Final Days Of 2017 Day 4: Two Of One Or One Of Two

dragon sticker ornament

This is an ornament I made myself. If you look closely, you may recognize the Victor Bilibin image I used for the back of my handmade Tarot cards.Koscej Nesmrtni by Ivan Bilibin

This ornament was made as an example of a simple craft one could do with stickers. For this one, I took 5 rectangular stickers and placed a piece of Seahawks ribbon in the center. Each sticker is folded in half and attached to two other stickers. When the stickers are all stuck together, the outer edge can be cut into a desired shape. In this example, a ball.

Though this example is not very Christmasy and was hastily (and shabbily) constructed. The concept is sound and a fun craft to do with kids. Maybe I’ll make some nicer ones for the tree this year.

#vss very short story

Harper couldn’t figure out why her mother kept saying decapitated dragons didn’t belong on the Christmas tree. Ever since she learned the story of St. George and the dragon, she was pretty sure decapitated dragons belonged everywhere.

Today’s Poetry Prompt and Poem

Today, I’m between examining my poems from the PAD Chapbook Challenge and getting my prompts for MoSt New Year’s Poetry Challenge, so I chose a prompt from Poets on the Page. This prompt from Morgan Dragonwillow felt appropriate for today:

What inspires you?

What keeps me going, keeps me writing poetry? It is to understand life, to see it through the lens of my words, to see where they will lead.

What keeps you going?

Prompts:

What was the last photo you captured? Write for ten minutes about the photo. What emotion does it convey? What draws you in?

Word Prompts:

Inspiring
flow
capture
camera

This prompt inspired me to go out and take some pictures and I am so glad I did. The light was perfect!

Two Of One Or One Of Two

Inspiring reflection
Attempts to capture light
Ever changing in natures flow

I stand at the horizon
Neither above nor below
Feeling the vast distance the light travels

Water and sky meet in light
Mirroring mountains, clouds and trees
I see soundscapes in the patterns

Frequencies imagined by my inner ear
To hear the music of the mountain and the trees
Joined by the light on the water through clouds formed by water in the sky

Editing Focus

Inspired by: Revision And Self-Editing (Write Great Fiction) by James Scott Bell

Take a look at each of your minor characters. Make sure they are each unique with their own voice and visual distinction.

For each minor character, ask:

  • What is his purpose in the story?
  • What audio-visual markers can I attach to her?
  • How can I make each marker more unique or memorable?
  • What plot possibilities–a twist, a revelation of my protagonist, a setup, a premonition, a mood–does the character offer?
  • How can the character irritate my protagonist? Or help her in a unique fashion?

#FlashFicHive

For yesterday’s challenge, I worked on a couple of ideas for the 53-Word Story Contest over at Prime Number Magazine. The theme for the month is: A story about a box. I will be brainstorming more stories around this idea. And will post the best lines from the non-entrants for the retweet swarm today.

FlashFIC day4

graphic by Anjela Curtis

Today’s themes are:

SICK ✨ RUN ✨ STRONG ✨ TWINKLE ✨ FED UP ✨ PROTAG’S BIGGEST FEAR

monday writing events

graphic by Mica Scotti Kole

Don’t Forget To Read!

Reading short stories is a great way to get some reading in when you’re feeling short on time. I’m enjoying a couple different short story collections this month:
Five-Carat Soul by James McBride
and
The Best of Talebones edited by Patrick Swenson

What short story collections are you reading? Do you like a short story collection you would like to recommend?

Happy Reading and Writing!

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#FD2017 Final Days Of 2017 Day 3: Pretty, Naughty Pig

pig decoration

This little piggy was not created as an ornament, but has been donned by many of my “Christmas Trees” (in quotes because instead of a tree, I have used a hat rack, or gathered fallen branches).  A festive and naughty pig, note the Mardi Gras beads and dirty feet, perhaps she represents the greed, gluttony and commercialism that threaten the true meaning of the season. Or maybe, she’s just a very fun pig.

#vss very short story

When she finished decorating the tree, Martha enjoyed a well deserved moment to herself. She put on some Christmas music and plugged in the lights. Blowing  steam from her fresh cup of cocoa, she felt warm in the joy of the season. She was pulled from her Christmas cocoon by a whisper of snorts and giggles. She followed the noise to her tree. She should have known better than to put Mardi Gras pig by boa-sparkle-pants Santa.

Today’s Poetry Prompt and Poem

Today’s prompt is from PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 4

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Whosoever (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “Whosoever Objects to This Union,” “Whosoever Wants to Eat My Candy,” or “Whosoever Doesn’t Wash Their Hands After Flushing.”

 

Whosoever Is Trespassing Here

Whosoever is trespassing here
Be ye thief or hunter, or even reindeer
Let it be known that you’re in the wrong
This be the place you do not belong
And hear ye this, my solemn vow
Thy presence I will not allow
Away with thee, run quick with fear
Whosoever trespasseth here

 

Editing Focus

-from Revision And Self-Editing (Write Great Fiction) by James Scott Bell.

To deepen the character during revision try: The Pull-Back Technique

  1. Brainstorm a list of your Main Character’s (MC) traits.
  2. What is an absolutely extreme action your MC could take because of or guided by this trait. List at least five for each trait.
  3. Are these actions too extreme? Would your MC taking this action impact the plot too much? Try to find some you could incorporate into the story without impacting the plot.
  4. For the actions that were too extreme, try pulling back 25%. Now can you use them?

Example: My MC is a perfectionist. Extreme actions could include:

  1. Missing his grandson’s soccer game because he spent an entire day trying to remove every piece of clover from the lawn.
  2. Yelling at his son because he returned the screwdriver to the wrong hook in the garage.
  3. Missing his daughter’s wedding because he didn’t like the crease in his pants and had to return them to the rental.
  4. Leaf-blowing fir-needles off of the driveway in the rain until every single one is off of the pavement.
  5. Laying out his clothes for the next morning even though he is retired.

In this example, I could probably use 1, 4 and 5 as they are to show his extreme behavior. Number 2 could fit, if I use the Pull-Back Technique. He could notice the screwdriver out of place and use it as a “teaching moment.” He could call his son into the garage and ask him what was wrong with the screwdriver, or what he was thinking when he put the screwdriver where he did. This would give the reader insight into the MC’s mindset and also show his relationship with his son. I’m guessing his son does not appreciate his father’s need for perfect placement.

#FlashFicHive

flashfic3

graphic by Anjela Curtis

Today’s a great day to write a flash fiction story. I am going to start loading my very short stories to Hit Record. As I do, I’ll look for one to develop into a longer piece today.  Look for my favorite lines at #FlashFicHive on Twitter later this evening.

Don’t Forget To Read!

I have a friend who has recently finished his first story that he is interested in publishing. He asked me how to submit his story and my response was READ! He needs to read as many literary magazines as he can find. He needs to read tons of short stories. He needs to read his favorite literary magazines’ submission pages, carefully. He needs to read interviews with the editors of those magazines.

Because I’m writing poetry and flash fiction this month, I need to read magazines that feature these forms. I’ve written about some great flash fiction magazines this year:

New LitMag+

LitMag+ The Sequel

More flash fiction magazines:

24 Magazines for Flash Fiction

Daily Science Fiction

Advice for writing flash fiction:

Flash Fiction: What’s It All About

Flash Fiction/The New Yorker

I found a list of literary magazines recommended for poetry. I plan to read them extensively: Best Places to Submit Poetry

Happy Reading and Writing!

#FD2017 Final Days Of 2017 Day 2: Explore Your Preface

safari angel

safari angel back

I know what you’re thinking. Why is that a silly ornament? It’s a pretty angel. A nice silver ornament. But take a closer look. What’s she wearing that hat for? Is she going on safari? And what is she doing? Smashing some vines into a crescent moon? And what’s going on with her neck on the back there? And with the robe hanging down, that back is hilarious. It looks like a swan stuck in a tablecloth trying to fly through the letter O.

#vss very short story

Stacy’s prom took an odd turn when a swan, the opposing team’s stolen mascot, got loose and during its chaotic attempt to escape became entangled in the buffet table’s skirting. After pulling the snacks and punch bowl smashing to the ground, it flew through the large letter O of the Ooh La La lettering of the photo-booth. The motion-censored camera took a series of haunting photos of an angel that night–blurred by the light of her aura, of course–that made the rounds on the internet. At least if was a prom to remember.

Today’s Poetry Prompt and Poem

Today’s prompt is from the PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 23

For today’s prompt, write a preface poem. A preface is a super literary term as the term typically relates to books–usually as the opening statement or introductory remarks of a book. So I’m mildly surprised I haven’t used this prompt previously. However, I think it’s perfect for the chapbook challenge, because poets who are writing to a theme have an opportunity to write a poetic preface. Of course, stand alone preface poems are just as interesting.

I decided on my theme for my Chapbook last night, so I thought I’d tackle the preface poem today.

The Journey

In his ordinary world
Vines cover the arbor around the garden gate
He finds security in laboring from early to late
He is practical and thrifty, on the minimal he’ll skate
Thus never in a state of want

Then adventure calls
A discovery of surprise found at his feet
Questions so exciting they cause his heart to leap
Curiosity tears from scheduled promises to keep
Fear focusing his approach to love

And he would like to refuse
Ignore the nagging pull to find the answers
Turning people that he speaks to into dancers
Causing both parties to suddenly forget their manners
Making him a fish out of water

He listens to a friend
A trusted sounding board and mirror
Hoping he can make his actions clearer
As opposing forces begin to grow nearer
But he tells him it is his decision

Now there’s no turning back
He found a thief in the garage
The threat to his safety was not a mirage
He imagines a gearing up montage
His pocket knife returns to his pocket

Those he must oppose
All think he knows of their secret grave
They won’t all get the satisfaction they crave
To hold his ground he’ll have to be brave
Even as his family betrays him

He feels the darkness closing in
The lies and family secrets all laid bare
He begins to wonder if he should even care
Falsely believing his had a true love so rare
Why protect an illusion

He’s standing in rough seas
But the killers don’t know he’s lost his way
They still believe he has more to pay
They’re here to make him rue this day
He will have to fight

The mystery is finally uncovered
The meaning of the map and its origins revealed
A body to be recovered from an unmarked field
The threat of revelation no longer his to wield
The cost is death

Through sacrifice, survival
The enemies of his unknown enemies now friends
His lawn strewn with blood of lives lost to foul ends
The truth here set free forges time for amends
The physical pain will subside

He feels a need to resist
Like he should be angry at a life so unfair
But he can’t ignore that God answered his prayer
And had brought an end to this terrible nightmare
He will have to adapt and forgive

The healing waters flow
He has a new appreciation for other people’s trouble
No longer caught up in his perfect-life bubble
He feels new love; it burst through the rubble
Nothing can be the same

Editing Focus

-from Revision And Self-Editing (Write Great Fiction) by James Scott Bell.

The Character Voice Journal– Write stream-of-consciousness in the voice of your character. Mr. Bell suggests these questions to have your character talk about:

  • What do you care most about in the world?
  • What really ticks you off?
  • If you could do one thing, and succeed at it, what would it be?
  • What people do you most admire, and why?
  • What was your childhood like?
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you?

To continue this practice, there are three questions to ask your character in the Ask Your Character section of each of the Experience Writing daily posts in November.

#FlashFicHive

Flash Fic Hive Day 2

graphic by Anjela Curtis http://anjelacurtis.com/

Looking at these options, I still needed some inspiration. I rolled my Story Cubes:

And picked a card from my Writer Emergency Packand I chose a couple of Oblique Strategies (Creativity ideas from Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt): 1. Infinitesimal gradations 2. Decorate, decorate.

So what have I got for a flash fiction story idea?

The cashier from the dollar store promises to get the decorations and plastic instruments to her hair-dresser girlfriend’s house in time for her son’s birthday party. The clock is ticking and she has to get across town. As she’s locking up, she waves to the man staring at her from the car lot across the street. He comes right at her as if drawn like a magnet and picks the flowers out of the bank along the sidewalk and gives them to her. He tells her he has admired her from afar for almost a year. Yesterday, he found out he only has a month to live and he wants to know if she will go to dinner with him to bring some joy to his final days. She feels like she has been thrown into a game of Scruples. Does she tell him the truth, that she is attracted to women and in a loving relationship, or does she bring some joy to a dying man by spending a little time with him. What could it hurt? But there is a bee in the flowers and when she politely says thank you and goes to smell them, the bee stings her right in the eye. She thinks it’s the end of the world because she is allergic and she’s going to miss the birthday party. But the man, knowing she’s allergic to bees because he watches her every day and has made it his hobby to know everything about her, has an epinephrine auto-injector and stabs her right in the leg.

Don’t Forget To Read!

In Revision And Self-Editing (Write Great Fiction) by James Scott Bell, he recommends taking notes while you read. After you’ve read the book for pleasure and thought about it, got back and make index cards for each scene. Number the cards, give the setting, what the scene is about, and what, if anything, makes you want to read on. This exercise helps burn plot and structure into your mind.

He also recommends recording your observations. Jotting down any technique you appreciate or insight you have while you read. When you see a technique, or find one in a writing book, practice it. Incorporate it into your own writing.

If you’re interested in using this technique of reading to improve your writing, grab a copy of my study guide-Read to Write: Conflict and Suspense.

What book are you reading today?

Happy Reading and Writing!

Final Days Of 2017! #FD2017 Day 1: Creating Achievable Goals

Dancing Boa Santa

For our visual prompts this month, I thought it would be fun to share some of the odd ornaments I’ve been given and some strange things I’ve used as ornaments. If you have some strange or funny ornaments that you would like to share as a visual prompt here on Experience Writing please let me know.

#vss very short story

Santa thought a trip to New Orleans might make him feel more festive. With his new boa and sparkly pants, he couldn’t help but jiggle and jangle. Once he returned to the North Pole, the elves had to scramble to find enough glitter to fill his new demands.

Today’s Poetry Prompt and Poem

Today’s poem is inspired by PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 29

For today’s prompt, write a response poem. The poem can be a response to anything–a piece of news, some art, a famous (or not so famous) quotation, or whatever. However, I thought it might be a cool opportunity to respond to a poem that you’ve written this month. If both poems work, it could make an interesting dynamic to have two (or more) poems that interact with each other.

I went back to the first poem I wrote in November, “I Don’t Write Poetry” from Day 1: The Ordinary World. I chose a couple of lines I really like “Life is a state of constant decay
But hard work helps the end’s delay” that I thought I might use in this response poem. But now, I’m thinking I might use this prompt as an opportunity for one of my other main characters (My MC’s wife) to respond to the first poem.

The Poet Who Won’t Show It

Imagine my surprise
I didn’t realize
He’s a poet
Through his adamant refusal.

He uses lovely words
For the world he observes
As he’s working
Hard on his recusal.

My pride would but offend
Though I know it’s all pretend
His hard edges
Are all a butch facade.

But he’ll never mend his ways
Even getting mad at jays
For being lazy
In the poem he’ll never write.

Editing Focus

I’m going to start this study with Revision And Self-Editing (Write Great Fiction) by James Scott Bell. I have read this before, but not worked through it. I hope to use it as more of a workbook this time around.

Exercise 1: Pick six books in your genre that you think might be comparable to your novel . Look for similar themes. Look at your favorite author in your genre. Look at similar styles to your writing and voice in your genre. Pick six books that you think you might be able to use to say, “My story is like ___________ combined with _______________  in the style of _____________.

You can definitely choose books you’ve read before, but plan to read them a couple more times, studying different aspects.

Exercise 1: My six books
The Hiding Place by David Bell
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
Bad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
Evening News by Marly Swick
These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly

#FlashFicHive

#FlashFicHiveDay1

graphic by Anjela Curtis http://anjelacurtis.com/

 

I’m excited for #FlashFicHive this month. After spending the month of November working on a novel, writing some flash fiction is going to be fun. I hope you will join us in creating some flash fiction goals for the month. I plan on writing my very short stories every day, but I also want to work on some longer pieces. I have one Christmas-themed flash fiction story that needs work that I hope to look at this month as well.

Don’t Forget To Read!

(made me think, “Don’t forget to breathe!”)

If you’ve been following along for a while, you may have noticed that I read many books at once.

Today, I plan to finish Shallow Graves by Kali Wallace and turn my attention to The Hiding Place by David Bell. These are both books that I picked up thinking they might be comps (comparison novels) for this year’s NaNoWriMo project. Shallow Graves started out well. I was intrigued by the premise and the main character, but then it took a turn and floundered. I’m afraid I’m only getting through it at this point. I hope The Hiding Place turns out to be much more enjoyable.

What are you reading? What are you planning to read this month?

I hope you’ll join me for a month of writing and editing in these Final Days of 2017.

Happy Reading and Writing!

#NaNoWriMo Recap and December Writing Plans

 

We did it! We survived National Novel Writing Month. It’s time to put away that draft, but not time to give up the daily practice. So what’s next?

For me, it means continuing this momentum into editing. This month, I’m going to dive back into last year’s NaNoWriMo draft and work through revisions to a finished second draft.

This month I will continue my daily poems, #vss very short stories and will participate in December’s FlashFicHive, but the main focus will be inspiration for a daily editing practice.

Here’s the bibliography of books I plan on working through this month of editing:

Revision And Self-Editing (Write Great Fiction)

Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, Second Edition: How to Edit Yourself Into Print

Manuscript Makeover: Revision Techniques No Fiction Writer Can Afford to Ignore

The Story Grid: What Good Editors Know

Getting the Words Right: 39 Ways to Improve Your Writing

To keep the poetry going, I looked up December poetry challenges and found the MoSt (Modesto-Stanislaus Poetry Center) 10th Annual New Year’s Poetry Challenge.

December Flash Fic Hive

graphic by Anjela Curtis

It starts on December 8th and runs through the new year to January 6th. For this challenge, I had to sign up with my e-mail and they will send me the daily prompts.

Anjela Curtis who graciously runs #FlashFicHive has pre-posted the daily Flash Fiction prompts, so everyone participating can plan around social obligations.

I have a Christmas story I wrote a while back that needs a re-write. Hopefully, I will find some Christmas flash fiction inspiration.

 

 

Conflict & Suspense

One thing you’ll be thinking about during revision of your novel is how you can increase the conflict and suspense. It’s how you keep the reader turning pages. I did a lot of study in this area and created a guide based on what I learned. I’ve made it available, for free, when you sign up for the Experience Writing Newsletter.

The monthly (or quarterly) Experience Writing Newsletter is just that: News from Experience Writing. You’ll get a quick overview of what’s going on here at Experience Writing including book reviews, great links, and writing challenges.

I hope you’ll take advantage of this FREE opportunity!

People walking in a rocky sky

November Review

How was your month? If you participated in NaNoWriMo, I would enjoy hearing about your experience. What was your favorite thing that happened during the month? What was your least favorite? Please let me know in the comments.

My favorite part of my NaNoWriMo experience this year was  including a poem and a very short story in my daily writing practice. Writing the daily posts here helped me focus my intentions for the day’s writing. For the first time, I reached my word goal early and did not feel rushed.

My least favorite part was not finishing the complete draft. I still have some scenes to write and I will try to finish those this weekend, but it’s hard not to want to take a break. I feel like I worked hard and met the challenge, but I also want to have a complete draft. Thus I write on.

I’m excited to take a look back at all the poems and very short stories I’ve written over the last two months. I will be looking over the Poem A Day prompts and putting together my Chapbook for the Chapbook Challenge. I’m also planning to upload my very short stories to Hit Record in hopes to inspire collaborations and find projects for them.

I hope you’ll continue to join me this month for daily poems and very short stories along with prompts and inspiration.

Welcome to the last month of 2017.

Let’s end this year with great Writing and Reading!

 

 

 

 

 

 

#Writober Day 31: Words magically open doors

writober 31

photo by Christopher McKenney

This image is full of story potential. It makes me think of magical worlds like Narnia and Oz,but it also makes me think of all those great stories where the story an author is writing becomes real like Stranger than Fiction, Secret Window and In the Mouth of Madness.

What story do you see? Is he going on a fantastic journey or returning home? Are those his pages swirling, or is he the character created by the words? So many possibilities.

#vss very short story

As the pages of his manuscript swirled on the warm breeze, he took a deep breath, turned the doorknob and stepped into his new story.

#OctPoWriMo

I survived

The words I chose from the random word generator:

metallic      harvest      accomplice     elongation        anyplace
timeless      gritty         horrors            exhibition          burden
The First Frost
A metallic shimmer covers the harvest
Winter’s accomplice spurs dark shadows’ elongation
Covering anyplace in darkness, frozen and timeless
Nourishment resting in gritty horrors
The exhibition of this year’s creation, now a belated burden

#FlashFicHive

flashfichivefinal

graphic by Anjela Curtis

Here it is. The final day of #Writober. How did you do? I hope you were inspired and wrote a bunch of flash fiction. Don’t forget to share your successes over at #FlashFicHive.

#NaNoWriMo

National Novel Writing Month starts tomorrow. Are you ready? I am very excited to get started on my new novel. I have so many fun ideas to stay motivated and inspired every day of November. I’ll be writing more about it later today. I hope you’ll join me. Would like to be my NaNo buddy? You can find me in NaNoWriMoland as marialberg.

Happy Halloween!

#Writober Day 30: The skeletons are out of the closets!

writober 30

from kitchenfunwithmy3sons.com

An invasion of skeletons. Are they only after you because you accidentally summoned them with a spell book or an ancient amulet? Have all of the science class skeletons risen up to take over the world?

This image makes me think of the attack skeletons from Jason And The Argonauts but it also brings up the scene from Signs when the alien is on the roof.

I hear a lot of strange noises in this house. For the last couple of weeks, my neighbor across the street has been banging away at something with machinery and the banging sounds like it’s in the house. I’m going to try hard NOT to imagine that it’s the sound of an army of skeletons trying to get in.

#vss very short story

Suxie-Q wished she hadn’t motivated all of her listeners to air their dirty laundry. Now the skeletons were out of the closets and they were coming for her.

#OctPoWriMo

Theme: Forbidden

This theme fits great with the idea of letting the skeletons out of the closets. What forbidden secrets do they represent and why were they hidden away?

Today, I’m trying the abecedarian since I skipped it on Day 21, opting to use the theme from Day 19. The theme from day 21 – Nothing Remains the Same also goes well with the skeletons coming out of the closets.

T.M.I.

Agatha’s atrocious artifice is avarice
Bob’s bloodthirsty brutal beatings bruise
Chester is a callous cold-blooded cheat
Diana deludes depraved degenerates
Elmer engages elaborate evil edifice
Francine forces fools into fake fascism
Gunther is gross with gluttony and guile
Harold howls hateful heartless hubris
Irene invents inhuman injurious infections
Keith kills
Leonard’s lips lust for lies
Mike makes up murders maliciously
Nancy’s nefarious narcissism needles
Opal obfuscates obloquy
Quinton quakes in a quagmire of qualmish quaaludes
Ramona rigs a rotten ruse
Sandra’s sinful subterfuge stinks of scandal
Ted’s terribly twisted trick turns table
Uma’s unnatural ululating to a ubiquitous underworld causes umbrage
Victor vituperates vile violence
Wally walked off with your wallet
Xena is xenophobic
Yolanda yowls yarns of yearning
Zeus zigzags zany for zaftig

Note: That was super fun! I recommend reading it aloud for extra pleasure. It reminds me of The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey or the The Sesame Street Library stories that would focus on only one letter. I especially remember a dragon story for the letter D.

#FlashFicHive

flash fic hive 30

graphic by Anjela Curtis

Sadly, #Writober is coming to a close. Not today though!!! We still have today and tomorrow to write awesome stories. If you get a chance today, pick your two favorite images from #Writober2 and write anything and everything that comes to mind. Have fun with it.

Looking back through all the great visual inspiration, the two images I choose to focus on today are the great Gregory Crewdson scenes from Day 9 and Day 10. I hope you’ll join me and finish strong.

Happy Reading and Writing!

#Writober Day 29: Alien Invasion

writober 29

Alien by Ivan Mityaev from artstation.com

Isn’t this image amazing? I love this creature. Such a great design and rendering.

Last year, the alien image inspired me to write a story about the subtle reptilian invasion going on under our noses; co-workers and friends in human form until “the change”. This year, I’m thinking full-scale, violent invasion. A whole army of these awesome aliens coming right atcha!

It makes me think of Mars Attacks! and Independence Day but I think I want my story to be less silly blockbuster and more The Elephant Man and Frankenstein. The plight of the poor, misunderstood monster, alien invasion style.

#vss very short story

When the Shnaggerfens arrived, they believed they were alone on Planet Gerfenx 1024. Their eyes did not register the billions of angry and confused occupants they kept squishing.

#OctPoWriMo

Theme: Breathtaking
form: Villanelle

The Day We Arrived

Today in the day we invade
Because it’s the day we arrived
Why do they look so afraid?

Leaders try to ply us with trade
But we are not in any need
Today is the day we invade

An officer thinks loud voice will persuade
Their weapons will do no harm
Why do they look so afraid?

Scientists use numbers in hope to dissuade
But we have no choice; our fate is set
Today is the day we invade

They ask for patience as options are weighed
Gathered in houses with spires and crosses
Why do they look so afraid?

Look at this mess they have made
Denying this inevitable day
Today is the day we invade
Why do they look so afraid?

 

#FlashFicHive

flash fic hive 29

graphic by Anjela Curtis

Since I didn’t participate in August, I looked back through October’s prompts. I had the most fun with Day 26‘s Circumlocution prompt, but I think my favorite writer’s prompts were the antagonist prompts on Day 23 and Day 24. I think I’ll take a look at an antagonists backstory and write from an antagonist’s point of view.

Are the alien invaders the antagonists, or the humans? Or are these aliens even invading earth? Maybe these awesome aliens have just discovered a new planet and encountered a completely different form of antagonist. So many ideas. Fun. Fun. Fun.

#RIP XII

Have you been doing the Readers Imbibing Peril challenge? How’s it going? Still a few days left. My planned reads kept changing, but I’ll make it. I only need to finish reading Slade House by David Mitchell for Peril of the Group Read and it’s good, so finishing shouldn’t be a problem.

Happy Reading and Writing!

#Writober Day 28: Underwater Living

writober 28

photos by Yang Yi

I love these haunting images of life underwater. They make me think of Atlantis in decay. Maybe a gritty crime drama set in the underwater city.

It makes me think of mermaids, but not The Little Mermaid kind. More like the scary ones from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

I looked up scary mermaid movies and found H.P. Lovecraft’s Dagon. I know what I’ll be watching this weekend.

What story do you see in these images? Mermaids and Sea-monsters, or people living mundane daily lives who just happen to live at the bottom of the sea?

#vss very short story

After the war, many people returned home to live in what remained of their homes under the sea. Many were already occupied by sentient sea-creatures. Thus the war began anew.

#OctPoWriMo

Today’s theme is: Belonging
poem form: Clarity Pyramid

Trust
Honest
Speak the truth

Wrapped in acceptance
Home in fearless embrace
Calm in common interests

“Freedom from back-stabbing voices”

 

Note: For this poem, a mind-map of “Belonging” was very helpful.

#FlashFicHive

Write a 25-word version of your story:

After the dam broke, they lived peacefully in their underwater city until the mermaids moved into the area. All that constant singing day and night!

Have a great Writing Day!

#Writober Day 27: Watch what you wish for, it may show up in mutated ways

writober 27

Mutation by Maria L. Berg 2017

I don’t have much to say about this one. I’m listening to Nancy Sinatra  and wanting my plant to eat all the people.  Or maybe the (other) crazy geneticists have already made the Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) that will reach out and ask how you feel about them as they eat you back. That is terrifying enough.

Would you like to ride in my beautiful balloon?

#vss very short story

I didn’t think the first mutation was exciting enough to call the papers. Now, I think I might have wanted to nip that in the bud.

#OctPoWriMo

Theme: The Scent of a flower
Form: Haiku

 

Stop crossing the line
You know you are complicit
Time to make jerks go.

 

Sometimes I forget
Life is not debt to any
Mine to give all day

 

#FlashFicHive

Day 27 flash

graphic by Anjela Curtis

This is a good idea for today’s Mutation story, since I didn’t have a lot to say about my image. Exploring more images and words to go with it might help form more of a story idea. I made a mood/story board on pinterest.

Happy Reading and Writing!

Have a great Halloween Weekend!