Friday, October 3, 2014

Orchard Gap-The Novel

“A rogue biotech scientist secretly nurtures her deadly GMO corn seed while America sleeps…”


Sally Barber is a young Ph.D. working for a global biotech firm in Research Triangle Park North Carolina who is about to be honored as the youngest recipient of the World Food Prize.  Her new GMO corn seed will revolutionize milk production. 

What the world doesn’t know is of her sinister plot to use her “secret” GMO corn seed to kill and destabilize the United States.

An adrenaline producing thriller to capture this mysterious scientist before it is too late takes the reader through the slums of Karachi to the GMO Research fields of Kauai and finds it’s ending in tiny Orchard Gap.

Quinn McSpain and Louisa Hawke are called upon again to capture this rogue geneticist who holds the deadliest of secrets and must be stopped before she brings America to…its knees!
Chapter 1
The traffic on Interstate-40 West out of Research Triangle Park was lighter than usual and she was thankful for that.
She still had second thoughts about whether she should even be taking a few days off from her projects in her laboratory in the biotech complex.  Yet she was frustrated that certain parts of her latest project were not working out as she had planned.
She was not at all pleased. Sally Barber was accustomed to have her projects work as planned.
Yet she decided that a change of scenery would probably give her a new prospective. One of her laboratory technicians had suggested that she should drive north through Winston-Salem and explore the Blue Ridge Parkway.
The late summer sun felt good as she drove with her windows open. She didn’t have any particular destination in mind and liked the notion that she could do as she pleased—at least for a day or two.
Her extremely structured life left little time for any frivolous activities. Her work was her life…her mission…her only reason to exist.
She soon saw the exit sign on Highway 52 to Mt. Airy. She was told that this place was the model for the favorite American television series the Andy Griffith show. She knew that this show depicted an idyllic American life for all to emulate.
She cringed as she drove past the exit. Fuck the American dream, she thought.
As she drove past the state line in Virginia the road began to curve left and right through the switchbacks up the mountain. She accelerated as she liked to challenge herself on dangerous roads.
The traffic up the mountain was light and didn’t pose any problems.
What soon did present a problem was the fine mist she soon found herself driving in. She slowed as the mist quickly got thicker and thicker to the point where she turned the fog lights on.
She didn’t notice that her grip on the steering wheel tightened.
Soon she found herself completely focused on the solid white line on the road going left to right. The twilight turned to darkness as the cloud deck settled in at twenty six hundred feet and was as thick as pea soup.
Out of the corner of her eye she caught sight on the Blue Ridge Parkway entrance sign in Fancy Gap. She pulled the steering wheel hard to the right and barely made it to the Stop sign at the Parkway entrance.
Her choices were limited to two…left or right.
She chose to go right and proceeded to creep along this new road. Her Google search had enlightened her on the history and facts surrounding this highway that was a national park for all of four hundred and sixty-nine miles.
She continued to drive cautiously as she strained to see though the thick blanket of white she was in.
Suddenly and without warning the cloud deck lifted and the road opened up into fields of farmland and small homesteads that dotted the rolling landscape. She accelerated to the posted speed of forty-five miles–per-hour.
A large sign on the right hand side of road the indicated that she was now in Orchard Gap.
A small paved road intersected with the Parkway that caught her attention. Off in the distance she saw a For Sale sign. She stopped and quickly backed up enough to take a left on this new road.
The sign got closer and closer until she realized that an arrow was pointing further down the road.
She drove for another five miles before another arrow pointed right to a dirt road. She turned on the dirt road and drove for another mile until she came upon the property. What she saw not at all pretty but still brought a smile to her face. The dilapidated farm house appeared to be coming apart at the seams. 
The sun was slowly setting as she parked in the driveway and got out of her car. She walked to the side of the house and noticed a small pasture. The other side of the house was reserved for what was, at one time, a garden. 
Perfect she thought.
The sounds of children at play soon crested over the small earthen berm to the rear of the property. Two young girls soon bounded over the berm and ran in her direction. They stopped just short of her car and smiled.
“Are you going to buy the Isenhour homestead,” the taller of the two girls asked? She smiled before she answered, “Well I don’t know I just got here and I need to find out more about this place.” 
The smaller of the two replied, “well we sure hope you do cause no one has lived here for at least five years.”  The taller took a few steps closer and held out her hand, my name is Sandra and this is my sister Jane. What is your name?” 
She took Sandra’s hand, “good to meet the two of you my name is Sally. Do you live nearby?”
“We do”, Jane replied, “we live on a little farm on the other side of the bump. We have three milk cows and chickens on our farm. Our Mommy and Daddy are not working right now but we sure hope that they do soon.”
She was taken back with the little girl’s forthright fullness. Sandra took Jane’s hand and turned as she spoke, “we have to go now cause it’s suppertime.” 
“Nice to meet you girls and I hope to see you again at some time.”
They disappeared over the berm as she turned to take a harder look at the property. She looked into the ground floor windows and saw broken cabinets in the kitchen as she suspected that the place had been vandalized in more than a few occasions.
The front door came open as she gave it a tug.
Her quick walkthrough only confirmed what she suspected.  The house was a dump. Perfect she thought. She left the house and turned to what was the garden area. She knew she didn’t need much space to plant what she would plant.
No indeed…her GMO seed of death needed very little space at all.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Untitled by makedustoreatdust at Garmin Connect - Details

Great 36 miler from Fancy gap to Meadows of Dan this morning on a picture perfect day on the Blue Ridge Parkway--great cadence & speed--awesome workout!!! Untitled by makedustoreatdust at Garmin Connect - Details

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Fancy Gap 145th Awesome Five-Star Amazon Reader Review!

Wordle: Fancy Gap-the Novel

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Fancy Gap-The Novel--Serialized in The Galax, VA Gazette!

I am humbled & and very pleased to announce that the editors of the Galax, Virginia Gazette newspaper have chosen my novel, “Fancy Gap” to be serialized to their readers. The initial installment is published today’s weekend edition of this award winning newspaper. Subsequent installments will follow in each weekend edition thereafter. My thanks to the Galax Gazette for bringing “Fancy Gap” to their readers! ═► 118th ★★★★★ Reviews!!═►Riveting ★★★★★Thriller═►Amazon Prime —═►FREE

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Market America Cares Blog

David Gelly gets great reviews in our book!

June 12 2013—
David Gelly has authored numerous essays and short stories on global travel, athletic accomplishments and life experiences.  A raconteur and oenophile of note, he is an avid marathoner and cyclist who explores unusual places in his travels on domestic as well as international assignments.  He is also quite a talented storyteller!  He has plied his trade in government agencies as well as in the corporate ranks of many significant entities taking him through the streets and alleys of concrete canyons as well as the twists and turns of the Silk Road to the wheat fields of America’s heartland.  A graduate of Northeastern University in Boston, he currently resides in North Carolina as well as the mountains of southwest Virginia, where his most recent book, Fancy Gap, is set.
David has been very supportive of ma Cares and our “A Night of Stars – Saluting Our Veterans” event to benefit Patriot Rovers.  He also uses his interest in cycling to help raise money for charities.  Naturally, we wanted to learn more about our local talent and his involvement in the community and David kindly obliged.

ma Cares:  What inspired you to write your first book, Fancy Gap?
David Gelly:  Well Fancy Gap was born of the legendary fog on Fancy Gap Mountain. So many unfortunate horrific car crashes have happened in that fog that I soon realized that the fog could be the basis of a murder/mystery novel.  Fancy Gap is the 1st in a series of five of the “Gap” series.  The second installment will be “Orchard Gap” an agro-terrorism thriller.

ma Cares: What challenges did you encounter in writing it?
David Gelly:  I am a story teller.  I wrote the story in but three months.  All 99,999 words came out in that time.  Once I realized that the story worked, the next six months where spent working with my editor to get Fancy Gap in the proper style/format that this novel demanded.

ma Cares: What suggestions would you give to aspiring writers?
David Gelly:  WOW…large question! I now encounter so many people who say, “Gee I’ve always wanted to write a book!”  It is now possible thru self-publishing for anyone to realize their dream.  The days of having to find an agent and a publishing house are history.  I used CreateSpace.  They were wonderful to work with.  I hope to make the book available on SHOP.COM.

ma Cares:  As an avid marathoner, how often do you participate in marathons?
David Gelly:  I have run fifty marathons over the past thirty years.  I ran the 100th Birthday edition of the Boston Marathon with my son Eric.  That was very special! Check out photos and more on my blog at:

ma Cares:  What are some other ways that you give back to the community?
David Gelly:  My son Eric is the COO of the North Carolina Credit Union League.  We have a wonderful group of credit union runners and bike riders who raise money for charity and special groups.  We are:  Check us out!  My favorite ride was where we raised over $161,000 for the Hope for the Warriors Care Center at Camp Lejeune.  In a week we rode our bikes to all the military bases in North Carolina.  It was a week I’ll never forget!
We are certainly impressed with his many accomplishments!  To learn more about David and how to purchase his book, check out the Fancy Gap Facebook page, connect with the author on Twitter or send him an email.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Fog shrouds mountain in mystery

Fancy Gap's fog inspired an author to set his thriller in the Carroll community.

By Christopher Brooke, Reporter

Friday, August 10, 2012 at 6:00 am (Updated: August 10, 6:00 am)

FANCY GAP — David Gelly saw possibilities in the famous fog of Fancy Gap — as a shroud of mystery for the setting in his fictional murder thriller.

He’s often driven up U.S. 52 from Winston-Salem, N.C., to his getaway in the mountains, having to slash through fog where he couldn’t see two feet ahead.

Like many drivers who have ended up in the multi-vehicle pileups on Interstate 77 or those who struggled to stay out of accidents in the area, the weather made an impression on Gelly.

To write “Fancy Gap,” Gelly combined his experience as a corporate security supervisor with his love of writing and his interest in the local culture of the Blue Ridge Mountains to pen this tale of a loathsome crime.

“For travelers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Fancy Gap, the fog often hangs like an azure dream over the rolling green hills,” the book’s blurb says. “But when a madman abducts two children and disappears into the wisps with the young brother and sister, the landscape becomes a nightmare for the children’s parents and local residents.”

“On the bucket list: I said one day I want to write this novel,” he explained.

Staples of Carroll County and Blue Ridge Mountain living appear in the piece, including the Devil’s Den Nature Preserve and the Hillsville Labor Day Gun Show and Flea Market, Buffalo Mountain, the Beaver Dam Trail and vintages from a well-known local winery.

“For travelers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Fancy Gap, the fog often hangs like an azure dream over the rolling green hills,” the book’s blurb says. “But when a madman abducts two children and disappears into the wisps with the young brother and sister, the landscape becomes a nightmare for the children’s parents and local residents.”

The inspiration came to him in October to write this story. After that, Gelly got up at 4 a.m. each Saturday and sat in his chateau with its panoramic views through the bay windows of the Piedmont. He continues typing until there were 1,000 more words on the page.

“It was a great use of my time instead of going to the bar,” he joked.


While the places have their basis in fact, few characters in the book do, Gelly stressed. Any similarity to real people is a coincidence.

Quinn McSpain, the novel’s hero, is a 60-something widower, living like a hermit in his adopted mountain home and still mourning the loss of his spouse.

He meets workaholic FBI agent Louisa Hawke at a retirement party in Arlington, but the couple’s budding romance gets interrupted by a crime that horrifies the mountain community.

Gelly’s previous writing flowed in the non-fiction vein, as the author of many articles for the Twin City Track Club monthly newsletter.

Gelly has directed considerable energy over the years to his running, participating in 50 marathons. His outdoor activities continue, only now he’s hiking, biking and kayaking in the mountains.

Gelly provided security during his time in the U.S. Army, before going on to work for the IRS and then entering the private sector, including working for Sara Lee while it still manufactured clothing in Hillsville and Galax.

That meant he would travel here on occasion to talk about security matters. “I always thought Carroll County was a pretty place.”

No case he investigated in corporate security resembled the plot in the book. However, Gelly did help resolve a prominent scheme where a cotton buyer working to fill Sara Lee’s demand for the textile fiber took kickbacks from suppliers. The chief cotton buyer was found guilty of conspiracy, mail fraud and money laundering in federal court in Greensboro.

An estimated $1.2 million was involved and the ringleader went to prison for 6.5 years.

Gelly stands on the verge of retirement himself, at which time he plans to fully immerse himself in the continuing adventures of McSpain and Hawke in the other five planned novels in the “Gap series.”

“Next year, when I retire, I won’t be bound by work,” he explained.

• This is the first in a series of six "Gap" novels by David Gelly. Others planned for the series include Orchard Gap, Volunteer Gap, Willis Gap, Squirrel Gap and Low Gap. Fancy Gap is available on and comes in paperback for $14.99 plus shipping or $5.99 for a downloadable version. For more, see Gelly’s blog,