Saturday, December 4, 2010
She even leaves the link live for a full week, so you've got plenty of time to craft a tale to share. And make sure to visit all the links, this is an amazing group of writers and you never know what they will come up with. You'll laugh, you'll cry... it's better than a night at the movies! It's so much fun to see how the same prompt speaks so differently to everyone.
This week's prompt is in bold, blue font. My take this week is for every person out there who struggles to make their holiday picture perfect. Martha Stewart and reality don't usually meet, no matter how we try!
Mother Brown was stepping aside, letting her host Christmas for the first time. After months pouring over Martha Stewart magazines, her home was perfect. Handcrafted placecards at each table setting. Cinnamon sticks and apples simmered on the stove, scenting the air. Stockings painstakingly crafted of vintage linens culled from antique stores. Simple, elegant mantel, with evergreens, magnolia leaves and berries gathered by hand. She was pleased. Not a single thing the old bat could criticize.
Now for the tree. Opening the first box, she stared in disbelief at the bin of tangled up holiday lights. And uttered some words that Mother Brown would definitely not approve of!
Sunday, November 28, 2010
It's Saturday Centus time again boys and girls! Remember how you used to look forward to Saturday morning cartoons? Well, Jenny Matlock at Off On My Tangent is my "grown up" version! Our lovely host Jenny provides us with a prompt, and we write a story of 100 words or less exclusive of the prompt. It sounds easier than it is, but it's a great way to stretch your editing muscles and your imagination. Jenny leaves the link live all week, so you've got plenty of time to come up with a nice little tale to share. Because the stories are so short, I get to visit every link. And I'm glad, because Jenny's mad little band of Centusians is one talented group!
This week, another curve ball. In Jenny's words:
This week we have a unique prompt supplied by Clearspace...a regular contributor to SC. Here are the instructions for this week: This weeks prompt writing will be one with a twist. You know those horoscopes in newspapers? One of those will be your new prompt. Pick one randomly from a paper or a website and write a story <100>
The horoscope that I chose is in bold font.
A favorite hobby or skill takes priority this morning and occupies your mind until you eat your next meal. Your many interests may include reading, trains, dolls, model building, miniatures, etc. There may be an opportunity to attend an art show this afternoon, perhaps a public showing of collections and hobbies. You will enjoy being with some of your friends that have the same sort of hobby interest as you. Working with hobbies is a wonderful way to get to know someone better. A common interest in spiritual values among family members may occur as well. You happily involve yourself in many conversations with great people today. You may be called upon to settle a debate this evening. You know just how to direct the conversation.
The scent of coffee wafting through the air roused her before the alarm. Thank God for automatic coffeepots. Throwing the twisted blankets aside, she slid out of bed and stumbled into the kitchen. Fired up the laptop, and just for grins, checked her horoscope. What a crock. She hadn't written anything in weeks. Her muse had skipped town, taken the last train out without so much as a goodbye. Sighing, she opened her unfinished manuscript and was shocked to feel herself falling down that familiar rabbit hole. Eight hours later, her rumbling stomach called her back to reality. She smiled.
Saturday, November 20, 2010
It's time to join the lovely Jenny Matlock at Off On My Tangent for Saturday Centus! Life has been crazy lately and I haven't been able to post much. But I always make time to join our little band of Centusians for this weekly writing exercise. Jenny provides us with a prompt, and we write a story of no more than 100 words exclusive of the prompt. The only rules are no pictures, no profanity and no splitting the prompt! Jenny is gracious enough to keep the link live for the entire week, so you have plenty of time to craft a tale to share.
And the stories are so short, there is no excuse for not visiting all of the links. You'll be glad you did, there are some amazing writers who join every week.
I look forward every week to waking up on Saturday and seeing what Jenny has provided us to work with. This morning was no different. Until I read the prompt. Initially I groaned, then started laughing so hard I almost lost my coffee in a very unbecoming way. This is going to be an interesting week! Here is my contribution, the prompt is in bold blue font.
For years, he suffered. Bullies taunting him in the schoolyard. Raised eyebrows and barely suppressed laughter as teachers read his name for the first time. Outright howls whenever his name was called in public. His parents certainly had a flare for the outrageous. How many kids grew up in a house painted Barney purple? He always assumed that the anesthesiologist had used a free hand with the demerol when he was born. But what was his dad's excuse?
Then he read the job posting on Monster. And smiled as he entered the corporate offices of Butterball.
"Pardon me," said Tom T. Urkee. "Which way to HR?"
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Oh glorious Saturday. My favorite day of the week. It's the day we get to play with words and join the fabulous Jenny Matlock at Off On My Tangent for Saturday Centus!
Won't you join our merry band of Centusians and write a story? I won't tell you it's easy, because it's not. But it is fun! And it may just be that kick in the pants you need to start writing. The premise is simple. Jenny provides us with a prompt. We then take that prompt and write a story of 100 words or less, exclusive of the prompt. The only rules are that the prompt must be left intact, no pictures, and no profanity. Simple, right? And to sweeten the pot, Jenny leaves the link live for a solid week, so you've got plenty of time to craft a story.
The other benefit to joining us is the amazingly diverse group of writers who participate. And this is the most supportive and fun gang of people you will ever meet. I have yet to see a single snarky comment. Other than those from Tom. But he's just cracking wise about us Southerners, not about the writing. I think the ghost of Flannery O'Connor needs to visit him and straighten that boy out, don't you? I try to visit every link, every week because the stories are so great.
This week's prompt is in bold, blue font. Enjoy!
Gazing out the window, Eva sighed. It was going to take all weekend to rake those leaves. She remembered her first glimpse of this old place, falling in love with the magnificent trees guarding the house like benevolent sentinels. Now those same trees were the bane of her existence.
Eight grueling hours later, she looked around. Heaps of fallen oak leaves lay scattered like ancient burial mounds.
The early November sunshine cast golden rays of light over her handiwork. Laying the rake aside, she smiled. She couldn't resist. Laughing, she took a flying leap, landing in the largest pile, casting hours of work to the autumn breeze.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
This is my second contribution to Saturday Centus this week, hosted by the lovely Jenny Matlock at Off on My Tangent. This started as a memorial to a very good friend, mixing some fact with some fiction. 100 words was not going to cut it, so this is part 2 of my story "Danny". The prompt is in bold blue font. Hopefully this story stands on it's own, but if not, read Part 1.
"... Storm of the Century. Let's look back at some images from that day..." Turning off the television, she didn't need pictures to remember. Waking to a wind so fierce it rocked the house. Ancient trees snapping like kindling in the early morning tempest. Looking out the kitchen window as Frankie's bike flew past, cartwheeling through the heavy air like a lunatic gymnast.
She warned Danny to stay home. Devil's Hollow was surely washed out. Even if it wasn't, no one could handle those hairpin turns in that storm.
For most, it was the 11th Anniversary of the storm. For her, it was the day Danny died.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Time for Saturday Centus hosted by the lovely Jenny Matlock at Off On My Tangent. We are back to our regularly scheduled program, after last week's detour into brevity. You know the routine by now, right? Jenny provides a prompt, and we fashion a micro story of 100 words or less exclusive of the prompt. Last week, Jenny shook things up and allowed us only 50 words. 50 words! Guess she got tired of all the complaining - "100 words is not enough, I can't possibly write a story with only 100 words" whine, whine, blah, blah, blah. After last week, this is going to feel like writing an epic!
This story is fiction mixed with some fact, based on a dear friend from high school. I couldn't do it justice in 100 words, so this one's a two parter. And before Tom starts his Southern bashing, I will tell you that I never could stand "The Devil Went Down to Georgia". But now I do at least smile a bit when I hear it, because it reminds me of my friend... The prompt is in bold, blue font.
The morning broke clear and crisp, frost sparkling like fairy diamonds. Oh, the irony. Amazing how something as simple as the weather could change everything.
She closed her eyes, remembering Danny. A gentle giant, his laugh booming through a room like happy thunder. The way he danced whenever he heard "The Devil Went Down to Georgia". Good Lord, that boy could NOT dance, but his sheer joy infected everyone. His bear hugs, lifting her off her feet as he sang "Short People", grinning like a loon. She smiled, wiping tears from her face.
It was the 11th Anniversary of the day she lost her best friend.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
This is one of my favorites. Cait and her dorm mate. What were they? I'll let Cait's Facebook Status from that day explain:
Cait: we're the girls that brought extra clothing for the ones who forgot theirs....we're fighting the stereotype that girls are expected to dress like skanks for Halloween : )
Hope everyone has a frightfully good Halloween!
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Jenny, Jenny, Jenny... What are you doing to us? It's time for Saturday Centus, hosted by our lovely Jenny Matlock at Off On My Tangent. You know the routine, Jenny gives us a prompt and we write a fun little story of 100 words or less. Every week, I struggle keeping my word count down. Slave and sweat over which of my sweet little words are going to the recycling bin. Well, this week Jenny threw us a curve ball. We only get 50 words. Now how on earth are we supposed to tell a story in 50 words or less? Good grief, I use more words than that on my grocery list! Guess this is our trick for Halloween. I'm going to give it the old college try. The prompt is in blue font. Make sure to visit all the links, I'm sure you'll find some treats there!
The old Civil War depot was haunted. Everyone knew that. Frankie went in anyway. You can't ignore a triple dog dare! After the longest 30 minutes in history, he emerged. Shaking, but with a victorious smile on his impish face. "Come on Frankie, what happened?" He just smirked and said
"Abraham Lincoln was a lot shorter then I thought he would be..."
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Here's a spooky little short for Halloween, enjoy!
The wind howled through trees, restless banshees prowling the night. Windows rattled with every clap of thunder, lightening providing glimpses of the raging storm. Ten teenage girls giggled and screamed as branches scratched against the clapboards, the old house groaning as it settled in for the night.
Sarah's mom smiled as she listened from the top of the stairs. She was so glad that she had rescued the old Hoffman place from the wrecking ball, ignoring the superstitions of the townspeople.
The lights went out just as Sarah started to speak "This is the scariest story I've ever heard...". Her mom felt a cold hand on her shoulder...
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Since it's October, the ghouls and ghosties are out and about. Oh wait, that's just a group of Centusians moaning over which words to delete from their story! Seriously, it's harder than you think. I'm just writing along, and when I stop to check my word count, I'm usually over 100 words before I'm anywhere near done writing.
This week's prompt was provided by our lovely Miss Anna and it's very appropriate to the season. Here's my take on it, the prompt is in bold font. Hope you enjoy, and don't forget to visit all the links. And check back throughout the week, the link stays live until next Friday evening. You don't want to miss any of the amazing writers who participate!
Cindy was so mad she could spit! The boys got to run wild on Halloween, while she had to trick or treat with daddy.
She was almost 10, for goodness sake. Why couldn't she go with the boys? Running through the spooky old graveyard, playing tricks on crazy ole Miss Harriet. Dang it, she would show them.
Stomping up the stairs, Cindy opened the door to the attic. Found the musty old uniform and slipped it on. A few dabs of ketchup and she was ready.
" "Trick or treat!" they shouted as the door opened..."
The screams of those boys were worth every lick she knew she had coming...
Sunday, October 10, 2010
This weeks prompt: "If I had a hammer..."
My take. Hope you enjoy!
The sun was slowly sinking as I made my last turn around the square. Grand old buildings stood sentinel, Victorian dowagers passing judgment on every passing citizen. A sudden breeze whispered through fallen leaves on the courthouse lawn. What a glorious evening for a stroll through this beautiful old town. Peaking into gleaming shop windows, I admired the artwork at the gallery, the book display at the corner book shop. I crossed the empty street to see what had moved into the old Hoffmeier building. A candy shop! The window beckoned, displaying a veritable wonderland of luscious hand dipped chocolates. If I had a hammer ...
Please make sure to stop by Jenny's and read all the links. There are some really amazing writers participating in Saturday Centus every week!
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Time to put on the old creative hat and get writing - it's Saturday Centus time! By now, you know the routine, right? Our lovely hostess, Jenny Matlock at Off On My Tangent, provides us with a prompt and we write a micro story of 100 words or less exclusive of the prompt. Simple, right? Not so much. And this week, she's shaking things up again. No written prompt, we are to use a picture instead. Normally we are not allowed to use pictures in our posts. But since the picture is the prompt, I'm going to to be an anarchist and break that rule. The prompt for this week:
I was hoping to be able to add to this story (thank cj for prompting me) and I think I managed it.
My take on the prompt:
The screen door slamming sounded like a gunshot in the old house. Charlee jumped, flour floating to the floor, ghosts in the October breeze. Little Frank ran into the kitchen, jumping up and down like a pogo stick. "Aunt Charlee, I'm going to pick pumpkins for Jr. He said he'd pay me and some other kids a dime for every good one!" Charlee untied her apron, turning toward the boy. "Child, we've talked about this. You aren't to go anywhere near the Ewell place. Jr. is a bad man. I don't want you talking to him."
Roy would handle this ...
Make sure to stop by and visit all the links. There are some amazing writers participating in this meme every week. And since the posts are so short, you can read them all!
Monday, October 4, 2010
I've been tagged! Now this is an interesting concept. Tom at Sophisticated Lunacy has tagged me to participate in a meme started by The Kid in the Front Row which is called "A 30 Sentence Kid In The Front Row Story, by 28 Authors." Want to see the rules? Click here.
Basically, the "Kid" starts and ends the story. The rest of us complete it one sentence at a time. I apologize for the delay in responding to this, we were in Dallas for the weekend and did not have time for blogging - it was OU weekend after all! So without further ado, here is my contribution at #10. I'm tagging Jeff at TennesseeMudbug to continue the story.
1. Jane never expected to visit Belarus, but it was the only possible solution after what had happened.
10. Please return to hospital stat - patient awake, agitated, requesting nurse to masticate and regurgitate his dinner - wings noted sprouting from back, need your expertise in birds ASAP!
30. The three of them left as quickly as they could and vowed never to return again, especially if Jane was in town.
Monday, September 27, 2010
Once in a while, no matter how dark things seem, something happens to renew your hope and your faith in humanity. I hope everyone takes the time to read the link below. And think hard before condemning "today's kids". This is why I love our town. Enjoy this and make sure you have a box of kleenex handy!
Fairy tale ending at GHS homecoming | KXAN.com
Saturday, September 25, 2010
This week's prompt is in honor our Tom's birthday
He never dreamed when he blew out the candles on his cake...
My take on the prompt. This is especially for you Tom :)
Tom walked under the canopy of oaks, cursing and swatting at the clouds of gnats that circled his head. Moving through air that felt like syrup, avoiding clouds of grasshoppers that jumped in his wake, he shook his head in disbelief. How had he ended up in this backwater town?
Had it really been just 2 short weeks since his birthday party back in L.A.? Natasha, leaning close as she brought out the cake. "Don't forget to make a wish..."
He never dreamed when he blew out the candles on his cake that his wish for a writing job would land him in Mississippi. Be careful what you wish for, indeed!
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Make sure to read all the great stories this week. There are some amazing writers out there!
This weeks prompt is something everyone can relate to. It should be interesting to see what our little band of Centusians does with it!
"This is never going to come out," she thought as she scrubbed at the spot on the worn carpet.
Here's my take on it. Hope you enjoy!
Dust motes performed their intricate ballet in the sun streaming through the old lead glass window. Charlee carefully set the pail of foamy water in the hall. "This is never going to come out," she thought as she scrubbed at the spot on the worn carpet.
Mama's best oriental rug, ruined. What had they tracked in last night? It was Roy's turn to host his men's club and the meeting had run late. She guessed some of the boys may have sampled the fruit of the corn a bit too freely. Tempers were running hot after hearing little Frank's story about Jr. She hoped they had put the fear of God into that good for nothing waste of flesh.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Saw this ad on Craigslist, and thought it was one of the funniest things I'd ever seen.
Free Lusy Blom Ikea RugDate: 2010-09-14, 7:54PM
This rug is white with brightly colored flowers. It's in good shape, but needs vacuuming, and we don't have a vacuum. The rug is outside by the curb if you want it. Bye Bye Rug! Enjoy your new home.
- it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
Original URL: http://austin.craigslist.org/zip/1954461815.html
Saturday, September 11, 2010
What I remember most clearly from the days, weeks and months that followed this horrific attack is the sense of pride and unity. No one was going to bring this country to it's knees. The sense of thankfulness for our firefighters and police officers who willingly went into the inferno to save lives and bring some semblance of order to chaos. The picture that I remember most clearly from this frantic time was of the thousands of people streaming across the bridge leaving Manhattan, with firefighters and police officers going into the city.
As I sit here with my morning coffee, I wonder what we have really learned from this. What happened to our sense of pride and unity? The constant bickering over every little thing, the two political parties acting like a bunch of spoiled schoolchildren. Name calling, mud slinging and ugly, hateful rhetoric spewing from every talk radio station. People, if we cannot pull ourselves together and learn to tolerate each other's differences and opinions, we are letting the terrorists win. Our biggest strength lies in our ability to discuss, work together and learn from each other. Our greatest ally is ourselves! We the People! Not you the democrats and you the republicans and you the "whatever". Our country was formed in response to intolerance and injustice. A place where everyone has the right to change government, just by pulling a little lever. Let's not let our differences tear us apart. Rather, try to remember that it is people from all walks of life, all religious beliefs, all political leanings and all backgrounds that give this country it's strength. It saddens me to think that the only time we can come together as a people and unite in a common cause is when we are under attack.
It is important that we never forget what happened on this fateful day. But it's also important to remember what happened in this great country of ours over 200 years ago. The greatest country on earth, with the greatest system of government on earth, was formed. So while it is important that we fly our flags and wear our lapel pins today, I think it is more important that we keep the flag in our hearts and minds everyday. Make our forefathers proud of what we have become and what we can accomplish. Do not let the terrorists win.
Thursday, September 9, 2010
This weeks prompt is a classic. When I opened the post and read it, I laughed out loud. Like a loon. Ask DH or Cait - they thought I'd finally lost it.
It was a dark and stormy night
Here's my take on this week's prompt. This one is especially for you, Jenny. Enjoy!
It was a dark and stormy night. And I was awake for every crash of thunder and flash of lightening. Tossing and turning like the wind chimes outside my window.
Late for class again, but better late than never. It's our last Rainbow Summer School session and Mrs. Matlock has assigned the color violet. Stop by class and read everyone's essays. Hopefully they will be ALOT better than mine. Without further ado, my post for violet.
This is a violin .......
Therefore, this must be a violet...
Get it? Violet? Sorry folks. I'm sleep deprived, overworked and stressed to the max this week. I've got bupkiss! Stop by Jenny's and see some much more creative work!
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Time for Rainbow Summer School again. Mrs. Matlock will be proud - I was on time this week! It's not too late to register for class. Come visit everyone at Jenny Matlock - Off On My Tangent. This is a really fun group!
This week our color is Indigo Blue. Last week I shared pictures of our beautiful blue skies here in Texas. This week I'll prove that our Indigo evening skies are just as wondrous. So join me on a little tour of a typical Texas weekend in the fall.
Start the weekend off right with a small town high school football game. And in Texas, the half time show and the band are almost as important as the game! This was actually taken at a Marching competition. At a real game, there would not be an empty seat in the stadium. We used to joke that if you wanted to get away with something, best do it on Friday night. Because EVERYONE is at the game! And I know that the sky is not yet Indigo in this shot. But the drum major's uniform is! (Yes, that's our Cait)
If you're lucky enough to have connections (like a former player on the 69 National Champion Longhorns), you might score tickets to a Longhorn game for your Saturday entertainment.
If football's not your thing (I don't think you should admit that if you live in Texas), you could make a night visit to the State Capitol.
Just a note. If you lay on the floor to get a really neat shot of the inside of the dome, the DPS officers guarding the Capitol are likely to smile, shake their head, and walk the other way. I guess they figured we were a bit nuts, but basically harmless!
On your way home, stop and take a spooky shot of Grace Heritage Church - just off the square here in Georgetown. PJ, this shot is just for you!
Hope you enjoyed your tour of a Texas fall weekend.