Category Archives: Fiction

I just finished my first draft of a new Weird Western story!

 

Today I finished the first draft of a short story that takes place in my “Inquisitor” universe. Dominican priest Aidan McGrath joins forces with a youthful tailor and a homely muleteer to climb the formidable Sandia Mountains and rescue a Quinceañera from her abductor, the legendary Hairy Man. The story, which is set in 1833 New Mexico, has action, humor, and a mythic monster–with a Catholic twist.

I’m going to let the story rest for a few days, do my first round of revising and editing, then share it with my critique group and my editor.

Next comes formatting, organizing pre-launch marketing, and finally publishing the story on Amazon-Kindle. All this will take place within the next month or two.

I’ll let you know when I’m ready to launch this fun, exciting story.

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IN OTHER NEWS, I encourage you to fill out the form in the right-side column and subscribe to the Patrick Dorn Author Newsletter, which will come out monthly or thereabouts, with updates on all my various writing projects. I’ll be giving free stories and previews of upcoming works to subscribers.

The Night Nurse – western horror short story is now available!

Now available on Amazon-Kindle…

Read for FREE on Kindle Unlimited!


When the mysterious Night Nurse at a hospice for dying miners selects Sister Angela as her successor, the young nun must walk the fine line between faith and fear to discover the truth about the Night Nurse’s dreadful Gift. This is a Western Horror short story with a Catholic twist.

ORDER NOW for only 99 cents and The Night Nurse will automatically download to your Kindle app or device.

Approximately 7,500 words. NOT APPROPRIATE FOR CHILDREN.

Check out my Weird West Roundup blog for all things Weird Western, Western Horror, and Western Fantasy.

Western Horror Short Story: ‘Thin Skinned’

Read FREE on Kindle Unlimited

Thin Skinned: a short story of a woman’s revenge in the West

By Patrick Dorn

on April 27, 2016

In the barren, unforgiving desert outside Las Cruces, New Mexico, a sadistic Irish immigrant exacts gruesome revenge on the English lord who wronged her family. This is a western horror short story, approximately 2,250 words. NOT APPROPRIATE FOR CHILDREN.

Read FREE on Kindle Unlimited, or PURCHASE for only 99 cents.

Fiction Update: Weird Western series in the works

I’m currently developing a series of short stories in the Weird Western genre. The tales will take place around 1780, during the California Mission period, and involve cryptozoological (creature of the week) storylines.

My hero is Otto Eisenschaf, a Hessian mercenary who lost his left hand and part of his arm in the first battle of the American Revolutionary War. Rescued from a colonial POW camp by a Jesuit priest, Otto is spirited away to Alta California, and fitted with an iron prosthetic that is full of gears and gadgets and accessories.

Otto serves under Father President Junípero Serra in various capacities, especially investigating strange occurrences in the New World.

My current project, Chupacabron, involves a wily shapeshifting creature that sucks the blood from goats during the full moon at St. Anthony Padua mission.

The stories will have gobs of action and humor. As soon as one is fit for print, I’ll make it available for free on this website, in exchange for subscribing to my newsletter. Or, if you subscribe beforehand, I’ll send you a copy when it’s ready.

The idea for a German mercenary with an iron hand came from a real life character, Gottfried “Götz” von Berlichingen, who fought in the 1500s, nearly 300 years before my stories begin. His prosthetic is pictured here.

Fiction: The Bunny and the Big Black Dog

Dear Readers:

After the catastrophic loss of all my website data a couple weeks ago, I’ve started re-posting some of my most popular posts. Please feel free to share this story with others.

THE BUNNY AND THE BIG BLACK DOG
(Based on an actual event, as refined through theological reflection)

By Patrick Dorn

Early one cloudy morning, a big black dog trotted along a narrow dirt path, sniffing the air and enjoying the freedom that comes with a retractable leash.

Frankie on walk 6-20-15Without warning, a bunny dashed up the path, directly toward him!

“Good morning, Bunny,” Frankie (for that was the big black dog’s name) said. “Would you like to play chase?”

The bunny did not reply, so Frankie lolled his tongue and grinned a toothy, winning smile.

He repeated the invitation. “Chase?”

The bunny continued straight toward him. A collision seemed imminent.

The big black dog was taken aback. Typically, the bunnies he saw on his daily walks ran AWAY from him. But here was this bunny with pert ears and a bouncy stride coming straight at him, and not slowing down.

Frankie braced for impact, hoping the bunny wouldn’t be injured when it bounced off his big black body.Bunny

With an agile grace that Frankie could only admire, and secretly covet, the bunny performed an abrupt left turn, sprinted across a lush patch of grass, and under a bush.

“I guess he changed his mind,” Frankie said to himself. “But why was he in such a hurry?”

The big black dog looked up and saw, only a few yards above, a falconits angry beak gaping, notched wings outstretched against the clouds.

The falcon tucked away its talons, spun and circled upward, perching on the jagged top branches of a long-dead tree.falcon

Frankie glanced at the bush where the bunny crouched and shivered. The poor creature was hunched into a ball, making himself look very small indeed.

“By golly, if I hadn’t happened along, you might have become a tasty morsel for that falcon,” Frankie said. He tried to sound amiable, to calm the agitated bunny.

The bunny twitched its nose.

“You may have saved my life,” the bunny said. “But that doesn’t make us friends.”

The bunny turned, and in a flash of fluffy cottontail, disappeared into the dense undergrowth.

Frankie sadFrankie felt sad as he continued his walk. But he knew the bunny was right. It was a wild bunny after all, running loose in a world of falcons.

It had never known the kind of reassuring freedom that comes with a retractable leash.

THE END

SYMBOLISM ALERT: If you like to figure things out for yourself, READ NO FURTHER. However, if you’d like a hint to aid in deeper reflection, consider this: who is the implied character on the other end of the leash? That’s right. The Master. Now you take it from there.

‘Thin Skinned’ seeks reviewers. Free copies available from author.

Thin Skinned:

Thin Skinned Cover

In the barren, unforgiving desert outside Las Cruces, New Mexico, a sadistic Irish immigrant exacts gruesome revenge on the English lord who wronged her family.

Thin Skinned is a very short (about nine pages), gory horror/western mashup and is available on Amazon/Kindle for 99 cents, or FREE if you contact me and ask for a copy!

No, it’s not a western with horses and cattle drives and shootouts and saloon girls. Instead, it’s a character study of an abused woman who carries a lethal grudge and a carpetbag full of kitchen utensils.

And just because I’m feeling rebellious, I am proud to say that this story, which is unlike anything else I’ve ever published, has so far received a grand total of one, one-star review on Amazon:

“Do not read…Would not recommend it at all..”

I’m especially gratified by seeing not just one period but two periods at the end of the one-sentence review, presumably for emphasis.

So here’s the deal. If you feel like reading something short and nasty, very descriptive and also historically, geographically and otherwise accurate in the telling, order a FREE COPY from me by e-mailing PatrickDorn.Writer@gmail.com or purchasing it for 99 cents on Amazon, and say what you did or did not like about the story, what worked and what didn’t work.

‘Cause how else is a writer supposed to improve?