Category Archives: Writing

Three Things Challenge: PL35

Welcome to the Three Things Challenge. Every day at 10PM (PST) I will post three seemingly unconnected things that will, hopefully, ignite your muse. You don’t have to use all three things if you don’t want to. There are no restrictions on length, style, genre, or anything. Simply read the prompt, see where your muse takes you, and bring us along for the ride. Use 3TC as a tag if you’d like and link back to this prompt, or post your link in the comments below so others can find you.

Happy Writing! 😀

Today’s prompt: stockings, radio, algae

Programs and Poems [fiction 538]

After his wife abandoned him for someone younger and more exciting, Henry accepted the task of restoring the old writings from the Merriweather estate. Soon his office was crowded with damp boxes of yellowed parchment, the spidery old scribbles now nearly illegible.

Henry had developed a scanning program that could read old documents however. It was different from the other software currently on the market and still in a trial stage. He was eager to practice on the estate files and rejoiced as his blank screen filled with code.

Meticulously, Henry spent long days refining his program and decoding the messy papers into a semblance of order. They appeared to be a mix of boring estate inventories along with poetry. He found himself strangely interested in the verse, though he never had been previously.

Snippets haunted him as he tried to sleep. “I adore you, lady fair… lace at your wrists… rose in your hair…” It sounded like a man describing a beautiful woman. Henry tried to picture her, and one night she appeared, semi-formed, in the slight light near his window.

He gasped in terror. “Who? What?” Henry was incoherent with shock.

“I am Sarah,” she whispered, her voice like necklaces sliding together. “Those poems were written for me, read to me in secret on nights such as this when the moon was full.”

“Yes, yes of course.” Henry tried to reassure her. “I’m being very respectful of them.”

“Respectful?” She laughed. “I was the butler’s daughter. James Merriweather wooed me with pretty words and seduced me. When he found out I was with child, he murdered me!”

“Murdered!” Henry slid out of bed, feeling at a disadvantage. He approached Sarah, but she was so insubstantial he could still see the outline of the window through her.

With tears streaming down her fading face, Sarah cried, “I loathe all of them and their descendants! Help me, Henry. Help me find justice after all these years!”

Henry returned to the documents with a renewed sense of purpose, determined to put together the pieces of the puzzle and expose James as the evil man he was. He kept Sarah’s distraught face in his mind as he worked, his radar homing in on any oddities. Finally, he had enough evidence to present to his boss.

“Great work, Henry,” Belinda said. “But of course we’re not going to the police or the media with this. The Merriweathers are too important to our firm. Besides, James is long gone. Just forget you ever saw it, and a bonus will be headed your way. Take the rest of the week off.”

When Henry returned to his office on Monday, every box had disappeared and his computer had been wiped of all the Merriweather files.

But in his personal locked drawer, one scrap of paper remained with a printout he’d decoded.

“I adore you, lady fair;
With soft lace at your wrists,
A pink rose in your hair.
Please step out of my dreams,
And meet me tonight
When the stars are a-shimmer
And the moon full and bright.”

Maybe Henry would see Sarah again in his dreams. He hoped so. In fact, he decided to begin his own poem for her…

~*~

Opposites Attract: Challenge 16

Opposites Attract: Challenge 17

Genre Challenge 17: Paranormal Romance

Behind the Blogger

THE RULES:

• Thank the person who nominated you

Thank you, Laura!

• Answer all the questions down below

Okay…

• Pingback to the creator: Ellyn @ Allonsythornraxx

• Nominate 5+ bloggers you’d like to know more about, to do this tag

🙄🙄🙄

1. Why did you start blogging & why have you kept blogging?

Began in 2003 because it seemed like fun. Have had various blogs through the years to connect with others who enjoy writing in public. It’s a great way to generate immediate feedback.

2. What is your favorite type of blog post to write?

Flash fiction or poetry.

3. What are your top 3 favorite blog posts?

Postcards from Afar

Valentines

Brumation

4. What are some of your favorite things to do to relax?

Read, write, repeat.

5. What are 3 of your favorite things?

My family, my kitty, and reading.

6. What are your proudest blogging moments?

My recent sci-fi stories.

7. What are your hobbies outside of blogging?

There’s something outside of blogging?

8. Describe your personality in 3 words:

Obsessive, solipsistic, and green.

9. What are your top 3 pet peeves?

1. Excessively loud people, including parents who let older children scream in public. (Yes, I realize a tiny percentage of these children are disabled in some way; I’m talking about all the other ones.) This also includes truck beepy backups. Yes, I know what they’re for. Do not care. And it includes grocery and other stores that need to shriek announcements to employees over an intercom system. Text them, ffs!

2. People who pollute the world with their disgusting garbage because the bin is full so hey toss it on the ground why not? And people who litter in general destroying our planet including and especially all the big corporations and the corrupt politicians they bribe.

3. Basically people. All of them.

10. What’s something your followers don’t know about you?

Nothing.

Tag – You’re It!

Anyone who hasn’t done this yet should have a go!

Rory’s S’mores

Another Guy Called Bloke Production!

***

At what point in our lives do you think we think we are good enough?

Speaking only for myself… never! I wake every day knowing there are goals to achieve and improvements to make.

***

In life, what do you consider beautiful?

Cats, poetry, art of various forms, nature (flowers, sunsets, birds, butterflies, etc.), and of course my family.

***

Do you think that when we dream, we can dream within a dream? But if you don’t dream, why do you think that is?

Yes, definitely. I have dreamt about dreaming.

***

How do you manage your stress or do you not suffer from stress?

It varies. I don’t handle stress well at all, so I try to eliminate it at the source ~ this is why I gave up dating, where others persevere through unpleasantness. I can’t tolerate the bad. It literally makes me sick. But some things can’t be helped; stuff appears out of the blue. I will get physically ill and have to deal with that. I’ll get migraines and take medicine. My sleep will suffer. Etc. I severely manage down interactions with people so that my stress is minimized.

***

Are there things or maybe just one thing you wish to achieve before you die?

I did want to have success as a writer, but I don’t see that happening. I’m not talented enough, nor do I have the patience to endlessly slog away on a novel anymore when I can get instant feedback via short blog posts.

***

Some experience many things during their lifetimes, but do you think there is something that everyone should experience at least once?

No.

***

Are you afriad to be different? To stand out from the crowd, to push away your peers if needs be and say “I am ME!”

No. I’m more afraid of being one of them, though generally I blend in wherever I go, at least superficially. I realize that sounds contradictory, but it’s not. I blend in just enough so that no one notices/bothers me, and then I get away as fast as I can to be apart from them.

***

Which do you think is easier ‘to hate or to love?’

To hate obviously. Humans are all about forming groups and excluding other humans in order to hate and possibly kill them.

Three Things Challenge: PL34

Welcome to the Three Things Challenge. Every day at 10PM (PST) I will post three seemingly unconnected things that will, hopefully, ignite your muse. You don’t have to use all three things if you don’t want to. There are no restrictions on length, style, genre, or anything. Simply read the prompt, see where your muse takes you, and bring us along for the ride. Use 3TC as a tag if you’d like and link back to this prompt, or post your link in the comments below so others can find you.

Happy Writing! 😀

Today’s prompt: guitar, forest, caviar 

Three Things Challenge: PL33

Welcome to the Three Things Challenge. Every day at 10PM (PST) I will post three seemingly unconnected things that will, hopefully, ignite your muse. You don’t have to use all three things if you don’t want to. There are no restrictions on length, style, genre, or anything. Simply read the prompt, see where your muse takes you, and bring us along for the ride. Use 3TC as a tag if you’d like and link back to this prompt, or post your link in the comments below so others can find you.

Happy Writing! 😀

Today’s prompt: earthquake, vanilla, pillbox

Once Upon A Blog Crime ~ Game 4

A Guy Called Bloke aka Chief Rory alerted me to some nefarious shenanigans happening in our otherwise peaceful neighborhood. It is my sworn and solemn duty as Inspector Light (my secret identity) to investigate any such disruptions to our smooth and graceful waves of daily (and nightly) postings.

Chief R informed me that unfortunately we only had the skimpiest bits of clues at this time, but I must needs make haste to find out why things were awry, askew, crooked, and cattywampus. Naturally, in order to discover why things were cattywampus, I had to bring my partner, Mr. Gatsby. 😾

My report to Chief R:

Our first stop is at Ribana of Popsicle Society, and Mr. G commences examining the popsicle sticks on the living room table. I discover with my amazing powers of investigation (aka reading the “about” section) that Ribana is from Romania, and therefore already suspect as a vampire. I immediately search for a coffin, which I do find in the bedroom, but Ribana is not in it. Who is?

It’s Jay-lin! But wait. Everything here is not what it seems, my sharpened instincts from years on dating sites tell me. Swiftly, I whip out a mirror and hold it up to Jay-lin’s pretty face. Aha! No reflection. Ribana must have turned her into a vampire too.

I check my reflection in the compact and put on some lipstick because you never know when you might “cute meet” your dream man, and as I’m doing this Mr. G meows from the kitchen. I rush in there to find Sadje making a nice healthy lunch. Or she was making lunch, but now Sadje is collapsed on the floor with lettuce and tomatoes and mushrooms all over her. Mr. G is swatting the mushrooms under the refrigerator.

“Stop that!” I scold him. “Those are evidence.”

He doesn’t listen though; he never does. I try to move the refrigerator to collect the mushrooms for my evidence bag, but it’s too heavy, which makes me suspicious. I open the refrigerator door, and there, there in the refrigerator, is the cold corpse of none other than our very own…

Lisa of All About Life! (But sadly, not now.)

Well, Chief, I know a dead body when I see one, especially with a set of bite wounds in her neck, and Lisa is definitely dead. It occurs to me at that point to check if Sadje is dead too, thank my stellar reflexes again, since she’s just about to stab me with a steak knife. Quickly, I overpower her and secure her wrists behind her back with the zip ties in my purse.

“Why were you on the floor?” I ask.

“Low blood sugar,” she says. “Fainted.”

Now I remember that Richa of iScriblr is a ghost writer, and I run up the narrow staircase to the attic to find Richa indeed writing Ribana’s vampire life story as Ribana dictates it while Richa floats around in the air with her laptop. Jay-lin is awake and with them now too, hissing at me when she sees me in the doorway.

So, Chief, we now have all the questions properly answered:

Who is the victim? Lisa

Who is the murderer? Jay-lin

Who is the location? Ribana

Who is the murder weapon? Sadje

Who is the motive? Richa

Jay-lin, a vampire agent, reps vampires to publishers who sell first-person vampire stories. Jay-lin discovered that Ribana is a vampire and got her a big advance. She hired Richa, an actual ghost writer, to write the story that Ribana dictated. Sadje stayed downstairs as a housekeeper. When Lisa, another writer, came over looking for Richa because she wanted to hire her for a project, she asked too many questions and Sadje became upset. Lisa wouldn’t leave, so Sadje hit her over the head with a cutting board. Jay-lin arose from her coffin and finished the job with a bite to the neck, which also was dinner, conveniently. 😺

~*~

I hope everyone had fun with my story and no one took offense. 💖

A2Z Blogging ~ Theme Reveal

First, please accept my apology for deleting the earlier post about A2Z April blogging. Thank you to everyone who liked and commented. I had too much multitasking going on and made a bunch of errors in the post and comments, so it’s best I begin again.

Second, I’m joining in the fun this year by committing to blog the alphabet during April. I already signed up on the official page and hope you do too. I know several of my favorite bloggers have also accepted the challenge. The more the merrier!

Third, my theme is romance reviews, specifically romantic comedies and romance novels. These will be positive reviews of some of my favorite movies and novels, nothing negative, and all my posts will be family-friendly.

Here’s a taste of what you can expect:

A. Alex and Emma, an underrated romcom gem.

B. Bet Me, one of my favorite Jennifer Crusie novels.

C. Clueless, a sweet romcom based on Jane Austen’s Emma.

I hope you will enjoy the posts, and I look forward to yours. Some interesting themes are happening! 😀

Three Things Challenge: PL32

Welcome to the Three Things Challenge. Every day at 10PM (PST) I will post three seemingly unconnected things that will, hopefully, ignite your muse. You don’t have to use all three things if you don’t want to. There are no restrictions on length, style, genre, or anything. Simply read the prompt, see where your muse takes you, and bring us along for the ride. Use 3TC as a tag if you’d like and link back to this prompt, or post your link in the comments below so others can find you.

Happy Writing! 😀

Today’s prompt: rainbow, serpent, cookie

A New You — Finish the Story Challenge

This challenge was started by Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith and then passed to Rory, A Guy Called Bloke. Rory passed the challenge on to Kristian, who passed it to me. [Note: I edited this paragraph to apply to me after Rory reblogged my post and noted that I’d kept Kristian’s wording.]

Here is Rory’s post:

Finish The Story 2019 – #8

and here is Teresa’s original post:

https://thehauntedwordsmith.wordpress.com/2019/03/13/finish-the-story-2019-8/

store-984393_1920

Finish The Story 2019 – #8

Tailoring A New You

The small shop sat on the corner of Houston and Parker for more than a century. Any piece of clothing a person ever needed could be found there. They even sold hand stitched underwear. The Frederickson family owned the shop from the day it opened, and everyone loved the family.
It wasn’t just the customer service, low prices, and great quality that brought customers back for generations – it was the other things the Fredericksons offered. They say a new pair of clothes can change a person, and at A New You, they meant it. One had to be careful when requesting a custom suit – you didn’t want to get your specifications wrong. Why, even one misplaced check mark could have dire consequences on a person’s future.
Take Emilio for example, he …
***
Part 2 – Rory from A Guy Called Bloke

Take Emilio for example, he … had listened to his Father Fausto for years, since indeed when he had been kneehigh to a grasshopper crediting and hailing the Fredericksons or as his Father pronounced it the Frederickshons for their exquisitery and finery in being able to produce something absolutely remarkable from sometimes the most staidest of cloth and if not that then there was this magical element to the garments, you didn’t just wear the suit, the suit wore you!
Fausto, had been a young man when he had first ventured into the German tailors at the bequest of his own Father Gregorio, Emilio’s Grandfather only armed with the words – ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover Fausto, this family are from a long line of magickal tailors. They enthuse the garments with not just love and beauty, nor experience and wisdom but if l didn’t know better, l would say with their very souls and blood, indeed it is almost like wearing another person’s skin, but in suit form. For the best suit anywhere in this world, this is the only place to be”
“The moment you slip inside the fabric, it’s almost like you are a different person. My last bit of advice is you must know what you and who you want and where you want to be in life? Then the master tailor Gunther he will make you a masterpiece of craftsmanship. There will never be anything like it ever again, it will be your one and only suit from the time you start your professional life to the day you stop working, then you MUST take off that suit and return it to the family of the Frederickshons, so that they can destroy it, do you understand what l am saying to Fausto?”
“I think so Father, yes.” Fausto answered rather confusedly.
When Fausto had gone to the family tailors he had been made a suit so fine, so fitting that he never needed another suit ever again in his life, he had wanted to be rich and successful and within a very short time Fausto had become one of the cities most sought out grocers. No one had fruits or vegetables of the quality that Fausto had. No one could ever outsell him, outbid him, outsmart or outfool him. After 50 years he had built up an empire of grocery stalls that was the best in all of the Americas! Fausto had wanted his favourite and only Son Emilio to take on the family business, but Emilio needed his own power suit, his own successful three-piece so he could follow in his Father’s footsteps ………
.….except Fausto hadn’t actually asked his Son what and if he wanted to follow in his Father’s shadow, or if he wanted to lead his own life?
Of course the truth had he been asked was indeed different – Emilio wanted his Sister Alessandra to take on her Father’s business. His Sister had always been keenly astute on that side of the business, she was very taken with fruits and vegetables and herbs, she was a fabulous cook, who knew all the right ingredients to make each dish spectacular – she was in her own rights their families best chef! You see Emilio, well he had other interests, and they didn’t involve cucumbers, broccoli or marrows – he used to play with bananas and pretend they were guns …. and even more recently he had made friends with Alphonse who had even bigger dreams. Alphonse had at one time been a Five Points Gang member and was shrewd, he was also closely associated with the notorious Johnny Torrio. Alphonse himself was a right ‘snorky’, and also used the Frederickshons for his own suits, but he had many made and needed more than one, for his many shades of personality and success. Snorky was the terms for ‘sharp dresser’ and Emilio wanted to be like Alphonse too!
The year was 1923, the location was Chicago and Emilio and Alphonse walked into the Frederickshons Tailors where Gunther upon seeing them, greeting them both, “Emilio, your Papa Fausto said you would be stopping by with your new friend, but l never knew, this was the type of suit you wanted!” Turning to Alphonse, “Mr Capone it is so good to see you again, a new suit is it?”
” Gunther, not at all, l want you to outfit my new boy here, Emilio, tell the man what you want?”
Emilio, smiled a big proud toothy grin and said …..

Part 3 – Kristian’s Addition

“I want to look drop dead gorgeous” Emilio said. He liked the ladies, but so far in his life, they seemed to realise he was a low life scumbag who liked gangs and violence and so stayed well away.

Unfortunately the Magical Tailor, Gunther, was become a trifle deaf. He was coming up to two hundred years old and was way past retirement age. Being slightly deaf, he failed to hear Emilio’s last word. You would have thought that it would have occurred to him that Emilio’s request was rather strange and therefore he must have misheard, but senility was creeping in, so he crafted the suit according to the very request he had heard.

Within a week of wearing it, Emilio had dropped dead.

The consequences of Gunther’s auditory and mental deterioration were even more drastically displayed when poor Tristram Van De Gould went in for a fitting.

He asked for a waistcoat that would make him appear slimmer, what he ended up with was a straightjacket that prevented him from eating at all. He died of an emptystomach.

If you thought things couldn’t get any worse, you were wrong because next……..

 

Part 4 ~ Paula’s Part

The taxicab stopped in front of the shop and a disparate group of Americans piled out. “Hey!” yelled the driver. “Someone needs to pay me!”

“Someone pay the poor guy, for Pete’s sake,” Bernie said. “What’s the matter with you people?” And he walked into the shop, bumping his head on the door. “Owww.”

“I’d love to pay him,” Kamala said, “but I gave all my money to that sweet little girl at the airport who said she was homeless.” She went into the shop too. Amy and Beto and Liz ran after her. “Wait for us!” they shouted.

Joe rolled his eyes. “Geez, I’ll pay him. I always get stuck with the check when I go out with those guys,” he said to the cabbie. “It’s just the weirdest thing!”

“I sympathize, buddy,” the cabbie said. “My in-laws are exactly the same. Have fun shopping.”

Trailing after the others into the shop, Joe found them already arguing with the suit maker, who was nearly deaf, apparently. Everyone was yelling. “CALM DOWN!” Joe shouted.

“I was here first,” Bernie insisted. “I should get to order my suit first.”

“Fine.” Amy plopped down in a chair. “I’ll just sit here and have some of their free juice. Can I drink it out of one of these shoes, Gunther?”

The ancient tailor heard his name and turned in her direction. “Ehh, no one here named Sue, honey. We have a Lucy, but she’s off today.”

“‘Scuse me!” Beto said. “But we don’t call women honey anymore. I got in trouble for making some jokes earlier, so now I intend to be an annoying sourpuss wherever I go. I think my suit should reflect my new personality of a serious man who has meditated deeply upon–”

Bernie waggled a finger in his face. “MY TURN MY TURN MY TURN!”

“Ahem,” Kamala said. “This is a perfect example of why we need a woman in charge. Men just feel so entitled to everything. It’s definitely time for women to show how things can be done in a more orderly and peaceful manner.”

“You hussy!” Liz cried. “You winked at my husband at the rally last month.”

“What are you talking about?” Kamala said. “Have you gone off the reservation again?”

“LOL!” Amy laughed, coughing on her shoe juice.

Beto tried so hard not to laugh he waved his arms around madly and knocked over a rack of ties. Joe picked them all up.

Liz showed Kamala a video on her phone. “See? There you are winking at my sweetie.”

“I was crying,” Kamala told her. “I have hay fever. I had to take a Benadryl.”

Gunther hobbled over and said, “Alrighty then, dearies. Who’s next? I’ve measured the men.”

Kamala went next. Liz said to Amy, “I don’t even know why we’re here. It seems so silly, but I didn’t want to be at a disadvantage when you all said you were getting these special suits made.”

“I know, right?” Amy shrugged. “They’re supposed to be magical, or something.”

“Hillary had a suit made here,” Joe said. “But then she didn’t wear it. I’m not sure why. I’d ask her, but she won’t talk to me anymore. Who can even understand women, am I right?”

They just glared at him. “Oopsy,” Beto said. “Uncle Joe needs to go for retraining. Perhaps some yoga.”

“What?” Joe looked around, bewildered. “What did I do?”

“This shop needs to unionize,” Bernie announced. “Who’s with me on that?”

Liz frowned. “I don’t see any employees, Bern. Plus, it’s another country. They don’t need your help.”

“Everyone needs my help!” Bernie waggled his finger at her.

Gunther finished up with Liz and Kamala, and now all six Americans had been measured and fitted for their custom suits. They had told Gunther exactly what their hopes were for the coming year and he would take that into account when designing their apparel. He tallied up the final bill and brought it back out to the front.

“All the suits should be ready in three weeks,” he said to the group. “I can have them air mailed for an additional fee, since I know everyone has to zip back across the pond to his and her busy lives. Now did you want separate cheques?”

Everyone looked at Joe. He sighed and took out his Amex. “No, I’ll put it on my card for the travel points. We’ll settle up later.”

“Thanks, Joe!” everyone said. “You’re the best! We’ll PayPal you!”

The suits did arrive three weeks later, as promised. But…

 

And here I pass the story on to….

Fandango, of course!

Rules–
Copy the story below as it appears when you receive it (and the rules please)
Add somehow to the story in which ever style and length you choose
Tag only 1 person
If you choose to not participate or finish the story, please comment/tag this post so that I know.