December 28: Flash Fiction Challenge: 99 Word Prompt – Wishing Star – Carrot Ranch Literary Community

In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about a wishing star. It can be central to the story or used in a different way. You can have a character interact or not. Go where the prompt leads.

 

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Bringing Mum Home

 

Every night Susan would look up at a star in the sky, wish upon it that her mother would return from the dead. Her father had told her she was gone away forever. Susan heard a kid at school say her mother was gone away ‘forever’ meaning dead.

Her father Mark sat in the kitchen not known his nine-year-old daughter’s pain. One day, he’d have to tell her how her mother walked out of their home to go far away because she was in love with his best friend Mike. Now, he thought she was too young to know.

 

If you want to participate, here’s the link: 

 

https://carrotranch.com/2017/12/28/december-28-flash-fiction-challenge/

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#SoCS Dec. 30/17 – Resolution

Linda’s prompt for SoCS this week…

 

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “resolution.” Use it any way you’d like.

 

The rolling hills of Bray stretched on for miles to their vision as they sat in their favourite small cafe. There was four of them: two couples Jade and Matthew and Leon and Charles. They were filling themselves with copious amounts of warm coffee to heat themselves from the cold air outside and Leon was throwing back chunks of two wonderful deserts flowing with chocolate sauce to ease his sweet tooth.

“So guys, it’s almost New Year, have any of you made any New Year’s resolutions yet?”, Jade asked.

Charles’ eyes fell on Leon’s cake assembly, rolled his eyes but made no comment.

“I’m trying to cut down on the ciggies.”, Matthew said.

“Trying not to die before next year.”, he added.

“Cut down? Not give them up?”, Leon smiled.

“Yeah, cut down is the object word in that sentence!”, Matthew laughed.

“Otherwise I’d be back on 20 a day in a flash, like. Moderation’s the name of the game, like.”, he added.

“I want to give more to charity.”, Jade said.

“Kind of defeats the purpose when you’re bragging about it darling.”, Matthew teased.

“No, it doesn’t!”, she laughed, tipping him in the arm gently.

“And you Charles?”, Matthew asked.

Leon rolled his eyes as Charles whipped his scarf around himself. Leon felt a sermon coming on.

“Resolutions are really all just useless crap, aren’t they? You know a way to make ourselves feel good and yet we just give them up by January 2nd if we’re lucky. Kind of like commercialism at Christmas …”

“In short, he hasn’t made any.”, Leon smiled.

“I was getting to the good bit.”

“Yeah, for you Mr. Intellectual.”, Leon grinned.

Charles made a scowl.

“And what have you decided on so dearest?”

There was sarcasm in the last word which made Leon smile.

“Continuing to piss you off.”

“Sure, you do that anyway.”, Charles smiled.

“I’m planning to read a few Classics. I’ve made a list of ten. Not just any Classics mind, that guy Chau … Chau …”

Chaucer

“Chaucer.”, Charles said.

“That’s the fella. Miller’s Tale or something. And a bit of Shakespeare and Christie.”

Charles raised an eyebrow.

“Agatha Christie’s not Classics.”

“She’s Classics of sorts. She made a lot of money, that woman.”

 

 

Later that night, Jade and Matthew were at their flat.

“So did you mean it when you said that you wanted to help more charities in the New Year?”

“Yeah, especially the homeless. I see people on the streets when I’m going around and it breaks my heart. Also something to help a heart charity obviously because of Dad dying from it.”

“I think that’s amazing even though I rag you about it all.”

“And your resolution is pretty brilliant too.”

“Oh it pales in comparison to yours though.”

“Not really. I know how challenging it can be. That was my resolution last year after all.”, she said as they kissed.

“And we both know that didn’t work out.”, she laughed.

 

 

Meanwhile back at Leon’s and Charles’ flat, Leon was tucking into the packet of cookies he’d got on the way home.

“You think I should give up sweet foods for the new year, don’t you?”

“Never said that …”

“But you do.”, Leon grinned, munching a chunk of cookie.

“I promise to still keep my body not too fat for you.”

“It’s not about that babe. It’s your health I’m worried about.”

“So you really haven’t made a resolution?”

“Maybe … but then I’m not really into resolutions for a year. I prefer lifetime resolutions.”, Charles replied, rolling the ring across the kitchen counter.

“Is that …”, Leon began, tears starting to fill his eyes.

Charles lifted the ring up and placed it on Leon’s finger.

“Marry me?”

“Yes. Yes, yes, I will.”, Leon replied, kissing Charles passionately.

As Charles wiped Leon’s happy tears in his, Leon laughed.

“Jeez, when you do resolutions, you really do do resolutions!”

“I don’t like to do anything by halves.”, Charles grinned.

 

 

 

Writing 101: Publishing

 

 

Hello everyone and welcome to part 9 of my 10-part series Writing 101. It’s strange to think this series started in 2017 and will end in 2018. Thank you all for joining me for part 9 which is about publishing.

 

Yes, publishing, the ‘ole cherry on top of your writing journey. Seems simple but in reality, it’s not quite as simple as anyone who got to that stage and is ready to publish knows. We live in a very different world to older days when you relied on a publishing house to like your work. That option still of course exists but now we have a world of choice. Without further ado let’s get into the world of publishing …

 

 

  1. Believe In Your Work

 

Ok, I hear you: what’s she going on about? This is publishing. It’s the business end. And that’s very valid. But in truth if you believe in your work, you are more likely to still publish it when that publishing house possibly turns you down. I don’t want to dampen the dream, I’ve been there, but realistically, it’s not going to happen for all of us. You might be the lucky one in 100 but more likely with statistics you won’t be and I want to say still believe in your work. It’s one or a couple of peoples’ opinion/opinions. It doesn’t mean your work is bad. Heck publishing houses are not always right. You created this work, it relies on you, as much as a non-feeling script does, to bring it to light. You owe it to your work if you believe in it. And you never know, someday you might find another publishing house who loves your work down the line. We learn as writers who we are suited to and basically we should take baby steps but if you love what you have written, get it out there by any means possible within limit.

 

2. Where To Publish

 

There is numerous publishing houses, both indie and well-known as well as in-between as well as many others. I started sending to some publishers. I was a bit impatient. So I turned to Amazon. There is also so many others out there from indie to well-known and self-publishing. Where you publish depends on yourself. There is really no right way or wrong way so long as you know there’s good and bad books in all. People think your career is either one or the other. Maybe it is for some and that’s their way. Most of us ebb between them all just wanting to get our characters out there. Because we love them. Most unbusiness-like statement but there you go. (Apart from Amir in my new book that I’m writing, can’t stand him, not a promotion moment, just had to say it, sorry.) What I’m saying is that it doesn’t matter. As a reader, I have read good, bad, inbetween books from so many places that where they are published ceases to matter anymore. Publish wherever and don’t worry about the snobbery or the fall-out.

 

3. But …?

 

And this is important my fellow writers, when I say publish wherever, I don’t mean vanity publishers. It’s very enticing when you are starting out. Very. I was enticed when I was younger by them. They offer you what you always wished of: your title published and your name on the book cover. But they want you to pay for it. Always a bad sign. Don’t go there. You can’t get it published by a publisher, run to Amazon and co … run from vanity publishers. They haven’t you or your book’s best interests at heart.

 

4. Some publishers

 

Here’s a few websites with some details:

 

https://www.writing.ie/resources/irish-publishers/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_English-language_book_publishing_companies

http://www.lorillake.com/glbt_pub.html

 

5. Your Publisher Must Get Your Work

 

Research publishers. Read books by the writers from the company. Get a feel for their work and what they publish. We all jump head first in when we start or most of us do in any case. Your work must suit the company, not the other way around. Don’t write to be accepted by a company. Write what you want and research a company who wants what you’ve written.

 

 Key Points Summary

  • There is many options in publishing in our world nowadays.
  • Believe in your work and don’t take rejection personally.
  • You have options ranging from publishers to Amazon and beyond …
  • However avoid vanity publishers.
  • Make sure your work fits the company, don’t try to fit the company’s work. And research, research, research ….

 

 

 

 

 

Three Line Tales Writing Prompt – Home For Christmas

 

three line tales, week 100: a ferris wheel in Paris with soldiers patrolling

photo by Manu Sanchez via Unsplash

 

https://only100words.xyz/2017/12/28/three-line-tales-week-100/

 

It was Christmas and I was home from the army for the Christmas, rushing ahead of my mate from the army Jake to find my husband Greg and on the way I passed a straight couple. Jake was interested in the girl which I’d heard all about on the mission and I was tired out by it all. Seeing Greg in the distance I dropped my gun to the ground, took him in my arms, kissing him heaps, and he whispered in my ear, “Welcome home Adam. Merry Christmas.”

 

For Three Line Tales Writing Prompt. The website can be found at:

https://only100words.xyz/

Three Line Tales Writing Prompt – No Reality

three lien tales week 99: a purple sky and a batman shaped belfry

photo by Emily Morter via Unsplash

 

https://only100words.xyz/2017/12/21/three-line-tales-week-99/

 

It was a mystical land or so it seemed in Ivan’s drug-addled state. The sky was purple and the world was at peace lost in his perception of it now. When he came back to his senses, his on-off girlfriend was still pregnant and responsibility loomed back into his mind as the mystical world left.

 

 

For Three Line Tales Writing Prompt. The website can be found at:

https://only100words.xyz/

One-Liner Wednesday – The Christmas Dog

#1linerWeds badge by Dan Antion

 

Tim, the stray terrier, could see Christmas in all those who passed him and then he put in his gift from one passer-by of a CD player and music and Christmas classics filled his ears, nice but he would have preferred food, still he felt he couldn’t be picky.

 

In response to Linda G. Hill’s prompt which can be found at:

https://lindaghill.com/2017/12/27/one-liner-wednesday-not-a-fan-of-christmas/

For What Pegman Saw Writing Prompt – A Man For Christmas

 

 

A Man For Christmas

 

I needed a man!

I was getting on at the ancient age of 27. The struggles of life! Seeing my friends coupling up in marriages and cohabiting relationships. I probably didn’t want a man. I just needed one you know. Older peer pressure. I thought all this in my head.

I had been roped into bringing my niece to see Santa in the North Pole by my busy brother who said I wasn’t busy. One more thing to be self-conscious about. Still watching Santa giving her a present warmed my heart away from my thoughts. She ripped it open in glee and thanked Santa.

Santa’s shift ended. He handed me a piece of paper with his phone number on it. He pulled down his beard.
“But Santa’s not gay.”, I teased.
“In real life Santa’s very gay. I’m Dylan by the way.”
“Simon.”, I smiled.
I definitely wanted this man!

 

For What Pegman Saw Writing Prompt. Check out the website at:

What Pegman Saw: North Pole, Alaska