My Story Dam Intro


November 4, 2011 by Ray Yanek

One of the things I keep meaning and forgetting to do—no, it’s not wash—is put something in the damn “about” section of this blog.

Had that page been ready, I could have used that as my intro to the new, web based writing community called “Story Dam”.

The ‘about’ section is still blank, so I’m going to introduce myself here and treat it like a general blog post.  If I make this feel like a blog rather an “about” me thing, maybe I won’t break out in hives, twitch, wet myself a little, and go in search of strong sedatives.

But anyway, for those who don’t know me, I’m an unpublished writer, a teacher, a father, and a husband.

I had an agent for my novel The Ecstasy of St. Theresa (you can read about the novel here) but things didn’t work.  In hindsight, I think parting ways with that agency was for the best though. I wrote a little bit about that (not much) here.  I’m currently seeking new representations, so I’m back to the query and wait and drink heavily stage of the game.  I’m also trying to figure out how get the changes I’ve made to my gravatar to stick…

Currently, I’m working through the second draft of a new novel I’m thinking of calling That Cool Autumn Breeze.  It’s a mystery/crime novel with a psychological bent.  I’ve never tried to summarize it before, but I’ll give it a shot here:

Kirk Kilborne, Mark Hrash, Cassady Malley, and Jerry Highsmith were the closest of high school friends.  They were inseparable; they were each other’s’ pillar, each other’s strength and balance.

But then, in the Autumn of their final year together, things went so wrong.

Kirk Kilborne, now an English teacher at the same high school he graduated from has not spoken to his friends in years.  He has tried to move on from that time, the time that stains his memory with mud and pain and death. On the first day of Spring Break, Kirk receives a call from Mark, a call that plunges Kirk back into the pain of his past and into the murder and betrayal of the present.

Kirk has no choice but to face the fact that what he remembered happening in those cool autumn breezes may not actually have the way things truly were.

That’s vague, I know, but I’m kind of in a rush, because I’m also a teacher.  I was conferences all day yesterday, I’m working today, and after school I’m leaving for Millikin University to take a group of students to a Literary Festival at Millikin University.  I won’t be back until Sunday.

As the mystery stuff, I’ve also been dabbling in some fantasy short stories and really enjoying them. I’m new at the blogging thing, but am really starting to enjoy it.  Please feel free to peruse some of the posts and also to read some of the stories I wrote for Flash Fiction Friday.

Thanks for stopping by, and you can expect to see me at your place soon.

So don’t call the cops when I do show up…


8 thoughts on “My Story Dam Intro

  1. Brandon says:

    Very good to meet you, Ray! Of course, now knowing there is a teacher participating on Story Dam, I will have to really watch my spelling and grammar, lol!

    No worries, I wield a pretty mean red pen myself. (But thank God for spell check… phew!)

    Looking forward to seeing what you bring to the community. The book blurb (if I may use that term) interested me. I think with a little editing, you sound like you have a winner!

    We’ll see you around!

    • Ray Yanek says:

      Good to meet you as well, Brandon! And really, I hope your red pen is better than mine…at least at correcting my own mistakes! Again, a pleasure to meet you and thanks a ton for doing this. It’s going to be good…

  2. I have great admiration for good teachers who care for and respect their students. You sound like one of the good ones so I’ll spare you my disdain for the lousy ones who have been known to destroy the self esteem of some kids. As for the whole agent thing, you are probably right that it’s for the best, and yet I can imagine it’s a hard pill to swallow. You’ll find another though. After all, you’ve done it before, right? Look forward to seeing you around story dam.

    • Ray Yanek says:

      Thanks for stopping by Bridget and I really appreciate your thoughts about the agent thing. And you’re right, it doesn’t hurt quite as bad the second time through…at least not yet. 🙂

  3. Why is it that the ‘about me’ section is always so hard to write? I mean I could write them about other people all day long…. but for me, I’m still trying to come up with one that won’t scare people off, or the one that shows that I’m funny, sweet, a smart ass, and most of all a real person.

    Thanks so much for introducing yourself to us, and I can’t wait to have you join us for some prompts, and well since you mentioned it… maybe a drink or two 😉

    • Ray Yanek says:

      I don’t know, Brandi. Maybe we’re just too humble for our own good. I do think those drinks you mentioned may take care of that though… Really, thanks for commenting and I’m really looking forward to this whole endeavor.

  4. Jsell says:

    Sorry to hear about your representative’s head injury, Ray; once they get over their collective concussion, I’m sure they’ll be ready to pick up TEOStT again.

    Also, have fun at Millikin! Man, I wish I could go. Seriously, one of my favorite high school memories was going to Millikin for that weekend.

  5. julieemoore says:

    I look forward to reading your stuff and appreciate your transparency. Sorry about your agent.

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