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Weekly reflection #1

As a new blogger and aspiring writer, I have been busy trying to learn some of the science of the craft. I have been busy following other bloggers that interest me and find I am drawn to those that are reviewing books or publishing stories. There are some amazing sites and so many talented people to follow and learn from. The writing and reading community seems amazing and so supportive of each other. I took a chance and submitted 2 short stories, hearing back from 1 editor so far with good news that it will be published next week. Honoured for the opportunity and excited to keep building my skills. Twitter is also an inspiration, both from the tips from other authors and the unlimited potential of venues and sites of all genres looking for stories.

With full time work, and an addiction to tv and movies, my reading time was a bit less than hoped. This leaves me in awe of all the reviewers that seem to be able to share so many amazing books with us eager followers. My ‘want-to-read’ list on Goodreads is growing every day and I am sure will allow me to keep very busy when I retire. it has also been interesting to add some books I read in my younger years, and noticing trends, I obviously loved mystery as a child.

I have a lot of works in progress in a lot of genres; from horror, romance, paranormal, thrillers and even a children’s story. As a pet owner and animal lover, most of them feature some sort of animal in the story, and the grief from a recent loss seems to be compelling me towards those stories more than others. I wonder if this is true of other authors, does current mindset inspire creativity.

After some life chores are marked off, I will light a candle, put on the wool shawl my mom knit me, and get busy creating, with the pictures of all my pets surrounding me, almost hearing the purring and the sensation of curly and silky fur on my feet.

Free to enter short story competition – theme ‘A New Home’

Sounds intriguing

alysonfayewordpress

https://www.solution-loans.co.uk/competitions/short-story-writing-competition/

story writing contest up to 2000 words

Short Story Writing Competition

WINTER COMPETITION: NOW OPEN

Enter our FREE short story competition for a chance to win a cash prize and see your winning entry published online!

Prizes:

The winner will receive £200 and publication on the Solution Loans website, with £50 and publication for three runners-up.

How To Enter:

As the dark nights draw in and the weather turns cold we often retreat back into our homes. People start doing those DIY projects they put off over the summer, or perhaps they begin to think about changing or moving house.

We’re therefore looking for short stories with the title or theme of “A New Home.” You may choose to interpret the theme however you wish, but remember the advice from our judges in the last competition. Ultimately our judges said they shortlisted those stories which they felt combined a strong and engaging idea with overall…

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Wool scarf

As a child she remembered the smell of the winter air through the wool scarf her mother lovingly knit her. Somehow it always seemed fresher with the pink one, with the ivory fringes. By the time she got home from school her eyelashes were tipped in white and her cheeks were flushed, but her fragile lungs were protected against the cold gusts that triggered her asthma. The soft pink was her favourite colour and stood out amongst the dreary black and greys of the season, so she felt quite special when she wore it, never really associating it with her how much her mom loved her and how much creative talent she possessed.

Now, as an adult, she often takes long walks on her lunch hour, this time wearing an ivory scarf with pink fringes, again  lovingly knit by her mother. It still smells wonderful, like a warm bath, and still prevents fits of coughing. Now she appreciates it even more, as she knows that the hands that created it are starting to curl with arthritis and the eyes that carefully followed the knitting pattern are aided by glasses, but still made with love.

#personal essay #family # short story

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Animal justice

ee94cd23-47d3-4c38-9f95-5f7a561eff0bShe did not recoil at the vicious slash marks on his torso, or the deep bites on his neck, but somehow the gnawed off toes made her shiver. Judging by the teeth impressions some very large feline had made them a snack, or a play thing. Maybe the bulletin going to all sanctuaries and zoos would prove fruitful in finding the remains. She turned him over to photograph the words cut into his back knowing that the case would reach the vigilante task force within minutes. She hoped that they would drag their feet and allow a few more animal abusers to meet some rough justice. I guess she could forget to file the report until Monday.

Romance Book Review- Pumpkin Everything By Beth Labonte

**** I picked up Pumpkin Everything in the fall but with all the holiday bustle finally finished it and I was not disappointed. This is my first time reading Beth Labonte and I really like her humour and concise writing style. I enjoyed the story arc of someone returning to their home town and first love, and this did not disappoint. I loved the heroine’s growth and self reflection. The chemistry between Amy and Kit is obvious, as is their friendship. The secondary characters are amazing, especially the grandfather, and so is the small town setting, great potential for some sequels. I could almost smell the spices, Labonte evokes all the senses with her evocative style. A quick and fun read with a great message.

Gaggle outside the gym

At exactly 1155 the ever growing group of girls tried to look nonchalant from their spot on the hallway floor outside the small gymnasium. He always went past at this time and it was important to get a good spot for maximum viewing pleasure, too close and he may not see you, and too far from the door, he would have looked away in embarrassment. Being the inaugural member of the “Deadly Dimples Fan Club” she knew the perfect spot to witness all of his sweaty, shy perfection as he strode past in just his gym shorts after the daily basketball intramural match.

Would today be the day he smiled at her again? The first time was like a drug and she needed her dose of dimples, and now so did the other admirers. Some liked him for his broad shoulders, some for his soft brown eyes, others for his shiny hair, but she was a sucker for the smile and the way he bounced on the balls of his feet when he went past, almost like a dancer. What was the most appealing was the fact he did not seem to realize how magnificent he was and how many crushes he endeared.

How she wished she never shared the secret of his shirtless trek to the locker rooms with the other grade 10 girls, they normally did not come into the senior wing. She could only hope he would remember her from the soccer field, where he practiced next to her own scrimmages.

The girls were suddenly silent, signifying his presence, so she sat up straight and tried her best to look uninterested and yet available. He was with a team mate and seemed deep in conversation but just as he was passing he met her eyes. She smiled and received one in return, almost stopping her heart. She felt her cheeks burning, like she was sitting in front of a fireplace.

30 years later she was sitting in front of a fireplace reliving the warmth of the moment she met her husband. Those dimples were still deadly, as was the smile, but the heat was now more like a long burning ember.

Black socks on the clothesline

“He walked very slowly down the back alley delaying the journey home and the inevitable questions he could not answer. Paul never took this way, he always used the front street, and always in a hurry, never at such a liesurely pace. Maybe he would finally learn something about the neighborhood he had called home for so long but never got to enjoy, as he rushed madly from the downtown skyscraper, to the crowded bus, to the quick walk past all the manicured lawns to his brick bungalow, like all the other suburban homes.”

Opening sentences of a short story I am working on. I want to publish stories to build my profile, though my wish is to publish a novel or novella.

Do other writers work on smaller pieces to pad their resume? If you do, do you try and stay in the same genre, or spice things up?

Do you have any tips for websites or publishers that are open to new writers? I have found quite a few in the horror genre, but not as many in romance. Wisdom welcome……


The Journey Begins

Read with me, write with me, learn with me.Thanks for joining me on my creative writing journey!

This is my first blog on my new website and the first thing I am discovering is that the quality of the website matters.

My hope is to add some book reviews, short stories and comments about the journey. I am active on Twitter and enjoy the writing community support.

I also hope to discuss my love of tv and movies, I have eclectic tastes in this and books. Some days I want horror, the next romance, perhaps some sci-fi and than some paranormal, with a little cozy mystery thrown in.

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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