As a general rule, I’m ambivalent regarding contests. That probably comes because I seldom, if ever, win. I consider myself a damned good writer. Not the best, certainly, but not the worst by far. Therefore, I dislike putting my work up for subjective judgment and and paying for the privilege.

But, because I’m either an incurable optimist or stupid beyond belief, I entered another contest and paid for the privilege of being judged. Screencraft announced a cinematic short story contest seeking prose, not screenplays. I scratched my head and quickly reviewed my published work and decided I had an entry that fit the contest parameters. I also thought the story would make for a really cool movie, assuming liberal application of CGI special effects. Screencraft will announce the finalists on March 14, 2017. Fingers are crossed.

Hey, if the story wins and it’s picked up by a movie studio and adapted to a screenplay, then I know whom to recommend for the lead male protagonist. Unfortunately, I can’t recommend myself for the lead female protagonist because (1) I can’t act and (2) the lead actor is young enough to be my son, so that would be really creepy.

Speaking of creepy, I find myself feeling that way more and more as beefcake cover art populates my social media news feed. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate these handsome, buff young men who bare nearly everything for the photographer. I’m just old enough to be their mother and ogling those pictures makes me feel like the feminine version of a dirty old man. Perhaps that’s one reason why my own covers seldom feature such provocative cover art. Our house guest who’s twenty years old likes to roam around without a shirt, which also gets a little discomfiting. Put a shirt on, boy.

At least he doesn’t parade about in his underwear like my own sons do. Boys have no couth.

Speaking of those sons, I’ve been toying with the idea of using the elder as a cover model. Clothed, of course. Gawking at my own boy without a shirt… ewwww. But he’s a handsome young man, if I do say so myself. Of course, using the on-property scenery will require that the story take place in a rural community. Maybe with a horse, like the lovely Lady Anastasia, a Morgan who looks absolutely phenomenal for being above ground at the advanced age of 32. Well, considering that I don’t have an active manuscript with the rural background of my little farm, I suppose that idea will have to linger on shelf for a good while longer.

Further speaking of sons, I’ll be headed to San Antonio this week to attend the younger’s graduation from military basic training. Therefore, I won’t be posting my usual blog next week, which will be spent playing “catch-up” in resuming work for clients. I do intend, however, on putting in a few hours on the manuscripts in progress. I’ve still got that December 31 deadline for the sequel to Daughter of the Twin Moons, tentatively titled Witchbreed Fire.

And for those who are looking for something entertaining to read and a good bargain, too, Rowan: Branch 1 of the Tree of Life is on sale November 1 through 7. Download the ebook for only $0.99 on Amazon. Rowan is my first e-book and remains a favorite of mine. The heroine’s sardonic nature masks a pragmatism and strength of will that recognizes when to stand firm and when to bend. No over-the-top stubbornness to the point of terminal stupidity here. The heroes–yes, more than one–bring their own motives, personalities, strengths, and flaws, sometimes in competition with one another.