Havelock Free Press - Collection of Short Stories by Tim Schulz


Available for free 31 May – 2 June 2014

There are twenty stories in all. Some captures humanity at its best and others demonstrate humanity at its worst. Some deal with the seriousness of life and the hardships that happen. One called “Christmas Story” is about a young girl trying to survive from the death of her parents after falling through the cracks of a society that doesn’t want to be involved. She is saved in the end by the miracle of Christmas. “The Flu Epidemic of 1918” is a historically accurate narrative about the flu epidemic of 1918 that kills millions of people. It describes the hardships of a mother with three small children trying to survive on the prairies of North Dakota since the death of her husband when they are isolated from the rest of the world during the worst winter on record. “The End of a Dream” is a novelette about a man struggling with the death of his wife from pesticides.

“Hearts”’ is a love story about a disabled veteran who stays locked in his room playing Hearts on the computer until a young lady delivering pizzas falls in love with him. It’s a serious story that will bring a smile to your heart. “Going Fishing” is a fantasy about a lonely old man who spends his life working who decides to go fishing for the first time in fifty years and he’s brought back in time so he can relive his past. He gets to reconnect with his dead parents and a woman he gave up for his career. “The Baby” deals with a young women who becomes pregnant after the death of her husband and she has no idea how she got pregnant. She remembers that one night, after taking a sleeping pill and a glass of wine, she had a dream of someone coming to her bed and make love to her during the time she was staying with her in-laws. DNA test of the baby surprises everyone about who is the father.

“Terror in the Heartland” is a serious saga about an ex CIA agent who retires on a farm and after ten years of living a peaceful life with his wife, terrorists find him and come to extract their vengeance on him. The terrorists soon find out that he may be old, but he still has a lot of fight left in him. “Farmer’s Market” is a tale about a young man who is bored with his life and his only social life revolves around a group of people who sell produce at the local farmer’s market. When he finds out about his father dying of cancer, one of the venders gives him a chicken to make soup that has mystical properties. “The First Day of the Annual Roundup” is a realistic story about a group of ranchers that get together to brand, castrate, dehorn, and give shots to their livestock during one day of their annual roundup.

“The Professionals” is a satirical look about bureaucrats in the future who have taken over the world. Anyone who has ever dealt with too much red tape will find this humorous but also a little frightening. Other tales are about the inhabitants of a fictional farming community called Havelock. “Frescobaldi-Benhad Nuptials” takes a humorous look at the naming of the local church called “Perpetual Penitence of Sinners Twice Reformed and Free Church of the Lord, Independent.” It deals with characters such as Wilbur Tickets the local sheriff and the bride’s new name of Innocents Benhad. Another tale describes the Annual Rain Dance that over the years has morphed into something that has nothing to do with rain. It describes a community dealing with prohibition to the present time and how they turn a celebration before harvest into a ritual to marry their daughters. Their methods may not work for others, but in their world it makes sense. There are several other humorous accounts of everyday problems that that may appear bazar to outsiders, but to them it only common sense. “The Coffee Shop” is a humorous narrative of someone trying to order an “Arabian mocha cappuccino vanilla-flavored latte with just a drizzle of mocha syrup and a double shot of espresso” in a small town coffee shop where they only sell ordinary coffee.

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