Posted in "Monday Morning Coffee", #8Sunday, Blog Hops and Fests, Blogfest Entries, Marketing my Writing, Published Works, Short Stories, Weekend Writing Warriors, Weekly Features, Writing Sample

One Short Syllable for #WeWriWa #8Sunday

Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors’ Eight Sentence Sunday – 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 our 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, feeling inspiration in the form of a newspaper rose.

 One Short Syllable

I’ll put Jeremy’s rose right by my lamp, to inspire me…

Above, in the livelier parts of the library, students and faculty mingle with the other librarians – the ones I’ve never paid much attention to.

Up above, right now, is life, and possibility.  That’s something I can tell Jeremy when I see him on Friday, before I ask all the questions already boiling over in my mind. The flower, and the story of how it came to me, are things I can talk about, with the others…

I pick up Jeremy’s paper rose, and head upstairs, humming “Red Rubber Ball”.  I see one of my colleagues wiping down tables – Fred? Brad? Matt?  I only know that it’s one short syllable.

What does Rose intend to do now?

Will she remember her colleague’s name?

Where will the rose lead Rose?

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.

As I type this on Thursday evening, NaNoWriMo is figuratively breathing down my neck, looking over my shoulder, and I’m still in the planning/early plotting stages of my WIP-to-be.

I’m not overly concerned, though. Each step in my hybridized process yields new insights and inspirations, and gets me a little more into the story world, so that my mind is priming itself for the journey ahead. I’m a discovery writer, anyway. Even when I have a well-developed plot, at some point the characters will just decide to go their own ways, and – poof! Before I know it, everything is different, and almost always for the better.

I’ll keep on going until November 1 – and then we’ll see.

Until then, may you and yours find joy!

Looking for more #8Sunday?

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

I Was Human 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, contemplating Jeremy and the nature of her own humanity – or perhaps, lack thereof…

I Was Human

I know I’ll go to Scrimshaw on Friday – but this is only Monday, and it’s not even nine o’clock yet. My Monday life has been empty – my entire life, really. Each morning, I slink past my colleagues upstairs, and hide myself down here, as though I have no place or business in the rest of the library. I can’t even recall their names.

I was human in the train station with Jeremy. But I haven’t been, here.

Now I’m noticing and thinking, not hiding. I remember the woman I sat beside at the station, the way her painted drawstring mouth cinched up her closed face.

What will Rose find when she meets Jeremy at Scrimshaw?

Can she learn to be human at work?

Is she too much like the woman at the station?

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.

It’s been a busy week in Shan-land. Last Friday, my best friend and I took a day trip to Lenox, Massachusetts. Saturday was a relative’s housewarming party – a beautiful, big place by a glacier-carved lake. Sunday, we were along the Erie Canal for our last week at the Waterford Harbor Farmer’s Market, and Monday, we closed out the season at our local library’s market, as well.

Because I had a cold last week and missed two workouts in my 5K training program, I’ve gone for a walk/jog every day this week to catch up. I attained that goal today (Thursday, as I type this), and tomorrow I’ll be able to do my on-time workout to close out the week.

The kids and I also have plans to go see the new My Little Pony movie tomorrow, and then I’ll be gearing up for a weekend that includes both a swap meet/motorcycle show, and a fall festival. And next week is a whole other adventure; I’ll share the details of that next weekend.

Until then, may you and yours find joy!

Looking for more #8Sunday?

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

Of Battenberg Lace 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, contemplating the gift given to her by a shabbily dressed man, and beginning to see her m life in new ways….

Of Battenberg Lace

How can Jeremy afford to eat there, or have this kind of money, and claim not to need it?

Another question –

Why have I spent so many days hunched and huddled away in this desolate little office?

Jeremy created beauty, in only a few moments, with only a newspaper and his skills. I have time and abundance, and yet, this space is devoid of character. What did that say, about me?

I’ve never before imagined what my office could be. There’s a window high up in this basement – it’s bare, but I can reach it, and there’s a shelf beneath where I could place potted flowers. Curtains would add softness. I’ve always been fond of Battenburg lace…

What makes Jeremy and Rose so different?

Will Rose act on her new ideas?

Will she meet Jeremy again?

Why does he want to meet her there?

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.

I’m running a bit earlier this week. I’d love to say it’s that I’ve gotten everything into order, and things are ticking along like a train on the track….but if I did, I’d be giving you a second work of fiction.

Honestly, it’s that I’m not likely to have time or focus to do this tomorrow or Saturday, as I’ll be spending both days away from home – exploring cafes with my best-friend-since-forever; and then a homecoming party.

Then, Sunday and Monday, we’ve got the final markets at two of our venues. It’s going to seem strange not going there each week – but next weekend, our round of fall festivals, craft fairs, and even a large swap meet kick into a higher gear for the next several weeks.

We’re also expanding a bit. I’m experimenting with adding some writing to what we offer, and we’ll also be launching our “gift buckets” – an actual royal blue bucket with either 3 or 5 sauces. We can make a few ahead, or make them custom to guests’ tastes.

But first – posting this, and finally getting around to those visits I’ve been trying to make all week!


Until we meet again, may you and yours be well!

Get more #8Sunday reading!

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 "Monday Morning Coffee", Blog Hops and Fests, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Published Works, Weekend Writing Warriors, Weekly Features, writing, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

I’ve Invested Nothing 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, but her contact with a shabbily dressed man has her seeing her office  – and maybe her life – in a new way.

I’ve Invested Nothing

I have only what’s needed to conduct my task of archiving documents, and filling research requisitions for professors and graduate students.

I’ve invested nothing of myself here. If I quit this job tomorrow, would anyone notice?

I sit down at my serviceable, if not quite steady, metal desk. Setting my purse down on the right corner, I open it, and tenderly withdraw Jeremy’s rose. Maybe I’ll buy a vase to put it in at the chapel thrift store – I might even be able to find a warmer coat for Jeremy, or at least a heavier shirt…I want to see him again, and know that he’ll be safe and warm.

What would Jeremy think of Rose’s office?

Will Rose take action, or sink back into life as she knows it?

If she takes action, what will it be?

Any guesses?

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

I’m still not doing as well as I want at visiting my fellow #8sunday participants, but I do feel things moving to a more even keel as we adjust to a self-employed life with less tension, since we decided to cash out on a modest investment or two and use the funds to replace the car, fund some much-needed purchases, have a financial safety net during the transition, and invest in moving the business to the next level.

I’m still working on my major revision class, marketing, and self-publication. I’m also reading and working through Prosperity for Writers, which is a mindful approach to shifting perceptions and attitudes toward, well – prosperity through writing.

Now, once I get better at fitting visiting and commenting into this growth, I’ll be golden! Yo that end, I’ve pulled several posts into my Pocket account, and hope to be able to read/comment upon them during odd quiet moments at our Sunday morning market. I can do that right on my phone. I’m hoping that will be the answer to my quandary.

Looking for more #8Sunday?

Posted in #8Sunday, Life Writing, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

A Drab Little Lizard 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, engulfed by musings inspired by the ragged, compelling man she met during her morning commute.

Attention: some creative punctuation ahead!


A Drab Little Lizard

No, I will see him again – I have to! Have to know he’s all right – or at least alive, in this harsh winter.

On the door of my office is a small, artfully handmade sign – a joke, of sorts, from my early days here, placed by some anonymous co-worker. A drab little lizard, puffing out smoke, with a magnifying glass in one talon. It was perched on a stack of scrolls and old curling pages, and beneath was the proclamation:

Beware, all ye who enter here, for it be the lair of a Document Dragon!”

If this is my lair – this former service closet, with its tiny attached restroom – what does that say about me? I’ve been here most of three years, and, other than the sign, and my yard sale coffee-maker and chipped ceramic mugs, there’s nothing here that’s my own.

Will Jeremy survive the winter?

Will Rose see him again?

What does her lair say about her?

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.

In personal news, I’m emerging from the cocoon of my four-month Chaostivity Marathon. I’ve completed all of the current batch of homeschool paperwork. It’s the busiest time of year for that; the end of year reporting for 2016-2017 and beginning of year planning for 2017-2o18 overlap. But all that remains now is to get confirmation of both kids’ IHIPs for the new year, and I’ll be free of state-mandated paperwork until December 1.

I’d hoped to visit more of my fellow #8sunday folks last week, and answer all comments, but that hasn’t happened as I type this on Saturday evening (although it might by the time you read this sometime after 9AM Sunday morning).

Two weeks ago, my Accomplice’s employer informed him that he would be letting him go, because business was down, and he was having a hard time making ends meet. Since my husband is the highest-paid employee, it was seen as a cost-cutting measure.

It’s the latest in a chain of financial uncertainty that began a little over a year ago, when he was released from his nine-year tenure at a kitchen he’d launched, so that the owner’s son could be installed as the chef. We’ve been getting by with a lot of imagination, making do, and scraping by; thankfully, we don’t have house or car payments to deal with.

We’re now making the leap to self-employment. My chef husband launched his hot-sauce business 3 months ago, and, this week, we’ve added two additional farmer’s markets to the one we’ve been doing since late June. We’re scouting out others, as well as local events and smaller specialty markets that could sell his sauces when we’re not physically present (at the moment, we’ve got one elderly and limping Subaru, and no clones, so there’s only so much we can do).

Behind the scenes, I’m honing my craft through a major revision class, because I’ve realized I need to develop confidence and a more efficient approach in order to move my many works-in-progress to the Completed column. I’ve started delving marketing and self-publication, so that once I have work revised, I can move confidently forward with the process of offering my words to the world at large.

And, on my birthday, I took a leap of faith, and launched my Patreon page. This was hard, and took me as long as it typically takes to gestate a human baby, in large part because I was raised never to ask for what my parents termed “a handout,” or to “toot my own horn,” which was seen as bragging or conceit.

Sometimes, the hardest part of attaining a goal is getting past the voices instilled in our heads by those who raised us…but I’m learning, and growing.

Now, I just need to learn how to fit visiting and commenting into this growth…

If you’re looking for more #8Sunday, click this link!

Posted in #8Sunday, Blogfest Entries, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

Society Threw Him Away 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, but she can’t escape from memories of the ragged, compelling man she met at the train station.


Society Threw Him Away

I’ve never made a point of lingering to exchange greetings. I reach the stairs that lead to my office, and descend, alone. But the rose is in my bag, and I can feel Jeremy’s kisses across my forehead. I’m not as alone as I’ve been every other Monday.

Remembering the coat that couldn’t keep him warm, and his chapped hands moving with such confident artistry, warms me and, at the same time, chills me. I imagine him sitting in the coffee shop, no longer huddled, breathing in the rich smells, sipping and eating while he indulges in his paper. Society threw him away without noticing the quick intelligence in his eyes, or the kindness in his gentle voice – but I notice, and I won’t throw him away, in my own heart, even if I never see him again.

The familiar cogs of my day stick, then lurch forward again, reminding me of the train.

Will Rose return to the station to see Jeremy?

Is he safe and warm in the coffee shop?

What’s next?

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.

This week, Shakespeare in the Park with my teen was a go. We saw A Winter’s Tale – I had no prior exposure to the play, so it was fresh. I liked much of it – although I found the ending rather too indicative of the way women were viewed in that era, and too often still are today.

I’m still recovering from four months of writing challenges. Much of this week was taken up by working on my husband’s new hot sauce business, and then homeschool reporting. Nearly finished with that, at least, and then things will settle down enough that I can make the rounds to other Eight Sentence Sunday writers – I’ve missed you all!

And, on that note….

Check out more #8Sunday!