The Plan – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #98

There you have it.  When I saw Crispina‘s photo, I knew exactly what I was going to do.  And then, in my search for that photo I needed to join in the story I found a couple more.  Ahhh… with a modification and a twist, I went for it. Apologies, Crisp! I blew the 150-word limit!  I’m surely forgiven… right?

The Plan

When I look back now, I realise this started at a very young age.  The first time, I actually blamed myself for not paying attention, for not doing what I should, but no.  I can see it wouldn’t have mattered. She’d have found a way. She waited till she knew I’d notice it too late and wouldn’t be able to go back to find it.  She was just a baby for goodness sake!  Still.  Now?  I’m sure she knew exactly what she was doing.

When she hit her teenage years, I could more fully understand.  It had to be a conscious decision.  Of course, back then, she was still of an age to run around and play, so it was less obvious.

As a young adult, I couldn’t understand this obsession. Did she really think it could possibly work? Leaving a balled up note inside, to boot? It seemed rather desperate, to me.  Fairy tales were for children!

This time?  My goodness.  Now she has done it.  No way it could be missed. She chose the flashiest colour and hung it up at eye-level.

Surely Prince Charming would find THIS one?

No Longer Needed – Friday Fictioneers

I really wasn’t going to touch this one.  And then I couldn’t help but go back 23 years.  This week’s photo is supplied by Roger Bultot.  Thanks, always to Rochelle for hosting this weekly gathering.  If you want to play along, just click on the frog below and add your link to your 100 words.

©Roger Bultot

High Chair — Nee & Wee

No Longer Needed

Why did you throw out the highchair?

I didn’t throw it out, I left it on the curb for anyone to pick it up.  It’s not like we need it anymore.

What if we have another baby?

What if we don’t?  What if he was our one and only?  I can’t walk past that thing just like I can’t leave his room the way it is.  I’m turning it into a reading room.

I get it and I’ll help you.  …  Do you think one day we can try for a family again?

Yes.  When my heart doesn’t hurt so much.

 

Austin’s Room

 

 

 

The Moon, Playing Coquette

For those of you participating in dVerse, I would not want to take up more of your time.  Do not be shy and jump down to the title, saving you the extra 300 words of my preamble!  Speaking of challenges, Merril is hosting Prosery Monday today and I cannot resist, especially since I was already working on this post when the challenge popped into my inbox.  Of course, that meant limiting myself to 144 words but hey, why not?  Today, we must use the line:  “In their dreams they sleep with the moon.” – From Mary Oliver, “Death at Wind River”.

Eeesh… hard to believe it was two weeks ago, I promised Marina the moon.  What can I say? Either time, stuff, fatigue, listlessness, other stuff, etc. got in the way.  Or a combo of all.  Or some.  Neither here nor there, right?  I’m here now.  And how do you like that?  The time it took me to do this, the moon is in the same phase-ish.  Wait. Is it?

No, it isn’t.  I had to look up just where in the moon’s phase I was when I took the photos. Though my camera says September 1st, I know it was August 31st (must find out how to change the settings on my camera).  On August 31st, the moon was at 97% Illumination, in Waxing Gibbous, leading up to September 2nd’s Full Moon.  I was going to post this tomorrow, September 15th, when she is at 5% Illumination, in Waning Crescent, leading up to September 17th’s New Moon. So. My timing (with a minor cheat) is bang on – mirror-style.  Have I bored you?  Or, like me, did you learn something new?

Enough blah blah, Rogerson, move on to your little story created using your pictures of the moon,taken on August 31st.  A little music to get you in the mood…

The Moon, Playing Coquette

 

Like voyeurs, they watch, moonstruck, unwilling to leave, because on this night, the Moon plays temptress.  Unabashedly, she prances around fully nude, but tonight, though her light is bright, she keeps a sliver of herself hidden.

She is playing the seductress with a reverse striptease.  She flirts with the leaves on the trees, coyly covering and uncovering parts of herself.

First one side,

then the other, concealing more of herself each time she shifts.

It is sensuous dance that surprises the watchers. How can they be aroused by the addition rather than the removal of vestments? And yet they are. Enchanted, even.

At last, she finishes her dance, her new garment reminding her audience of a woman’s shoulder, decorated with lace.

They leave her, making their way to their beds and, in their dreams, they sleep with the moon, replaying her dance, in reverse.

 

Not Gonna Happen – Friday Fictioneers

It’s Wednesday! You know that means Friday… for Fictioneers, that is. Rochelle is hostess and supplier of photo this week. Should you wish to play along, just click on the frog below and add your link to your 100-word story. G’head. It’s fun!

https://rochellewisofffields.files.wordpress.com/2020/08/wilmington.jpg

Amazon.com: Big Magnet, 3.5

 

“Cynthia, will you marry me?”

“No, Brad. Stop asking. You keep getting the same answer. When will you understand I like how things are?”

“But you love me, right?”

“Yes, I do.”

“So what’s the problem?”

“I don’t want to be married. I like my independence. What we have works. Why ruin a good thing?”

With a “Hmph!” Brad kissed her on the cheek and said, “Fine. I’ll pick you up after work.”

“Great! See ya later!”

As Brad approached Cynthia’s shop, he thought of a new way to ask her.

However, in the door, he got his answer.

‘Nope’.

Staying the Course – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #93

Crispina’s challenge has sent me down a path I couldn’t seem to avoid. It’s been a week since Pat’s death and we are still reeling so I apologise ahead of time!

Staying the Course

He had never been afraid of the dark or going it alone before and he wasn’t going to start now. He was, however, a mix of angry and sad that life had dealt him yet another blow.

“You can grieve for a bit but then you have to keep moving forward, my friend. But know this. I have your back and when you see a light in the darkest corners, that’ll be me, there for you.

“And, when your own journey is over – and that’s not for a really long time – I’ll be there waiting for you.”

Boo Radley’s House – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday morning!  Say it like you mean it!  Today’s Friday Fictioneers came immediately and I just simply wrote it without thought. Gah… that always worries me. However, I am sticking with it!  Today’s photo is brought to us by Ted Strutz.  Excellent choice, Rochelle. I love the feel of this photo.  And thank you for hosting this weekly party.  If y’all wanna see what others wrote or, even better want to add your own, click on the frog below!

©Ted Strutz

Frog House Stock Illustrations – 610 Frog House Stock ...

Click me!

Boo Radley’s House

That house has a Boo Radley feel to it, don’t you think?

Are you thinking like a Finch or like the rest of the lot?

What do you mean?

Well, are you scared for no reason or do you have compassion for the man inside?

No need to get all uppity with me!

Seriously. Does the place spook you or are you curious and empathetic about who lives there?

I think we’re talking nonsense. The place looks abandoned.

Not nonsense.  I feel love coming from it.

You are so weird.

If you say so. I wonder if it’s for sale?

 

How Did I Become a Prompt Queen?

I went to a French high school.  We didn’t do things like the Prom Queen and King. Come to think of it, I wonder if any of the English schools in Quebec did?  Maybe it’s just an American thing. I honestly don’t know and frankly, don’t feel like looking it up because, in the grand scheme of things, it means diddly-squat.  Prompt Queen? Now that’s a different story.

Somehow any writing I have done in the past few years has been a good ninety-to-ninety-five percent prompt-related.  How did this happen? Is this a bad thing or a good thing?  Or a nothing to even waste my energies on?  I know I am far from alone.  Many bloggers only write prompt-induced posts. And that is a fine thing.  It has helped me work on my writing chops, I think.  Plus, when it comes to creativity, I need a nudge.

I take a pause in writing to think about this, and what my point shall be while I make myself a coffee,

Random shot of coffee

then get side-tracked by catching up on my daily blog reading, check my emails, and I land on my horoscope.  Coz yeah, I receive it daily, even though I don’t buy what they’re selling.  However, it is ironic that today’s says this:

07.30.2020

You may find yourself asking some major life questions today, Aries. Thoughtful Mercury finds itself opposed to grandiose Jupiter, asking you to ask whether you have all of the tools you need for the career you wish to create for yourself. You may find yourself revisiting educational or travel plans today. A positive sense of optimism permeates the day, lending support and strength to your questioning.

Okay, so why I write what I write is not a “major life question” but it is one of the questions I’ve been posing myself lately, and the only one I shall tackle at this time because it does affect how I spend some of my time.  Time that suddenly became plentiful, yet ill-used.  Since March, our lives, the world over, have been turned upside-down, sideways and inside out in a manner none of could ever have imagined.  Now that we are almost half a year into this (Seriously?!?!) we still can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.  How are we spending this time?  Everyone has seen some kind of change in their schedule.  Some barely had a break as they went from working in an office to working from home (and are working up to 20% more than before), some went from working days to working overnight, many of us lost our jobs, some were/are on hold, waiting, convinced they will be able to return to their former jobs at some time (though less and less a probability) and some, like me, have managed to find new jobs.  A first, it seemed this no working thing would be the perfect time to tackle projects! Um. No. I couldn’t justify it as projects require money which is no longer coming in, or at least, not with the same flow.  Many took up baking and cooking and gardening.  And reading. And writing.

Because flowers are pretty even when they are straggly

Many bloggers went to town. Suddenly the once, twice or thrice-weekly bloggers became daily bloggers. The multi-posters wrote even more.  My inbox overflowed.  (I hate using the Reader though I swear I am contemplating moving to it so that my overwhelm doesn’t send me to the looney-bin.)

I know I have a point to all this.  Oh yes. Prompts.  I don’t know how I went from Friday Fictioneers to also participating in Crimson’s Creative Challenge, Weekend Writing Prompt and an occasional dVerse.  I don’t like to post more than once per day and I’m not a daily blogger, either.  I often would find myself wanting to write about something and then thinking, oh no, it’s Wednesday, that’s when I do FF and then I can’t write it on Thursday because that’s when I do CCC and then it’s too late because that feeling has passed.  Just so you know, there is no obligation for me to write FF on Wednesdays nor CCC on Thursdays. It is all self-imposed.  The reason I do this is it gives me a chance to read everyone else’s story/poem, whatevs… because. There is the rub. I’m an excellent participant and reciprocator. But it is as time-consuming AF to read and comment on 65 other 100-word stories. And I do. Mostly. I have since cut back on those who don’t even acknowledge my comment – after a few weeks of nothing, I drop them. Got better things to do with my time. And there are those who never visit mine. (And that’s okay, too. Just don’t expect me to go to yours after a while, either.)  That’s what blogging is.

The swirls of the clouds resemble my thoughts

So what about those blogs I follow (and love) and read outside of these prompts? I feel so bad when fellow bloggers read me and I find myself three posts behind on theirs.  How much time per day is a person supposed to sit on their ass reading and commenting on blogs?  I swear I must read a novel’s worth per day.  When can I sit on my ass and read a book?  Because, frankly, after reading off the computer for 3-4 hours (if not more) I no longer feel like picking up a book.

That’s a helluva detour to my point, isn’t it?  Maybe that’s why I do these prompts. They force me to keep myself brief as none of them are longer than 150 words. 😉 They have and will continue to serve their purpose as they push my creativity to write different things.  And I think my writing has improved because of these challenges so no, I am not giving them up.  I am, however, going to cherry-pick from now on because for me it is important, when participating in a challenge, to participate.  I’m not a write-and-run kinda gal.

Back in February 2016, Eric Tonningson, Awakening to Awareness (a coach, speaker, writer, blogger I admire) commented with:  “Hey, where are those thoughtful Dale posts??? All I’m seeing in my WP Reader is Friday Fictioneer stuff. 🙂”.  I haven’t heard from him since this time, last year, but his words have been swirling in my head lately.

What would he say now?  He’d probably nod his head in agreement.

I have now seen the light.  I officially demote myself from Prompt Queen to Prompt Baroness.

Apologies. I understand if it was TL:DR

Some Assembly Required – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #88

Good afternoon.  It’s Friday!  And for most people, that means the end of the workweek… for me? It means it’s Sunday.  Does it matter?  No, because come Monday, it’s my Saturday… confused?  So am I.  So let’s just skip this nonsense and get to Crispina’s lovely challenge number 88, shall we?

 

Some Assembly Required

Got all the pieces?

Yep. Here they are all lined up.

 

They don’t seem to make much sense.  Where’s the instruction sheet?

I don’t have it.

What do you mean you don’t have it? Didn’t it come inside the box?

Ummm. Yeah.

So?

I chucked it.

What the hell would you do that for?

Instructions are for pussies!  Plus, it was in Chinese!

You’re telling me they didn’t have an English version? C’mon man…

Well, they did, but the translation was so bad, I figured it would be best if we just tried to figure it out ourselves.

Oh, for heaven’s sake.  Lemme see the box cover, so we can have an idea.

I can’t for the life of me see how those pieces will make this.

I can’t either. I think we got screwed.

Big time.

 

Snail Mail – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday! Time for another episode of Friday Fictioneers!  Our illustrious leader, Rochelle, has challenged us once again to use a photo and write a 100-word-max story inspired by it. This week, it is Jean L. Hays’ photo. Should you dare (g’head, try it!) click on the frog below and add your link.  It’s fun and addictive.

©Jean L. Hays

Snail Mail

She had been waiting for her lover’s letter for ages.

Patience, she told herself. There is nothing you can do, so stop fretting.  She refused to believe it was anything else but an extremely slow postal service. They did call it “snail mail” after all!

The grandfather clock in her hallway chimed eleven times, reminding her the mailman had passed.

She made her way down the driveway, telling herself not to expect anything.

What now, a box? Oh right, she was expecting a clipper for her dog.

Phooey. Not even for her. It was addressed to the former owners. Sigh.

Fountain of Youth? – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #87

I was going to go a whole ‘nother route. Even had a kinda/sorta matchy-matchy but then this popped into my head so I felt it best to just run with it.  Thanks to Crispina for hosting this fun party weekly.

Fountain of Youth?

I think we found it!

Found what?

The Fountain of Youth!

Seriously?  Looks more like a wishing well to me.

Ye, of little faith.

Don’t you find it a tad small to be anything of that sort?

Maybe that’s why it’s been so hard to find. People must have been looking for something way more grandiose.

Maybe it’s been hard to find because it only exists in myths! Besides, it’s not even deep enough to go to your knees!

Who says we have to go IN it?  Maybe all we have to do is drink from it.

You may have a point.

Hah! You willing to agree this might be it?

Ummmm… sure.  So, go ahead. Give it a taste.

You go first.

Your Fountain, YOU go first!

Fine. The water looks clear enough.

Yeah, you can see all the coins people have thrown in, thinking it’s a wishing well.