Children's Stories
Novel Excerpts
Guts (short story excerpt)

Billy scuffed his shoe in the dirt.  “I wish Pa was gonna go with me tomorrow.”
“You gotta have guts,” Jeff said, opening the door to the barn.
Confused, five year old Billy reached inside his pockets.  “Will the guts fit in here?  Do you mean I gotta have the insides of a fish before I start kindergarten?”


Freaked Out in Fifth Grade  (MG novel excerpt)

How does an alien know my name?
A low hum fills my brain. My feet, legs, and arms vibrate. The hum gets louder. I wiggle my toes inside my shoes. My sneakers evaporate into a green glow. The vibrating creeps into my chest. My legs become a cloudy glow that spreads over the rest of my body. 
The green glow evaporates. I’m disappearing!  The vibrating fades away. Within seconds, all I see of myself is the end of my nose. But I’m thinking how horrible this is. How scared I am. I start to scream. 
I can think!  I still have my brain. There’s still time to figure things out.
I turn toward the door of the computer lab. My eyes orbit above my chair. My head is completely gone. 
All that’s left of me is a pair of floating eyes.
For an instant, I see Alberto’s head peer into the classroom before my eyes become green and disappear from the classroom as well as the planet.

Destiny (short story excerpt)

I thought I was lucky to have a boyfriend who wasn’t only brave but had connections.  I also thought we had made long term plans to run away after we graduated next year, but two weeks after our discussion, Michael gave me a note in Mrs. Chatmire’s English class:  “We leave Saturday.” 
For three years, my parents had already planned my future.  After graduating from high school, I would go to junior college here in Bakersfield and work part-time at Dad’s sister’s deli as a waitress. 
“Shawntall, with your dimples and blonde hair,” Dad said, “it won’t take you no time ‘til you get married.” 


Mom's Good Luck Bra  (MG novel excerpt)

The tabloid take on my birth into this world was entirely different from reality, but perhaps it was the first glimpse into my life and the fact that I would always be different.

Pregnant Man Births World’s Oldest Baby

Jack Rambrook, age 65, was pregnant over three years with 38 pound baby girl.  Wife and mother, Angela Rambrook, age 40, extremely jealous.  Hate-filled Angela Borax Rambrook scorned Jack’s pregnancy.  “He was unfaithful to me,”
she sobbed bitterly in the phone interview. Jack could not be reached for comment. Neighbors suspect he is in seclusion, recuperating from giving birth to three year old. Daughter born talking and walking.
Double Teamed: the long shot kid (MG novel excerpt)

Mrs. Graves calls herself a reading specialist. How many books has she read? Three million? Starting today, I have reading with her by myself – every day. She makes me practice reading a couple of baby books with spelling patterns. The little books are really stupid: “The sea was clean in my dream.” and “That part of the art is a tart.”
Somebody should sue the guy that wrote them.    
“Practice, practice, practice,” she says.
I feel dumb. At least she’s nice to me.    

From Zero to Hero in Six Weeks
You Gotta Read This
(‘Cause Somebody’s Gotta Know My Side of Things)

(MG novel excerpt)

“Remember me hitting you in the nose two years ago when we played football in your backyard?” I asked. Wade's nose bled all over the place, even on Sport, their snow white schnauzer.
Wade still had his imaginary personal audience of six hundred. He held his hand to his chest.  “Thank you, thank you. Yes, you are very lucky to see me in person. I am the Bleeder Man.” He raised his hand to stop the applause. “Hey, what about you?  Mom told me you got a column in the newspaper where you rag on Aunt Angela. Dude! I didn’t know you had it in you!”
I nodded like I was ever so humble at impressing him. I held my hand up to stop the applause from his fake audience. “Yes, thank you. Thank you.” Bleeder had no idea the stress it caused me at school. “But seriously, people. I don’t mind getting harassed at school on account of the woman who pretends to be my mother.”
“Hey, they only clap for me,” Bleeder said.