Heart of Stone

 

Crime Fiction
Date Published: 7/4/2017
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Are the deacons of Shalom Bethel invincible? Legend has it that in the 1940’s, they came out of a gunfight with holes in their clothes but not their skin. Bullets bounced off of them. They walked through buckshots like water. That story is passed down by every deacon. The legend of Stephen Stone. That legend is about to be tested.
On the heels of a nightclub triple murder, a mysterious blizzard hits Shalom, a city normally warm year round. The blizzard brings with it bitter memories and ghosts Deacon Oak East thought were long gone: his prior drug conviction, his on and off relationship with his wife, the gruesome murder of his father and the role he played in it. But it’s not just the past that haunts him. In the present, a homicide detective wants him and the deacons for the nightclub murders. And a gangster named Cap Morgan wants revenge. The snow is falling. But soon, it will be raining bullets. Is the legend true? Are the deacons of Shalom Bethel bulletproof?
Guest Post

When Deadlines Become Lifelines

“Someday is not a day of the week” – Unknown.  I used to be a serial procrastinator and I didn’t even know it. I would use phrases like “Someday, I’ll do this.” Or “Someday, I’ll do that.” Or “One of these days…” I would smile when I said what I would do in the future. Feel all warm inside. Feel accomplished. But in reality, I had accomplished absolutely nothing. But at least I felt warm inside.

I’m an author. However, the “someday” behavior I previously exhibited was unconducive to my craft. I would work without deadlines because (Hey!) I’m the boss, and I’ll release that book when I’m good and ready. But when is that? What date and time is good and ready? I came to the realization that even though I am the boss, I have to push myself. I had to give myself deadlines.

Deadlines. We tend to shy away from that word. It’s a stressful word. The last thing we want to be is stressed, right? Wrong. Not wrong about being stressed. But wrong about deadlines being a stressful word. The term deadline is not a four letter word (literally and figuratively). It’s actually a good thing to put a date on it because you move away from the unattainable “someday.” For example, I started assigning hard and fast release dates for my novels. I noticed something interesting. Time I wasted before, I started putting to good use when I knew that that deadline was looming. I became more productive by putting a date on it. My work started coming to life in a timely fashion. So, I don’t know. I think we might need to change this term deadline into lifeline. Let me know what you think.

About the Author

James Fant is an award winning author who lives in Charleston, SC with his lovely wife and two hilarious children. He received a degree in biology from College of Charleston and a master’s in business administration from Charleston Southern University. His love for literature was forged by the works of Eric Jerome Dickey, Walter Mosley, and Stephen King. He also finds inspiration from screenwriters Shonda Rhimes, Aaron Sorkin and Kurt Sutter. Literarily, James has always been drawn to intelligent yet imperfect characters and he writes novels with them in mind.
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Twitter: @jamesfantjr
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