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Today I’m delighted to welcome Edmund Wells to my blog and share my review of one of his short stories, along with an excerpt. Edmund’s style of writing is unique, humorous and full of quirkiness. Think Monty Python and the Marx Brothers. Whenever I want to kick back with a fun, well-written adventure, I am never disappointed. Read on and see if you don’t agree.

On Amazon: In Veterans of the Future Wars, Martin T. Ingham has assembled an anthology of short stories, all well written and edited. A special favorite of mine is Tour of Duty by Edmund Wells. I’ve read his stuff before and am always amazed at how much description and detail he manages to pack into them. In this story Caleb is waiting for a shuttle from Mars to arrive at his outpost. One by one, his crew has met with disaster, leaving him alone with the exception of a handful of robots, each possessing intricate and hilarious personalities of their own. The way he deals with his situation is both humorous and touching, and I especially liked the epilogue.

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A little bit about Edmund Wells: He was born on a damp Thursday on the Isle of Wight, England. He spent his formative years locked in a wine cellar arguing with crusty Irish philosophers. Using only his wits and a sharpened potato, he escaped by ferry to America, where he was captured by actuaries and forced to work in insurance.

After much begging, Edmund’s story “The Light of Venus” was granted first place in Golden Visions Summer 2011 writing contest, while a modest bribe secured “Neptune Rising” third place in the Winter 2012 edition. Due to a computer error, his ‘weird west’ fantasy “Oasis” won first prize in Fantasy Faction’s theoretical 2013 Anthology.

Several of his finer works can be practically stolen from the following publisher:

http://www.martinus.us/books.html#alteredamerica

An excerpt from Tour of Duty: “Greetings, Captain,” one of the small astro-bots said in a dry voice simulated to sound like Leonard Nimoy. Its cylindrical, brushed-steel body turned to face him.

“Morning, Mr. Spork. What’s new in astrometrics?”

Spork raised a dark metal eyebrow—one Caleb had added for effect. That and the pointed ears he had soldered to the sides of his head. “Approximately 330 megabytes per second is new, Captain.” He covered his mouth, hiding a broad yawn. “It’s mind-bogglingly dull, of course, but if you like—”

“Never mind, Spork. Lieutenant Sue-Lu, anything on visual?”

Sue-Lu twirled away from the telescope and placed a hand on one hip. “Uranus is looking especially perky this morning, Captain. Oh, my.”

Caleb put a hand over his eyes, restraining a groan. At least McOy wasn’t here to snicker at yet another “Uranus” joke. “Carry on, Sue-Lu. Lieutenant O’Hara, any messages?”

“Messages?” she drawled, sounding all steamy. “Or massages, Colonel?”

O’Hara wore a tight red t-shirt, stuffed underneath with one of Rhylie’s bras. On her head sat a wide-brimmed “southern belle” hat, complete with green velvet ribbon. The effect was rather amusing, as was the communicator-rod sticking a foot and a half from her left ear. The fact that Miss O’Hara’s shirt was “scarlet” in color was a detail that the copyright lawyers could only frown at.

“Messages, O’Hara. You are chief communications officer. And I’m your captain, not a colonel, as I keep telling you.”

“Fiddle-dee-dee. Still no contact from that naughty Mars Colony, Colonel-Captain.”

It was the same report he’d received every day for the past seven months. He tried to stifle a sigh… and failed.

“Don’t fret. After all, tomorrow is another day.”

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