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

Deeper Than Thought 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:


A shabbily dressed man returns kindness with kindness, and a connection has been forged.

Deeper Than Thought

The 6:53 pulls in – and he says, softly, “It’s time for you to go back to your own life, now, kind Rose.”

“Will I see you again, Jeremy? Please say yes!” I sound as breathless as the three girls chattering about Hunter and his dimple.

“Perhaps, dear Rose. Perhaps.” He leans in, wafting a faint note of cologne– another grace note; another mystery. I want to nuzzle him, to press against him, to offer myself to him. The desire runs deeper than thought, from hidden animal places within me.

Will Rose finally get on a train?

What will she do with the newspaper rose Jeremy made for her?

Is she going to tell him how she feels, and what she wants?

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 went a little topsy-turvy when I had a frightening car breakdown with my son in the passenger seat, but I’ve more or less recovered from the resultant chaos.

I’m moving #8sunday back to my blog – some folks are having a hard time commenting on my Squarespace website. Until I can figure out why this is happening, it’s better to move it to a place I know is working as it should (although I’m not exactly getting to comments as quickly as I should…this is an extremely busy time IRL – but I will get to them, as soon as I can.

Until then….

If you’re looking for more #8Sunday, click this link, or the icon below!

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Challenges and Contests, JuNoWriMo, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Round Two 2017, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

Full Moon and Stories in Bloom; June 11, 2017

Hi there, and Welcome to StoryFest Weekend!

I hear you scratching your heads and trying to figure out what I’m talking about. Well, no worries – I’m here to answer your questions. StoryFest is a recital for those who participated in the #StoryADay May Challenge – our chance to spiff up our favorite story of the month, and offer it  for the world to see. This year, there was even a brand-new mini-critique group to help the polishing process along.

The selection is diverse and engaging. There are dark reads, light reads, humorous and heroic and tragic tales – there might even be a bit of naughtiness among the offerings.


Tempted? Well, it IS the weekend, so read away! Click on the icon above, and be transported anytime until the end of day Sunday, and have at it!

Drafting:

  • JuNoWriMo: Write 50,000 words of raw material for blog posts. 17,140/50,000 words. Primary goal on target.
  • Play with fiction writing as/if desired.Plot tribbles have arrived; I’m letting them at the quadrotriticale…so we’ll see what happens there. Did a snippet of new writing for my upcoming WIPpet post, Secondary goal on target.

Plotting:

  • JuNoWriMo: Plot/outline blog posts as needed to complete the drafting goal above. Picking up a bit of pace, but don’t want to get too far ahead of myself, because that can be confusing. Secondary goal on target.

Revising:

  • Look at the #StoryADay critique group; choose one of my last two SN stories and submit for peer review. Take action as indicated to polish the story; share for #StoryFest. Revised and posted. I was a little less than two hours late submitting my link, but the form took me, so…\Stretch goal COMPLETED!

*Stretch goals are that “little bit extra”; things that might make me uncomfortable, but will facilitate further growth. They will be in the background, mostly, so they don’t scare me too much! =)

Social Media:

  • Blogging: Revise/polish/package relevant blogposts in order to return to a regular blogging schedule. Designate reblogged/repurposed posts or work ahead to cover July’s schedule. Posting has begun. Still not up to par, but closer; had an idea for repurposed blogposts for July. Primary goal on target.

  • Other Platforms: Resume posting to my Facebook Writer page, Instagram, and Pinterest.  Complete Patreon  profile and launch.Wrote a post, changed profile and cover images, did some liking as my FB page; reviewed videos and selected one to use; liked and followed, added Layouts, and posted a collage on Instagram. Created a new secret board for Jim’s business in Pinterest; one public post, too. Secondary goal on target.

  • Continue in Twitter #writingcrew and #AllStarTrek sprints/chats regularly. Dabble in other social media (LinkedIn, Medium, Quora, Wattpad) if/as desired. Both sprints/ chats Wed. Read on Quora, Stretch goal om target.

Business:

  • Assist my Accomplice with his labeling/branding/platform/marketing (if this is scary for me; it’s completely alien to him). I worked out several complications; created a solid prototype ; accepted info for next product and began creating template; will begin sometime in next coupke of days. Secondary goal on target at last.
  • Complete Build Your Marketing Muscles class; simmer; draft an action plan to apply what I’ve learned, and experiment with early changes/additions to my currently nearly non-existent “marketing plan.Skimmed through new items. Went through some of the material I’ve missed. Stretch goal.

Tending goals:

It really wasn’t the best week for my tending goals; the full moon and transition from May to June caught me somewhat off-guard and off-form.

  • Hometending: Spend time at least 5x/week in mindful cleaning and/or yardtending; complete all homeschool paperwork and testing; deal with subscriptions and other business that tends to get pushed aside; support other indie writers as I’m able. Mindful cleaning: 5/5 I(brief sessions). Ran Twitter sprints for #JuNoWriMo. Contacted school superintendent to request approval for our required standardized testing.

  • Selftending: Spend time with my beloveds, friends, and myself; get at least one hour of physical activity 5x/week, and five hours of strenuous activity weekly (including Baby Steps to 5K); meditate and journal 8x/week. Meditation/journaling 1/8. Hour; 3/5; Strenuous: 1.5/5.

Kait Nolan’s ROW80  –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

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

Posted in Challenges and Contests, Coffee and Conversation, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Story a Day May Challenge, Weekend Coffee Share, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

June Gear Shift for #weekendcoffeeshare

If we were having coffee, you might just find me scratching my head and saying, “Wow – June seems to be flying by!’ I may also be scratching my head and staring around me in stark befuddlement….

Or, more likely, I’m at my laptop. I’m finished with #StoryADay May, other than StoryFest this weekend – I’ll tell you more about that a bit later in the post – and I’m about a third of the way through the #JuNoWriMo Challenge (think a more freeform version of NaNoWriMo).

But here I go, putting the conversation before the coffee again. I have a tendency to do that when my mind is busy, and I’m deeply involved in something….or when I have a new passion. Please do come in, sit down, make yourself at home. It’s cold and rainy today (I’m typing this on Tuesday), but it’s snug here in the house, if none too tidy.

That goes hand in hand with my busyness of the mind and overall sense of distraction.

I know, I know. I’m rambling. Haven’t slept much the last couple of days. My sleep/wake cycle seems to be influenced strongly by the moon, and there are a couple of days most months when I don’t actually sleep at night; just take a catnap or two during the course of the late morning/early evening hours. You’re catching me after the second night…and I’m more than a little bit tired.

But that doesn’t mean you’re not welcome. I’ve got a wide variety of teas, coffee, lemonade, and an assortment of snacks. Please, help yourself.

So, in addition to my marketing and revision classes, I’m also still refining my Accomplice’s labels, and now taking a more professional approach to the business side of my writing career. I’ve gotten very efficient at producing first drafts, adequate and gaining skills at plotting, and I’m making strides with revision – which means the only remaining obstacles to publication are production and marketing.

I like to start learning things before I specifically need them, so I’m making an internal shift toward those things. As time goes by, I expect to be putting more of my energy into them.

And that’s a bit of where my JuNoWriMo effort fits in. This year, instead of writing fiction for a third straight month, I’m drafting blog posts (including this one). When I’m in a place of creative intensity, I tend to get too absorbed in the project at hand to focus on writing new posts – or even reblogging older ones. Also, since I’ve been deeply engaged with fiction projects for the past two months, I’m in need of a bit of a breather – a changing of the gears, so to speak.

So I’m using my breather productively to create a blog pool. I’ll use some of the time to get back into the rhythm of my weekly blog schedule, which was abandoned somewhere along the middle of April, and really hasn’t been seen in anything more than the barest glimpses since.

But the rest will become my rough draft inventory, to be revised, polished, and packaged for later consumption.

For the first time, I will have a substantial stock of material ready to develop; once the month is finished, dedicating to a few hours a week of maintenance and replenishment should keep me in good shape. August brings another month without a major challenge, so I’ll use that for developing and finishing posts and ideas.

I think I’m onto something here, and it’s making me very happy.

Oh, I almost forgot!

This weekend is StoryFest – the “virtual recital” of the StoryADay May Challenge. If you’re a fan of short fiction, stop by the homepage anytime before Monday morning (EST), and enjoy a nibble, or a buffet, including my 1,100 word story, “Broken.” Writers write for readers to read! =D

There’s probably a lot more I could say, but I feel like I’ve been talking your ears off already, figuratively. Now I’d just like to sit here quietly and sip my drink while you tell me what’s been going on with you. If my eyes start to drift closed, feel free to just leave your cup on the table. I’ll get to it….later.

As you venture out on your way, I wish you a week that’s filled with all the joy you can imagine – and then a little more!

This post is part of the #weekendcoffeeshare, hosted by #nerdinthebrain. Clicking the link will take you to more conversations – and please leave a comment in the box below, because it’s not a very good conversation if I’m the only one talking. =)

Posted in #8Sunday, Blogfest Entries, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Parenting, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

Slicing Through My Soul: #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, or pick a few like leftover holiday memories….

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

It’s the weekend as I prep this post – a full week before Sunday the 12th. Yup, that’s right – I’m running EARLY!

I know; that’s a little shocking, since I’m usually the caboose on the links list. But I’ve shifted my main focus from Story a Day May to JuNoWriMo – and from exploring characters and their stories to actually, well, writing the novels these characters will inhabit, and I’m trying to get some of the smaller, slip-through-the-cracks stuff tended to before the noveling pulls me back in for another round of creation.

And so, here I am – so early it’s a little disorienting, but in a good way. I think I could even get used to this…(except that, after I wrote this, I got sick, and then it was all a scramble to get those big things done, and now it’s Friday, and I’m close to running late again, which makes me rather happy in a run-on sentence kind of way that I started this way back when!)

But now, onward…

We’ve gathered here today to explore another snippet from “A Splash of Red,” which I’m serializing. This surreal fantasy story is the child of my own life and dreams, with a generous dollop of imagery and a big dash of creative license…we’re getting close to the end, now, so things that have been mysteries will maybe begin to come clear…or as clear as they will get, anyway.

More on the story after the nine-sentence snippet.

Context, such as it is…A woman is attempting to win the trust of a little girl in a red dress, while hawks wheel above.We left last week with the child’s truncated question still unfinished.

Given the surrealism of the story, punctuation is a bit creative, so be warned!

Slicing Through My Soul

“Do you hit them? Yell at them? Call them names?”

I know that, if she’s ever to trust me, I have to give her the truth, even when it’s not pretty. “I yell, sometimes – not as much as I used to. I don’t hit them, or call names. I used to, though, before I learned how not to.”

“Why?” Her voice is an accusing cry, more fearsome than the hawk’s, slicing through my soul.

How will the woman answer?

Will she answer at all?

Will the child be able to trust her?

Next week may bring answers – and certainly more questions!

Previous “A Splash of Red” snippets:

Did you like what you read? “A Splash of Red” was originally published in the 2014 inaugural edition of World Unknown Review, which is edited by L.S. Engler. Since I retain all rights beyond first publication, I intend to revise the story and use it as my own initial self-publishing experiment.

That being said, I’d love any and all input and criticism you’re inclined to offer. Until then, may your week be delightful! =D

And in tangentially related news, I’m honored to be May’s Featured Writer for the 2015 edition of World Unknown Review! Here’s my story, “Monday Morning Coffee” at L.S. Engler, available free for a limited time. You can also read my interview with L.S. 

Want more #8Sunday?

Posted in Blogfest Entries, Challenges and Contests, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Novel Excerpts, WIPpet Wednesday, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

“Without Tethers and Poisons”: Sea Changes (Kifo Island Chronicles Volume 1) for WIPpet Wednesday


Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday, a weekly blog hop which encourages writers to move WIPs (works-in-progress) to publication by posting excerpts related to the date.We’re led by the capable fingers and nimble mind of Emily Witt.

I made it to everyone last week! Before the weekend was over, even!

It helps that I’m settling into my new June focuses, and finding something of a rhythm. Yup, it’s the rhythm of Paul Simon’s new album, Stranger to Stranger. It varies, with driving beats, lyrical grace, short and longer tracks – there’s a certain amount of lovely chaos in it that suits me perfectly – and it’s Paul Simon, my all-time favorite singer/songwriter, so there’s that.

Anyway, I think I’ve got the hang of this transition from Story a Day May to JuNoWriMo and noveling. I’m finding a pace, moving between projects, and I can finally see my way to finishing the rough draft of A Rising Tide and the plotting of the next project on my summer schedule, The Far Shore.

But I’m getting a little ahead of myself, here…

Because now it’s time to rejoin Donovan Nash and Ava Garcia in Sea Changes.

Donovan is one of my favorite Kifo Island characters. He had a major supporting role in both of my previously drafted Kifo stories. Now, he gets his own (well, shared with Karina and Ava, but still, he’s finally the star he was always meant to be!)

For those new to this story, here’s the premise:

In advocating for a dying girl seeking emancipation from controlling parents, can an overburdened young woman and a lonely young man find a future together?

Note:

This passage is NaNo rough. My plan is to begin creating a revision plan within the next few months, when all 24 scenes have passed through my local crit group. Of course, that means I’ll have to do the rough revision pass on this one, so I can, you know, SUBMIT it….)

That said, any input is gratefully accepted!

WIPpet Math:

  • Today is June 8, 2016
  • I‘ve got 11 sentences today. Why 11? Well, because I had the wrong date, and 11 sentences brings us to a very nice stopping place (from my perspective, but maybe not yours…) Or, we could say that it’s because I added the 8 and 6 from the day and year to get 14, then subtracted the 2 and the 1 from the year, leaving us with -presto! – 11 sentences. Wouldn’t be true, but we can still say it, right? =)

Donovan and Ava are exploring a possible working relationship. Donovan has asked Ava what she wants and needs.

“Without Tethers and Poisons”

“I want to live. I want not to have leukemia – but those are wishes no one can grant, not even that fairy godmother in all those ridiculous princess stories my mother read to me whether I wanted to hear them or not. What I want most is to live and die somewhere beautiful. Somewhere without tethers and poisons. Somewhere where walls and elevators and hospital policy don’t separate my from the rest of the world, ‘for my own good.’ Somewhere just like here, where someone like you might be my friend, and occasionally even hug me.”

Her eyes were still wet with tears, but, for the second time today, Donovan encountered a stranger who met his eyes without fear or surprise or revulsion. He thought he loved her for that, and it decided him.

“Whatever happens, Ava, I’m in this with you. I don’t need to hear anything more, but I will need access to your medical history, if I’m going to be the best support person I can be – “

“It may take longer to read it than I have left to live,” the girl said, and she sagged back against her chair as though in mute testament to the living of those records.

Will Donovan be able to help Ava reach her goals?

Should she have the right to refuse further treatment?

What will Ava’s medical records reveal about her status?

Some of these questions may be answered – and others will certainly be posed- next week, so be sure to come back then to learn more of Donovan’s story.

To catch up with Donovan’s scene, just follow the links:

And now, a friendly reminder:


If you’re enjoying my Kifo Island posts, and would like to see the evolution of two upcoming novels, The Far Shore and Tsunamis, I’ll soon be posting an index for my Story a Day May 2016 vignettes (OK, maybe soon is a relative term. Maybe we should go with ‘eventually’ instead….

Want more WIPpets?

You can find them, and add your own date-related excerpt, by following the little blue froggy from WIPpet to WIPpet to WIPpet!

 

 

Posted in Blogfest Entries, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

Scattered Bookishness for #SoCS

This post is part of Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday meme -an unedited stream of consciousness piece that ties into the weekly prompt: ‘book,’ used any way we like.

I’m scattered today. Probably a blend of fatigue from swimming and a good deal of activity yesterday, and buying the new Paul Simon album, Stranger to Stranger. I’ve been listening to it all day, and it inspired me – not so much to blog about books, but to finish a Trip and T’Pol fan fiction story I began a week or more ago, to do some mellow hometending, and to go out in the yard and take pictures on Instagram in the fading light – the view from here stuff. You can find those and the rest of my growing Instagram gallery here. =)

What you can’t see or here is the way my neighbors are randomly exploding fireworks. That’s distracting, an it makes me jump.

But we’re here today to discuss books, and books are and always have been a huge part of my life.

  • I learned to read at age 4. At school in the mid-70s, we weren’t “taught” to read until first grade, with Dick and Jane books. I know some people love them; I found them insulting and nearly deadly dull, even at age 6. I went home every night and read things like Black Beauty and Heidi.

  • When my parents wanted to punish me severely, they didn’t ground me. They took away my reading privileges!

  • I’ve been sorting books. Everyone in our family can now read at an adult level, and we have probably a couple of thousand children’s books here (a lifestyle occupation of our unschooling life,) and we’ll be moving cross country in the next year or so, so we’re sorting through, little by little, to keep only what is loved and wanted – and, apparently, letting go of books isn’t an easy matter for me, or my daughter. But, oh, the cool books we’re rediscovering! =D

  • A few years back, my sister was at a party at my house. At one point, she looked around my living room, where only a portion of our many, many books reside, and exclaimed, “I thought I had a lot of books, but you’ve REALLY got a lot of books!” I looked at her incredulously, and said, “Have you met me?!” Maybe that was rude, but I just couldn’t believe that my sibling, with whom I’d shared a room all through childhood, and a house and an apartment as adults, wouldn’t have known beyond doubt how intricately interwoven my life is with books.

  • There are 160 books on my Kindle! I didn’t realize there was that many, and, to be honest, most of them are in the cloud drive, but the idea that I have access to 160 books on a device barely taller, no wider than, and definitely thinner than, a paperback – and much, much easier to read in bed or carry in my bag – is amazing. I know some people are anti-paper book, or anti-e-reader, but I say “Vive la diversite!”

  • And, of course, I write books. I’ve learned to plot them first, and I’m getting the hang of revising them. Once I get firm footing with that, I will learn how to self-publish and market them.

Well, I think the neighbors just did their very loud, very pretty, and very distracting finale. A good sign that this post, too, has come to a natural end.

Did you enjoy this dip into the Stream of Consciousness waters? Come join in – there’s plenty of room, and just a few simple rules. Check out the #SoCS hashtag, or on the Friday  Prompt post.


Posted in Blogfest Entries, Challenges and Contests, Flash Fiction Pieces, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Sexuality and Erotica, Story a Day May Challenge, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

Whoa, Wait – What? The Kifo Project for #SoCS and #StaD Day 21


This post is part of Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday meme -an unedited stream of consciousness piece that ties into the weekly prompt: ‘break/brake,’ using one or both, any way we like.

Why, hello there!

No, you’re not imagining it. I’m here for the second week in a row! OK, so that might have a lot to do with combining prompts with another challenge:

Let me tell you a Story A Day, all May long…

In June and July, I’ll be drafting two new Kifo Island novels. I know something about 5 of the 6 point of view characters, and I’ve got a sketchy idea of the plots – but I need to learn more about these people and their stories.

So, in May, I explore. Every day, I’ll follow the prompts in A Month of Writing Prompts 2016. I’ll play while moving through my planning efforts. Some of these stories may become part of the eventual novels, but my goal is to invite these characters to show me who they are and what they want – and how their lives fit together to make a novel.

I wanted to get this post up yesterday, but the story felt like it wasn’t quite right. I set it aside and slept on it, and today, I was able to figure out where to go in revisions.

The daily prompt is, A Classic Story-Starter.” You’ll find in in the opening quote. I thought it was going to go in another direction, but, in classic stream-of-consciousness style, it went somewhere else.

Week Three is our Rescue Week – some easier prompts that offset the challenges behind and still ahead.

Zeke and Yvette are in bed together for the first time…needless to say, this is an R-rated story. Potentially NSFW.

Whoa, Wait -What?

Huh,” he said. “I didn’t think that could fit in there.”

“That’s what she said.” Yvette reached up and tangled her fingers in his curls, pulling him in for a close, tight kiss. “But no more talking, now, mon chere. Now is time for l’amour.

Zeke focused on the kissing. It had been so long since he’d been with a woman, and she was a hell of a woman. He was desperate to put an emergency brake on the urge to just plunge in and let himself go crazy.

That was no way to treat the woman he loved.

Whoa, wait –

What?

Love? Did he? Did he love her?

The question floated there in his mind, in their tangled-up breaths, sighs, and moans, as they learned how to give and take pleasure together…

It floated there as they strained for every last crumb of ecstasy, and as she fell asleep in his arms.

Zeke held her as though she might break, like there was no greater treasure in the world, and he knew.

He was in love with Yvette Perrault.

And she was another man’s wife.

Did you enjoy this dip into the Stream of Consciousness waters? Come join in – there’s plenty of room, and just a few simple rules. Check out the #SoCS hashtag, or get more SoCS right here!