Wednesday, October 20, 2021

WEP Challenge for Halloween Scream

 Time for our favorite Halloween bloghop with the writers at Write, Edit, Publish. A big thank you to Denise Covey for starting this group and to those who act as hosts. Nila, Laura, Jemi, Renee and Olga. Applauding. 

To read what others have written go here.


Tagline: While mourning the loss of her beautiful neighborhood, Becca discovers something terrifying. 

                                                                    Mud Spiders        

Becca collected her gardening tools in the garage and opened the automatic door to the front of her home. She stopped in the driveway to gaze across the street. The beautiful neighborhood that she and Charlie had moved into five years ago was gone. They’d chosen this small development because each house was well cared for and had beautiful landscaping. Now, not a single neighbor’s house remained except a few several blocks away.

First came the fires a little over a year ago, replacing the scent of fragrant blooms with billowing hot smoke that threatened to suffocate her. Everyone had been evacuated, and the news played twenty-four hours in the shelter where they’d stayed so they could keep an eye on the fire.

Once the fire was out, they returned home. Every home in the neighborhood was spared, but the high California hills behind her neighbor’s houses were burned barren. Heartbroken, she’d reminisced about peering through her binoculars at the top of those lush hills and viewing all the wildlife, now gone.

Then, last spring, the rains came. A record downpour lasting several days and ended when a mudslide crashed down on those homes across the street from hers. All in the middle of the night. She and Charlie woke to sirens and hurried to their large double-pane front window. The mud had almost crossed the street to their own front lawn. Not one of her neighbors had survived. She’d helped the rescuers as much as possible, but they refused to let her dig in the mud, so she opted to feed them breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And like the shelter, she served donuts, but hers were homemade. She loved cooking, and her home carried the scent of her many creations. Charlie bought beer to go with the dinners at the end of the day. And by the time she’d done all those dishes and was relaxing with her feet up, that beer was a welcome thirst quencher.

Now, as she gazed across at the once beautiful homes and gardens of her neighbors, she saw only devastation. Mounds of mud had buried the homes. The rescuers had dug it out, leaving behind part of the house, sticking up in broken boards, plywood, shingles, and glass. The smell was of earth and a kind of mold, if you could believe it. Becca had never smelled anything like it before. Rancid and full of decay. Because of it, she didn’t open her windows, even when evening brought a cool breeze to cleanse the world of the summer heat.

She knelt, rolled up the pink sleeves of her blouse, and began to weed. There were always weeds. It was a constant struggle, but since she loved gardening, she didn’t mind. The bees were busy moving from her purple phlox to the daisies and coneflowers. Each flower reaching toward the sun, displaying a delicate dance when the breeze rustled their petals, releasing their scent and surrounding Becca with joy.

She struggled with the roots of a stubborn weed when she heard a strange kind of sucking noise followed by a swish plop. She sat back on her heels and stared at her reflection in the window. Suck, swish, plop again. The air brought the toxic muddy scent to her. Becca turned. Coming across the street toward her were creatures, unlike anything she’d ever seen before. Their arms and legs were double-jointed and pushed out like spiders. Their round heads wobbled back and forth, and their yellow eyes stared at her. Globs of mud dripped from their bodies resulting in the plopping noise when it hit the pavement.

She dropped the gardening tool and stood, turning to fully face them. One, two, three, she counted. Like giant spiders, they advanced. Their movements were slow. Four, five, six…eleven. She stopped counting and backed up toward the open garage door. All the while, she heard the swish and plop and then the sucking noise as they lifted their feet from the pavement. As she stared, one of them stood like a human, and its front legs became arms with long fingers and no hand. It dripped mud from its long digits. They all dripped mud leaving behind blotches of sludge where they’d been. The goo oozed with popping bubbles, and then she saw the patches of mud spread out to rise up as another monster.

Her heart made a staccato rhythm that hurt her chest. The air was filled with choking decay. Finally, she turned and fled to the garage door that led inside the house. A roar was added to the clamor of their movement, and she turned, pressing the garage door’s button to lower it. When she did, they were all stood, their mouths open to issue yet another howl.

Becca was a practical person. She’d never screamed in her life. But she screamed now as the mud spiders launched themselves and landed on her body. Her scream was hushed when one of them slid its head into her open mouth.

The End


Word count 840

Thanks for coming by. Let me know what you think.

N. R. Williams


Please leave a comment and tell me what you think.

Now Available:

The Beginning of a Legend, A Chronicles of Gil-Lael Novella

E-book is FREE everywhere.

Amazon US Link: Here

The Treasures of Carmelidrium, Book 1 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael 

Amazon US Link: Here

The Rise of Lord Sinon, Book 2 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael

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Coming in November 2021: The Emperor of the Moon and Stars, Book 3 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael.

I'm having a little trouble getting links on my website but they will soon be available. Paper copies are available for The Treasures of Carmelidrium at $19.99 and will be available soon for my other books. 

Visit my website and sign up for my newsletter to receive a Free short story title Loren's Choice. You'll receive news once a month. Website link: Here

And I was interviewed by RobbAuthor. To read it go here:

Happy Halloween 

Friday, October 8, 2021

Coming October 20th Scream A Halloween bloghop

 Be sure to check in on October 20 for a Halloween blog hop. The challenge is called, Scream.

In other news, I've been interviewed by RobbAuthor. To see my answers to a bunch of questions go here

And, now available everywhere, The Beginning of a Legend. A Chronicles of Gil-Lael Novella. The link is for Amazon but the e-book is free everywhere. So pick up your copy. Amazon link. 

The Rise of Lord Sinon, Book 2 in the Chronicles of Gil-Lael Available everywhere. Here's the Amazon link. 

And just for fun, here's a map!

Please visit my website and sign up for my newsletter. I promise not to be annoying and when you do, you'll receive a free short story titled: Loren's Choice. Here's the link to my website. LINK

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

WEP, Freedom of Speech

 Time for the WEP bloghop flash fiction stories, pictures, poems, or thoughts in regard to the subject: This month it is Freedom of Speech. I want to thank the fine ladies of Write, Edit, Publish for this opportunity, Denise, Nila, Laura, Jemi, Renee and Olga. If you'd like to post something too, it's not too late.

Freedom of Speech:

 Mary took a breath and watched as the king’s soldiers took her father from their estate. The captain thrust a parchment at her mother. Turned and left to be replaced by Lord Beliveau.

“Pack what you can carry, Madam. This estate and all in it now belongs to me. You and your daughter must leave at once.”

“Why? What has happened?”

“Your husband has betrayed our king, speaking against him in the public arena.”

Belivera followed them. “Only what you can carry.”

“But I brought this from home,” her mother said, holding up the china vase.

“You have no possessions. You’re lucky I’m letting you keep your clothes.”

Much later, Mary held her mother as she wept. No one would help them, and they found themselves in an old ally between buildings, freezing. Snow began to fall.

Word count 138

 The subject of this post, Freedom of Speech is something that I can’t do in a flash fiction story. So this short piece would need to turn into a short story or novella for me to do it justice. Instead, I hope as you read this it will remind you that not too long ago, none of us had freedom of speech.


Freedom of speech[2] (FoS or FOS) is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation, censorship, or legal sanction. Freedom of expression (FoE or FOE) is generally used synonymously but, in legal sense, includes any activity of seeking, receiving, and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used.

 It’s also important to note that threatening someone is not freedom of speech.


Freedom of speech and expression is not absolute, and common limitations or boundaries to freedom of speech relate to libelslanderobscenitypornographyseditionincitementfighting wordsclassified informationcopyright violationtrade secretsfood labelingnon-disclosure agreements, the right to privacydignity, the right to be forgottenpublic security, and perjury. Justifications for such include the harm principle, proposed by John Stuart Mill in On Liberty, which suggests that "the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others."[4] Idea of the "offense principle" is also used in the justification of speech limitations, describing the restriction on forms of expression deemed offensive to society, considering factors such as extent, duration, motives of the speaker, and ease with which it could be avoided.[4]

 As an American, I haven’t thought twice about freedom of speech in all my years until the last 5. Now I know, that I can lose my freedoms if the wrong person comes to power. You can find me at the voting booth.

To read what others have written or posted go here.

In other news, I'm excited to announce that my first book, The Treasures of Carmelidrium is now available in paperback. There are two ways to order. 

One, go to your local bookstore and request they order copies from IngramSparks. The Treasures of Carmelidrium, by N. R. Williams

Two, for USA customers only because shipping is outrageous, send me an email and I'll send my PayPal information: Cost is $19.99 plus $5.00 shipping. You'll get a signed copy. 

My email address is:

Be sure to tell me in the subject line that you want to order your very own signed copy of Treasures. I get a lot of spam and I wouldn't want to delete your request.

 Coming in September 2021

The Beginning of a Legend, a novella in the Chronicles of Gil-Lael.


The Rise of Lord Sinon, Book 2 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael.

Thanks you for reading. Please leave a comment.