"What do you plan to do with your one, wild, precious life?" -Mary Oliver

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Breakthrough Novel Award Contest

I made the first cut in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest in the General Fiction category. It was a shot of adreneline to find my name on the list. There were ten thousand entries so I guess that's pretty cool. If nothing else, I know my query is effective. I have the folks at Agent Query and She Writes to thank, as well as the amazing Mindy McGinnis at Writer Writer Pants On Fire, who also just so happens to have a short story in SPRING FEVERS. Her debut novel NOT A DROP TO DRINK is coming out in 2013 but you can add it to your Goodreads shelf if you have one. While you're there, you might as well add SPRING FEVERS too.

I've decided that Twitter might be a cool way to connect with people. If the creator of Spring Fevers can find time to Twitter, than I can too. One can only buck the current for so long. So if you see me out there floundering in a headwind, please offer me shelter on a branch.

I hear sleet against the window. Dare I wish for an "ice day". A free day to sit at my computer and make up stories? Delve deep into my imagination and bank of memory? This brings up an interesting discussion I started with Tricia over at Talespinning.

Do you think memory can be imagined? The mind is a fascinating thing. Dark and beautiful and mysterious. How do you know you don't know something and how do you know that that embellished memory is authentic? We all embellish memory, tweek it and edit it. Then there's memory loss. How much of your self do you retain if you lose your memory?

Keep a diary. It's the only sure way to remember the past with accuracy. That or sit down with an older family member or an old friend who can set you straight. But you might not like what they tell you.

Off to imagine some stories. Come on sleet. Come on.


P.S. I posted this accidently before all my links were in place. Sorry Mindy. Corrections have been made. And, no, I didn't get that free day.

Monday, February 27, 2012

SPRING FEVERS - It's Contagious!

Just in time for spring,
is hot off the press!

Hot in more ways than one, the anthology is a collection of tales that explore relationships in all their forms. Created by Cat Woods and Matt Sinclair, SPRING FEVERS is the debut publication of Elephant's Bookshelf Press. The ten writers featured are: MarcyKate Connolly, S.Q. Eries, Robb Grindstaff, J. Lea Lopez, Mindy McGinnis, R.S. Mellette, Matt Sinclair, A.M. Supinger, Cat Woods and myself. Yes, I am very proud to have two of my short stories included with such a fine group of writers.

The cover design was done by Calista Taylor. Isn't it pretty?
She just launched a new site for her ebook covers. If you need a cover, check out her gallery here.

SPRING FEVERS is available at Amazon or at Smashwords.

Catch a fever!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Flash Fiction Friday

DRINKING A DEAD MAN’S BEER

Someone poured a stein for the deceased
and set it on the mantle.
It had warmed but wasn’t flat.
The sun danced off the lake
which should have been ice-covered
but was bare as the hands wrapped in a rosary.
Let them wonder that you walked
amongst their grieving
and finished your final beer unfettered.


I thank the G-Man for providing an outlet for 55 of my wayward words come Friday. And let's remember that this is supposed to be fiction. I wouldn't want you to think I'd actually do such a thing.

TGIF. Keep warm and in good company.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Winners Announced at The Literary Lab

The Literary Lab just announced the winners of their latest contest "Variations on a Theme", and I'm thrilled that my short story Varcy And The Girl Who Said No is one of them.

You can go here to see the other winners and the stories that will be included, as well as the two who took the top money prizes. The collection is slated to be published on March 15th, the Ides of March. That's just how cool the folks at the Literary Lab are.

Special thanks to Michelle Davidson Argle, Davin Malasarn, and Scott Bailey for all their support and the hard work that made this possible. To echo one of my fellow contestants...."YeeHaw! I'm in!"

Thursday, February 16, 2012

College Classics That Shouldn't Be

If you've ever felt guilty because you really couldn't understand all the hype about Wuthering Heights, this is the article for you.

Twenty Classroom Classics That Shouldn't Be is a humorous take on some of those novels that made you feel like...what? Am I just dense? Compiled by Onlinecollegecourses.com, this list, from Bronte to Absalom, Absalom by William Faulker (did anyone ever understand Faulkner?) to Ann Rand, which they stop just short of burning, will make you sigh with relief. Yes, you should've raised your hand and told the teacher you didn't understand a single word. Your classmates would've thanked you.

There are a couple I would remove from this list, but out of twenty, that's still a consensus. I wonder which two you would remove. Anyway, for now I thought we could all just enjoy a lighthearted round of sacred cow tipping with our first cup of coffee.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Maypie Tales - "White Like Me"


WHITE LIKE ME

They forgive me my alabaster chill.
They love me in spite of myself.
With smooth walnut bodies,
muscled and uniform as recruits in an army,
they embrace me.

I’ve never walked into a room where I was the only one.
Never in a store, classroom or street
have I been the only one.
White like an angel of the lord
who was white too
(it’s in a book)
am I smug in my majority.
All the angels on high—
the Seraphims and Heroines
in the missals of my upbringing were white like me.

So when they embraced me and held me tight
with arms that were brown,
I was fearful and senseless and tried to escape
until they closed my eyes to my minority.
Only then could I feel the weight of an arm across my breasts
and the breath in my hair and on my legs
and know it was good.

The hands that held me were warm as a counterpane
that encases a dream, and I became color blind and free.


This week's prompt for Maypie Tales

from Tess Kincaid at Willow Manor stumped me for a while.

Like the woodpecker frozen on the feeder with his beak aiming for the suet, I didn't know how to proceed. Then I went off on a thread and walked the wire inside my head. Maypie sometimes does that to me. I think that's a good thing.

Here's to a productive week to all you writers, editors, and creative souls out there. Here's to aiming for the suet that seems out of reach.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Friday Flash 55

THE SILK AND THE TASSEL

They called her into the corn field
and said they just wanted to look at it.
She studied the silk and tassel above her head,
not knowing they were the male and female parts
that together formed the cob.
They whispered against her thighs
and clucked their tongues
and a flock of blackbirds darkened the sky.

If you can write a flash story in exactly 55 words that you want to share, post it and then visit the G-Man who moderates Flash Fiction Friday every Friday.

TGIF