Friday, December 14, 2018

Book Release: Rainbows and Clouds

New release: a short story collection

Short stories about life’s humorous, happy, and dark moments.
Some of the stories are from my years in nursing, Steve's clumsiness and my cooking disasters might make you spit out your coffee laughing. The stories of my pets will put a warm smile on your face, and the stories about life's darker moments might make you wipe a tear or two.

Rainbows and dark clouds are part of life,
Without darkness, there can be no light.
Without moments that make us cry,
We can’t enjoy moments that make us smile.
Without moments that make us laugh,
We can’t get through moments that make us sad.

Enter the Amazon GIVEAWAY:

Editorial review:
The Rainbows and Clouds by Erika M Szabo is a collection of fun anecdotes, heartwarming stories, and slice-of-life tales that evoke a wide range of emotions. It's impossible to choose a favorite story because I loved them all, particularly the tales that explored the challenges of having a pet. There are several stories within this collection that explore the best - and the worst - of humanity. We are reminded that not everything, or everyone, is what they appear to be and that the best things in life are often surprises. I would absolutely recommend this book to everyone! It truly is something special.
~Tricia Drammeh

From the story of Mean Streaks:
I used to live in an apartment building, way back when. Working evening shift in the Hospital as a mental health counselor, I usually arrived home around midnight. As I was running up the steps to the barely lit front door I heard a muted cry.
“Ouch!” The voice came from below, close to the concrete steps.
I looked down and saw Daniel, my upstairs neighbor, on his hands and knees. I realized that I didn’t notice him in the dark and stepped on his hand.
“Oh my God! I’m so sorry!” I shouted, feeling remorse building up inside of me, imagining the pain I had caused.
“Yes, Ma’am. No… no problem,” he mumbled in his drunken stupor. “I’m just gonna sit here for a while until my head stops spinning.”
He is drunk as a skunk, again, I thought. I can’t leave him in the middle of the night on the steps.
“Let me help you up and walk you home,” I offered.
“No Ma’am, please!” he begged. “There will be much bodily harm coming to me if I go home now. She will be very angry.” I almost burst out laughing, but then he looked up at me and I saw fear in his eyes.
What could be going on in your house? I thought, alarmed. I recalled seeing him bruised all over many times since I’d moved into the apartment house. I was aware, like everyone else in the building, that occasionally he drank himself into a stupor. After the binge, he stayed sober for weeks at a time. He was the sweetest, most helpful guy in the neighborhood. He was always there when anyone needed their door or dishwasher fixed. We started calling him “golden hands” because there wasn’t anything he couldn’t fix. He always had a smile and a nice word for everyone. I had seen him many times with bruises after his drinking binges, but I always assumed he had fallen when he was drunk. But seeing the fear in his eyes, I started thinking. They seemed to be the perfect couple, but I wonder… He said ‘bodily harm.’ Is she beating him when he’s drunk and can’t defend himself?
Although his wife was friendly with everyone, I had detected some mean streaks in her personality. It occurred to me that I had never seen love in her eyes when she looked at her husband. I only saw calculated and cold glances. People gave her a lot of compliments about Daniel’s “golden hands” and even then, she just nodded coldly.

Continue reading the story:

From the story of Nurse's Voice:
A large man in the ER screamed bloody murder after two nurses tried to insert an IV in his arm and failed. The guy threatened to call his lawyer and sue the hospital. He called the nurses incompetent fools, so, because I was the supervisor on that shift, they called me to deal with the angry man.
I walked into his room, introduced myself and told him, “Sir, I’m going to try to start your IV.”
He yelled, “This hospital is full of ******* idiots! I hope you know what you’re doing!”
I put my nurse’s face on and said in my soothing nurse’s voice to break his foul mood, “Don’t worry, sir, I just watched a video on YouTube and learned how to start IVs.”
The surprised look on his face was priceless and I heard the nurses taking sharp breaths outside the door, ready for another angry eruption.

Continue reading the story: