Effing Feline chortles #wewriwa

Photos: DepositPhotos

I, Effing Feline, have found the perfect painting of Twiggles the Dog, my sometimes friend and always nemesis.

For comparison purposes, at right is a photo of the dumb dog admiring one of the grandchildren. She looks sweet, right? Well, the camera lies! Below is the truth — a cat’s eye view of Twiggles the Dog!

Today’s snippet from Ed’s upcoming sci fi romance, Constellation XXI, picks up from where last week’s left off. Sienna Dukelsky is a young starship pilot on her first solo flight on a tugship. Tugships, like tugboats, are a key part of traffic control around Farflung Space Station; they guide incoming spaceships to safe berths without  crashing into the station or other spacecraft.

But things get complicated when an incoming ship is piloted by none other than her first, best lover, Crispin Hunt — a lover she had hurt and betrayed. Here is the final line from last week: Now he was here, on this very ship, trailing rainbow memories that seduced her senses and shrouded her brain as powerfully as the shielding on the ship’s reactors.

It was no surprise, then, that Sienna’s first coherent thought, post-ship-death, was that Crispin had turned off the lights on the bridge to sneak up and throw his arms around her like old times and then —

No. The past was ashes. Love was just a cruel ghost. She had murdered it.

Her second thought when the ship died, a nanosecond after the first, forced a black scowl that banished all color.

Sergeant Vallant. The marine must be hazing her again for no better reason than she was a rookie from a rich and famous family, though a humble twig of the family tree. But how dare Vallant mess with the ship! Turning off lights and artificial gravity was surely a court-martial offense.

Effing Feline here again. It sounds to me like Sergeant Vallant will be Sienna’s antagonist, just like Twiggles is mine. And speaking of Twiggles, that painting captures the essence of dogdom but with one thing wrong. The dog has a tail. Twiggles doesn’t. Who ever heard of a dog without a tail to wag? Ha ha ha!

Be sure to check out the other great writers in Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday.

Constellation XXI

Rediscovering love at the worst possible time

Although Sienna Dukelsky had been the most promising student pilot at Keening AstroSpace Academy, she inexplicably settles for a routine, unglamorous job guiding incoming spaceships to safe berths at Farflung Space Station. Rumors, never verified, blamed her surprising decision on a boyfriend who got expelled from Keening.

Crispin Hunt, fleeing enemy forces, is greeted by a tugship captained by Sienna, his former girlfriend. Love rekindles — until an old betrayal boils to the surface. Her ship loses power while aimed dead at the space station, forcing Sienna to confront the terrifying truth about Crispin and his cargo . . . and her routine job suddenly becomes the most important in the entire galaxy.

Edward Hoornaert’s romantic space opera, Constellation XXI, continues the saga of the Dukelsky family begun in The Guardian Angel of Farflung Station and Escapee.



  1. Author Jessica E. Subject · · Reply

    😂😂 That’s an interesting illustration of Twiggles.

    A hazing? I hope that’s all it is and not something much worse.

    1. The ship’s shutdown is much worse. After all, you know we have to torture our characters.

  2. Terrific writing, my friend

    1. Merci, mon ami !

  3. I love how you use language in this snippet. I particularly like the second paragraph.

    1. In my snarkier, darkier moments, I rather like the imagery of murdering Love.

  4. Excellent imagery and internal thoughts here. I might have nightmares about that painting, Effing. I’d like to know how Twiggles truly sees you.

    1. Knowing Twiggles, she probably sees Effing as a cute little kitten. She’s one of those dogs that seems to see the world through rose-coloured glasses.

  5. Diane Burton · · Reply

    That image of Twiggles No tail, huh? Too bad. I so love that you’re continuing the Dukelsky Family saga. Yes, the imagery in this snippet is fantastic. Murdering love? Perfect. You capture well all the thoughts that race through a person’s mind when something unexpected happens.

    1. Now that I’ve gotten the rights back to the first two Dukelsky books, I’m forging ahead with the series. I’m working on a fourth book right now.

  6. Interesting situation. Also interesting that her first thoughts go to who might have done this to set her up in some way, as if this might be a silly prank. Is there more to it than defunct lights and AG?

    1. The full scope of the problem reveals itself to her gradually, with more revelations right up to the very end.

  7. Your snippet makes me curious – what caused her to leave her love?

    1. That’s the kind of question I want readers to have, Aurora!

  8. Sounds like she’s expecting this disaster is manufactured by a friend, not a true foe. Is she going to be in for a nasty surprise?

    1. She’s in for a whole series of nasty surprises. How’d you guess, Jenna?

  9. This is great. I’m worrying equally about the past and the future, although I suspect the immediate future will be taking over all her attention pretty quick.

    1. Great? Blush . . .

  10. I wonder if the ship’s shutdown is really hazing, or something more serious? Poor Effing, having to look at that hell-hound all day!

    1. Maybe it’s shut down because it wants a border wall?

  11. Oooo those second line sentences are haunting, I love them!

    1. In that line, you get some hints about her ‘wound’ right up front.

  12. Nice hook. I like this series.

    Oh Effing, I fear that perhaps this falls under the saying, “We don’t see things as we are, we see them as we are.” 🙂

    1. Effing definitely sees things the way he wants to see them.

  13. Love the imagery! I especially love these lines! “The past was ashes. Love was just a cruel ghost. She had murdered it.”

    Twiggles true self photo is hilarious! I have a dog who appears sweet and mild but used to have ‘Cujo’ tendencies. lol He’s fourteen now and has mellowed in his old age.

    1. The thing is, Twiggles was born meek and mellow.

  14. nancygideon · · Reply

    “Humble twig!” What a great image that creates, Ed. Almost as good as the one of Twiggles!

    1. Yeah, Humble twiggles.

  15. Great snippet. Tweeted.

  16. Elaine Cantrell · · Reply

    A practical joke or something more? Nice snippet.

    1. That question is a pretty good reason to keep reading, don’t you think?

  17. You have a talent for choosing just the right snippets to hook the imagination.

    I am wondering how Sienna is related to Duke.

    1. They’re cousins. As Duke says later in the book, they’re “second or third cousins, depending on which aunt you believe.” Sienna is mentioned briefly in the previous book, Escapee.

  18. I think she’s going to wish it was just some hazing. Great mix of tension in this snippet!

    1. You hit the head on the nail. Err, the other way around!

  19. Interesting snippet … i have to go back and catch up on details 🙂

    1. Considering that this snippet starts ten sentences into the book, you won’t have far to go back!

  20. So much to ponder in this snippet, including whether she’s right about Vallant or something much more dire has happened. Great excerpt, will definitely keep readers reading LOL. Wow, Twiggles is pretty scary in that drawing!!!

    1. As long as there isn’t too much to ponder . . . but then if there was, you’d tell me, right? You’ve made suggestions before that were wise, and I’ve followed them.

  21. Oh my goodness Effing that is a Devil Dog. Sorry trying hard not to laugh. Here I thought labs were sweet. Ed best of luck on this new book!

    1. Thanks for the best wishes, Lisa. Actually, Twiggles is far from a devil dog, and I’ve had a stern talk with Effing about the way he’s portraying her!

  22. When does she stop thinking about a person doing something and think about actually going to see what’s wrong?

    1. Thoughts happen quick than words on the page, but as it happens, Sienna wonders pretty much the same thing. How much time had she wasted because she was in shock?

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