The Old Mansion

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A short story of two young girls and a boy that set out on an adventure to discover elves.
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Published: April 26, 2012
Words: 1,600
Language: English
ISBN: 9781476106434
About Walter Lazo

“Our free short stories are intended as a doorway to our more mature premium works. Their purpose is to showcase the author’s writing style and use of evocative imagery. Although these are his earlier works—he has gotten much better since—they serve as a nice introduction to his thematic concerns as well as to his belief that a story has to be believed in to be effective. Therefore, what he presents in these stories are situations and the reactions of characters within those situations.”

Walter Lazo was born in Cambridge, MA, and now lives in North Carolina. As a child he discovered his love of Weird Fiction and large, epic, heroic stories, as well as German and Greek mythology, devouring the works of H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, J.R.R. Tolkien, Stephen King, the Grimm brothers, Bram Stoker, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Walter grew up reading the short stories of Richard Matheson, and later discovered the works of the great science fiction writers of the 20th century; namely, Philip K. Dick, Ray Bradbury and Isaac Asimov.

He enjoys writing horror and science fiction stories with an occasional martial arts story thrown in for good measure. He is currently obsessed with the short story form and hopes that it will make a comeback in popularity. As an adult he has tried to create his own mythos, writing about the Demon World and other creatures that torment men’s dreams.

He is a longtime fan of Stephen King and of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien.

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Reviews

Review by: Michael Carter on May 02, 2013 : star star star star
When three young kids head off to a scary mansion looking for elves, they witness something they had not expected. This is very well written, clear prose, and easy and enjoyable to read. I think it's also a great idea, in fact there's about three great ideas in here, but I would have to echo some of the other reviews here; up to the last hundred or so words, the story is great, but the ending lacks a punch. Any tension drains away by the uneventful climax, and what momentum has been built up is lost. It's a shame, as I really liked this, and think the ideas are fresh and have great potential. Walter, perhaps you could expand the ending; I can see many different directions this could go, and the idea and the quality of writing have the strength to make a top-class story, whatever length you would care to make it.

Don't be put off by these slight criticisms of your endings; your writing and ideas are great!
(review of free book)

Review by: Jonathan Antony Strickland on April 28, 2013 : star star star
Three young children enter into the grounds of an old mansion in search of elves. The story was good, with fairytale beginning and a brothers Grimm like twist for an end. Perhaps it could be improved if a little more action happens and the children find themselves in more danger.

Because of this I agree with the reviewer Ardy, this would make a great intro for a longer story.
(review of free book)

Review by: Chris The Story Reading Ape on March 13, 2013 : star star star star star
Fairytale characters may not all be as sweet and kindly, or even as beautiful, as they are portrayed, as three children find out in this little story.
(review of free book)

Review by: Ardy on July 11, 2012 : star star star star
A very good story with a lot of potential. Should be the first chapter of a novel, though.
(review of free book)

Review by: A.E. Moseley on May 09, 2012 : star star star
This short story starts off nicely and makes it easy to sympathize with the three kids. There is a very nice twist towards the middle and then an end. The twist isn't built upon and the tension breaks because of it, which left me disappointed at the end.

The Old Mansion would have been excellent if the tension had been built upon and if so many things hadn't been left hanging. I would love to see this story built upon and would certainly read it if it was!

In summary this story has great potential and good writing style but is ended too soon which leaves many questions unanswered which breaks the suspense.
(review of free book)

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