Welcome

Dear Reader,

Welcome to my website!  Feel free to take a look around.

In work.   My primary work in progress is currently an episodic science fiction series code-named the Salvage project.  Simmering behind Salvage is a science fiction short story, Out of the Blue, that may be evolving into a novel of its own.   My mainstream novel, the Sifa and Peter project, is on hold.  And, as much as my son loves Zeddy and Bubba, my planned children’s series, I may drop the concept due to the unwieldiness of a science-based travelogue for kids between 7 and 10.  My main focus right now is honing my writing skills with the science fiction series to better prepare for Sifa and Peter.

Background.  In my former career I worked on software for over a million personal computers, for three multi-million-dollar NASA spacecraft, and for helping pilots navigate.   Read more about my background here.

Get Updates.   You can also subscribe to my email newsletter in the sidebar of this website.   It’ll give you an inside look on my upcoming works, including excerpts, and from time to time it will contain special offers.   If you just want updates to this website, that’s fine, too — you can subscribe by email or RSS in the bottom of the sidebar.

Contact Me.  I’d like to hear from you.   You can reach me through the contact form, Facebook, or email.

Thanks for stopping by.

Cindy Rae Johnson

October Favorite Reads

A busy month, this October.  Here’s few that I liked:

I keep looking through the library and online for a good sf read, but so far I haven’t really liked anything.  Let me know by one of the thousand ways to contact me if you have a good read in any genre.

Well, no, not horror, I don’t read that.  Well, no, not erotica.  I don’t go there.  No, not that dark gruesome mystery or violent-filled thriller, either… I’m not a picky person, really.

Writing Status: Improving Plot Structure for Salvage, Ep. 1

So, sometimes a writer has to tighten her belt, er, plot.   Did I mention my unique talent for making a short story very, very long?  Turns out that’s something to rein in to create a great story.

After research, thought, and analysis, I’ve tightened up the plot for Salvage’s episode 1.

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“So, Kili, want a treat?” The doctor held out a jar of lollipops.

It’s “Kaylah.” She shook her head.  Does he think I’m three?

A flicker of a frown crossed his face.  “Suit yourself.”

They were not alone in the cramped medical bay.  Beyond the doctor the medical assistant checked supplies with deft, efficient movements.  The younger man had short hair that spiked up in the oddest directions.  His lip curled up in an odd way on one side, yet, when he had glanced her way…

He seems friendly. More than the doctor, anyway.  I wonder what— 

“How are you enjoying your trip so far?” The doctor offered a false smile.

“It’s okay,” she said softly. I wish Mom had stayed with me. She shifted uneasily.

“It can be scary leaving home for some people.”  He leaned forward and pressed his hands together at the fingertips.

Who does that steepling thing? 

“It’s no big deal,” she said aloud.

“Do you miss Earth?”

Well, duh, it was my home, all I ever knew.  She shrugged.

Behind the doctor the assistant medic looked over his shoulder at her and rolled his eyes.  Her mouth twitched a little, and the burning sensation in her stomach eased.

The doctor continued, “Space is really big. Does it bother you?”

“No.”  What, he can’t use big words? Wait– didn’t he even check my file? My space stuff is all over it.

“How about ship life? Others onboard?” He asked, now scrutinizing the tablet in front of him.

The lights overhead seemed really bright, almost harsh.  Why is he asking about that stuff?

Returning to Mystery

My father was a fan of Agatha Christie.  Lying around my childhood home were almost every one of her mystery novels.

I devoured those books.  In turn, those books set my expectations to a rather high standard, so much that for years I could barely read a page or two into any other mystery.

Now, a personal renaissance has led me back to the genre.  Here are a few favorites:

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Writing is a Business: I Have to Talk to Other People?

Come on, you know you know some introverts or shy folks.  Maybe you are even one yourself, like me.

The core of writing is a solitary pursuit, but most of us want financial return.  Part of treating writing as a business is networking with other writers.

How do you go about this?  What are some first steps?  What options will work for you?

Many options exist.  Here are a few:

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