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Larry Kollar
Works at ARRIS
Attended Michigan Technological University
Lives in Dawsonville, GA
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Larry Kollar

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I haven't posted here for a while. I thought, since there's still an hour left in Saturday, I'd post a #SaturdayScenes. This is from Secret of The Godforsaken, the eighth Accidental Sorcerers story and still very much a work in progress (it's not quite half done, and Book 7 is in beta). The Godforsaken is Termag's greatest and harshest desert, and our heroes have just left the very center of it on their way home. (The dragons mentioned here are Desert Dwarves, a tiny Lesser Dragon that makes its home here and is small enough to sit in your hand.)

Morning, of course, put the rising sun in their faces. Sura and Mik welcomed a small flock of dragons, as they came to snatch up insects and morsels the apprentices left out for them. As the sun peeked over the sun-screens, Storm Cloud brought clouds and light rain to cool them as they broke camp and resumed the march.

Shortly after lunch, the mages began growing nervous. Sura held her staff close, ready to use it as a weapon. Mik fingered the bronze dagger that had once been Captain Chelinn’s—or more likely, had belonged to one of his companions.

“Irrin,” said Bailar, “tell your folk to watch carefully. Something is afoot.”

“Yar,” said Storm Cloud. “Hup! Eyes open out there!”

“Sandcats!” came a reply. “Stalking alongside our path.”

“Keep your knife at the ready, they might do more than—”

A shout from across the way turned all heads. A pack of sandcats hurtled into their midst, bounding across the sand on long legs. Taking advantage of the distraction, the first sandcats attacked as well.

Sura and Mik stood back to back, Sura holding her staff in Bar the Way. Mik drew his dagger and boot knife, weapons as sharp and deadly as any sandcat’s claws, gleaming in the strong sun. Both of them raised magical defenses, Air and Earth, while Bailar Lifted himself above the fray.

The sandcat closest to Sura leapt at her—a mistake, for her Air fender deflected its flight and left it open for Sura’s counter-attack. She struck twice, bruising a foreleg and jabbing one end of her staff hard into the sandcat’s belly. The surprised animal tumbled and came up gasping on three legs. Before it could leap again, Sura called on Air and Fire. A jet of flame sprang from her palm, and the sandcat trailed smoke as it fled. Around them, Bailar did the same, throwing fire at other attackers.

An acolyte shouted, “Lad! Your left!” Mik saw a blur of motion coming his way. But he called to Earth instead of Fire magic, and a spray of sand startled the sandcat not two reaches away. It flinched, but its momentum carried it to the waiting warrior-mage. Dodging a flailing claw, he slashed at the sandcat’s throat. The sharp blade went deep, killing the animal almost instantly. It fell beyond him and lay still, spilling its blood into the thirsty sand.

Hearing shouts of pain and fear, the apprentices ran to the source. Sandcats had taken down two of Storm Cloud’s men, fastening their teeth on arms and legs.

“What are they doing?” Mik asked as they ran to help. “They’re not tearing or chewing!”

“Does it matter?” Sura replied. “Help that one, I’ll get the other.”

Three sandcats were fastened on the man, and two were clear targets; those she treated with thrown fire. As they fled, the third let go to face the charging Sura. It yowled and flailed as it rose into the air, three reaches, five, seven—then plummeted to the rocky earth and landed with an unpleasant crunch.

Mik had two sandcats to contend with. He flipped his dagger into the air, tossed his boot knife to his right hand, and threw. His combat trainers in Dacia had relentlessly drilled him in this maneuver, and this was the first time he had a chance to use it. His aim was true, and the knife went hilt-deep into the sandcat’s flank as Mik caught his dagger. It screamed and turned circles across the sand, and the second sandcat hopped over his victim to face Mik.

Before it could leap, two little dragons arrowed across the sand and attacked. One fastened itself to the sandcat’s head and bit an ear; the second nipped at the cat’s flank. The confused sandcat jumped, and Mik’s dagger slashed its throat before it landed.

“Thanks, friends,” Mik told the dragons as they alit on his shoulders. “Well done, Sura!”

“No better than you,” she replied. “But that one needs mercy.” She pointed to the one she had dropped; it lay still but its breath was ragged and it moaned in pain.

“Yar,” he said. His dagger flashed for the last time.
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Charlie on the Ball
Hmmm… cushy! As part of Charlie’s state-supported foster care, someone comes by the manor every couple of weeks from Babies Can’t Wait, a sort-of physical therapy program for babies with developmental issues. She gets to play with other people’s babies all ...
Hmmm… cushy! As part of Charlie’s state-supported foster care, someone comes by the manor every couple of weeks from Babies Can’t Wait, a sort-of physical therapy program for babies with developmental issues. She gets to play...
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Lucky Seven
His favorite cake Mason’s already 7. How time flies. We had pizza in town for his birthday dinner. Most of the kids close by (including Sizzle & DD’s bunch) came to help celebrate. Last I’d heard, it was going to be at the father in law’s place, so I went s...
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Tech Tuesday: Distraction-Free for Free
“ I’m a very technical boy. So I decided to get as crude as possible. These days, though, you have to be pretty technical before you can even aspire to crudeness. ” — William Gibson, Johnny Mnemonic The writing advice people (and websites) are always harpin...
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Weekend of Woof
Our weekend began well enough, until Mason… shall we say, displayed symptoms of a 24-hour stomach virus starting late Friday evening. The fun went on a little while through the night, then settled down. Saturday went well—Mason bounced right back well befor...
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That's a wonderful image you found for your post.
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CreateSpace Cover Calculator (Tech Tuesday)
To be honest, I’m surprised that CreateSpace doesn’t have something like this on their own site already. Any time you want to publish a paperback with CreateSpace, you need to include a cover (or pay them to make one for you). The DIY guidelines include a f...
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Charles is making progress. Not as fast as everyone would like, but he’s starting to catch up. He'll be talking before we know it.
Hmmm… cushy! As part of Charlie’s state-supported foster care, someone comes by the manor every couple of weeks from Babies Can’t Wait, a sort-of physical therapy program for babies with developmental issues. She gets to play...
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Mason's 7th birthday! (This is is favorite kind of cake.)
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Happy Birthday Mason!
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Looking for a distraction-free #writing  environment? You may already have one on your computer.
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Stomach virus. You don't want it.
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A Titanic Change (#FridayFlash)
"Untergang der Titanic", by Willy Stöwer, from Wikimedia Commons September 11, 1931 There is a running joke about using a time machine to go kill your grandfather. I mean to save mine. April 17, 1912 saw one of the greatest maritime disasters in history. Ev...
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I didn’t know I could get that many clothes in a closet, let alone having some left over!
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Story
Tagline
Writer and middle-aged geek
Introduction
What I do isn't necessary what I am.

I've been doing technical writing since 1982. In that time, I got married, raised two kids, and am now raising a grandkid. The latter, family, is what defines me. If my career were my life, many things would be different.

I've always wanted to write stories, but too often found myself doing other things. At some point in the last few years, I got serious about it. In that time, I've written two novels, started a third, and wrote numerous short stories and flash fiction pieces. Many of them can be found on my blog, and I'm in the final few laps of publishing one of my novels, White Pickups.

I'm not all that concerned about "getting published" as eBook outlets now make it possible to bypass the entire query/agent/publisher gauntlet. Yes, doing it yourself is a lot of work — but honestly, the traditional route requires much the same amount (and kinds) of work but without any guarantee of seeing your work on the shelves, actual or virtual. That's not to say I would turn down a traditional book deal if one were offered, but I'm not going to go begging either. In either case, I don't expect to quit my dayjob. It's more important to me that people read and enjoy my stories than having some commercial success.
Bragging rights
Raising the World Cutest Grandkid
Education
  • Michigan Technological University
    B.A. Technical Communications, 1977 - 1982
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Relationship
Married
Work
Occupation
Technical Writer
Employment
  • ARRIS
    Senior Technical Writer, 1997 - present
  • Scientific-Atlanta
    Contractor Technical Writer, 1994 - 1997
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Dawsonville, GA
Previously
Clarkston, GA - Kentwood, MI - Moline, MI - Allegan, MI
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