“Rules”, New Home, Embrace & Love – the secret keeper Writing Prompts

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Image result for lgbtq

In honour of LGBTQ+ Pride Month, I have written the following three poems in response to the secret keeper writing prompts. Happy LGBTQ+ Pride Month everyone! 🙂




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Smash the stereotypes,

take away “rules” that should

never have been put in motion,

numb your heart to the prejudice

& ignorance & ignore those

seeking fame by throwing out

their negativity to the masses.


(5) Words: | NUMB | MOTION | FAME | RULES | SMASH |


In response to the secret keeper writing prompt:




New Home


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Fearful of a trap,

torn from his family,

no role left in his home

of Chechnya,

he arrived in a new land,

hoping to become a part of it

as a happy and proud trans and pan man

and to try to fuse his life back together.


(5) Words: | FUSE | PART | ROLE | TORN | TRAP |


In response to the secret keeper writing prompt:




Embrace & Love

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Sometimes this is a mad world

but stay clear of the madness,

embrace who you are,

love who you love,

for each person in LGBTQ+,

we are fabulous,

for each person who is an ally

of all letters,

we are fabulous,

ignore the muddle that

is going on in the minds of

the ignorant and prejudiced,

you can’t solve their case for them

and friends they got a big problem indeed!



(5) Words: | MAD | CLEAR | MUDDLE | CASE | SOLVE |


In response to the secret keeper writing prompt:






4 Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompts!

I am catching up on these four wonderful prompts and I have decided to make them into a mini continuing story. Hope you all enjoy! 🙂





“Cheers!”, I said for the must be coming on fiftieth time that day as I hit glasses with another guest at my wedding to my new husband Alan.

I wasn’t quite sure who this person was. Probably from Alan’s sales job or maybe the Hercule Poirot Appreciation Club.

Alan comes over rescuing me. He can be relied on like that.

“Ah Gary, thanks for coming. I see you’ve met my gorgeous husband Nick.”

He can be relied upon to be over the top too! My sister Niamh loves him, wishes her boyfriend would announce her gorgeousness so freely but to be honest I think it’s a little much. But I haven’t said. Don’t wish to rock the boat, you know.

“Yeah, Alan’s told me so much about you.”, I smile, like you do, think I’ve said the right thing.

“Oh I hope not all bad!”, Gary replies with a hearty chuckle.

“No, not at all.”, I grin back.

I’ve smiled a lot today. Introverts’ trait.


Later in the evening Alan and I are back in our hotel room. We don’t bother with the traditional getting it on of the wedding night. We’re both knackered from the day and in any case we’ve been through that many times before. So we simply crawl into bed, cuddle for a few moments, tell each other how great we did today and then put the lights out.


In response to Linda’s prompt:





The Phone



“You didn’t come back last night! Where the hell were you?!”, Alan says, standing in the middle of the kitchen looking all stern and stuff.

“I was drunk so I crashed on Niamh’s sofa! It’s no big deal!”, I reply with a shrug.

“A likely story!”

“Call her then!”

“What would be the point? She’d only back you up … and saying you are telling the truth …”

“I am!”

And I was. Jesus!

“Was he there?”

“Do you mean Niamh’s boyfriend Cian?”

“Yes, he’s bi you know.”

“Yeah, I’m aware of that and you and I are gay, Niamh’s straight, what exactly are you coming at here?”

“Oh you wouldn’t tell me the truth anyway!”, he says, starting to leave the kitchen.

I follow him through to the living-room, anger growing inside me.

“Do you think I’m screwing him Al? Is that honestly what you think?!”

“He left his mobile phone here when I was away on business …”

“Jeez, that’s incriminating.”, I reply with sarcasm.

He slumps down on the sofa.

“Was he staying here?”

“He came over for lunch.”

“And why didn’t you tell me?”

“I didn’t think it was important that my sister’s boyfriend came over for lunch for a half an hour …”

“Of course it isn’t … I’m sorry. I …”

I slumped down beside him on the sofa, took his hand in mine.

“I’m not Brendan, you know? I can be faithful.”

He places his hand on top of mine, rubs it softly.

“I know. I’m sorry. I love you Nicky.”

“Love you too, you jealous ‘ole lump.”, I smile, giving him a quick reassuring kiss.


In response to Linda’s prompt:







“Do you think we’re coming near the place now?”, I asked as we rounded yet another street.

“Not sure. I’m sure we’re getting pretty warm in finding it though.”, Al replied, forcing me to roll my eyes.

“Just for future reference babe, maybe bring a Google map or something.”

“I don’t know how those things work.”


Eventually we get there and are greeted by the receptionist. When the receptionist fails to find the reservation in the book, Al gets agitated.

“You’re supposed to know what you’re doing. Are you new here or something?!”

“Well um, actually I am, um …”

“It’s ok.”, I interrupt.

“We can wait. Maybe you could ring your supervisor? You’re doing grand.”

The receptionist smiles.

“I’ll sort it out.”, they say, going to the phone.

“You are too soft Nicky. He shouldn’t be here if he doesn’t know what he’s doing! I know you are a receptionist and all but …”

“Yeah and you’re a big shot salesman, we know!”

“That’s not what I meant!”

“Well you’re sure acting like it. Give them time.”

“And you’re doing that irritating thing again.”

“What’s that?”

“Saying them …”

“Well I don’t like to assume someone’s gender or pronouns based on how they present so sue me!”

“Jesus, he’s taking all day about this!”

“They are trying their best Al. It isn’t that easy when you’re under pressure, you know.”

Eventually the supervisor came down and things were sorted. There was two reservation books and the receptionist had been looking at the wrong one. Al rolled his eyes and made sure the receptionist seen. I smiled over to them, thanked both them and the supervisor for their help. Al sighed and done likewise before we headed up to our room.

After we had got settled, we had some wine and had a wonderful night of passion.


In response to Linda’s prompt:






The baby or babies.

My mind buzzed like a wasp.

“I know we hadn’t planned it but …”, I said, tears beckoning to come into my eyes as I sat across the kitchen table from Al.

Instinctively he takes my hand in his.

“Take your time. Hadn’t planned what? Are you alright?”

“Yeah, um … well with me being a trans guy and you being a cis guy, there was always the chance.”

“What’s any of that got to do with anything?Always the chance of what?”

“You know that night of passion we had at the hotel …”

“How could I forget?!”, he smiled with a cheeky grin and then a light bulb seemed to have went off.

“Oh.”, he said.


He broke out into a smile and took me into a gentle hug.

“That’s amazing news!”

“Really?”, I replied, relieved.

“It’s just as I said we haven’t planned it and all …”

“Oh forget that! This is brilliant. I’m really happy. Are you?”

A tear of joy slips down my face.

“Yes, yes I am.”


In response to Linda’s prompt:





One Liner Wednesday – Keep On Keeping On

Three One Liner Wednesdays …   


If at first you don’t succeed keep trying …


If again you don’t succeed keep hoping …


And at last if you don’t succeed keep adventuring because at least it’ll be an interesting ride!


#1linerWeds badge by Cheryl, at dreamingreality646941880.wordpress.com/

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



Three Line Tales – All At Sea

three line tales, week 126: a tall ship on the liffey at sunrise

photo by Mark Dalton via Unsplash




Every day she waited at the store for the return of the sailor who had stolen her heart. Eventually she gave up thinking he didn’t love her and had found another girl. What she didn’t know was he had drown at sea on his way back to her.


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





Friday Fictioneers: Amy

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields





Her room was alive with what made Amy her really. The array of guitars she would have on her lap and the keyboard she would sit at writing songs for the school rock band she was in called Rock Stars. The wall decoration she found in a local thrift store which reminded her of the band, the teddy Alfie attached which her girlfriend Sonia gave to her for her sixteenth birthday …


For her last birthday. Standing in the doorway, the tears of a Mum roll down my face. Today she is dead because some people don’t like Goths. But I loved mine.


My book Black Coat based on a previous Friday Fictioneers prompt is available at:


For Friday Fictioneers Writing Prompt. Check out the website at:


Three Line Tales – Mary & Maggie





The midnight hour was approaching and Mary met her love of thirty years Maggie as the heart balloon exploded into the sky. She got down on one knee and asked her love to marry her on May 23rd 2015 in Kilkenny, the Republic of Ireland. Oh by the way, she said yes!


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


Three Line Tales – Open Door?

three line tales, week 124: two colourful doors that lead to ...

photo by Luis Alfonso Orellana via Unsplash




When one door closes, another one opens, thought April. She checked both doors and neither opened. That’s when she turned around and the zombies prepared for their feast.

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




Perfume: The Story of a Murderer By Patrick SĂĽskind Review!

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Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (1985) by Patrick Süskind is an interesting and original book in the crime and historical genres. It is translated wonderfully by John E. Woods.


Following the story of Jean-Baptiste Grenouille and set in 18th century France, the young Grenouille, living in the slums, has already an excellent sense of smell. As he grows older he becomes an apprentice to a well-established perfumer who teaches him the tricks of the trade. But soon his obsession with smell becomes overpowering and he has a desire to capture the smell of various objects like wood which is newly-cut. But then what originally was a harmless interest or harmless obsession soon turns sinister when his sense of smell is caught by the scent of a young female virgin and soon he is killing females in the pursuit of the scent he desires for his perfume.


It is quite a haunting and terrifying book. With Grenouille as the main character we see a lot of the book through his perspective and it is harrowing. He is an evil, sexually depraved and very obsessional person and he is also a very egotistical character who believes he can do whatever he wants and get away with it. A very complex and fascinating character for a book, wouldn’t like to run into a real version of him in a darkened alley though! This story takes a look at the depraved mind and can’t have been easy for SĂĽskind to write. It has a very honest and indepth feel to it. The story is also very fresh and original and it is brilliantly written. Grenouille strikes me as a very lonely and isolated character who in a very weird way I think thinks when he captures these women he is gaining a closeness to another human being. While not every person who is lonely, isolated and doesn’t belong is going to go out and kill a lot of people it shows that with some people that loneliness can drive them strange. Though my fear is that some other readers might see this as an excuse to give to Grenouille which I think would be outrageous. While to me it isn’t an excuse, it does show the reasoning behind why he is acting in such a way but there’s definitely something in him too that leads him to act on the weird fantasies which have come into his head. Yes this book is very psychological!


In all Grenouille kills 25 women to try to create his scent and the ending is surreal and just as original as the rest of the book. There is a lot of issues in this story like ambition getting the better of someone and the want to have a purpose and all of these feelings in Grenouille has come to have drastic consequences. That whole thing of ‘to be somebody’ at all costs and Grenouille very much strikes me as being like that. So long feeling invisible he now wants to be very visible and he’s willing to kill to be so. It’s very heavy stuff but amazingly written. There is also the superficial element. Grenouille seems to believe peoples’ lives aren’t worth anything in comparison to creating a scent and that all kind of ties into that whole idea of beauty at all costs. I think there is a bit of a metaphor there. The book very obviously deals with a very important issue of people, women in this case, being in danger from unsuspecting weirdos and Grenouille  would most certainly make readers cautious of possible real-life people like Grenouille which is a very good thing.


SĂĽskind writes here in a very poetic style. At times it reads like a long poem. He leaves no stone unturned and writes a realistic picture of the various difficult and deep topics in this book. It’s a complex and wonderfully written book.


A great read. Brilliantly written.


To purchase Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick SĂĽskind go to:


And for more about Patrick Süskind and his work go to:


Friday Fictioneers: On The Boat






On The Boat


Piero waited on the boat. His breathing was heavy. His leg was shaking involuntarily. Soon a person would arrive. He hoped he would remember all Giovanni told him to do when this first mysterious person arrived …


Piero felt his heart beat. He was nervous and trying not to show it.

“Is this boat free?”

He stopped thinking, turned and smiled warmly at a group of three people,

“Good Morning. It is. We cover much of the city of Venice here at Venice City Tours. My name is Piero and I will be your guide today. May I ask your names?”



My book Black Coat based on a previous Friday Fictioneers prompt is available at:



For Friday Fictioneers Writing Prompt. Check out the website at:



Culture Vulture Express Receives It’s Second Real Neat Blog Award!

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Culture Vulture Express has got a second Real Neat Blog Award from Mark at markanthonysblog. Thanks so much Mark. 🙂





1. Benedict Cumberbatch or Tom Hanks?

Both great actors but I have a bit of a crush on Benedict so I’m going to say him! 🙂


2. If you could go back in time, where would you go?

The 60s because it was a time of so much social change beginning and I love the music and the clothes.


3. Hot or cold weather?

Cold weather, not freezing but cooler weather. I’m Irish, I’m not used to the sun! 🙂


4. Things that remind you of your childhood?

Furbies, tamagotchis, Pokemon, Rugrats, troll dolls, Toy Story, Tellytubbies, Cindy doll, Barbie, Polly Pocket.


5. What show are you currently watching?

I’m catching up on the Rupaul’s Drag Race seasons gradually. I hadn’t watched the show and then I started watching season 6 because I became a fan of Courtney Act in Celebrity Big Brother in the UK and I got hooked and now I’m going through the seasons.


6. Favourite blogger(s)? and why.

Everyone’s blog that I follow because you’re all amazing! 🙂


7. What subjects are your most and least favourite?

Well when I was at school my favourite was English because I always loved reading and writing. My least favourite was Maths. I was never any good at them and a close second for least would have been PE. I quite liked hockey and tennis but the rest especially the fitness tests, no.


Feel free to use the same questions and comment below if you would like to be a nominee and take part. 🙂