Rubicon Ranch: The Saga Continues


Rubicon Ranch

More than a year and a half ago, nine authors from Second Wind Publishing got together to write a novel online. We knew nothing more than that a little girl’s body had been found in the wilderness near the desert community of Rubicon Ranch.

Rubicon Ranch

Was it an accident? Or . . . murder! But who would want to kill little Riley? Everyone in this upscale housing development is hiding something. Everyone has an agenda. Everyone’s life will be different after they have encountered the Rubicon. Rubicon Ranch, that is.

From that short proposal grew a novel with intriguing and nefarious characters, each completely different because each was created by a different author.

Jeff and Kourtney Peterson are Riley’s “adoptive” parents who didn’t go through legal channels to get the child they so desperately wanted. Would they kill to protect their secret?

Moody Sinclair had once killed an eight-year-old boy. Has she killed again?

Fifteen-year-old Dylan McKenzie is a straight-A honor student. By day. Did Riley discover the other Dylan, the one who prowls at night?

Cooper Dahlsing does strange things while sleepwalking. Could he have killed and not known it?

Mark and Jamie Westbrook, self-styled private investigators, show up to help solve the murder, but perhaps they had a hand in creating the crime?

Eighty-two-year-old Eloy Franklin sits on his porch and watches. But does he do more than watch?

Forty-three-year-old Melanie Gray found Riley’s body stuffed in a television console that had been dumped in the desert. But is she as innocent as she seems?

Sheriff Seth Bryan is bitter and cynical at having lost everything he values. Is he manufacturing crimes to bring him the notoriety he craves?


Life sometimes got in the way of this collaboration, so instead of posting a chapter every week, we went through a long hiatus where the authors suffered variously from cancer, death of a family member, house flooding, job loss, but we picked right up where we left off, and now this experimental novel is finished!

The book will be published during the next couple of months, but you can read the entire story online here: Rubicon Ranch, Book One: Riley’s Story

But that is not the end!!! Next week, we will begin posting chapters to a book in the series, Rubicon Ranch, Book Two: Necropieces — Residents of Rubicon Ranch find body parts scattered all over the desert. Who was the victim and why did someone want him so very dead? Eight Second Wind authors are collaborating to create another innovative crime novel set in the desert community of Rubicon Ranch.

Again, we will be posting a new chapter every week. I hope you will join us as the Rubicon Ranch saga continues.

  1. Avatar of Nancy Duci Denofio
    Nancy Duci Denofio says

    Just google+ ‘ed your story here – I would love to learn more, how this became a collaborative novel? It certainly sounds interesting. Your Friend, Nancy

    1. Avatar of Pat Bertram
      Pat Bertram says

      Nancy, We started with the scenario of a murdered child, and each author created a character who might have had reason to kill her. At the end, we decided who really did it. You can find the entire story at Rubicon Ranch

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