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Weekly Challenge freebie #10: True North

cover3Okay, number ten is here. I’m being a little goofy about this one too–it’s brand-new and all, but it’s not actually Wednesday yet where I am (which is Boise, ID).

But it’s Wednesday back in Maryland where I started this trip, and that’s good enough. Isn’t it?

I mean, I’m tired. And also I have a drinking tour of breweries in Bend, Oregon planned for tomorrow–with a friend who just moved there from Alaska yesterday. Funny how life works out.

Anyway, I typically put a description/teaser below the story title, in italics. But I’m doing something else there with italics. So should I tell you what’s up with this one? Probably.

It’s set in Alaska, ’cause I’m on my way and will arrive (Dog willin’ and the creek don’t rise) next week. So it’s on my mind. I hope that’s all you need to know, ’cause now I’m wondering whether some of you think the “Dog” thing means I’m using a dogsled to get there. If you are, please allow me to point out that it is not yet full winter, and dogsleds are much easier to manage with snow on the ground. Also, I said I’m in Boise. Remember?

Look at it this way: at least I’m not telling you all about how I came to be cleaning cat litter out of an elevator in Wyoming last night. That’s a story too, but it’s kind of icky.

True North

[REDACTED 3/31/2015]

I’m making many of my stories Amazon-only for a while. Their “Kindle Unlimited” deal is very nice for short fiction. I hate to leave people out if they prefer buying stuff at non-Amazon sites, but…(1) nearly all sales and downloads, for me, have always come from Amazon, (2) while I’ve had issues with Amazon, they’ve been very responsive in dealing with them, (3) I can’t say that for any other online distributor (well, Smashwords is actually pretty nice), and (4) this may boost visibility at Amazon…kind of the core of my business. If you really really hate the idea, please let me know.

Published inWeekly Challenge


  1. ShelleyB happy

    David, First question: How did the tour of breweries go? I’m hoping a couple stories come out of your travels. One would definitely have to include cat litter and elevators!! Second question: I just have to know if you have had experience with rock climbing. It sure sounds like it. That has got to be an exciting and rewarding thing to do. I am now putting “make cheese straws” on my to-do list. I have not had those since I lived in Florida. Yuummmm!
    The story was a joy to read! You handled the going back forth time-wise very well and it built up the suspense beautifully! Having two apexes was twice the fun. It is very obvious you love Alaska and your writing makes me want to see it firsthand. Thank you for a very enjoyable lunch time!

    • David

      We only made it to two brewpubs. They were good, though: Deschutes and Ten Barrels. Neither had the sort of IPA I really wanted (my current favorite is “The Truth” by Flying Dog, which recently edged out Stone’s “Ruination IPA”) but the beers were tasty anyway.

      And…nope, no real rock-climbing experience. I’ve played around with it, but being up high makes me feel stupid. As if I should’ve thought more carefully before putting myself into that situation. I’m a lot happier wandering down among the trees, walking what a climbing friend once called “garbage miles.” I like looking at plants/animals/bugs/water more than rocks, which is weird I know, but there it is. Basically? I’m a boring kind of guy–never been an adrenaline junkie.

      Glad the story worked for you. So far feedback on the time-switching seems to be about 50% good. So I probably overdid it…maybe. It was fun to write the story that way, though. Actually I thought of you while I was writing it & figured you’d like that part, which kinda helped me give myself permission to do it. Feel free to share the blame! 🙂

      Thanks again!


      • Shelley Bricker

        Gladly sharing the blame! As you know, I like a good tale that makes me work a little bit to get the whole story! And thanks to you (and Wikipedia) I have learned something today. I now know what IPA stands for in the brew world. I like beer but I have a feeling I have never experienced really good beer. Gonna have to expand my horizons (along with the waistline ha!) Have a very good evening / day…forgot about that 4 hour difference!

        • David

          Gonna start homebrewing again pretty soon. So if you guys come up to Alaska… {8’>

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