Tag Archive: writing



Once again, Wednesday has arrived, and with it our fearless ringmaster, Rochelle has donned her red coat and top hat, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls”, she announces with a crack of her whip. Issuing the challenge to join her at the circus known as Friday Fictioneers.  https://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/. Under her discipline we climb to the high wire to present a story in approximately 100 words.

Other acrobats have posted, their back-flips and somersaults can be found here: http://www.inlinkz.com/new/view.php?id=623923

 

ff4-15-15 kent Bonham

This week’s picture courtesy of Kent Bonham led me down a path that my grandson walks each day.

Brett is autistic, although reading and writing are skills he has not mastered in his 21 years, he can speak, articulating some of the effects of his condition.

April is Autism Awareness Month. I dedicate this little tale to Brett and all who deal with Autism, in its many guises. Maybe it will raise awareness a bit as well. I can hope.

 

Sound Prison

“Sensory overload” the therapist calls it, “meltdown” in layman’s terms.

People gather around, invading the circle of ‘personal space’, gesturing, talking.

Afraid to approach.

But too near and too loud for the boy.

No matter what, he hears it all. There are no filters.

No way to block the beating

The words have form and substance, invisible,battering.

They swirl around, floating shapes, sweeping in, crushing.

Rhythms pound, hammers in his mind.

Varied tones stab like knives.

He has to close it off! It has to stop!

And so, he sits on the floor, rocking.

Withdrawn, locked in his alternate universe,

Forced to submission by the weaponry of sound.


ff3-25-16

Today’s photo prompt for Friday Fictioneers is brought to us by the talented and sagacious Rochelle.  https://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2016/03/23/25-march-2016/

The goal is to write a ‘story’, beginning, middle, end, in 100 words more or less.

Several thoughts ran through my head when I saw it. Maybe in yours as well?

Ideas from other folks can be found by clicking here: http://www.inlinkz.com/new/view.php?id=618340

“Beauty in Ashes”

Coming home, done with a late night shift, she drove past the burned out hulk. Finally, demolition is in progress.

Appliances, fixtures, boards and tiles, scattered debris, stark and ugly, waited for pick-up.

Remains of someone’s home to be carried away.

Nostalgic and a bit melancholy, as she is this sunny morning.

The workers have not yet arrived to finish the job.

The sorting, recycling still to be done.

Impulsive, she stops and places a flat of bright pansies in the empty commode.

A simple gesture that brings a smile.

Hope is planted.

 


battle of Pilot Knob 150th anni 064nurse prepared for the battleAnd there I was! I’d read about Clara Barton, Dorothea Dix and other women, making a difference for our men in battle.

I knew I had to help. My brothers, Johnny, Clint and Lucas were out there somewhere. Their infrequent letters filled with tales of things so horrifying. Lives were daily lost for want of nursing skill on the field and in the ragged tent hospitals.

Maw cried, but helped me make my dress, the red trim marking me as a nursing volunteer.Now, here I am following the unit into a skirmish. A bag of bandages and a bottle of white likker in a bag at my hip. Not much to do with, but more than many had.

The drummer boys, no more than 10 or 12 have been shooed away into the woods or back to the earth berm fort behind us.

I can hear the crack of rifles, smoke from the cannons hangs heavy over the field in front.

As I watch, a man out front falls! Those around him carry him back to where I now lay upon the ground. Rifle balls sing over my head like a swarm of mosquitoes. It is all up to me, to help this man.

More are being dragged this way… Where are the ambulances? Blood, blood, blood! Can I do enough to save even one?


A Day in the life of the Bathroom mirror

“Oh, NO! There’s that clock”, says the mirror, “here they come!” In seconds, bright light illuminates the room, sparkling off the mirrors flat face.
The man ignore it as he reaches sleepily for a washcloth, razor and shaving foam. Hot water steams the shining surface as he washes his face. Using the wash cloth, he wipes the mist from the glass, then fills his hand with thick foam as he begins his daily routine. Lathering the thick cream over his face, he grimaces at the mirror. Picking up the razor, he begins to glide it over his cheeks, neck and chin, alert to the contours he feels.

Now, he reaches for his denture cup, pouring out the overnight solution. Paste on the toothbrush, he cleans the partial plate, rinses it, then begins again with toothpaste on his remaining teeth, splashing the mirror with toothpaste and water as he does it. Another rinse and the partial is fitted in his mouth and a smile reflects back at him.

Five or six strokes of the comb through his thinning hair and he walks off, ready to face the day.

The woman of the house follows, wrapped in a cocoon of terry cloth, still dripping a bit from the shower. She ducks down to return with a blow dryer in hand. the view is of one possessed as she wields the buzzing dryer in one hand and a hairbrush with the other, coaxing the unruly wet mop into a semblance of order.

She notices the spattered face of the mirror and reaches down again, coming up with a spray bottle. A spritz or two, a swipe with a towel restores a clear view.

She puts away the brush dryer, glass cleaner, denture cup, shaving cream and razor. With a frown, she winces as a slight tug removes the offending gray hair. Rushing, time is short, a dash of blush, a squirt of perfume and she is away.

There comes a lull, then invasion as two young ladies rush in, scattering make-up and hair products across the counter. After Quick work with soap, water and toothbrushes, they start the real preperations. Giggles, chatter and a short argument punctuate the transformation of one fresh washed face into a white mask with black eyes and lips. Teased hair is semi-tamed with a pick and liberally coated with pink and blue sprays. Stiff hair, stark faced, she studies the look. A satisfied nod says she is ready to go out to face her day.

The second, conforming to a different fashion ideal, brushes her long straight hair, places a colorful barrette, examines then adjusts. A touch of lip gloss, a hint of blooming color on her cheeks. One can hardly tell anything has been added. These two finish their work, pack up their supplie and move along.

Here’s the boy, dirty faced, called in from play even this early in the day. He splashed some cold water over his face, creating streaks in the dirty film. Splattering muddy drops all around as he shakes murky liquid off like a wet puppy, he grins flexing minute muscles. then checks for signs of adolescence, is that a pimple? Does it look like a few whiskers? No toothpaste for him, swishing Scope instead, contorting his face. Then he attempts to spit, imitating his favorite baseball star.

With a furtive glance, he picks a towel from the hamper, smearing muddy drops, and towel fuzz across the reflection. He skitters out, returning seconds late to douse himself liberally with his father’s aftershave, once again rushing away.


Some time ago, the Quilt in a Day forum had a contest. Simply put, you had to name and describe an ice cream flavor, using quilting terms. The quotes in the body are for quilt terms and quilt block names. I let imagination take over and this result was my entry:

In honor of talented ‘sewing’ instructor, author, ‘quilter’, and owner of “‘Quilt’ in a Day”, Eleanor Burns, we would like to introduce, “Sunbonnet Sue ‘Light'” our newest ice cream. So much like ‘hand made’, you won’t believe a ‘machine’ was involved! A perfect new ‘angle’ for a sweet treat.

We all ‘cotton’ up to something good and this new reduced calorie flavor is sure to go around the ‘block’. Just a bit will prove our brand is a ‘cut’ above the rest. It will beome a real ‘star’ when served at your ‘log cabin’!

‘Double’ delicious, with reduced fat and calories, a ‘delectable mountain’ of “Sunbonnet Sue Light”,’fabric’ated of creamy ‘traditional’ fresh vanilla, ‘bound’ together with succulent ‘strips’ of chocolate, ‘charmed’ with ‘bright’ cherries, ‘soft’ marshmellow, and ‘pieces’ of almond will not cause any guilt in your day.

From ‘king’ to those in the ‘crib’, all will agree to our tasteful ‘blend’.

Don’t go to the ‘mat’ for a great snack or dessert idea, just ‘pick out’ our new “Sunbonnet Sue Light” at your favorite store, for a simple but elegant ‘finish’! It will become a ‘top’ choice in your freezer.

This was a lot of fun to enter and the prize of a quilt book from Quilt in a Day was a great added bonus


I recently read Nancy’s book Unbreakable, which made me really think about some things in my own life. I am so pleased to be able to give you a little information about her and some of what is going on with her writing career. Don’t forget to go over to her newsletter, read it and sign up for a chance to win a copy of her newest book when it comes out!
Nancy Mehl’s first novel was published in 2001. Since then thirteen books have followed, including an omnibus edition, Cozy in Kansas, which contains three of her previously published Ivy Towers’s mysteries. Book three in the series, For Whom the Wedding Bell Tolls, won the American Christian Fiction Writers Mystery Book of the Year award in 2009. The first book in her Road to Kingdom Series, Inescapable, released in July of 2012. It was followed by Unbreakable, which came out in February of 2013. The last book in this series, Unforeseeable, will hit bookstores in September. She is currently working on a brand new a Mennonite-themed suspense series for Bethany House Publishing.
Nancy’s main writing interests lie in mystery, although her Mennonite novels, The Harmony Series and The Kingdom Series, lean more toward the romantic suspense genre. “There’s a touch of mystery in everything I write,” she says. “The truth is that the lines between suspense and mystery are closer than most people realize. I think the mystery influence will always show up in my books”
So far, Nancy’s novels have all been set in Kansas. “I love Kansas,” she says. “We’re a lot more interesting than people think. Using Kansas in my novels is easy. We have everything – big cities, small towns, rolling hills, rich farmland, culture, history, odd locations (look up The Garden of Eden in Lucas, Kansas!) and a friendly hometown feeling. “We also enjoy all four seasons. This allows me to set my stories in different weather conditions. Winter is my favorite season. Throw lots of snow in a story and your plot can suddenly go in an interesting direction.”
Nancy lives in Wichita, Kansas with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She has one grown son, Danny, who is an award winning graphic designer. Danny lives with his beautiful wife, Shaen, and their son, Aidan, Nancy’s first grandchild, in Missouri. Besides writing, Nancy spends her time with a volunteer organization, Wichita Homebound Outreach. WHO is actively involved in the lives of low-income, elderly people in the Wichita area. Nancy is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America. She and her husband attend Believer’s Tabernacle.
Readers can learn more about Nancy through her Web site: http://www.nancymehl.com. She has a newsletter located at: http://www.nancymehl.blogspot.com, and is a part of another blog, The Suspense Sisters, along with several other popular suspense authors. She is also very active on Facebook.


I would like to introduce you to Author, Linnette R Mullin. Linnette is married and a mother of 4 busy boys who still found time to write a Christian novel, “Finding Beth”, which is now in the publication process. I am really excited to get to interview her and hope you all will check out her blogs, follow her on Facebook and be ready to enjoy her book when it arrives on bookshelves.
Here is a blurb about “Finding Beth”:
Fearful she’s about to make the biggest mistake of her life, Beth Gallagher runs to the Smoky Mountains to seek God’s will regarding her impending marriage. Through the aid of a new friend, Adam Blythe, she finds the answers. Will she have the strength and resolve to follow through? And, if she does, what might it cost her?

Adam Blythe gave up hope of ever finding a woman who would love him for himself rather than his heritage. Healing from a broken relationship and committed to caring for his ailing mother, he finds his heart irrevocably entangled with Beth – a woman already spoken for… a woman needing protection… a woman living hundreds of miles away.

Kyle Heinrich is used to getting his way. When his docile fiancé, Beth, leaves town without a word only to return a changed woman and with another man at her heels, he refuses to give her up. She will be his! One way or another…
And here is my interview sith Linnette, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did chatting with her.
Mary:
Linnette, as a busy mom, could you tell us what inspires your daily path?

Linnette:
That’s a loaded question, Mary. I tend to float (sometimes race) from one day to the next and do my best not to lose my sanity. LOL I love my boys with a fierce love. They are a huge part of my joy. My love for my husband is quieter, deeper – as it should be. My family is the most important part of my life, but the backbone of it all is Jesus. My need for him grows stronger with each passing year. About the only time I miss attending my wonderful Church on Sundays and Wednesdays is when I’m too sick to get out of bed or I’m visiting my family and friends in Missouri. Worship – the singing and the preaching of God’s Word, is vital. I could not survive life without this beautiful, life-giving means of grace.

Now, if you meant what inspires me to write, that’s another whole question!

Mary:
You have several blogs, one about your battle with Lyme disease, http://linnetteslymelife.blogspot.com/ Was this your first foray into writing for the public?

Linnette:
No. Back when Yahoo had free websites, I started my first. It started out as a sort of family blog, actually. I knew nothing about blogs at the time. This website became my segue into writing my first novel (which is in the drawer for now) – Coming Home. Since then, I’ve had articles and devotionals published in various venues. Lymelife came much later.

Since you mentioned that I have several blogs, let me say that if you go to http://www.LinnetteMullin.com you will find all my links across the top of the home page. It’s my one stop shop.
Mary:
I know with a family it must be hard to find time for yourself, do you have any ‘tips’ for us?

Linnette:
Take things a day at a time and sometimes a moment at a time. Don’t beat yourself up for not always writing when you plan to write. Some writers may think I’m too lenient with myself, but when you have a large family and most of you deal with chronic illness, you have to be easy on yourself or you’ll live in a frustrated state on mind which brings it’s own set of troubles.
Mary:
Would you like to give us a hint about any new projects you are working on?

Linnette:
I would absolutely LOVE to! “Loving Tiffany” is book two in my “Flying with Broken Wings” series. Tiffany is Beth’s best friend. (Each book I write will stand on its own.) This is a story that my readers, and Tiffany herself, demanded I write:

Loving Tiffany:
Tiffany Nash: After suffering a lifetime of abuse from every man who should have loved her, Tiffany finds herself longing to be truly love and cherished, but will she ever be able to trust even a good man?

Michael Olivier: Afraid to love again after the betrayal and heart shattering death of his high-school sweetheart, Michael finds himself drawn to the feisty woman (Tiffany) but he can’t seem to break down the barriers around her heart.

Wealthy Reece Carrington: Tiffany’s new boss and admirer, is out to make an alliance that will convenience them both. If he’s lucky, he’ll catch her heart along the way to providing the security she seeks.

Then, there’s God. Can Tiffany trust a God who demands her all? Can she afford not to?
~

Mary, I have to tell you that when I’m writing Tiffany’s story, my heart burn as if it’s Tiffany’s beating inside my chest. It’s been an incredible experience so far and I can’t wait to see what God’s going to do with this book!
Mary:
I got to read “Finding Beth” in the early stages and was very impressed with the story and Linnette’s ability to make her characters come to life. I will be posting updates on publication and I hope you will be waiting along with me to read this new book! Thank you for joining me for this interview, Linnette. I certainly wish you success with “Finding Beth” and “Loving Tiffany”.

Linnette:
Thank you for the fun interview, Mary!

Mary:
Linnette can be found on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/?ref=tn_tnmn#!/pages/Linnette-R-Mullin-Writer/23510882491?fref=ts or at her website: http://www.LinnetteMullin.com. Take a minute to check them out, please. You will not regret it.


For the backstory, please go here: https://oldentimes.wordpress.com/2011/06/25/flour-sack-feed-sack-treasure/

Since that post was written, I have discovered some ‘history’ regarding some of the quilting treasure. Part of it belonged to the great-great-great grandmother of a young girl who attends my church.
At the request of this young ladies great-great grandmother, I have made a collage of some of the ‘treasure’ to present her and written the accompanying letter:
Dear Morgan,

Right now, perhaps, you are too young to understand this treasure.
Years ago, ladies made quilts to keep their families warm. People could not go to the store and buy things, like we do now, so every scrap was used for something.
In winter, when things were slow and there was not so much work to do, quilts were made. Often this had to be done at night after the rest of the family was in bed, using a coal oil lamp for light. It was very hard work.
In this frame is a quilt block, in the pattern called Dresden plate. This one is made with old feed sack fabric, some of what is called ‘shirting’, possibly dress fabric and cotton broadcloth.
The pattern pieces with it were cut from cardboard.
They would be traced on the fabric, then it was cut out in shapes and sewed together by hand to make blocks.
These would finally be sewed to make a quilt top, layered with a batting and back and stitched together to make a warm quilt.
The strips are for a quilt called ‘Double Wedding Ring’, quite often made years ago by a mother, aunt or grandmother as a wedding gift for a bride and groom. A treasure for all their lives.
This one seems to have pieces cut from clothing, possibly that of the bride or groom’s family. I left one upside down so the hand stitching would show.
Now I know, you are asking, why is this a treasure for me?
This Dresden Plate block and the pieces for the Double Wedding Ring were made by your great-great-great- grandmother. The fabric is old and valued in quilt making today, a rare and wonderful find.
I received it as a gift and now I am giving it back to you.


The challenge is to tell a story about the picture in approximately 100 words. Here is how to find other entries. http://www.inlinkz.com/wpview.php?id=232846
This weeks picture by Renee Heath gave me lots of thoughts before I came up with this.
On the boardwalk (historical)
Bump, thud, bounce!
I stopped, looking past the boardwalk,
Out to the sandy beach.
In that moment, my 90 years fell away,
I became a tender and frightened lad.
The beach I saw was covered in blood and broken bodies
D-Day! The horror of those moments
Never goes away.
I turn the wheelchair away from the scene
Cannon, long silent, thunder again in my mind.


It’s another Friday and the Fictioneers are up and typing. http://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/18-january-2013/#comments

The prompt this week was really a challenge, but I tryed. This is the prompt:
<img src="https://oldentimes.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/friday-fiction-01-18-13.jpg?w=112" alt="Friday fiction 01-18-13" width="112" height="150" class="aligncenter size-thumbnail wp-image-5159″ />
and here is my piece: genre? historical
1937
Sarah set down the phone, her hands shaking.
She could not talk now. Tears fell.
She’d opened the box as soon as the postman left.
From Poland, it had come.
Inside, a wax encrusted menorah and a photo.
A photo of Max, her love,
On the back, one scrawled phrase.
‘Gestapo are coming’.
Behind her the crackling radio
Reports an invasion.
What has happened?
Who sent this?
She will never know.