the premise of this book. Really intrigued. I’d like to see more worldbuild!

    1. While Jo is recovering from injuries, the focus is on her psychology; after she’s confronted with the woman she’s supposed to kill, the worldbuilding kicks in more strongy.

  16. historysleuth1 · · Reply

    Hope you feel better soon, Ed, and back to writing. Interesting character dynamics you have going on.
    History Sleuth’s Mysteries

    1. I’m giving myself permission to get better before pushing myself to write. Hopefully, though, it won’t take long.

  17. I love the way her mind works. 😀

    1. She deals with life as well as she can.

  18. Karen Michelle Nutt · · Reply

    I love how she’s noticing her feelings like how someone touching her and the differences between the two people who have done so. Well done.

    Hope you feel better soon.

    1. With the touching issue, I was trying to point out the newness issue — that she’s never before noticed different people’s touches felt different.

  19. I hope you get better soon, Ed. You seem to have had a rough time. You are the only one I’ve visited on Wewriwa so far, as I am hospital visiting my elderly father. Not nice places.
    I too am currently reading this book, and loving it so far. It is an intriguing story.

    1. You’re visiting your dad whom you wrote about recently? Neat story of your parents’ love!

  20. Hope you’re doing better, Ed! I love her mental associations, and how she navigates unfamiliar emotions.

    1. In this example, she navigates by faking it — an essential skill, you must agree, for any human being.

  21. elainecsc2013 · · Reply

    Enjoyed the excerpt. Glad you are feeling better.

    1. Thanks much, Elaine.

  22. Just realized I hadn’t seen anything from you in a while and was checking in to make sure you were okay! Glad to see you are!

  23. *okay now, that is. Geesh, hit enter too soon.

    1. Thanks for caring enough to check on me, Lilyn!

  24. So sorry to hear about your incapacitation, Ed. I missed you and Effing!

    Hope you feel better soon.

    1. I feel much better now, though full wellness is going to take quite a while — and I’m not used to that. At least one surgery looms. This episode makes me appreciate how healthy I’ve always been!

  25. Sorry you were sick, but glad you are getting better. Who knows what Effin has been up to in the meantime..eeck! Great snippet. I love how she is “learning” to have emotional responses that “become” real…

    1. Jo’s internal conflict is between her implanted compulsion to kill and the human part of her clone that wants to be a normal person.

  26. Hope you are getting better and better, Ed!

    I’m enjoying watching her (likely unwanted) humanity grow. 🙂

    1. Although her creators would hate the growth in her humanity, Jo is increasingly consumed by the need to figure out if she’s actually human.

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