Stephen L. Thompson’s September 2011 Newsletter


Welcome to my electronic newsletter, covering September 2011. 

My publication news for the past month:

Publication of my story “Housebreaking” by AntipodeanSF.

You can also listen to “Housebreaking” here.

Publication of my story “Never Done” on my Ficly account.

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I don’t want to make this a monthly thing, but I just want to remind you that I also have several blogs you can check out.  There’s The King of Prussia Writing Examiner, the Prince of Pithy Blog, the Oneoveralpha’s Writing Blog :D, and Enjoying Scifi Blog.

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This month I wrote 3,704 words, giving me a total this year of 35,691.  

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Here is my story board at the end of September:


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Here’s the story I wrote for this month.  Enjoy.


“It Came Out of the Night”

Last fall I stayed with a friend and his wife for a few days.  I was in the area visiting with some old acquaintances, and they had offered to put me up.  The first evening we caught up over dinner and then went out to a play. 

I was fatigued from my journey, so I turned in early that night.  Their house was old and had settled some, leaving the door for one room not square with its frame.  The lock on that door didn’t always catch, so they used that room for general storage, including a small bed for visitors such as myself. 

A chill woke me early the next morning.  In the dark I managed to find the drawer I was told held extra bedding.  I found a heavy quilt and added that to the bed. 

I buried myself under the covers and was close to drifting back to sleep when I heard what sounded like something falling in the hallway.  I wasn’t the only one to hear it, as my friend’s bulldog let out a single bark.  Being nearly asleep, I figured it was of no importance.

Some minutes later, I again heard a thump from the hallway.  This time – however – the door slowly swung open about a foot; the hinges creaking the whole way.  The hallway beyond was lit with moonlight, but without my glasses I saw only a blur.  From down the hallway I could hear my friend’s snores, but there was another, closer sound: a faint, almost squeaking breathing. 

Uncertain if I had fallen asleep and was now in some dream, I sat up in bed.  I stared at the blurry doorway, but saw nothing.  I strained my hearing, but the mysterious sound had vanished. 

After ten or fifteen seconds I thought, This is foolish.  I moved my hand to the edge of the bed as a prelude to standing up, and it collided with something small and furry.

Five seconds later – once my heart had slowed down – I let out a slight chuckle.  In addition to the bulldog, my friend also had a cat who was recovering from a respiratory infection.  Despite having free range of the entire house, I had been told that the cat often slept in the storage room.  My friend had assumed that a closed door would just make it find someplace else to sleep. 

I had heard it run out of the room, so I reclosed the door and went back to bed.  The cat apparently found somewhere else to sleep that morning.  We all had a good laugh about the matter over breakfast, but for the rest of my stay with them, I kept a chair in front of the door.

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