Author, Books, Writing

Meet Author, Robert Parlante – #Plotting a Different Ending – @robertparlante

Hello, bloggers!

Welcome to a fabulous day in the grand state of Alabama.

Today, it is my pleasure to welcome Author, Robert Parlante. This creative mind takes us on a unique journey, where WE get to come up with the ending. And, as if today couldn’t get any better, continue reading to find out how you can enter for a chance at one of Robert’s books!!


Plotting a Different Ending

As a young boy, I always enjoyed visiting the peculiar couple who lived in the grey-weathered clapboarded building hidden away near an abandoned anthracite coal mine in Pennsylvania.

I called the old man the “junk dealer”, and she the “book lady”. I liked reading stories in the woman’s stash of pulp magazines. Zane Grey’s Western magazine was my favorite. As soon as I finished one story I would begin another and often read the same story over again trying to plot a different ending. I practically had the stories and alternate endings memorized, and I would go outside to reenact the plot. Cowboys and rustlers. The beautiful teacher abducted by the evil mine boss. My trusted dog Lassie would help me save the day! There was no limit to what my brain could conjure up on a humid summer day in coal country.

I also liked to scavenge the areas around the abandoned mines searching for treasures left behind after the mines stopped operating. When I stumbled upon a length of rusted metal for the old man, he acted like I had brought him a million dollars as he added his new treasure to his junk collection. I once brought back an empty cobalt-blue glass bottle that glistened like a sapphire gem. It was probably worthless but the old man treated the bottle as priceless, telling me it was fit for a king or queen’s crown. I tried immediately to incorporate that plot line into one of the stories running through my overactive imagination.

As a young boy, there was never a time I did not have a dog, and every one of them was named Lassie, male or female. I was obsessed with the movie “Lassie, Come Home” filmed in 1943. Between Zane Grey and Lassie, I had everything I needed to conjure up life-and-death stories where some young hero comes to the rescue.

One day while on another scavenger hunt, I heard a strange sound coming from the mine area and the surrounding waste heaps. It was a faint wailing, sounding desperate, like a crying baby wanting to be fed. When I honed in on the place it was coming from, I walked up to the edge of a cavernous excavation. As I scanned the deep ravine I saw a dog who had fallen off the edge and landed onto a narrow ledge about 50 feet above the crater’s bottom. Had the fall just happened or did it occur days ago? It had to be some time ago, because the dog was skinny and hardly moving.

There was no escape! There was no way for me to reach the desperate dog from the top. There was no way for the dog to jump off the ledge and survive the leap. Who to call? No phones. Certainly, no cell phones. I stood frozen looking down at the helpless animal. No matter how much I tried to figure out a rescue, I came up empty. As I considered the likely outcome, I found myself fighting back tears. I sat on the ground and imagined I was stroking the desperate animal, hoping it would be a source of comfort like some mystical hand.

As I eased back toward the edge of the ravine, there was stone silence. I was immediately heartbroken. I made up stories where I could change the ending or soften the hard parts with a happy thought or a redeeming gesture. But this time I sensed I would not be the hero. Or, was I?

Readers, here is a writing challenge. How would you plot the ending of this real-life story?

About today’s guest:

Bob has always been a writer, having crafted his first short story in the 7th grade. But the necessities and priorities of life came first making it more important to work at regular paying employment. He was a food researcher, a technical writer, environmental engineer, a site manager for a pharmaceutical manufacturing location, a director of external affairs, and the most meaningful vocation in his life, a minister. Bob has both BS and MS degrees in chemical engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark, New Jersey. He also has a MBA in Organizational Behavior from Iona College. He met his ministerial requirements through Berean Bible Institute and Alliance Theological Seminary. He was credentialed with the Assemblies of God since 1996 and ordained in 2001. He served as an associate pastor with Englewood Assembly of God church for over 10 years in Englewood, New Jersey. He is married to Angela, and they have three children and nine grandkids!


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Thank you so much for joining us today.

Will you accept Robert’s challenge? How would you plot the ending of his story? Comment below with YOUR ENDING and be entered into today’s giveaway! One lucky person will win a Kindle version of one of his books. All you need to do is be creative, be unique, and accept Robert’s challenge!!

Until next time……………………Happy Reading & Reviewing!!!


7 thoughts on “Meet Author, Robert Parlante – #Plotting a Different Ending – @robertparlante”

  1. I loved reading about Robert’s adventures when he visited with the old couple, and how wonderfully they treated him. The cobalt blue glass treasure made me grin.

    But the story of the dog on the ledge is simply heartbreaking. I like to think that poor animal took comfort in knowing there was someone there and that it was not alone when the final moments came. As someone who needs an HEA ending, yes, I would have to rewrite the end of the story. I would have to have someone arrive in the nick of time….the old man shows up in a pick-up truck that has a hodgepodge of tools in the back, including a rope. He and the boy int he story work together to rescue the dog. Either that, or I would have some form of mystical or miraculous intervention. Anything to arrive at that HEA. I’m such a sucker for animals. 🙂

    Thanks for hosting a most interesting guest, Marlena. I really enjoyed Robert’s post today.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree with Mae, Robert. Definitely need a happy ending. (Never hurt an animal, IRL or fiction. Too tragic.)

    The boy gets the junk dealer. Book lady calls fire dept. for help while junk dealer lowers a (handcrafted) rope ladder to the dog. Boy climbs down with a backpack filled with a bowl and bottled water, a few pieces of bacon, and lots of love. He feeds the dog, lets him drink, and comforts him until help arrives. A vet can save the dog, and boy adopts his next Lassie.

    Please don’t tell me otherwise. In my mind, the dog makes a full recovery and they all live HEA.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with Mae. It needed a happy ending. I can’t stand for an animal to suffer. 🙂 So, I would have the boy immediately start looking around in desperation for anything he can use to reach the dog. Of course, he finds nothing, so just as he is about to give up, the old man shows up and together they rescue the animal, which the boy immediately claims as his own and calls it Lassie. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love the cobalt blue bottle, I want it on the dresser in my porch where I have all sorts of collected items.
    Back to the story: Lassie saves the day, she/he is agile and intelligent of course, but also has senses far more acute than humans can perceive. She follows her instinct and a path another way down and edges along to the ledge to comfort the dog just as Zane Grey abseils down to save them both.

    Liked by 1 person

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