Strange Coincidences

Strange Coincidences

Strange Coincidences

In life they say they’re no strange coincidences.

Even this mountain isn’t a strange coincidence if you look at it close enough.

When writing SEETHINGS I came across one of these strange coincidences, a most unusual story I couldn’t leave alone. A lady-friend told me of it. It was real, very real. I was there and saw it. It really happened. It was so extraordinary I wanted it included into my narrative. Unfortunately, one of my earliest readers didn’t believe the story to be true. She was strongly objectionable about the coincidence and told me it was ‘completely ridiculous’ and wanted me to rewrite my story so I could take it out.

It had to do with the above pictured mountain.

This mountain is part of a range of mountains known as the Great Dividing Range which is located in eastern part of Australia. The range crosses three states. This itself is not unusual. This mountain is not particularly high but due to the relatively flat landscape to the north of it, it can be seen from a great distance. It’s a feature-scene for many homeowners who live north and have any windows facing south. This is where the our coincidence begins it’s wildly bizarre journey.

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A friend of mine had broken up with her husband.

It wasn’t an amicable breakup.

The police were involved.

She scooped up the baby and left the home with just a few other things of necessity in her little car. When the dust settled and their finances did the same, she decided to build a brand new home. She found a house plot, a builder and an architect who listened to all her special requests. One of those requests was to build the home in such a way that it allowed the living room window to face this mountain. She didn’t know the name of it but it was to be a feature of her new-found freedom.

The plot was cleared and the house began construction. While that took place, a fight in the courts ensued. It was all over custody. HE wanted access to the baby and SHE didn’t want HIM to have any part of the baby’s life.

There was name calling.

There were threats.

The police were involved.

The home was finished. A single mother and her child moved into a fresh, untouched home. She was there for a year and then met a new man. She invited him in. She showed him her home and then revealed the feature window by pulling back its curtain. There it was, a mountain of the Great Divide in the distance.

‘Do you know the name of that mountain? I’ve never known what it is.”

He knew it.

He said it.

The name he spoke was the same name of the mother’s former husband.

The curtain was snapped shut in horror.

Now you know why my reader asked me to remove the piece. She didn’t believe it to be true because it sounded too far fetched to be so.

But it was… and still is.

-Michael Forman (Author of SEETHINGS)

 The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Order 

Michael Forman’s books on Goodreads ratings: 4 (avg rating 4.50)

Seethings

‘Forman’s writing style is artful, with the protagonist Mitchell’s warped thought processes masterfully exposed. The author has a powerful and vivid command of language and his word pictures are stark and disturbingly real.’  – Linda J Bettenay, author of ‘Secrets Mothers Keep’ and ‘Wishes For Starlight’

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Strange Coincidences was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR

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Cruise Sailing: The Cruising Life For Me!

Cruise Sailing VS Race Sailing

There are two types of sailor out on the water. One yearns for speed, the other chooses cruise sailing.

These opposites have only one thing in common: Their love for having the wind power their yachts. Everything else they do when making that happen is entirely contradictory, well, almost everything.

Racing yacht
Racing: The art of speed.

One lives by a race mantra: The Faster the Better.

Every part of this sailor’s sail and boat is there for a specific purpose, designed to make the most out of the wind and water. Reducing wetted areas and increasing sail area is what it’s all about. Even the rigging is strung in ways reduce speed-limiting windage. Unnecessary weight in the boat is removed. Only the ballast that’s needed to keep the boat upright is kept, down low. Humans act as moveable ballast. The goal is to feed the sail as much good, clean, undisturbed air and make the hull touch the least amount of water as possible.

 

cruise sailing picture
Cruising: The art of boat conservation

The other sailor has a boat of a different kind. He fits his relatively spacious boat out with fridges, solar panels, wind-guided autopilots and every other gadget to make his time on the water a comfortable one. His boat is heavier. The sails on it are smaller and thicker. There are all kinds of things attached to the mast and rigging. Sometimes the sail area is reduced even further to allow a boom to swing safely over the heads of crew in the cockpit. To a racing sailor, this is all energy wasting junk and it must frustrate him to see it. To a cruiser, it’s about enjoying the air and water and taking the time to experience them.

At the end of the day, one of these sailors drinks wine, the other, beer. One talks about the races he’s been in and the other talks about the places he’s sailed to. The two sit at a bar in different groups. You can easily tell them apart. Racers are the noisy ones. The cruisers sit quietly. Racers order steaks. Cruisers eat chicken or fish. Racers wear matching clothes and shoes. Cruisers wear anything that’s not in the wash. Shoes are optional. Shirts are not always needed either.

I began writing my first novel when I was cruise sailing the east coast of Australia. I lived on my thirty foot ‘Last Laugh’ and wrote a murder mystery / noir  / thriller novel on her specially modified chart table. I’d sit and write there for hours at a time, listening the wind howl through the yacht’s rigging above me while thinking up ways to send my characters packing. I’d sail, drop anchor, write and sail again. Ironically, there were no boats written into SEETHINGS. It was a land-based narrative that spent most of its time around Brisbane City. It was the second novel that crossed over and went into cruise sailing.

HEAR THINGS takes to the warm waters of Moreton Bay. My protagonist is into cruise sailing and takes a number of people out on his boat to show them what it’s all about. We meet people at the local marina and find out what life is like for the liveaboards and the cruisers. There’s a rescue in it. And then a body is discovered near Tangalooma, Moreton Island. How it got there and why it’s there is what the story is all about. Someone at the marina knows something but nobody is talking about it. It’s a close-knit community. Lips are shut tight. They look after their own down at the marina.

If you’re into cruise sailing or simply like reading stories about the sea, get yourself a copy today. Find out what cruise sailing is all about while following The Beast into the deep darkness.

-Michael Forman. Author/Photographer

Cruise Sailing: The Cruising Life For Me! was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR

Neo-Noir Fiction: Evil Has Gone Up A Notch!

Neo-Fiction: The New Black

neo-noir fiction.

‘That’s only my hand child. I mean you no harm.

Trust me. There is nothing to fear.

…but don’t tell anyone I was here!’

Neo-Noir Fiction is about to get one big shake up in the form of a new novel called SEETHINGS (by Australian Author Michael Forman.)

If you’re the kind of reader who is more inclined to venture past the ‘bump in the night’ kinds of stories to find find out what causes its noise, you’re in for a treat.

Neo-Noir fiction (SEETHINGS)

Movies that came from books in the Neo-Noir genre: Shutter Island; Gone, Baby, Gone and Mystic River.

Noir fiction differs from other crime genres. Rather than following a protagonist from the investigative side of the narrative, Noir-Neo allows a reader to ride shotgun and watch the destruction take place. Invariably, this allows them to see the raw motives driving the evil first-hand, without the political and bureaucratic distillation processes that happen afterwards.

Wikipedia’s definition of Noir Fiction (a popular genre in the ’50s):

Noir fiction (or roman noir) is a literary genre closely related to hardboiled genre[1] with a distinction that the protagonist is not a detective, but instead either a victim, a suspect, or a perpetrator. Other common characteristics include the self-destructive qualities of the protagonist.[2] A typical protagonist of the Noir fiction is dealing with the legal, political or other system that is no less corrupt than the perpetrator by whom the protagonist is either victimized and/or has to victimize others on a daily basis, leading to Lose-lose situation.

Neo-Noir narratives build on the previous ‘Noir’ by adding contemporary devices and elements to modernize them, drawing from other modern genres including: Fantasy, science fiction, and horror. It also touches on niche storytelling like magical realism, slipstream, transgressive, and the grotesque.

SEETHINGS looks closely at modern relationships and the newer conflicts evolving from feminism, sexuality and Church. It’s protagonist sees an emasculated society growing uncontrollably, starting in his own bedroom. The struggle between idealism and practicality reaches it’s zenith in an explosive ending you won’t see coming. (Reviews here)

-Michael Forman

Neo-Noir Fiction: Evil Has Gone Up A Notch! was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR

Paper Orgasms: My Literotica

Paper Orgasms: LiteroticaLiterotica? Are you sure you want to go down that path Michael? It’s psychological thrillers you’re writing, not Chick-Lit!

Why not include literotica in a story about sex and murder?

Sex is suspenseful, right? Good sex is extremely suspenseful. And they say sex starts in the brain and moves outwards. So why not take the suspense from one act of life and then tie it to another, like crime, so readers can be taken to places they’d never expect? Sex is a normal part of life and good erotica isn’t exclusive to books of tease. Sometimes sex and sexual attraction are there to take characters on a completely relatable journey in other types worlds, like the novels you find in the psychological thrillers genre – reflecting life’s adventures in the art of creative writing. (Or is it the other way around?)

Lori Beeton (a reader) said my literotica was very feminine in comparison to other male writers. (She’s also read a lot of Dean Koontz by the way.) She says I take my time to set the moment and don’t rush to get business done.

My Literotica

It’s true, I do hold back. That’s because once intercourse begins, it’s pretty much over. The only enticement left in the bag of writing tricks is to elevate sex to a new and higher level and to take some time getting it there. That’s okay but let’s face it, that first deep kiss, that first penetration of a c*ck into a warm p*ssy, is the highest plane of sex for many of us – well beyond the words of mere mortals. It’s such a sweet and magical leap… but the next few jumps aren’t so big. Bigger thrusts, kinkier positions and sweatier actions are much like those that came before, only bigger, kinkier and sweatier. First contact is what it’s all about baby! Savour that!0e01a2606633abef9a7f7c6ec14110e2

So I use the tease before sexual intercourse to draw the reader in and hook them in tight. I like sex too but I love everything about what comes before it, that includes the odours, the twitches in the flesh, the flash of knickers, the lure of a set of seductive eyes. I love the actions a women makes with her body when she lifts a T-shirt over her head. Hell, I could write a whole chapter on the removal of a bloody T-shirt!adSEETHINGSBut SEETHINGS is more than removing shirts and throwing in tantalizing literotica. There is a seriously twisted narrative that supports it, taking you on a wild ride of sex and murder. Just as you think the sex can’t get any hotter, a surprise arrives to change all you believe in love and intimacy.

Do read SEETHINGS this year. You won’t find a better psycho-thriller all year!

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Order 

Michael Forman’s books on Goodreads ratings: 4 (avg rating 4.50)

Seethings

‘Forman’s writing style is artful, with the protagonist Mitchell’s warped thought processes masterfully exposed. The author has a powerful and vivid command of language and his word pictures are stark and disturbingly real.’  – Linda J Bettenay, author of ‘Secrets Mothers Keep’ and ‘Wishes For Starlight’

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Paper Orgasms: My Literotica was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR

WordPress Blogging for Authors of Fiction

WordPress Blogging for authors of novels, novellas and other fictional material.

Wordpress Blogging for Authors

So you want to build a league of followers through your fictional writing but only see factual-driven content being promoted online?

It’s true, there are more bloggers writing attractive and interesting blogs to lure a wide range of readers using a  one-stop line title and picture.

Open-source software like WordPress is a popular way for authors to get their message onto the web in the form of a DIY blog. It’s free, easy and there’s little more to do except think up stuff to write about.

But much of the blogging content out there is truth-based. Their authors measure and weigh bits of this world to create a factual (sometimes questionable) blog post of content that, on the surface, looks slick and helpful to their readers. But what about fiction? Where are the snippits of fiction to read? How does a writer promote fiction in the blogging arena with so much other stuff going on to take potential readers away?

More about that later in this blog.

First, let’s talk about the new blog you want to set up. It may alter the way you approach your fiction’s marketing strategy.

WordPress Blogging via two ways.

WordPress blogging is created in one of two primary web-zones:

  1. WordPress.com
  2. Self Hosted Site

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WordPress.com is where WordPress starts. This site not only has the software but it hosts the blogs too. If you choose to go this way, WordPress.com manages everything, making sure the platform stays stable and free of spammers and hackers. When there are WP upgrades, it’s all done automatically. You don’t have to lift a finger. There is little left for a blogger to do except develop a regime of regular writing and posting it.

There is one other huge benefit the WordPress.com host offers bloggers and thats it’s Global Tagging System. When an author posts new content to WP and provides tags with it, it will go directly into the WordPress catalogue, appearing in the WP reader application. Currently over sixty million readers and bloggers tap into this tagging resource via mobile devices and computers. It’s faster and better at getting a blog to a large audience – no search engine needed!

The WordPress.com Cons

There are no pretty plugins for WordPress.com users. All the fancy-schmancy things you currently see (like pop-ups and call-to-action buttons) on site aren’t on offer here. You need a self-hosted site to have those features available.

The WordPress Reader converts all sites into the one theme. It’s pretty ordinary to look at but it’s highly functional.

Self-Hosted Site. (DIY)

Control-Icon

You don’t need to be a programmer to manage your own site and add plugins to your favourite WordPress Theme. You can also add counters, floating sharing buttons and change your fonts. (And much more)

Other plugins bloggers find useful:

  • Subscription forms
  • Custom Backgrounds / Colours
  • e-Commerce
  • Sliders
  • Photo Galleries
  • Tables
  • Shortcode converters
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Caching optimizers
  • Ad inserters
  • Spam / hacker blocks
slider-skin
Example of a slider designed for photos

Each plug in has its purpose and there are thousands of plug-ins on offer. Some work better with photographers and their image-based sites while others are designed for writers and text-based sites. It’s all free (the extra inclusions are sometimes monetized) to download and use.

The Self Hosted Cons

‘Managing’ does take a writer away from their writing to keep things ticking over nicely. All upgrades are managed by the owner of the site (or manager) and they must be prepared to make changes to the site if a plugin is no longer supported by its creator or runs on WP.

Self-hosting means you’ll lose access to the WP global tagging system but gain all those lovely plugins that create life and personality in any blog. The question most want to know is: Sixty million people seems a lot to lose in exchange for some plugins and a bit of work to install them.

Perhaps. There is a way around it.

I solved that problem easily with a cross-post plugin I installed on my home site that re-broadcasts all my content to another blog I have on WordPress.com! This WP.com site picks up the post and all the tags I assigned my original and then deposits them into a real WordPress.com post. I make sure there are plenty of backlinks too, back to my homesite so I don’t miss out on all the traffic that comes its way.


WordPress Blogging for Authors of Fiction

Two of the greatest traffic-building posts I sent into the ether looked like real stories. I dressed them up to be news items and timed their release. The greater one of the two was held back until a real-life event could be tied in with it. Readers were automatically drawn in and the numbers went through the roof. The current affair clouded the line between reality and fiction making it easy to hide my character’s real identity and purpose. People wanted to know who died that night and why. It looked authentic and was all very frightening at the time.

A big reveal at the end set readers straight.

Some writers choose to post excerpts of their writing instead. I have done this in the past too. I’ve found it works better on the WordPress.com blogs when the tagging is pointed directly at the genre that best decribes the excerpt. Dedicated readers of that genre tend to lurk, waiting for such tags to appear. It’s time-sensitive so the greatest amount of readers will happen in the seconds that follow a posting. Again, if you include backlinks to your main site (or the place readers can get hold of your fiction) then you’re certain to bring your readers much closer to your work. Too many authors forget to do this and lose this vital opportunity.

It’s all about timing and getting it right before letting a post go.

Michael Forman (Author of SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman

WordPress Blogging for Authors of Fiction was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR

Sexless Relationship? Hidden Asexuality Causes It.

Sexless relationship? Is your partner playing hard to get or are they asexual?

Sexless relationship

It could be that your sexless relationship is the result of asexuality. You or your partner may be asexually inclined and didn’t even know it!

Libido is a very personal thing. Some of us have more of it and others have less. Sexual attraction, frequency of sex and sexual preferences can make the trip to heaven a little rocky. The map to paradise is made even more adventurous when asexuality’s road is added to it and then runs parallel to our own.

About one percent of the population is said to be asexual. That’s about the same as all the other non-hetero types. It’s regularly overlooked because there’s an understanding in general society that a couple’s sexual problem lies with their intimacy. It’s rarely an individual’s sexual identity that’s at fault.

We’re geared up to believe that sex between adults should be wild and chandelier-swinging. It’s so hardwired that our default setting never considers sex’s opposite. A sexless relationship is wrong.

Sex is NOT for everyone. Asexuals don’t experience sexual attraction. They don’t need sex. It’s not an illness. It’s not a fad. It’s just their sexuality type.

[There is a lot more detailed information about asexuality on this specialist asexuality website ]

And it’s not about not having good sex with a partner. It’s not about not having a caring and sensitive one either. It’s not about the partner at all. These are all legitimate reasons. They just happen to be an asexual’s go-to reasons when nothing else makes much sense.

ss1Asexuality is simply a sexual type, like gay or lesbian. The asexual requires nil sex. A sexless relationship (or a near sexual relationship) occurs with anyone they are partnered to.

If you’re the partner to an asexual then this is great news. You’re not at fault. You’re not the cause the sexless relationship. You’ve simply encountered an asexual who tried very hard to live a normal life pattern by having a normal relationship. It caught up with them. Their opposite expected physical intimacy to be part of the deal and that’s not working out well for both of you.

Sometimes asexuality can take a while to be discovered. Sometimes it’s never found because pride, bone headedness or even religious tradition blocks the way. That fact is, we assume sex is for all of us – always!

If you have a sexless relationship and you’re having therapy for it, ask your specialist to consider the possibility of asexuality. If they dismiss your concerns too quickly, stick to your guns. Relationship counsellors are people too. They live in the same sexually-fuelled society you do. It’s likely that they’re trapped in a bubble of disbelief, preferring to look at other things that might cause the problem and nothing else.

Remember: It wasn’t too long ago we didn’t accept same-sex lifestyles. Tradition had us believing love was only meant to be between a man and a woman.

love

Asexuality is also real. We have to come to terms with it. Sexless relationships and asexuality are intrinsicly tied together. When one exists, the other is often nearby. The question you’re probably asking is: How would I know for sure?

The site link I provided earlier gives clues although there are no definitive one-word answers. Independently, no single clue has the power to diagnose asexuality. They are only pointer-statements and are meant to be combined. Readers must make cluster-outcomes with the advice given to draw their conclusion. The info is also revised often and updated as new understandings come to light. You have to make up your own mind based on them.

I wrote a novel on one sexless relationship, turning it into a psychological thriller with neo noir overtones. It follows a couple who haven’t yet broken through the standard heterosexual stereotype of marriage. Hanging onto tradition and old-world beliefs almost kills them. Enjoy reading it by ordering a copy today!

-Michael (Author of sexless story in SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman

Sexless Relationship? Hidden Asexuality Causes It. was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR

Review of psychological thriller SEETHINGS

Review of psychological thrillerShazam! I’m so surprised and delighted! A reader has provided the first review of my new novel SEETHINGS, posted at GOODREADS sometime yesterday! What a great gift to receive on the eve of Christmas!

If you love reading books about Sex, Lust, Murder, Psychopaths and Mystery you could read the Bible but that’s too long and boring. So instead read Seethings, the new book by author Michael Forman. It’s got the lot and more. You’ll be glued to the pages right to the very end. A very intense psychological story with twists and turns when you least expect them. A very good first novel. Well done Mister Forman.’

Download SEETHINGS from  http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B00P2Q4YGS  (Paperback located @ https://www.createspace.com/4337560)

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Review of psychological thriller SEETHINGS was originally published on MICHAEL FORMAN AUTHOR