Posted in #weekendcoffeeshare, Blogfest Entries, Business Startup, Coffee and Conversation, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Parenting, slices of life, Weekend Coffee Share, Weekly Features

A Pleasant Sunday Cuppa for #weekendcoffeeshare, September 17, 2017

If we were having coffee, we’d be listening to Saturday night fireworks booming in from somewhere – maybe the village of Stillwater, since the direction’s right (we have a Stillwater address, but we live up on a hill overlooking it, so we’re not actually in the village, but the town of Stillwater – upstate New York has a rather complicated way of determining its communities). We can hear the fireworks, but not see them.

I’d be calm and sleepy, as the final salvo sounds. My hair would still be damp. After a very slow farmer’s market this morning/afternoon, I took my first swim in quite some time. 500 meters at the Y pool was a nice challenging stretch without being too strenuous for the fact that I only had about 2 hours of sleep, and there are two more market days yet to come.

It’s the end of a busy week… but it’s a different kind of week than last week, which was, as I wrote then, #lifeonespresso. This was a week more like Sunday morning coffee after tai chi class (even though my tai chi class is on Tuesdays and Thursdays). Yes, I actually attended tai chi twice this past week, after an absence that began in March, when life got uncooperative with my plans). I always forget just how much I love this practice, and enjoy the group I practice with. After class, I’m more energized and peaceful, and I’ve always learned something, smiled, and laughed while I stretched my body and mind. Not bad for a free hour at the Y.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that my 16 year old son had his first experience with driving on the road – quiet local country roads, but still, he drove several miles. I’m very impressed with his approach. He’s got an analytical mind and a laid-back, safety-conscious but not timid personality, and his nature seems very well suited to learning. He assesses his status constantly, and adjusts well, using everything he’s learned through reading and prior experience, and responds well to suggestions and corrections from me, his learning facilitator. I’m not his teacher – the wheel, so to speak, is firmly in his hands. He’s possessed of a level of maturity and judgment that I trust; he’s doing very well at pacing and challenging himself.

I’d tell you that I also began a new #5Ktraining this week, via my Samsung Health app. I like these apps, because they give me a framework in which to learn. Week One went well; for two of the three workouts, I carried my handweights and did a few upper body exercises.

If you’ve noticed a renewed focus on fitness and health in this update, you’re not mistaken. It’s time. I love the way I feel when I’m more active, and I love pretty much all vegetables, too…which is why this chef’s wife is committing to cooking a veggie-based meal at least three times a week. It’s quick, it’s fun, and it’s delicious! That it’s also good for me is a delightful bonus. =D

If we were having coffee, I’d notice that our cups are getting low, and offer you a refill while you tell me what you’ve been up to, and what your plans are for the next week. Once we’ve caught up on your news, I’d tell you that this week has a steady diet of goodness to offer. More veggies (just loaded up at the market today), more tai chi, more swimming, more walking on the way to running. More writing, of course, even though Round Three of ROW80 ends on Thursday. I’d tell you that I’ve got a plan for the break before Round 4 starts on October 2, but that I’m not ready to announce what it is just yet.

I’d see that your cup is now about empty, and you don’t want any more. So I’d quickly tell you that I’m excited to be getting back to my video class, revision course, and a local Writers’ Guild live chat. And then there’s the lecture I’ll be attending: General Philip Schuyler’s early pioneering of the New York State Canal System.

I’d also invite you to stay for a late dinner. Chef Bluebeard is baking chicken and red potatoes, and I’ve cooked off some farmer’s market green beans, and the aromas wafting through the house are lovely!

I’m so glad you decided to stay! Let’s eat!

Need another cuppa?

Visit Diana’s Part-Time Monster Blog or the hashtag for more #weekendcoffeeshare posts.

Posted in #STaD 2017, Blog Hops and Fests, Challenges and Contests, Enterprise fan fiction, Fan fiction, fantasy, Flash Fiction Pieces, Just for Fun!, Novel Excerpts, Short Stories, SoCS, Star Trek: Enterprise, Story a Day, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, The IDIC Romance, Weekly Features, Writers' Resources, writing, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

Hard News for #StoryADay/#SoCS

Hi there, and welcome to my joint #StoryADay/ Stream of Consciousness Saturday post.

The #SoCS prompt for this week is “vol.” I used three “vol” words, and a list of prompt words from a worksheet created by my friend and NaNoWriMo ML, Shannon Kauderer. Those are listed before the TnT drabble. I confess to editing that one to maintain the 100 word limit, so you can consider it a bonus if you’d like.

The first post is completely unedited.

I haven’t been posting my #StoryADay writing on a daily basis, but it fit so well here, I couldn’t resist. Learn more about StoryADay September 2017.

“You Have News” 

(Preparation for my upcoming Trueborn series epic fantasy series WIP, Solemates.)

“So, sister, you have news you have nay shared with me yet.”

Niaan might have been surprised, once, at the ease with which Rachyl discerned such things, when she had thought them camouflaged and safe from encroachment. But she was sitting on cushions beside a voluminous planting of sensates. She could nay read any but the most basic of the messages the plants made, but Rachyl tended to the plants as to dear friends, and they spoke to her even if she didn’t touch them.

“Are you going to tell it, or hoard it to yourself like you did that fur when you were seven sunrounds, and dragged it into the Great Hall, and would nay let any other touch it or take it from your jaws?”

“Nay – I will tell it. I want none of the flogging Mother gave me when I fell asleep with it.”

“As though I would flog you for simply being as you are, sister. Come, now, you know me better than that. Besides, your fangs are far sharper, and your Huntskills far stronger, than they were then. I value my skin too much to wish it punctured. Even more my breathsource and bloodsource, sister. So, if you will nay tell me now, I will wait on your choice, and hold to my own wonderings.” Rachyl sipped her tea sedately; as though nothing could ever disturb her.

Mayhap it could nay. She was a fine healer, and had been so since she was a child. It was she who had made and applied the salve after Mother’s flogging.

But, if there was that which could disturb her, it was like as nay the news Niaan had to share. It had been so long, near to her lifetime, and many tended to think she had only imagined it in some fever-sickness long past, and that she was merely a fool who chased after dartwings, and would nay release the dessicated carcass of a prey long since dead.

She set her drinking bowl on the flat rock beside her, and studied her sister closely for a moment. “Kaivelt is coming to me, Rachyl.”

Word Prompts for September 16, 2017:

  1. flaky
  2. bloody
  3. well-groomed
  4. bounce
  5. page
  6. cherry
  7. trick
  8. print
  9. embarrass
  10. brother
  11. prickly
  12. finicky
  13. bored
  14. domineering
  15. volatile
  16. voluble

Standard disclaimer:

I don’t own or profit from these characters.

The Hard Way

(Exploration for upcoming chapters of my Star Trek: Enterprise TnT fan fiction story, “Highly Classified Mission,” which is based on S2E7: “The Seventh.” All previous and subsequent Story A Day September Drabbles can (eventually) be found on my fanfiction.net page.)

Trip pokes at the flaky croissant, dips it in cherry jam – then puts it back on his plate, uneaten. He stares at the page on the PADD without really seeing it. The print swims; he still hasn’t slept.

Bored with playing a volatile, domineering tyrant so soon?” Malcolm doesn’t look tired enough. There’s still a bounce in his step. He’s well-groomed. “Too finicky for Chef’s breakfast, too, I see.”

Trip is prickly. Malcolm’s too damned voluble. Trip’s brother taught him well how to embarrass someone, and and Malcolm Bloody Reed’s about to learn a trick or two – the hard way.

Posted in "Monday Morning Coffee", #8Sunday, Blogfest Entries, Published Works, Short Stories, Weekend Writing Warriors, Weekly Features, Writing Sample

This Riddle of A Man for #WeWriWa #8Sunday

Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors Eight Sentence Sunday!

It’s the weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! We’ve got a variety of genres and talented writers just waiting for you to come sample their wordy wares. Come read one, or all!

If you’re inclined to share your own 8-10 sentence snippet, follow the link and sign up. It’s a great community to be a part of! =D

Monday Morning Coffee” has been with me since I was sixteen. A local boy with schizophrenia wandered away from his family at a large outdoor event. Several days later, he was found, deceased.

From that story came this one – the connection might not be clear to anyone but me – but it’s there.

Context:


Rose is at work on a Monday morning, exploring the gift given to her by a shabbily dressed man, when she discovers something unexpected.

This Riddle of A Man

It’s a hundred dollar bill, crisp and new, as though it’s never been used or folded, until it became a thorn. Had it been in his paper, the whole time?

It reminds me of a fortune cookie – and, as I open it, a folded slip of paper is revealed, like a fortune tucked within the thorn.

Who is this riddle of a man? How could he have a hundred dollar bill, or give it away, when his own need was so great? The money is the thorn, the sticking point. I set it aside, not understanding it, and take up the little piece of paper, unfolding it until it’s about the size of a business card. There’s a message, written in a tiny, precise hand:

“Greetings,

Your kindness went beyond guilt, or a token gesture, and has touched me deeply.

Who exactly IS Jeremy?

Where did he get the money?

Is there more to his note?

Any guesses?

Monday Morning Coffee” was originally published in the 2015 edition of World Unknown Review, edited by L.S. Engler. Since I retain all rights beyond first publication, I intend to revise the story and use it as my initial self-published offering.

Last week, I totally forgot to do an #8Sunday post – until about Monday afternoon! I think the fact that I posted the previous segment, “The Thorn,” early in the week prior (after prepping it and forgetting to post it the week before), threw me off.

Or it was working a two day festival the week after our son turned 16, the legal driving age in our state…

Either way, I forgot, and unintentionally left people hanging with a mysterious amount of unfortunately imaginary money…hopefully, I’ve answered that question, at least.

I’ve also found a way at last to work visits into my weekly routine, so I’ll be better at those from this point forward.

Read more #8Sunday right here!

Posted in Challenges and Contests, Enterprise fan fiction, Fan fiction, Flash Fiction Pieces, Just for Fun!, Short Stories, SoCS, Star Trek: Enterprise, Story a Day, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, The IDIC Romance, Weekly Features, Writers' Resources, writing, Writing in Freedom, writing prompts, Writing Samples

My Motive Is… Belated #SoCS and #StoryADay for 9/9/17

Hello there!

It’s been a busy week, and I’m capping it off with Tugboat Roundup – a two-day gathering of tugboats for competitions and camaraderie on the famed and historic Erie Canal. Today’s #SoCS posts were written on the fly there, as a matter of fact.

This week’s prompt is “motive”, used however we please. I chose to combine the prompt with my #StoryADay posts for today – with interesting results. One of this week’s prompts was to change the gender of the main character, and another was to “break the rules.” My first story is onesinglerunonword – there are no spaces to be found anywhere!

Standard disclaimer: I don’t own these characters, and do not profit from this writing.

“WithinMyOwnMadness”

YoureleasedmeTLysmyownorisitthatyouarenolongermyownwhatcouldbeyourmotiveinreleasingmeifyoutrulyaremyownorhasitbeentrueallalongthatyoudonotexistanywherebutwithinmyownmadness?

For the second story, I’m sharing my Star Trek: Enterprise TnT fan fiction drabble (a 100 word story). I used the SoCs prompt word and several more prompt words contributed by my fan fiction readers:

  • nimbus

  • plausible

  • savagely

  • forgetful

  • dismissive

  • fanatical

  • morph

“Who Is Jossen?”

T’Pol has no answers for her question, nor an understanding of her own motive in coming here. The nimbus of almost-memory remains; there is no plausible explanation for how savagely she had attacked the crates of plasma injecctors; how forgetful and dismissive of the dangers she had been.

All attempts to comprehend her fanatical behavior fail, nor can she release the question that consumes her:

Who is Jossen?

All attempts to answer morph into images of two men running, leaves slapping her face, the hands, the priest and the stone beneath her.

Who is Jossen?

She must learn the answer.

This post is a belated entry into Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday.

Wade in right  here!

Posted in "Monday Morning Coffee", #8Sunday, Blogfest Entries, Marketing my Writing, Published Works, Short Stories, Weekend Writing Warriors, Weekly Features, Writers' Resources, Writing Sample

The Thorn for #WeWriWa #8Sunday

 

Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors’

Eight Sentence Sunday!

It’s the weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! We’ve got a variety of genres and talented writers just waiting for you to come sample their wordy wares. Come read one, or all!

If you’re inclined to share your own 8-10 sentence snippet, follow the link and sign up. It’s a great community to be a part of! =D

Confession Time: This post was listed as part of last week’s collection, but when I checked on it earlier in the week, I realized I’d forgotten to, you know, hit that “Schedule” button in my editor…so, a week belatedly, here it is!

Monday Morning Coffee” has been with me since I was sixteen. A local boy with schizophrenia wandered away from his family at a large outdoor event. Several days later, he was found, deceased.

From that story came this one – the connection might not be clear to anyone but me – but it’s there.

Context:


Rose is at work on a Monday morning, exploring the gift given to her by a shabbily dressed man who occupies her mind.

The Thorn

My fingers explore the petals and then the stem – and stick again on the thorn. It’s a different texture than the rest of the creation, sturdier, and green-brown…

I bring the rose closer to my face, and take my magnifying lens from the top drawer, so that I can get a closer look.

The thorn is made of money.

“Not the twenty I gave you, Jeremy, please!” My whisper rasps through the quiet. I meant the money to offer him comfort; I don’t want it now, if it means that he’s hungry and cold.

I tug at it experimentally, and it pulls free of the sculpted rose, to lie in my hand. It’s not my twenty.

Where did Jeremy get the money?

Why did he use it to make the thorn?

What will Rose do next?

Any guesses?

“Monday Morning Coffee” was originally published in the 2015 edition of World Unknown Review,  Since I retain all rights beyond first publication, I intend to revise the story and use it as my initial self-published offering.

Another week…and, as I type this on Friday, I haven’t been much better at the visiting and answering comments thing…my only defense is that it’s been A WEEK.

Yup, all caps.

I won’t go into detail here, but, if you’re so inclined, you can read more about it here [#weekendcoffeeshare/#SoCS post]. Here’s the bullet list of highlights:

  • Sunday: Farmer’s market; test drove and bought 2007 Subaru Forester.
  • Monday: Paperwork; eclipse; picked up Forester; farmer’s market.
  • Tuesday: Looked for second car; put down payment on 2005 Subaru Outback.
  • Wednesday: 20th wedding anniversary; lovely dinner out.
  • Thursday: Purchased business website for Chef Bluebeard; spent night in emergency room – husband with abdominal pain (suspected appendicitis; turned out to be gall bladder).
  • Friday: Made reservations for midweek getaway in the fall; picked up Outback; dropped off Forester for repairs; packed Outback for weekend markets. 
  • Saturday: Market #1; workout; lunch out; shopping.

We have the #8sunday you’re  looking for!

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Blog Hops and Fests, Blogfest Entries, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Parenting, Round Three 2017, slices of life, Weekend Coffee Share, Weekly Features, Writing in Freedom

Growth Reflected Upon Over Coffee: #ROW80 August Final and #weekendcoffeeshare for September 1, 2017

If we were having coffee…

I’d thank you for meeting me for a cuppa on the run. There’s lots going on, and I’m combining indulgence with business today. I’m glad you’re still willing to get together!

August is over, and September means new challenges: Story A Day September and Va-Va Video career development for my writing, and for our blossoming hot sauce business.

Tomorrow, our firstborn turns sixteen years old. He and I are headed out to eat and do things he wants to do – a walk in a local park, and a stop by a lumber store, because he wants to make himself a desk. Sixteen is legal driving age in NY, but since it’s Labor Day Weekend, I’ll be taking him for his learner’s permit test on Tuesday. It all happened so fast!

Chef Bluebeard and I will be at the Waterford Harbor Farmer’s Market on Sunday, and have Monday off. Planning a mellow family day with a fire.

Well, lovely as it is to see you, I’ve got to get back to work, which means final accounting for my August ROW80 goals.

What’s on your weekend agenda? Another cuppa?
Find more #weekendcoffeeshare here!


  • Trueborn Series: Add 3,333 words/week to Foul Deeds Will Rise (until draft completed). 3,472/3,333. Primary goal COMPLETED for this week! Added 11,284 words for the month, and am into the climactic scenes of the novel. Solid progress.
  • Kifo Island Series: Add 5,555 words/week between Still Nameless and The Last House (until drafts completed). 461/5,555 words this week. 2,642 words added this month. Secondary goal; a bit of progress.

  • Story A Day September: Choose themes for main stories (Solemates, my November NaNoWriMo project) and TnT fanfiction drabbles; plot to the degree possible. Put out general call for word prompt lists. I’ve requested words as part of the Author’s Notes for “Highly Classified Mission,” and received one batch. No plotting to speak of. Primary goal; good progress.
  • Kifo Island Series: Plot as needed for SN, using hybrid form of The Writer’s Coloring Book and The Story Toolkit. Secondary goal; no progress.

  • Enterprise Early Days Arc: Continue revisions on this project for my WIPpet Wednesday posts. This week’s post: It’s All Yours Secondary goal COMPLETE for week/month!

Submitting:

  • Explore Duotrope; compile list of 25 paying short story/novella markets. Choose 5 to research in greater depth. Primary goal; no progress.

  • Explore ten of the sites I have in my various email feeds; choose 3 for further exploration. Secondary goal; no progress.

  • Blogging: Revise/maintain regular blogging schedule for August/ September. Outline/draft working schedule for October/November.. WIPpet done; simmering weekend posts, and September schedule. Primary goal; good progress.

  • JuNoWriMo blogpost drafts: Organize and schedule raw material for completion and revision. Spend 1 hour/ week on this project. Secondary goal COMPLETED for this week! 2/4 weeks completed; some progress.

  • Other Platforms: Spend 3 hours/week with my Facebook Writer page; Instagram Pinterest, and Patreon. Continue with Twitter #writingcrew and #AllStarTrek sprints/chats regularly. Dabble in other social media (LinkedIn, Medium, Quora, Wattpad, etc.) 1 hour/week. 1.5/3 hours; mins/1 hour; Quora. Stretch goal; some of each major throughout the month; good progress.

  • Chef Bluebeard’s Flavor Enhancement Sauces: Assist my Accomplice with his business 11 hours each week. 11/11 hours; worked on website. Primary goal COMPLETED for this week; good progress for the month.

  • Personal professional Development: Finish reading/exercises from Prosperity for Writers. Complete my writing business plan using this excellent article by Angela Ackerman as a guide. PSW: 73% read; 58% exercises, which take a bit longer to complete. Business Plan: Step 4/7 in progress from June. Secondary goal; good progress throughout the month.

  • Unschooltending: Draft kids’ 2017-2018 IHIPs (Individualized Home Instruction Plans), due Friday, August 4, and draft fourth quarter reports (due September 15), since those are easier to do in conjunction with each other; submit Lise’s test results, which got lost in the hustle. Sent fourth quarter reports a month early; mailed Lise’s test scores. Goal COMPLETED!

  • Hometending: Complete 1 hour of hometending/week. 1 hr, 30 minutes/1 hr. Goal EXCEEDED for this week; solid progress through the month.

  • Selftending: Spend time with my beloveds, friends, and myself; get at six hours physical activity/week, (including Baby Steps to 5K); meditate and journal 8x/week. Activity 7.5/6 hours; Meditate/journal 5/8. Solid progress this week, and for the month.

  • Paying It Forward: Spend 3 hours/week on back business for local crit group; and 2 hours/week on beta projects Spellfire’s Kiss and Stained Blood. Crit Group: 2.5/ 3 hours. Finished Chapter Two of SK, sent to author; 1.5 /2 hours. Modest progress throughout the latter third of the month.

Kait Nolan’s ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!
We’re on Facebook, too!

September 4, 2001 – or was that just yesterday? An uncertain young mother and a giant (10 pound, 2 ounce, 22.5 inches!) baby boy named Jeremiah, in Livingston, Montana. 16 years, in the blink of an eye – and now he’s a giant (6’3″ and growing!) young man. Tempis fugit!
Posted in Blog Hops and Fests, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, slices of life, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, Weekly Features

All Week Long for #SoCS and #weekendcoffeeshare

When it’s one thing after another, all week long, we’re looking at a bit of a jumbled up amalgam of Stream of Consciousness Saturday and #weekendcoffeeshare, because there’s not enough time or focus left in my day to do two separate posts, and tomorrow will come with another set of activities.

So, if we were having coffee now, I’d tell you that I’m fighting sleepiness on this Saturday night, after an extremely busy week…

Let me explain:

Recently, my Accomplice and I decided to cash in two modest investments, because we have business plans, but they require reliable vehicles – and we all require food, shelter, and clothing adequate for the weather. Finances have been precarious for over a year, and we had some sales, but not enough to move ahead after a long time of gradually losing financial ground.

With the investment capital in liquid form, though – we can do just what it suggests, and invest in ourselves, and our future.

And that’s what a lot of this week has been about.

We’ve purchased two used cars considerably newer and more reliable than our eldery 1998 Subaru Legacy Wagon, which was on the verge of almost literally falling apart. Jim now has a 2007 Forester in the shop for some repairs, and I have a vety sweet 2005 Outback. Since my 1998 Outback died on a local highway a few months ago, I’ve been missing having the freedom of my own car. More, our son will be 16 in a week, which means he’ll be eligible to get his learner’s permit – something he’s been looking forward to since he was 11 – and learning which would have had to wait if we still had a car that wasn’t suitable for his practice.

Both cars are blue. My favorite – and his. Also, the perfect color to go with the eventual magnetic signs for Chef Bluebeard’s Flavor Enhancement Sauces that will grace them, at least on market and event days.

We also used some of our newly liberated funds to purchase a few items to move the business into the next level, and allow us to be better organized as we move between markets and events in the months to come. Additionally, we purchased a three year subscription for a hosted WP website, and, in the coming days and weeks, I’ll be setting up the basics, so that Chef Bluebeard has a new online home in plenty of time for the holiday shopping season.

It’s all very exciting – but that’s not all that happened this week….oh, no, it isn’t.

Wednesday was our twentieth wedding anniversary. We went out to a local oyster bar Jim’s been wanting to eat at since he was looking for work and applied there in the winter, while the place was still being set up. It wasn’t the best fit for him, but the decision was made mutually and without rancor, and the owner recognized him, and even offered us champagne on the house. We don’t enjoy it, but it was a lovely dinner – lots of perfectly prepared asparagus, oysters of several varieties on the half shell, and crème brule and carrot cake to share.

We had a wonderful evening with a bit of walking to and from, and then, because we are parents and have other people to feed besides ourselves, we went grocery shopping on our way home.
It was a perfect day – and we’ll hang on to that for a while, even if the aftermath got a bit crazy…

Sometime in the night, Jim started having abdominal pain that intensified into a sharp lance when he breathed deeply or moved the wrong way. He thought he might have pulled a muscle while doing some sink de-clogging the day before, but then the pain intensified, and we decided a trip to the emergency room to find there was nothing really wrong, rather than risk a ruptured appendix or worse.

Turns out, after 5 hours, bloodwork, urine test, and an ultrasound, that his gall bladder has some “sludge” in it, and didn’t like the rich dinner as much as our taste buds did. He’s also got a bit of a fatty liver, so an MRI will soon be scheduled to be sure there’s nothing more serious going on there. He’ll need to be more conscious of his diet to avoid further aggravating his contentious gall bladder, too.

And now it’s Saturday, and our first weekend market is done. We have another tomorrow morning, and then another on Monday evening, before we get back to another four “rest” days (unless we decide to attempt to fit in a Thursday evening market several of our vending friends recommend).

If we were having coffee, I’d apologize if I bored or exhausted you with our week full of living, and for yawning so many times during the retelling of it.

Now, it’s your turn. What have you been up to this week? What do you have planned for the week ahead? Anything momentous, silly, or just part of your beloved routine?

Get another cup of #weekendcoffeeshare!

Float down the Stream of Consciousness Saturday!