Friday, May 30, 2014

Celebrate the Small Things-May 30, 2014

If you're here for May Monster Madness, you can find my post HERE.

It's Friday!  Let's Celebrate the Small Things with VikLit!

In addition to myself, the other co-hosts are:
Diana Wilder
Cyborg Mom (Katie)

I just dropped my son Jude off for his last day of school.  Now it really feels like summer is here!

The submission period for Write Club is almost up, so I'm happily polishing up my entry. For anyone who hasn't yet entered, tomorrow (May 31st) is the last day to submit!  I would have finished it up sooner, but I got distracted by books. Don't worry, I don't consider that a bad thing by any means.  I did a lot of reading while relaxing outside with my kids. That's always a good time!

We successfully purchased a used lawnmower for $40 this week, and it's in  great shape!  I looks good and works wonderfully, and my husband is excited about his new toy.

What would you like to celebrate?

May Monster Madness

The goal is simple.  Write a post about monsters.  It can be anything, like writing a story about monsters, ideas for monster related crafts, famous monsters, monster movies.  Anything goes.

I decided to write and share two drabbles that have to do with monsters.  I hope you enjoy them!

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Monster Under the Bed

“Do all beds have monsters under them?”  At six years old, T.J. hung on his older brother Kyle’s every word.  When Kyle confirmed that there were really monsters living under T.J.’s bed, he never thought to doubt him.

Kyle sat beside him on the bed.  “Not all.  Not yet anyway.  Monsters take little girls and boys and turn them into monsters.  If the monster gets you, it’ll turn you into one too.  Then maybe you’ll go after me, or maybe Mom and Dad.  That’s why you can’t let it get you.”

T.J.’s face blanched as he clutched his teddy bear.

Face of a Monster 

“Not all monsters look ugly,” Patricia said as she wound spaghetti noodles around her fork.  “The most frightening monsters are the ones you can’t see until it’s too late.”

This first date started out with light conversation about horror movies, but now Nadia feared it was taking a turn into darker realms.  That was the last thing she wanted.  “I know the world is filled with killers and rapists, but do we need to talk about that now?”

Patricia smiled sweetly.  “Honey, you misunderstand me.”  She dropped her fork, and with a sickening sound, talons burst forth from her fingertips.

*               *               *

I hope you enjoyed my drabbles!  Be sure to check out some of the other participants!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Express Yourself: A to Z Favorites

The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is hosted by Jackie @ Bouquet of Books and Dani @ Entertaining Interests.

The question for this week is: What A to Z post and/or blogger did you really enjoy this year?

That's a tough one, since I visited so many wonderful blogs over the course of April. However, I'll share with you a couple of the bloggers that I visited on a daily basis.

There's Alex J. Cavanuagh, of course, who highlighted some spectacular blogging friends in each of his posts.  There's also Laura at My Baffling Brain.  She wrote about Ancient Egypt for her A to Z posts, and I learned a lot from them.  I also visited Kyra Lennon at Write Here, Write Now on a daily basis so I could keep up with the story she wrote, which featured the main characters from Game On.

Which bloggers did you most enjoy during the A to Z Challenge?

Friday, May 23, 2014

Celebrate the Small Things-May 23, 2014

It's Friday!  Let's Celebrate the Small Things with VikLit!

I am co-hosting, along with these other lovely bloggers:

Diana Wilder
Cyborg Mom (Katie)
CaffeMaggieato @ mscoffeehouse

The weather here has been wonderful, so we've had the opportunity to spend some time outside as a family.

Our lawnmower is officially in need of replacement.  That's not really good news, but my husband is excited about the prospect of shopping for a new one, so I'm celebrating here on his behalf.  He's as excited about this as I am about buying books.  Believe me, that's saying something!

We also have to replace a cracked windshield in our car within the next week. Instead of focusing on the negative here, I'm choosing to celebrate that it will soon be fixed and look as good as new.

My nephew turns two this weekend, so we'll be celebrating that as well.

What would you like to celebrate?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Express Yourself: Celebrity Look-Alikes

The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is hosted by Jackie @ Bouquet of Books and Dani @ Entertaining Interests.

The question for this week is: Have you ever known someone or dated someone who could be a celebrity twin?

Does Jesus count as a celebrity?  Because I went to college with a guy that looked almost exactly like him.  At least, he looked like the long-haired, blue-eyed, pale-skinned portrayal of Jesus that you see in most Christian churches in America.  He had the hair, the beard, and it all looked spot on.  It also helped that he wore sandals a lot.  He also played acoustic guitar, and while I've never seen a picture of Jesus playing acoustic guitar, it added to the dude's serene vibe.  His name was Josh, but everyone called him Jesus.  You'd pass him in the hall, and someone would always say "Jesus, what's up?"

Maybe that contributed to his decision to shave his beard and cut his hair.  I remember feeling shocked when I saw him for the first time after he did that. People did start using his real name more frequently after that.

Do you know anyone who looks like a celebrity?

Friday, May 16, 2014

Celebrate the Small Things-May 16, 2014

It's Friday!  Let's Celebrate the Small Things with VikLit!

I'm co-hosting now!  Diana Wilder, The Cyborg Mom, and CafeMaggieato are also serving as co-hosts.

My son Lyle had a great 3rd birthday on Sunday!  We were so busy with that we didn't even have time to notice that it was also Mother's Day, but that's okay!

I also have a cup of coffee in hand as I write this post, so that's a good thing.  I also finished the rough draft of a WIP that's been giving me trouble.  Sure, there's a lot to fix, so revisions will be a challenge, but I'm ready for it!

Oh yeah, and I have chocolate in my cupboard.  No matter what goes wrong, I can tackle the problem as long as I have access to chocolate.

What would you like to celebrate?

Thursday, May 15, 2014

FSF: Innocence Lost

It's time once again for Five Sentence Fiction!  The word for this week is INNOCENCE.

My ongoing story "A Life For Sale" features Aurora and her struggle to survive in a world that treats her as a commodity.  To read this story from the beginning, go to this PAGE.

Chapter 5
Innocence Lost

The house before Aurora was in pristine condition, and it was far larger than the apartment building that she inhabited eleven months out of the year.  Though she knew it wasn’t the same, the look of this home put her in mind of the place where her innocence was first lost, and she learned once and for all that the world simply didn’t care about people like her.

Her daughter’s face flashed through her mind, and a deep sadness tugged at her heart as she acknowledged the fact that her daughter would grow up to face the same sad life as her, as would any grandchildren that might also come into the world.

The woman in the green dress, who had introduced herself as Drucilla on the ride over, studied Aurora’s face for a long moment, as if trying to discern her innermost thoughts, before going on to say something entirely unexpected.  “I can’t even begin to imagine what you’ve had to go through in the other homes where you served, but I can promise that you won’t be made to suffer here.”

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Express Yourself: Fictional Character Reflective of Me

The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is made possible by Jackie @ Bouquet of Books and Dani @ Entertaining Interests.

The prompt for this week is: Pick one fictional character who you think reflects your personality.

This is a fun one to think about.  There is no character that completely reflects who I am, but there are certain aspects of myself that I can see in fictional characters.  One of those characters is Susan Ivanova from Babylon 5.

She's more confident than I am, but her temper mirrors mine.  I'm a redhead, so that's my excuse.  She's also clever, which I would like to think I am, and she is thoroughly determined in everything she does.  She may not be perfect (after all, who is?), but she's pretty badass.

Here's a video that compiles a few memorable scenes with Ivanova.  It's kind of long, but you can skip through and get a general idea of her personality.

What fictional character reflects your personality?

Friday, May 9, 2014


One of my favorite words is DEFENESTRATION.  Why?  It sounds cool, and it has a fun meaning.  Well, in some circumstances it does.

Defenestration means:
1: a throwing of a person or thing out a window
2: a usually swift dismissal or expulsion (as from a political party or office)

"Defenestration." Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 9 May 2014. <>.

If you're throwing  a person out of a window, it isn't typically a fun word then. Still, in general it's a good word.

Here's a drabble inspired by that word, as well as an incident involving the director Kevin Smith and water balloons.

Image courtesy of Steve Wilhelm/

Josh looked at the cop with a calm expression.  “Why do you think I threw that water balloon out the window?”

“Several eyewitnesses say it was you,” the officer replied.

Crap!  Now what do I do?  “It was an act of political protest,” Josh declared.

The cop raised an eyebrow.

“I performed this act of defenestration to protest the companies that charge us money for something that falls from the sky every day,” Josh said passionately.  “I didn’t drop a water balloon.  I exercised my right of free speech.”

The cop handed him a slip of paper.  “Here’s your ticket.”

Celebrate the Small Things-May 9, 2014

It's Friday!  Let's Celebrate the Small Things with VikLit!

My week didn't start out so well, as my dad had a health scare on Sunday and ended up in the hospital.  I don't want to go into details, because they aren't my details to share. Fortunately, he was able to go home on Monday and was feeling much better.  I'm definitely glad about that.

Sunday is Mother's Day, so I'd like to take the time to acknowledge all of my fellow bloggers who successfully juggle motherhood and everything else life throws at them.  Hang in there. We're all in this together!

Sunday also happens to be my son Lyle's third birthday.  He's excited about turning three, but mostly he's excited about the birthday cake and presents.

I've struggled with insecurity this week when it comes to my writing, but I was struck with a bit of inspiration earlier today, and I'm hoping that will keep me going strong.

What would you like to celebrate?

Thursday, May 8, 2014

FSF: Behind Closed Doors

It's time once again for Five Sentence Fiction!  The prompt for this week is DOORS.

This chapter continues the saga of "A Life for Sale" where young Aurora must tread carefully in a world that treats her as a disposable distraction for wealthy patrons.  To read her story from the beginning, click HERE.

Chapter 4
Behind Closed Doors

Image courtesy of
A young woman adorned in a crisp emerald gown and golden bracelets and baubles earned the right to the next month of Aurora’s life.  Some might assume this is a good thing, but she knew from experience that the appetites of some women could be just as twisted and cruel as the worst of the violent men she’d come to know.

Someone could appear respectable to all the world as long as they dressed in the right way, and spoke as a cultured individual should.  Yet it is only behind closed doors that the real person is revealed, as that is where they strip away the mask that society compels them to wear.

As Aurora was escorted away from the auction block and ushered into a sleek white car, she wondered who this lady would prove to be once the door closed behind them.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Insecure Writer's Support Group: May 2014

It's time for another gathering of the Insecure Writer's Support Group!  The ever enigmatic Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh founded this successful group, and he has another eager group of minions helping him out this month.  They are Mark Koopmans, Joylene Nowell Butler, Elsie, and Lisa Buie-Collard.  Being a minion is no easy task, so let's give them a hand for being awesome!

See what I did there?  I gave them an actual hand.  Okay, okay.  I know it's not funny after I explain it (assuming it was ever funny at all), so I should probably learn when to leave well enough alone.

Anyway, you can also check out the IWSG website!  It's a cool site full of resources for writers, and you can also find plenty of support from your fellow writers that struggle with the same insecurities that you do.

This month I'm struggling with self-doubt.  At least, I'm struggling with self-doubt as I write this post.  I hope it doesn't last the entire month.  Yikes!  As I approach the end of the story I'm currently working on, I'm second guessing every choice I've made about it.  Logically speaking, I know that I frequently feel this anxiety as I reach the end of any project, so I shouldn't let it get to me.  I will continue to push forward, because at the end of the day, I believe in the story I'm telling.  I need also to believe in myself and my ability to tell the story that I'm aching to tell.

We all have moments of self-doubt.  Even the most famous among us, those who seem to radiate confidence, have admitted to moments of self-doubt.  I must admit that this makes me feel better.  If successful people have struggled with that kind of insecurity, that must mean that it's possible to overcome it.

When do you feel self-doubt?  Do you think it's healthy and necessary to doubt ourselves and our choices from time to time?  How do you move past your doubts when they threaten to overwhelm you?

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Express Yourself: Book Excerpt

The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is back, and as always, it's hosted by Jackie @ Bouquet of Books and Dani @ Entertaining Interests.

The prompt for this week is: Choose one of your fave books.  Turn to page 89.  What are the 8th and 9th sentences?

For this one, I chose American Gods by Neil Gaiman.  Here's the excerpt.

"She did not answer.  The shrug, if she shrugged, was imperceptible."

Short and sweet.  I love Neil Gaiman's writing.  Even these two sentences that, when taken out of context, don't seem to mean much, they sound amazing to me. Or maybe I'm crazy. Or both.  Perhaps it's both.

Monday, May 5, 2014

A to Z 2014 Challenge Reflections

Is April really over already?  It was busy, and by the end I was exhausted, but in the end, I think it was worth it.

I successfully completed the A to Z Challenge on two blogs, and I was also one of Alex J. Cavanaugh's minions.  I'm glad I decided to be a minion, because not only did it gave me the motivation I needed to visit new blogs, but it also left me with that extra sense of accomplishment at the end.

I was impressed by the number of people who participated in the challenge this year, and I was also impressed by the number of people who finished.  It can be difficult to post each day, and I understand that life continues to happen outside the blogosphere.  Overall, I'd say that this was a successful A to Z.

My original goal was to finish writing all my A to Z posts before April began so I could spend the majority of my time visiting other blogs.  I completed all of my drabbles for this blog before April began, so that helped me tremendously.  (I didn't achieve this goal on my other blog, but I had a good enough head start that I still completed the challenge there as well.) My other A to Z goal was to visit and comment on as many blogs as I could.  Fortunately, we had a lot of participants this year.  Unfortunately, that also means I have only visited a fraction of them in the past month.  Still, I can endeavor to continue visiting new bloggers throughout the coming year.

I made plenty of new friends, and I gained several new followers along the way. Some of the blogs I discovered ended up being added to my list of blogs that I read every day.  It's good to have quality blog posts to read on a daily basis, and there was no shortage of quality this year.

All in all, I'd say taking part in the challenge has been worthwhile, and I imagine I'll take part again next year.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Game On Audio Book and a Drabble: "Phrases and Definitions"

First things first.  I want to give a quick shout out to fellow writer and blogger Kyra Lennon. She is seeking out our help for making her dream of a Game On audio book a reality.  Even if you can't afford to donate monetarily, it would be a tremendous help if any of you could help her get the word out about this project.  Just check out her blog for more details.

Now, I think I fell in love with writing drabbles.  Is it bad that it's only May 2nd, and I already miss sharing them with you?

Either way, here's another drabble for you!

Phrases and Definitions

Definition of seismic shift: a great change in situation.

A term that doesn’t fully capture reality.  An attempt to describe that which can only be lived.

“Wipe the slate clean.”  The words swirl in my mind, a phrase that promises all wrongs can be washed away.  Some may believe it to be possible.

Not me.

I am formed by the past, a mixture of good and bad, bright and dark.  As is everyone else.

“To rise above.”  The only possibility.  Take the past and use it to inform the future.

I make a choice, because time travel is a fiction.

Celebrate the Small Things-May 2, 2014

It's Friday!  Let's Celebrate the Small Things with VikLit!

This week was a pretty exciting one.  First of all, I successfully completed the A to Z Challenge on two blogs!  Overall I think it went well, though I'll go into more details when I write my reflections post.

I also won an e-copy of Kyra Lennon's book Game On, and I finished it in a single day.  Her writing is so engaging, and her characters feel so real.  I just couldn't put it down.

This week I also got a couple of super cool pairs of socks.  Or, rather, nerdy/geeky socks, which means they fit within my definition of cool.  I also purchased Spock ears this week, but I haven't received them yet.

I figured that, while I'm posting pictures of my clothes, that I'd also share this picture of my Ninja Army t-shirt that I won courtesy of Alex J. Cavanaugh's 2000 Followers Giveaway.  I got it in the mail weeks ago, but I still wanted to share.  Isn't it neat?

I also have to say that Alex's books look awesome on my shelf!

 What would you like to celebrate?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

FSF: Freedom is a Costly Dream

I know it's been awhile since I've posted for Five Sentence Fiction.  I was busy working on a novella, and then I participated in the A to Z Challenge. That's kept me pretty busy. Still, I'm here now!

The word for this week is FREEDOM.

You can find the entire story of "A Life for Sale" on this PAGE.

Chapter 3
Freedom is a Costly Dream

Image courtesy of oO2bored2careOo/
Well-dressed ladies and gentlemen crowded the floor in front of the auction block, and Aurora tried to imagine what it felt like to stand in their place.  How would it feel to look upon the unwashed, emaciated bodies of the poorest in the city?  How would it feel to shop for your annual human distraction rather than fear who would purchase you for the month of your life you have no choice but to sacrifice?

With the dream of freedom in her mind, Aurora heard her number being called.  She stepped forward and watched as hands waved the numbered cards in the air, wondering if she would ever be able to pay the price for her freedom.