Snippet Sunday – Hard-Boiled/Noir WIP – January 24, 2016

Snippet Sunday is a Facebook group for writers I’ve been privileged enough to have been accepted into.

From the group guidelines; “Welcome to Snippet Sunday, where writers come together to share a few sentences of their current project–whether it’s a recently released novel, a WIP (work in progress), or an older manuscript that’s being revived. Intended to hook readers, gather feedback and build an author’s fan base, Snippet Sunday is the FB group that does all three.”

This week’s snippet picks up where last week’s left off.

The last line was…

I couldn’t get past the feeling that I’d just been measured for a coffin.

Here’s this week’s…

Marisa maneuvered us onto the dance floor.
I maneuvered us to a position from which I could see both Jed and the front door without craning my neck in either direction.
Beau hadn’t moved at all, except to deepen his frown. He had the look of a business owner worried that he hadn’t bought enough insurance. I still couldn’t see his left hand, and wasn’t sure if I felt better or worse about it.
“What just happened?” I asked as Marisa rested her hands on my shoulders.
“You mean Martha just now?”
“Who is she? Local undertaker?”
“She and her husband run the hardware store.”
I located Martha at her spot near the end of the bar, seated next to a broad-shouldered graybeard in a blue denim shirt.
“I think she wanted to talk to me,” I said.
“She probably wanted to warn you away from me,” she replied. “You can guess why.”
I glanced at Jed over Marisa’s shoulder.
“Yeah. One look at your ex put the kibosh on conversation.”
“He has that effect on people.” She leaned in and spoke right into my ear. “Martha caught one of his kids stealing hand tools from the store.”
“Jed’s kids?”
“With one of his other exes. Maybe two.”
I nodded.
“Anyway,” she continued, “Martha kicked the kid out and banned him from the store.”
“Seems reasonable.”
“Not to Jed. He stormed up there and demanded an apology. Martha wouldn’t do it. He torched their delivery truck the next day.”
“They report it?”
“Yeah, but dropped the whole thing after someone fired a few rounds through their bedroom window.”
“Half the people in this bar have a Jed story to tell.”
“Is he carrying?”
“You mean a gun?” She took a quick look in his direction. “He’s got a .45 he likes to show off but I don’t see it on him.”
I hadn’t seen a gun on him either, especially not a hand cannon like a .45.

Thanks for stopping by, and thanks for any feedback you feel inclined to leave.

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Posted on January 24, 2016, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Jed sounds like a real winner. Great snippet!


  2. Must be quite a character that Jed … another great snippet, Jeff.


  3. Love all the small-town drama, and it reads absolutely true. Looking forward to finding out more about all of them next week.


  4. I was thinking the same thing Joyce said about small town drama. I love the way the dialog builds the story.


  5. Jed’s going to be a big problem, I can see, but I have confidence our hero can handle it. I like the way you deliver the relevant backstory for the situation! Great snippet…


  6. Nice to know everyone knows Jed. Fun guy. Great snippet, Jeff. 🙂


  7. “He had the look of a business owner worried that he hadn’t bought enough insurance.” Great line!
    That Jed is not a nice fellow. Very nice dialogue to give all that info about people in the town, lively and interesting.


  8. Karen Michelle Nutt

    He sounds like a guy you want to stay clear of. Not sure dancing with his girl – even if she’s not anymore – is a good for his health. lol Great snippet.
    Pinterest link:


  9. Things are heating up. That Jed character sounds like someone I’d like to avoid.


  10. Someone definitely has some anger issues! Love the build in this piece, tells a lot about the characters and Jed. I especially love this description: “He had the look of a business owner worried that he hadn’t bought enough insurance. I still couldn’t see his left hand, and wasn’t sure if I felt better or worse about it.” Great snippet.


  11. Great scene–and wonderful job on the dialogue, Jeff. Small town stuff-it came across well. 🙂


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