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The Prologue To My Woodward Dream Cruise Detroit Thriller


A Motor City Thriller

Prologue      Coffin In the Sky

Saturday, August 20 – 12:00 Noon

WE WERE a mile high over the Dream Cruise when the engine died.

Instantly we began plummeting toward the vast crowd below. Three horrified men, trapped inside a shrapnel-riddled helicopter. A three-quarter-ton metal-and-fiberglass coffin that would soon go smashing into the massive horde of cars and people beneath us like a giant hunk of streaking lead.

The copter’s passenger doors were still open and the wind immediately began ripping through them like the shriek of a hundred crazed banshees as we hurtled earthward. Up in the cockpit the pilot, Goolsby, was frantically flipping switches, but to no effect. Strapped into the seat beside me La Borgia, the mafia porn king, was spewing out a violent stream of Italian curses, his sheet-white face contorted with panic. He was gesticulating wildly, waving his Glock around and looking as if he might at any moment begin pulling the trigger out of sheer, raging terror.

Heart hammering, my stomach in my throat, I glanced out the window beside me. Thousands of colorful cars and hundreds of thousands of milling spectators were rushing up at us with scrotum-tightening speed. The sea of humanity alongside the broad boulevard began parting as people ran for their lives. YES! I wanted to howl down at them. RUN! GET AWAY WHILE YOU CAN!

As we plunged toward what seemed like certain death, I became conscious of the Springfield .45 clenched in my own quivering hand. For an instant I considered putting it to my temple in order to escape the deathcrash.

But then a rush of images began flashing in front of my terrorstruck eyes. As if I were looking at them through some kind of crazy, high-speed kaleidoscope, the events of the past twelve days swirled before me. I saw a series of powerful explosions and their horrific aftermaths. I saw rows and rows of body bags containing the corpses of innocent men, women, and children. I saw the stunned faces of shell-shocked survivors. I saw the shredded bodies of fellow FBI agents. I saw the world’s ugliest cat. I saw the ghostly features of my long-dead sister.

When the image of the woman I loved rushed toward me, I did my best to hang onto it. An excruciating pang of regret lanced through me at the realization I’d never see or hold the beautiful doctor again. Never have the chance to finally win her and feel our two bodies consummate our love.

Then her gorgeous face was swept away by the onrush of more split-second images. I saw passenger-filled cars exploding, one after another. I saw mangled and mutilated SWAT cops, shrieking in misery. I saw a downtown intersection turned into a hellish inferno.

I was flashing back all the way to the very beginning now. To when the gut-wrenching terror that had hung over the Motor City for the past dozen days first came creeping out of the shadows. To the night when those two unsuspecting hot rodders came face-to-face with a deranged, murderous fiend.

To that muggy summer night on Woodward Avenue when the parade of horrors began…


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Scream Cruise Now Available For Several eReaders

Just wanted to post a quick update to let folks know that – in addition to the Amazon versions shown on the right side of the web page – you can now get the ebook version of Scream Cruise on several e-reader platforms. You can now preview and buy the book through the Apple iBookstore and read it on your iPad, iPod or even your iPhone. Here’s a link to Scream Cruise at the Apple store:

You can also purchase Scream Cruise online at Barnes & Noble – either in the print or Nook ebook version. Just click on the logo graphic for the version you prefer.

 Scream Cruise Print Version 

 Scream Cruise Nook eBook Version

If you have a Kobo ebook reader, you can get the book at the Kobo bookstore, at:

The book is also available at Smashwords.com in multiple electronic formats. Here’s a link to Scream Cruise on Smashwords:

It can be downloaded as an .html, .epub, .mobi or .PDF file. With .html, you can read it right in your browser. The .epub can be read on a number of different readers. .mobi files can be read on your Kindle (although if you are planning on reading it on a Kindle, I’d recommend getting it from Amazon over Smashwords). .PDF files can be read by the Adobe Reader program.

So there it is, folks: Scream Cruise in whatever format you prefer. Enjoy!

Scream Cruise eBook 99 Cent Sale

scream cruise - amazon sales page graphicScream Cruise eBook On Sale – Note: Sale Is Over!

Update: the 99 cent sale is over and the ebook price of Scream Cruise is back to $2.99. (Still a bargain in my opinion – just not an insane bargain!)

Thanks to everyone who’s bought a copy, at whatever price you paid. And if you enjoyed the book and want to support Detroit writers, please post a review on whatever store you bought from. Thanks!


For a limited time, I’ve made the ebook version of Scream Cruise available for just 99 cents. You can get it at this special price for Amazon’s Kindle, Apple’s iPad or iPod, Sony’s eReader or on Smashwords in multiple formats. The easiest way to find it is to just Google on “scream cruise” and add the name of the bookseller you prefer.

Did You Know Your PC is a Kindle Reader?

I’m discovering that an awful lot of folks are unaware that Amazon gives away a free Kindle application that allows you to read any Kindle ebook on your computer, whether it’s an Apple or IBM-compatible PC.

Since there’s no printing cost associated with ebooks, most of the time they’re more inexpensive than print book. There are a ton of excellent books available for only $2.99 (my normal price for Scream Cruise) or even 99 cents, when authors like myself are trying to build readership for their books.

Did You Know You Can Preview eBooks?

I’ve also found out from talking to people that very often they don’t know you can preview eBooks before buying them. All the big ebook sellers allow you to read at least the opening pages of the ebook, so you can get a feel for whether it’s for you.  So go ahead and check out the previews for Scream Cruise.


Scream Cruise Print Book Published on Amazon

Scream Cruise - A Motor City Thriller

Am happy to say I’ve reached another milestone in the publication process. The print version of Scream Cruise is now available on Amazon.

The process has been challenging, to say the least. I’ve made hundreds of small changes, corrections and improvements since “finishing” the original Kindle ebook.

I’ve got 20 copies on order from CreateSpace. These will be used primarily for marketing purposes. My intention is to provide local reviewers with copies, and also to show them to a couple of local retail outlets where I think they’ll be interested in the title, due to it being a Detroit-centered fiction.


Scream Cruise eBook Published on Amazon

scream cruise - amazon sales page graphicUpdate: Scream Cruise now available on all major ebook stores.

Thanks to Mark Coker’s excellent Smashwords.com site, Scream Cruise – A Motor City Thriller is now available for download to your Nook, iPad or iPod, or Sony e-reader as well as to your Amazon Kindle (or PC with the Kindle app installed).

 Milestone: Scream Cruise Published on Amazon.

Yesterday was something of a landmark day for me. I finally published my first fiction ebook on Amazon. I have to admit it feels great!

I wrote the initial draft of my Detroit thriller, Scream Cruise in about 3 months in 2011. I could tell there many good elements in the book. But there were also several problems with it, and at the time I just didn’t know how to go about fixing them.

After I retired last November, I decided to devote myself to writing fiction full-time. But instead of just diving in and trying to wing it and learn as I went, I also decided to start seeing myself as an apprentice at the craft of writing popular fiction. I started reading a LOT of bestsellers. I read in a lot of different genres – young adult fantasy, action thrillers, romantic thrillers, mystery and more.  But I didn’t just read the books and put them aside. I’d read them once just for the story, and then I’d go back through them, scene-by-scene and chapter-by-chapter, and analyze what the author had done to make the scene work the way it did.

Anyways, I know I learned a lot from that process.  Because when I took a look again at Scream Cruise back in June of 2012, I realized I now knew what I had to do to make the story work well for readers.

So for the past two months I’ve worked diligently to finish the book. Cutting, adding, shifting things around, and just generally using every technique I’d learned to make Scream Cruise as entertaining a book as possible.

One thing I also did was heighten the amount of local Detroit content. I realized I was taking a certain risk there, since people who aren’t from or familiar with the area might be kind of put off by the place references.  But my desire to produce something that people from Greater Detroit would get a kick out of won out in the end.  In a weird way, Scream Cruise is kind of an affectionate love letter to my home town, the Motor City.

In any case, getting the ebook of Scream Cruise up on Amazon is just the beginning. I’m already working on getting a paperback version prepared to release and also to get the book out in other electronic formats besides Kindle.

No rest for the wicked!

P.S. In case you’re wondering what authors I’ve been studying, they include James Patterson, Lee Child, Michael Connelly, Elmore Leonard, Stephen King, Lisa Gardner, Dean Koontz, Harlan Coben, Alex Kava, J. A. Konrath, Blake Crouch, Tess Gerritsen, Thomas Harris, William Peter Blatty, Stephenie Meyer, Suzanne Collins, Stieg Larsson, Carl Hiassen, Janet Evanovitch – and more besides.


Detroit author Jim DeLorey’s Current Novel Projects


Detroit author Jim DeLorey’s novel projects


I’m currently working on three different novel projects.

One is a young adult fantasy.  One is an action thriller, set in Detroit, that climaxes at the Woodward Avenue Dream Cruise. And the third is a revision of a novel I wrote a dozen years or so back, an updating of the Grimms’ fairy tale, “Hansel and Gretel,” set in the 1950s American midwest.

For better or worse, right now I’m rotating between them.  Working on one until I run into mental roadblocks that halt my momentum, then switching over to another.  The advantage is that it keeps my writing forward-momentum going.  The disadvantage is that it MAY prolong the completion time for them.

When I run into problem areas, I have a tendency to zero in too closely and try to fix things by getting exactly the right wordings – when the real problem tends to be more on the level of plain, old, simple story-telling.

That’s why moving from one piece to another seems to be working for me.  I get some distance from them in the interim periods, and am better able to see them from the altitude I need to be able to fix them.

Note: writing well (or at least effectively) has a lot to do with “zooming” in and out.  More on that next time.  Or at some point…