#NaNoWriMo & #NovPAD Day 4: A Party Hidden in Plain Sight

Fancy Ribbons by Maria L. Berg 2021

Today I was inspired to try a shadow effect inspired by images I’ve seen on Pinterest. Pareidolia combined with tricks of light and shadow made for some interesting house guests.

Out from Hiding by Maria L. Berg 2021

November PAD Chapbook Challenge

The prompt is to write a party poem.

At the Party

It hides
behind the fancy ribbons
the glitter, the streamers
it hides in plain sight
behind white-toothed
red-lipstick smiles
is obscured by
laughter and music

but then a sudden light–
headlights through the window
sweeping the far wall,
someone leaves the bathroom
or enters from the hall–
and the shadows shift
and I see it so clearly
and then it’s gone
covered again in laughter
and the next song’s major chords

It hides
under every plastic cup
and every paper plate
under every chair
used to fasten a balloon
I can taste it
in every bite of cake
there it is
in the flicker of candles
I smell it coming
in the smoke
when extinguished

It lingers longer this year
as it lurks in the shadows
and leaves a clingy film
after the guests have gone

The shadow from a piece of ribbon created a profile on a white wall.
His Stern Profile by Maria L. Berg 2021

My party poem combined with “hide” made for a conceit that fits Björn’s Meet the Bar prompt at dVerse.


My days are flying by. Every day I think I’ll get more done than I do, but I’m enjoying putting extra time into this initial set-up with the intent to have everything come up again later. I started hopping around a little bit yesterday, and that helped me get motivated to go back and continue the scene from the day before.

How’s your writing going? How do you get and stay motivated?

Why the Long Faces? by Maria L. Berg 2021
November Daily Prompts by Maria L. Berg 2021 Please leave your links in the comments. I hope you will join me.

Happy Reading and Writing!

#OctPoWriMo Day 30 & #SoCS: The Sun Came Out and the World is a Party

November Daily Prompts by Maria L. Berg 2021

Here’s the November daily prompts calendar I mentioned on Thursday. These words are much more abstract than the Halloween Challenge, but I’m hoping they will challenge me to create photographs that represent and inspire the feeling of these words while I work on my novel. I hope you will join me and post your links in the comments each day. I look forward to seeing how you interpret these prompts.

Everyone Came to the Party by Maria L. Berg 2021

For Tourmaline .’s Halloween Challenge, party, I made two different balloon filters. Then I made a vampire face on my single balloon. My world is a party because the sun came out, and my decorations get to go outside!

Party Ghosts by Maria L. Berg 2021


Today’s prompt, “Diary,” is a great prompt for a Stream of Consciousness Saturday. Today’s #SoCS prompt is “boo.” The prompt says to choose a work with boo in it and of course my mind screamed “BOOK!” which also brings me back to diary. These days I don’t keep a “diary,” I do morning pages in a journal. I once had the horrible experience of someone I loved and trusted, reading my diary and becoming angry at me–judging my personal, emotional, private thoughts–from what they read there. I tore out the pages and burned them on the back stairs. I never kept a diary again. My morning pages are about writing process and random mind clearing. I doubt they would make much sense to prying eyes.

The 2018 prompt, “Dancing on the Moon,” goes well with today’s prompt party.

Homecoming Party

Boo! Did I surprise you?
I would laugh that you shook
but you’re looking at my book
which you must have mistook for
anything other than my diary because
I know you wouldn’t do that to me.

But my eyes don’t mislead: I’ve been
forsook, or you took me for a rube
or a boob. I am no newb to a rude goon
rooting through my room for loot.
You took so much more than my words
you broke my trust. I am mute.

Like a kick with a steel-toed boot
my stomach fills with doom as you
hoot like a baboon, head a hot-air
balloon. I feel a swoon but red
heat is a boon. I grab my book
from your grasp and get to task.

As I tear the pages, your anger
is moot, its root in forbidden fruit
A taboo you zoomed past without booze.
As a lit fuse I set each page aflame,
and dance in my moonlit release.
I won’t make this mistake again.

Vampire Balloons in the Grass by Maria L. Berg 2021
The Sun Comes Out and the World is a Party by Maria L. Berg 2021

Happy Reading and Writing!