We're featuring something a little different today, but just as alluring. Check out these offerings by Andrea Speed and Riptide Publishing. See the end of the post for information on Speed's contest!
In hopes of eventually publishing a book about his experiences at the Quik-Mart, Josh has decided to start keeping a work diary of his times on the night shift. Here is one random page.
11:54 - Some new guy I’ve never met before, Jordan, is filling in for Julia. There’s something a little off about him, and I’m not just saying that ‘cause he smells like cream soda. Although that’s part of it.
12:35 - First creature of the night, a lizard man who seems to love every kind of corn chip made. They must have stomachs made of steel, and taste buds made of steel too. (I mean, have you ever had the “zesty ranch” flavor? If a chemical factory could barf, I bet it tastes just like that.) Got a “tip” of $4.97 - biggest to date! I will take back every bad thing I’ve ever said about Doritos if I keep getting tips like this.
1:28 - A first! I think a werewolf in human form came in. He was a really hairy guy, looked like a bum, smelled like a wet dog, and made a beeline to the flea collars. He asked me if one brand was the biggest flea collar available, and I told him it was in this store. He bought three, and while I was making change for him, he scratched behind his ear and I swear his foot started tapping. I managed not to laugh until he left.
1:43 - A series of loud noises brought me out into the alley behind the mart. I don’t like to go there at night ‘cause of the hell portal, but there was so much screaming I had to check it out. A family of raccoons had gotten into it with a werewolf over the Dumpsters, and the mom and dad raccoon were two of the biggest raccoons I’ve ever seen in my life. Like pit bull sized. I’m not sure they were raccoons, now that I think about it. Whatever they were, they really messed up that werewolf. For what it’s worth, I waved the silver broomstick around, feeling like a stupid douchebag, until they all scattered. The raccoon things gave me a look that seemed to suggest leaving was their idea. I hope I didn’t make an enemy.
2:27 - The yeti returned. This time he brought me half of a radial tire. Maybe he thinks that’s what humans like? I asked him about raccoon things, but I might as well have asked about the ending of Lost for all he understood me.
3:15 - Colin arrived. Asked him about raccoon things. He asked me to be more specific (!). He’s not sure, but he thought they might be vilkacis (?), which are apparently some kind of creature that can shift into a multitude of different animal shapes. Colin may be making this up, I can’t really tell. Vampires have great poker faces.
3:20 - 4:13 - Fooled around with Colin.
4:15 - A loud noise, like a big thud, on the roof made us both shriek like little girls. I made Colin go check it out (well, he’s the undead guy …) and he came back in holding what looked like some kind of fruit bat upside down by its leg. It was cursing up a storm at him. He explained it was a kludde (?) named Claude - I’m 87% certain he made that up - and it was trying to dismantle the parking lot security cameras so it could sell the scrap for cash. It’s addicted to baking soda, apparently. So I gave it a box of Arm & Hammer and told it next time it tried to tear apart store property, I was sending the yeti after it. It couldn’t fly off fast enough.
4:16 - 4:48 - Colin hung around because I was so freaked out by all my beast encounters tonight. But just to make me seem like a complete fool, the only thing that happened was two different lizard guys showed up to buy chips. But it was sweet he cared.
5:53 - Jorge shows up for the morning shift, a little freaked out himself. It seems he just barely missed hitting the biggest dog he’d ever seen in his life. He thought maybe it was a coyote or something, but he was pretty sure it was wearing a flea collar. I was just glad it wasn’t a raccoon thing. I ended up blaming the broken parking lot camera on a meth head. I think Mr. Kwon bought it, but he gave me the strangest look.
Blurb from Pretty Monsters:
Josh knew the night shift at the Quik-Mart would be full of freaks and geeks—and that was before the hell portal opened in the parking lot. Still, he likes to think he can roll with things. Sure, the zombies make a mess sometimes, but at least they never reach for anything more threatening than frozen burritos.
Besides, it’s not all lizard-monsters and the walking dead. There’s also the mysterious hottie with the sly red lips and a taste for sweets.
Josh has had the hots for Hot Guy since the moment he laid eyes on him, and it seems Hot Guy might be sweet on Josh too. Now if only Josh could figure out whether that’s a good thing, a bad thing, or something in between. After all, with a hell vortex just a stone’s throw away, Josh has learned to take nothing at face value—even if it’s a very, very pretty face.
This title is #1 of the Josh of the Damned series.
Read an excerpt and purchase Pretty Monsters
Blurb from Peek-A-Boo:
As night-shift clerk at the go-to Quik-Mart for monsters with the munchies, Josh Caplan believes he’s seen it all. Battling lizard men, werewolves chasing cars in the parking lot . . . nothing fazes Josh anymore.
Or so he thinks, at least, until a yeti with poor communication skills drops a dead skunk on the checkout counter. Josh can’t figure what a living, breathing shag carpet wants with him, or why it won’t leave him alone no matter how hard he ignores it. But hey, at least it seems harmless . . . if perhaps a little slow on the draw.
But Sasquatch is plenty fast when two of Josh’s human customers try to out-monster the monsters. Times are strange when creatures from the hell portal save the day, but in the protective hands of a lovesick yeti and a sexy vampire boyfriend, Josh realizes that maybe his new normal isn’t so bad after all.
Read an excerpt and purchase Peek-A-Boo
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Question for the grand prize:
What two things does the yeti try to give Josh? Simple, but you'll have to have read the story.
The Grand Prize – The Infected series ebook collection
Send the answer to the question to firstname.lastname@example.org
Put the name of the blog and Contest Answer in the subject line.
They can send as many entries as they'd like. Contest ends January 20.