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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Ursa Major and Other Stories by Tamara Narayan

I asked Tamara Narayan to give us a what if question for today. She gave us four. Take it away, Tamara...

Thanks Liz, for inviting me to the Unicorn Bell. I understand you enjoy what-if questions. Ursa Major and Other Stories contains three tales that answer some off-the-wall ones. Let's get started . . . 

Ghosts of a Benevolent Place: What if an autistic child met a senior citizen who, in his dementia, thought he was still a kid?

For Audrey Ericcson, raising an autistic son is like juggling hand grenades. She never knows when Ian is going to blow. Gloria Carter, whose husband Winston suffers from Alzheimer's, can sympathize. The unlikely friendship that blossoms between Ian and Winston on the shore of Lake Ontario is nothing short of miraculous to both women. When Ian begins to spell out words with rocks on the beach, Audrey is first thrilled, then puzzled, and eventually frightened. Are the mysterious stone messages from Ian, Winston, or something else entirely? Approx. 77 pages (21K words)

Ursa Major: What if you were starving and came upon a pristine box of donuts in the woods? Would you eat them, knowing they were bait?

Something with a heavy gait and a taste for sweets lurks in the woods behind Josh Surrel’s new home. Not that he has time to worry about it. As the new kid in school, he's got to figure out quickly whether to join the outcasts or the bullies, if he's got the guts to speak to the prettiest girl in ELA, and the answers to his hideous math homework before he lands in detention. Yet when everything goes wrong, these problems become meaningless. Josh finds himself alone in the dark, freezing in a freak September snowstorm, searching for the one thing he's most afraid of . . .
Approx. 73 pages (21K words)

The President and the Pea: What if you witnessed a murder, but no one believed you? What if the victim was the leader of the free world?

Sixty-something Annette Hutchins has her quirks. She abhors eggs and never drinks anything red. But those oddities pale in comparison to the secret she's been forced to keep for years. Annette witnessed the assassination of the President of the United States. Or did she? Approx. 35 pages (9K words)

Ursa Major and Other Stories (reduced to $0.99 through May on Amazon)

Ghosts of a Benevolent Place ($0.99 on Amazon)

Ursa Major ($0.99 on Amazon)

The President and the Pea ($0.99 on Amazon)

Author Bio

Starting at a zoo, I wrangled African penguins and raised several fluffy little footballs. Next it was back to school for a Ph.D. in mathematics and sympathy for Barbie. (Yes, math is hard.) After three years as a professor, daughter number one arrived (8 hours after final grades were submitted) and bam! The ever-challenging, at-home mom marathon began. When daughter number two was old enough to survive shopping trips with her dad, I dove headfirst into writing. Today I've got eight sci-fi/fantasy stories published through Wormhole Digital and am in the final edits (I hope) of a historical novel. I also blog a bit at www.tamaranarayan.com.

What can I say? I like variety, which leads to my final question:

What if you could snap your fingers and experience any job on the planet? Would you become a CSI investigator? An acrobat with Cirque du Soleil? Chocolate technologist for Ghiradelli?

Awesome jobs I’d like to experience: a zombie on the set of The Walking Dead, a tour guide to Machu Picchu, or a guitarist on tour with U2. Why not?


Chrys Fey said...

Those are awesome "what if" questions. I'm going to have to cheat and not answer them so I can read the stories and find out the right answers. ;)

Misha Gerrick said...

Love these "What if" questions. :-)

mshatch said...

Any job? I think I'd like the be an archaeologist who's just discovered something amazing.

Liz A. said...

Chocolate technologist... Hmmm... I like that idea.

Tamara Narayan said...

mshatch: That's a great one to pick as long as it doesn't end up like an Indiana Jones movie--snakes scare me as bad as they do the title character.

LIz: I know, right? But I wonder if these folks have trouble enjoying chocolate after over exposure. I used to work at a movie theater concession stand and for years, I didn't want popcorn.

Thanks again for having me!