Category: Novel Excerpts

Too Crowded

Quote from novel

When the Bull Gets the Last Laugh

Maybe it was a low point for Dad but for me, it was anything but. We were living at the Dennis ranch, when Dad came home drunk and decided it was time to act like a real rodeo star. I was standing outside the…

The Worry Wrestler

Ike, my grandfather, ain’t mean like his son. Unless he’s breaking a horse or doing something else with purpose, he’s got a smile perched on his leathered face. He stays cool as a cucumber even when times are hard. I hardly ever see that worry bubble dancing over…

Discouraging but Deserving

I like looking at my teach, Mrs. Alexander, at her nice smile and her fancy dress. I keep picturing my mother getting to wear a dress like that someday. Right before it’s time to go home, Mrs. Alexander starts to teach us a new…

Dumbest Teacher

The first day of school, I’m sitting in the back hoping she won’t see me. But she does. “Cono,” she says, “Sit on up here in front, where I can keep’n eye on you-uh.” I hate it when she says “you-uh,” like it’s two…

“Eternity Don’t Sound So Good”

It’s Sunday, revival time at the Baptist church. I don’t like it much, but the punch and cookies are good, that is if I can hold my patience until the end when all the “amen-ing” is done. I stuff those cookies in my mouth…

This Ain’t Us

I didn’t grow up with “Good morning, Cono” smiles or quiet and calm conversations around the supper table. Maybe, we just learned not to speak our mind. Especially since one or two of the minds around the kitchen table might not like our notions….

He Ain’t Normal

Although I’d thought about it many a time, I made it through half of the summer without killing No-Account. So has Aunt Nolie for that matter. Her and that dead-beat husband of hers seem be back to some kind of normal — which for…

The Darkness Within

She downed the last of several shots. A deep hole waited, someone she knew to be placed inside. She tripped over pebbles and glanced up ahead.  Almost there now. A small gathering stood around the gravesite. Had they started without her? She took in their…

He Can Run But He Can’t Hide

Narrated by Cono Dennis: I listened to those summer bugs, the cicadas, the ones that sound like sandpaper being rubbed together. Aunt Nolie’s radio started to crackle. We knew we were getting close. Finally, we heard the announcer, Clem McCarthy, saying that the fight was about…