Saturday Stories…ON Sunday (again)

So I’m not exactly sure why I didn’t take the time to write this yesterday. It was a fairly busy Saturday, but that’s no excuse (right?). Anyway, the point is that I’m here now. So here we go!

My goals for the past week were completely switched around and messed up but that’s what happens!

First off, I’m not gonna lie…I finished Aesop’s  Fables but put Emma back on the shelf. I just wasn’t able to sit down and read large chunks all together and was getting frustrated with doing that so I set it aside and did a big library haul. I finished “A Study in Charlotte” already and absolutely adored it.

I am a few more chapters into Wired for Story and have videos up for the first several chapters.

As for the writing…well I haven’t gotten caught up yet and most likely will not get to my goal for the month. However, the point is that I tried and will continue to try. I will keep writing and will, eventually, surpass that goal and any others I set.

Here is part of what I did write this week…chapter 5 of The Way We Were (part 2):

Chapter 5

“Oh my gosh,” the blond highlights in front of him blinked owl-like golden eyes and dropped to her knees, babbling apologies like an infant cooing as she scrambled to help Lee collect the groceries that had flown from his arms.

There was something familiar about her backlit curls, her long eyelashes, her…her. There was just something about her. Lee couldn’t shake, or place, the feeling and so he bumbled, grumbled, made a right ass of himself and, with cheeks flaming from the humiliation, turned to stalk away.

The well-manicured fingers lightly glazing his bicep stopped him cold in his cracks. In her other hand, held out between her fingers, was a folded receipt with a number scrawled hastily across it.

“My name is Cecily,” she murmured self-consciously, “Call me sometime and I’ll take you out for some apology coffee.”

“Lee,” Lee responded stupidly, unable to force his mouth to shape itself around any other words.

“Come on Cee,” Another set of highlights and manicures called from the store front, “You’ve been in here for ages!”

“Gotta go,” one more brilliant smile and she was off, jogging with her lethal cart to the checkouts.

Lee looked around bemusedly and tucked the highlight’s – Cecily’s – number in to his pocket before wandering outside.

A well timed text reminding him not to forget the eggs propelled the poor man back in to where his hapless groceries were still sitting in the middle of an aisle, waiting for him to wake up and buy them.

 

Saturday Stories April 16th

This week did not end with a huge amount of writing completed. HOWEVER, I read 3 full books for #genrethon and am in 3 others (I will discuss this down below). I did write a bit, about 3000 words I believe, which is not bad at all…unless you think about the fact that I’m supposed to be writing at least 834 words a day in order to complete my personal goal of 25,000 words in April (Yay Camp NaNoWriMo…crushing dreams and spurring both writing sprees and depression/self-disgust all at once.) But I digress.

Here is the breakdown of this week’s goals:

I wanted to finish at least 3 books for #genrethon, which ended last night. I was able to complete:

100 Cupboards by N.D. Wilson – this is the first in a MG trilogy. I am really looking forward to the other 2 books in this grouping.

be different by John Elder Robison – this is a non-fiction pseudo-memoir short story collection meant to offer advice on how to handle having Aspergers, or dealing with people who do. While I enjoyed it for the most part, I feel as those the advice was very buried within a testosterone fueled autobiographical feed.

Agatha Raisin and the Potted Gardener by M.C. Beaton – this series of cozy mystery novels is well written and hilarious. This was my third listen to an audio book adaptation (so it counted for 2 genres *raise the roof*) and the adaptations, at least the ones that my libraries Overdrive have, are actually radio plays performed by the BBC Radio personalities and WOW. They are the reason people used to gather around their radios and listen to radio plays. It not only brings a bit of nostalgia for when my dad would turn on the radio play he enjoys (I cannot think of the name…I want to call it Wildwood but I’m sure it isn’t). As a small(er) person in the backseat I would often pause reading or just lay back half-asleep listening to the hilarity and these audio books really bring that feeling back for me.

I did start four other books and am currently working on three of them.

The one I am not working on is Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. I had to return this audio book to the library so I’m waiting for another go at it.

While I wait I am reading Wired for Story by Lisa Cron (I will be posting a chat about each chapter on YouTube and will link it here as well), Emma by Jane Austen, and Aesop’s Fables.

As for my writing, I’ve done a few flash fiction pieces (started my own wattpad, which I’m still a little unsure of), a short story (as requested for a bed time story from a friend who couldn’t sleep…talk about a proud moment J ), and about 1500 words on The Way We Were, Part 2. It took me awhile to get anything done on TWWW, but then I shot a character and that really helped the baddie get it together so hopefully next week will be a bit better for writing.

And now, since you’ve managed to get this far with me, I give you the piece of flash I wrote on Friday. Please enjoy! (now I’m begging people…walks away with head hung low).

 

So there I was man, swimming along, minding my own business, and looking for some nice plankton to have myself a tasty snack and some BIG ship lilts over and blocks out the sun. Thanks moron, I only see in black and white and you take my light away. While I was trying to get my eyes to adjust to your wobbling shadows, all the plankton ran off. You let my snack get away! I have BLOOD SUGAR ISSUES!

Drunken Spaniards.

Oh, yeah…there ya go. Just run into the coral reef. Do you KNOW how many of us are trying to live or eat over there? Great, run off my snack and level my favorite diner. Seriously, what is that noise? Screaming, crying…you’re acting like my cousin Fred last year when he swam through a shipwreck…oh, a shipwreck. You totaled it.

Yup, serves you right! All I wanted to do was eat. You’re lucky I don’t come over in the shallows and knock you around. Silly little sticks with legs sitting on wooden things and thinking they have any say over what happens in the waters. That’s right, row away…oooh look, a squid.

 

 

Saturday Stories 4/9

Hello Friends. This week has not been the best. I won’t go into details again here but suffice it to say that the week has been long, difficult at points, frustrating, and a little surreal. Yesterday, however, was great.

So let’s talk about my goals real quick:

This week I wanted to get Leonard the Lemur completed and ready. Guess what?? I DID! As of yesterday afternoon you can find Leonard on Amazon and Createspace for paperback and as an e-book on Kindle!!

I cannot put into words how amazed, grateful, and proud I am to have the opportunity to put this together. I love all my book babies, but I truly believe that Leonard is something special. Please go check him out.

This week I also kept saying that I was going to focus on finishing up the first draft of Paulonious Punk and the Search for an Adventure. My first children’s book, this was a lot more difficult to write than I had expected. The first draft is rough and I’m sure there are a lot of things that need edited and revised…but I did it guys. I FINISHED IT!! Yesterday morning as I awaited my class’s completion of their quiz, I jotted down a few pages of things that were twisting in my head and suddenly (because I had no idea it would be that quickly) I was writing ‘to be continued’ on the bottom of a page. I’ve finished the book and I may have started a series.

I was at school 3/5  days this week and I don’t typically read while the kids are in class UNLESS it is an AR reading day (in which case I model by reading a page or two and then I get up and walk the class) because it is very difficult to monitor the and read at the same time. I don’t know how so many people do it. However, I was able to read 30 more pages in Rachel Caine’s Prince of Shadows and start John Elder Robison’s Be Different, in which I’m on page 29. I am still enjoying both immensely and will be sure to review them for you when I’m done. Genrethon starts tomorrow so I’m hoping to finish them up and get a few more things ticked off the to-be-read pile in the coming week.

Finally, here is the short story. I began this at some point last week. It has no title and is not a completed work. However, I did write it in the past week so here you go 😛

Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend. (trigger warning – abuse and foul language (mild) )

He took three quick, mincing steps towards her and raised a fist, swinging his body just short of releasing it. She stared him down without flinching. Only a very observant onlooker, who knew what to look for, would have noticed her subtle push of feet and skull backs into the brick wall she leaned on. To the world, she looked completely at ease. The veneer of nonchalance was thick and shiny across her surface. She had worked years to make it so. Worked years to bury the past and move on. It wasn’t going to all be lost just because of one asshat that raised a fist to her. He probably couldn’t hit half as hard as her ex had anyway. This guy was just an old mistake. Sometimes they liked to pop back up to remind her how far she’d come. All of this would fly through her mind later, at the moment all she could think was don’t flinch, don’t flinch, don’t look scared. Concentrate, you have to watch for weaknesses and listen so you can make a sassy comment in a minute. Be the strong female lead in your own life. Don’t flinch. DO NOT FLINCH.

She didn’t flinch, but boy howdy he did. When she had gathered herself up and used the foot propped behind her to shove quickly off the wall, his forward momentum couldn’t be stopped. The fist meant for her soft nose instead smashed into the side of the old building, sending dust softly fluttering down around them as he howled in pain and anger.

“What was that?” She asked softly, examining her nail beds as he rounded on her again. “Did you hurt yourself? You really should be more careful.”
“That smart mouth of yours is what got you in this mess,” he ground out between teeth clenched in pain, “You might want to keep it shut before it gets you hurt.”

“So far it seems that your anger is only hurting you,” She retorted smartly, “My mouth had nothing to do with that.” “Why you little whore,” he growled, “You’ve been talking shit on me and now you’re blaming it on me too?”

“No honey,” she purred, name calling only serving to help strengthen the walls she put up. “I’ve only been telling people the truth when they ask. Besides, whores get paid and I barely even get anything.”

“You had me,” now his anger took on a whine that made him sound like a petulant child.

Saturday Stories: The Mystery of the Missing Fat Man

ITS SATURDAY!!!! Not only is Saturday a sleep in and hang out in your pajamas day (in my house anyway) Saturday is STORY DAY! So settle in and get ready..but first, let me update you on my goal chasing for the week.

If you don’t subscribe to my BookTube channel, you probably didn’t see my weekly goals last Sunday. That’s fine, the good news is that you can go right HERE and check them out (don’t forget to subscribe while you’re there 😛 )

So how did I do? Well, I completed Liar and a review will be up on the channel sometime soon while a written review is already available on this blog: here.

Monkey and I told the story of Little Monster and you can view that video HERE.

I am waiting for my illustrator to complete the final picture needed for Leonard the Lemur, but she’s in the finishing stages and the rest of the book is ready and waiting for that addition.

I did not write anything at all on Paulonious Punk , nor did I write any short stories *hangs head in shame*. I have, however, joined Camp NaNoWriMo and written the first 2k on the second half of The Way We Were. Progress is progress..write? *ahem* I mean, right?

I am planning on focusing my will power on Pauly P. and his adventure today but first, I’m going to tell you a little true story. Ready?

George and the Mystery of the Missing Fat Man.

Last night my daughter and I pulled a book from her shelf and settled in to read a bed time story. The book we chose was Curious George Flies a Kite by H.A. Rey. The edition was an old one I’d found at a thrift shop and has a page torn from it. We know the stories by heart and didn’t think that would be a big deal. BOY HOWDY it was. Want to know why? The new editions are updated for new generations and adapted to the television show. The edition we were reading was published in 1958. In the 1958 edition there were 3 different stories and one was what we know now as “Curious George Goes Fishing.” In this story George sees a man walk by with a long stick that has a long string attached and he realizes the guy is going fishing. In 1958 the fisherman is referred to as “The Fat Man” several times. In the 2012 Curious George’s 5 minute stories the tale of “Curious George Goes Fishing” refers to the fat man as ‘A Big Man’ when George first sees him, and then just as ‘the man’ for the rest of his part of the story. So the original beloved children’s tale was ‘tweaked’ and now the fat man is missing.

I realize that we live in a time of political correctness and fight against body shaming and all of that jazz…but this is a children’s book meant for small kids. Maybe I’m just naïve about how other people raise their children, but mine didn’t blink an eye or start pointing and laughing or anything even resembling fat shaming. She did say “Hey look, that’s a BIIIG fishing rod!” So why change it?

What do you think? I’ll leave it to you to decide.

Saturday Stories – 3/12/16

This week I finished reading two books, wrote 3 pages of my novel, and re-worked our Little Monster interior too many times to count. My illustrator (mom) Becky A. Tyree got the interior designs for Leonard the Lemur completed yesterday so I’m going to be re-working Little Monster *again* and prepping Leonard the Lemur for the same this weekend.

Tanganyika Wildlife Park, the park featured in Leonard the Lemur, had its seasonal grand opening today so I wanted to do a quit shout out to them on their big day! Check them out on their website, facebook, or Amazon wishlist.

This week’s excerpt is from the ‘villains’ perspective in The Way We Were. ENJOY 😀

THE FOUNDATION:

“I am sickened by the incompetence you are displaying!” The voice seemed to surround a small group of cowering robes. “Is this why we’ve spent generations grooming your families? To breed OUT this disappointing behavior? Yet the mortals are winning again. We have been in existence, this plan has been in existence, since days of Noah. Time and again we have been thwarted. Time and again these toddlers have foiled everything! We have waited thousands of years for them to forget everything. For them to LOSE their knowledge and connections. They have finally reached a blank life AND YET YOU STILL FAIL ME!!! Disappointed.”

An empty silence pressed down against the cowering capes until one straightened determinedly and strode with confident purpose to the high seat.

“Well, you imbecile’s heard him,” The masked, helmeted and robed figure projected menacingly across the crowded meeting hall. “We are failing them. Just as our parents, grandparents, and forefathers failed them in every generation before us.”

He paused, the lightweight wood of his painted mask doing nothing to conceal his baleful glare as he, the Grand Guard of the Asmodeian Society, watched the sniveling members of his tribe scurry to their own, lesser, seats.

Positioned in a large circle situated around the outside of a plush, starched, and scotch-guarded carpet the color midnight’s bad dreams and decorated with the shimmering realism of black holes and dying stars, the circle of the submissives was ever reminded of their tenuous positions in the ranks.

Some days the carpet seemed to swirl and change design on its own, but those things were dangerous to dwell on and rarely spoken of by the members pledged to this sect. There are some things that frighten even those bred to be fearless.

Saturday Stories

As part of my goals for 2016, I sat down and came up with a schedule for my blog and BookTube posts. Now, I may post more than I have set up and I may, just may, not post as much (sigh…I know it will happen. I try so hard…but I digress), but at the moment my set up will look something like this:

Sunday – video (and possibly written blog ) Weekly Goals, TBR, and anything relevant on the schedule. 

Monday – Video “random” life topics. Movies, TV, Music, Writing, etc. Non-reading related items. 

Tuesday – Blog Spotlight on —Artists, Illustrators, etc…similar to Author Interview Fridays but may not include interviews. 

Wednesay – Blog and Video – The Return of What are You Reading Wednesdays…book reviews, TBR updates, etc. 

Blog – Writer’s Quote Wednesday

Thursday – off day

Friday – Blog Author Interview Fridays

Saturday – Blog Saturday’s Stories – Weekly Updates and Writing Excerpts. 

So that is my update for this week…I am also aiming to include weekly word counts and things worked on.

The Siren’s Tale (a short story) – 581 words

The Way We Were… (novel)- 846 words

Paulonious Punk (children’s book) – 92 words

Blog Posts – 311 words

Total Since 1/1/16 – 1830 words

Not a bad way to start out the year, if I do say so myself! Leave me a comment with your own new goals, word counts, etc. I can’t wait to hear from you!

For now, I’m going to end this week’s Saturday Stories with an excerpt from the first draft of The Way We Were… that I wrote this morning. This is from the villain’s perspective:

 

“See, here’s the thing,” Collin’s steel edged voice mirrored his father’s cultured tones to perfection, his hard gaze making even veterans of The Foundation flinch away. “Everyone is flawed and self-conscious. Everyone worries. The more you care, the more easily you get stressed. Everyone,” he pushed on the word again, physically leaning into it as though testing the strength of the thing, “Everyone has a weakness to exploit. We use that and we can get in anywhere, with anyone.”

A scrawny, scruffy young man in the middle of the seated group raised his hand tentatively. Knowing enough to accept the following glower in his direction as instruction to speak, but not quite smart enough yet to keep his mouth shut anyway, the twenty-something softly starter, “What you’re talking about is…” he swallowed visibly, his adam’s apple bobbing with the strain, “Well, isn’t that a type of,” he was almost hyperventilating by this point but pushed on admirably, “emotional abuse? That can break people, sir, irrevocably.”

“Psych major,” Collin growled the half question across the stage in Peter’s direction.

Pete merely tipped his beer while inclining his head and lazily reminded his friend, “You thought one or two of them might be helpful.”

“I’m a flippin’ genius,” Collin sighed sarcastically, obviously dismissive and agitated by the truth of the matter.

“No one here to argue that point,” Pete taunted half-heartedly. “You,” he pointed the bottle in his hand at the still-standing psychologist, “It can break people if done hard enough, long enough. But most of what we do is more like a mental splinter. We needle and we agitate with small gestures and comments. We talk about how so-and-so has found such a great job or mention that 5 star restaurant we just visited, and threw left overs out from, to someone who is obviously struggling. We talk about the resort we visited last week to a friend who puts all of their travels on hold to merely survive and care for their family. No bragging involved, just softly worded side notes really, but those kind work their way in to brains and later on, instead of sleeping, he or she will be crying into the darkness. This works especially well with anxiety suffered and parents. Yes, it is mental and emotional abuse. It breaks them down, it blocks them from seeing the way to their dreams, and it keeps them right where we want them.”

 

Until Next Time….