The Friday Poem: One Rose Blooms

One Rose Blooms

Weekly Writing Update: One Good Thing

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Have I mentioned that I never thought I’d be writing horror? And yet, here I am.

One good thing happened – a fellow writer just asked if I’d be interested in contributing to an anthology he’s putting together. My mind took off and ran with a story about a Navajo code talker and a Skinwalker during WWII.

And then the coincidences begin to drop. I was texting with a friend and my device changed McFlurry to McClure. Hmm, Mr. McClure isn’t what he seems, my brain said. Definitely a character for the story. The next day I was sitting at the Reference Desk at work and someone called with the last name of McClure. Strange, indeed.

In other good news, I’ve submitted my humorous horror story, Sinkholes, which features creepy doll heads, to The Literary Hatchet this weekend – keeping my fingers crossed.

I’m also working on cutting 1,500 words from my horror ghost story, Long Distance Call, to submit by the end of the month to Coffin Bell Journal.

And I’ve got another horror story in my head that plays with two men in a family line living 100 years apart in the same house, going through the same motions, making similar bad choices.

It seems horror is definitely running in my veins.

The Friday Poem: Just Waiting

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Weekly Writing Update: Sharing Stories

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I currently have five short stories and a novel submitted to potential publishers, and two more short stories I need to pick potential homes for.

It’s a little like holding a lottery ticket. You want to find out whether you won or not but the anticipation is wonderful fun as well. Schroedinger’s cat is still alive! Yes, there’s fun in both creating and sharing. That sharing can take a multitude of forms. There’s at least one story that I’ve shared with my writer’s group which I may never send out, but it was cathartic just writing it and sharing it with them.

Yesterday, I sent a copy of my poetry book to Brené Brown on a whim. I recently read her book, Braving the Wilderness, and so many things she said resonated with poems in my book that I wanted to share it with her. She may never read it, may never even see it if someone opens her mail for her, but I sent it.

Making connections, sharing who we are, is a big part of why we’re here. Sometimes I see memes that say things like “I should just keep quiet, nobody cares.” Bullshit. I care, I’m interested in people’s stories and what they think, and I’ve found over time that whatever it is I think or feel, there are plenty of people out there who feel the same way.

So, keep on sharing your story. Somebody may be waiting to hear it.

The Friday Poem: 2 Delays = Perfect Timing

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Moments of Joy: Reading Out Loud

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I had a blast being the M.C. for the readings at Riverrow Books in Owego last Friday night. I got to listen to some great readings from fellow authors and read the titular poem from my collection, A Sanctuary Built of Words. (That can be found in my poems here.) At the end I think I heard someone sob slightly, either that or they yawned loudly. 😊

I also read a story I call “Drying Up.” It intersperses the last few hours of a woman’s life in Hospice care with memories from her life that brought her to that point and the peace she has made with people in her life.

I felt that poem and story exemplified my belief about why we come together to read out loud. Research Professor Brené Brown refers to it as experiencing our inextricable connection through collective experiences of joy and pain. It’s a wonderful feeling, that connection.

I think it also has something to do with Bibliotherapy, a term I first learned about during my college years. Merriam-Webster defines bibliotherapy as “the use of reading material for help in solving personal problems or for psychiatric therapy, also: the reading material so used.”

I know I’ve found comfort and knowledge in books that lead to personal growth my entire life.

I believe books and stories can be a place of escape, refuge, connection, and offer hope to help people deal with reality. That is what I’ve experienced through reading and what I hope to offer with my writing.

The Friday Poem: Go Green

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Author Reading in Owego, NY

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How 2 Delays = Perfect Timing

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How 2 Delays = Perfect Timing (or) A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Coffee Shop

I was sitting at the traffic light on Friday when it turned yellow. Have I been sitting at a green light? I stepped on the gas and glanced in the rearview mirror.

At least three cars were lined up behind me but not one of them had honked. I could hear the questions now.

“Is someone crossing the street?”

“Maybe it’s a cat.”

Perhaps there was a moth, but I didn’t see it.

Neither did my friend in the passenger seat (who shall remain nameless) and who didn’t say anything about the green light either.

We arrived at the coffee shop and there was a free space right in front of the Tioga Arts Council. I attempted to parallel park but the alignment seemed, uncharacteristically, to be eluding me until the third try.

We got out of the car and a woman stopped on the sidewalk. “I love your bumper sticker! Are you a writer?”

I thought for a minute. She must be talking about my Got Writing? decal in the window.

“Um, yes. Yes, I am.”

We chatted a few minutes and she suggested I talk to the Director of the Arts Council because they needed authors for a reading at Riverrow Books in Owego, New York, during the First Friday Arts Crawl.

Long story short, I’m dragging along several from my writer’s group and acting as the M.C..

And that is how two delays can equal perfect timing. 😊

More information about who all will be there and when later today.