Wanted: Near future Sci-Fi, space opera, and hard sci-fi people to trade chapters.
I writs mostly hard science fiction, but I want to make it entertaining for all audiences (think Michael Crichton). I have conventionally published one novel and self-published collaborative works of soft sci-fi, paranormal, and contemporary romantic suspense. My current project is a YA series about quantum evolution that will span several generations. I have a full-time job as a research faculty at a top-five engineering university in the U.S. My children are adults and living on their own. My kids are now fur balls of canine energy. I compete at AKC agility trials, play tennis in the local club league, and renovate my house, room-by-room.
I love to read science fiction, soft or hard, and romantic thrillers or suspense. I like fantasy, but I’m not an expert. I like military novels as long as the violence is not too graphic. I’ve written ghost stories, but I don’t like horror because it give me nightmares (think Bird Box, that was hard for me to finish). I prefer commercial fiction and that is where I think I can be most useful. I have published conventional literary short stories, but straight forward writing is what I like (think Raymond Chandler or Philip Roth). I love alternate history and cerebral fiction.
Please, no gratuitous graphic violence, rape, horror, and experimental fiction.
Nicole is not an orphan as far as she knows, but she was raised in an orphanage with her identical twin sister, Sophie. All she knows is that her mother is dead and was abandoned by her father at age six. At sixteen, Qcorp hired the twins as couriers, transporting the most valuable substance on Earth, entangled particle pairs. They made a good team until Sophie quit and began stealing from couriers. Since then, Nicole has worked alone. When Sophie corners her on a delivery, Sophie offers an ultimatum: join her or give up the merchandise for ‘the cause’. When Nicole refuses, Sophie steals the pairs and Qcorp blames Nicole.
Nicole works to earn the company’s trust by turning Sophie in. She learns that Sophie is using the money to find their father, who is a Noble laureate and the founder of modern quantum communications. Sophie leads Nicole their childhood home and there she finds that their mother was a renowned native American biologist and looked exactly like the twins. Now Nicole can’t refuse the quest to find their father and discover why they look like their mother and why he gave them away.
Nicole joins the underground with Sophie where they encounter illegal clones and uncover facts that prove that Nicole and Sophie are connected at a much deeper level that anyone could have guessed.
Nobody can say I’m not used to being watched. People tend to keep an eye on unaccompanied minors like me. It seemed like my twin sister, Sophie, and I were being watched all the time—two identical girls traveling together. Although we’re nineteen, we always tried to look younger when we traveled together on a delivery. Our partnership ended several months ago when she went rogue. Since then, I’ve been working alone without incident, but today feels different. Not because I’m traveling alone. I’ve been on deliveries by myself, to Bangkok, Tel Aviv, Vladivostok and points south. But today an odd energy hangs in the air like the smell of fried fish. Maybe stress is getting to me. Pound-for-pound, my job is to deliver the most valuable substance in the universe.
I stroll off the airliner and up the ramp at Fiumicino Airport. In front of me, five men, three women and one child trudge up the walkway to the airport gate. I glance back and find all five pairs of eyes starting ahead. Behind me, an elderly man and a family of four appear to be traveling together. Nothing to worry about there, so I slow to put more distance between me and those ahead.
Sweat breaks out on my upper lip. Who knows my itinerary? My employer and the client. Not even my best friend, Megs, knows where I am. The feeling that I’m being watched started upon landing. I don’t put much stock in ESP or the supernatural. There’s plenty of natural weirdness in the universe without having to resort to that. But if I did, the source of my unease would be here at the terminal. Who could guess that a girl like me is carrying something so valuable. I should be learning to drive or planning college, not a self-schooled orphan with a black-belt in Aikido. Who could guess? That’s why I’m the best courier in the service.
I have two other finished adult science fiction novels which I am querying. My first novel is published at Double Dragon Press.
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