I, Effing Feline, am a cat, and like all cats I’m proud of my reputation for audacity and independent thinking. Ever tried to take a cat for a walk, without a leash? Hah to that! We cats do our own thing — which makes me admire today’s snippet.
Last week we left fourteen-year-old Billy Seaweed atop this cliff, trying to bottle up the mania energy churning inside him. This week he’s still there. We learn what he plans to do with all that energy.
Be forewarned Billy has a mouth that makes even a cat blush. Ed tells me he tried to tone it down, but whenever Billy was in a manic phase he said no way — the only time a character has ever come alive enough to refuse what Ed wanted. I admire that so much.
Anyway, please feel free to skip this one. I promise I won’t cough a fur ball in your slippers.
Billy stiffened his arms and legs like a mythical creature carved on a cedar pole. If he didn’t concentrate he couldn’t fly, and if he couldn’t fly, he might die. Like a guy cooked in a pie, he’d die in the sky.
Shit, this wasn’t working. And he didn’t want to die like a fucking spy in a pigsty. The tide was low, which meant the rocks were barely under the surface. Water pounded the base of the cliff, thrusting watery fingers toward him, beckoning him to its chilly embrace if he didn’t jump far enough — so concentrate, motherfucker!
Tsonkwa,” Billy shouted, hoping sheer volume would give him the energy of the creatures his ancestors had carved on totem poles. “Sisiutl . . . Komokwa!”
But the supply boat coming early meant another rich, soon-to-be-dead, crazy white guy who’d paid to get himself smuggled through the quarantine, hoping to become a fucking genius.
Effing Feline here again. For those upset by Billy’s language, I’ll alert you to a spoiler: sanitizing his language is one of the transformations the boy will undergo by the end of the book. Thus perishes another individualist.
Have you ever written a character who refused to behave? Good for you!
The Saint of Quarantine Island
Maybe you’ve read about viruses that turn people into zombies. But how about a virus that turns people into madmen, some of whom become creative geniuses?
Spurred by her husband’s infidelity, a suburban housewife smuggles herself into a wilderness quarantine to catch the new disease. She’s hoping to redeem her empty life by writing a great book . . . and maybe, just maybe, find love with the man called the Saint of Gilford Island. She’d once spent a memorable, though oddly chaste, night with him. Surely he’ll help her.
But a lifetime’s exile on an island of madmen — pirates, a suicidal Indian boy, an arrogant Cambridge scientist, a licentious cult leader, all of them periodically insane then sane and back again — is crueler than any suburban daydream. To survive, she’ll need to adapt.
Adapt how, though? Even if she wins the saint’s love, nothing in her life — or anyone’s life, ever – could possibly prepare her for the unpredictable society these creative madmen have built.
The Saint of Quarantine Island escapes from its pre-sale quarantine on July 1, 2020. Until then, it’s available at a special reduced price. Don’t wait — the price will be rising as surely as Billy Seaweed’s mania.