Sour Grapes

[Inspiration for this hit way too late to write/edit, etc., before the Grammar Ghoul’s prompt deadline today (incorporate the image and include “jealous” in your story). It ended up  jumping the fence on the word limit, as well, by almost 2x, but I decided to post anyway].

grapevineGrapevines stood tall and lush as far as Joan could see, stretching for what seemed like miles under the hot Italian summer sun. From one hill rolling over to the next, and back up again along the sides of the hills farther beyond, the expanse of her cousin Leah’s vineyard was an astounding sight.

Later that night, after the typical gourmet feast prepared by Leah’s charming, handsome and amazingly talented husband Geoffrey, she and Leah sat outside on the front porch with large cups of coffee to watch the twilight slowly descend behind the hills. Joan pictured Leah and Geoffrey sitting there every night, watching the day quietly fade into night in this beautiful place, amiably discussing their children’s lives, their vineyard and winery, and their plans for the next day. How lovely to have such a life. (more…)

Bad Bunny Bandit Boy

reblog-640x587I’m sure my Blog Propellant (TBP) friend tnkerr won’t mind if I “reblog,” the link to his take on TBP Picture Prompt #27: Fashion Statement.

When you feel like you have just the right amount of awesomeness, maybe you will join us in the fun over at TBP today. In the meantime, try to look beautiful…

(Comments and Likes turned off on this post. Let the blog link’s author know how much you like his post!)

Morada del Diablo

devils abode(c) b beachamThe cemetery spread along the area known as Devil’s Abode. Looking down from his perch, high above in the Ponderosa Pines, Red Bird could just make out the distant hills beyond the trees and grassy slopes that encircled the red clay of the grave sites like protective guardians.

“So,” he thought, “this is where they all live. Muy bonito.”

It seemed right that the small, fantastically colored wooden people he’d seen in the mercados al aire libre, some with just faces and no bodies; the ones they called Los Diablos, would live in such a beautiful place. He hopped off his perch, spreading his wings as far as he could and glided the entire way from the pines down to cemetery to get a closer look at las casitas de los diablos.

Lurking in the mausoleums’ shadows, Gato Demonio could not believe his dumb luck when the sumptuous scarlet treat he spied in the pines above seemed to be coming right to him.

Red Bird is a character in one of my stories.
Mondays Finish the Story asks that you use the picture and the first sentence to complete a story in 100-150 words.

Coming Out as a Writer

prideI did something yesterday I’ve not ever done: I shared one of my blog pieces on my Facebook page (Seasons Change and So Do I). What’s more, I didn’t post the accompanying image. I just let the words stand for themselves.

My FB “likes” register keeps dinging away, and a few lovely comments for “more, please” have come in. It’s so wonderful to finally have the guts to say to a larger group of family, friends and acquaintances, “I write. And, I like it. A lot.”

I started this blog so strangers could read what I write while I remained safely enclosed in a shelter of relative anonymity. I told absolutely no one I knew I had a blog until about 6 months in, and then to only a select few. But as I start my 3rd year of active blogging and writing, I find myself a little more assured and therefore not as shy.

Oh, I am well aware I am a novice in every way. I’m mostly self-taught and so would do very well by taking creative writing and back-to-basics composition classes (what the hell’s a past participle, again?), and I just might do all that somewhere down the road. But for now, I’m going to keep to my free-range, unsanctioned scribbling, and continue reveling in just the pure, simple joy of writing.

Seasons Change and So Do I

fall trail

Swatches of blood orange, umber and canary yellow plaster green leaves like careless strokes from a painter’s brush. The last of summer’s dust carries the sunset’s rays deep into the thicket, and wind whips at my hair, no longer June’s gentle breeze. Weary of the year’s travels, I return home in autumn.

In exactly 52 words, write a story or poem inspired by the image.

Basically, it literally was a very unique thing I never actually said.

basically literally[Not a Reblog, so much as a re-share…? A re-post. Whatever].

How a word evolves from its prescribed definition to its connotated vernacular, I do not know. Some make sense, such as “cool” and “hot,” implying how you might feel about something that turns you off or turns you on.

But some words are simply over used to the point of having almost no meaning anymore. “Actually,” “basically,” and “literally” are three of these words. Oh, and “very unique” are also misused words that genuinely bug me. (more…)

Sir Whatever


reblog-640x587 Having a giggle on a Tuesday at 5:30am is an unexpected pleasure and a great get-up-and-face-the-day motivator.

Originally posted on Edward Hotspur:


Once there was some guy who wore armor. He was a knight or something, I think. Some fantastic creature that isn’t likely to exist had been terrorizing the local places where a lot of buildings were and stuff. It said Grrr and breathed fire or acid. It was no bueno.

The ruler type person of some collection of buildings said something where people could hear, and then lots of these armored people came along, grabbed some stuff, and went looking for this creature. It might have been a flying creature, or a rodent. They looked around the place for a while. Some of them didn’t come to buy more crap. They probably died.

Sir The Guy I Mentioned In The First Sentence was passing through this large ruler house area, and heard about this proclo…decree thingy. He figured he’d take a shot at it. He went out and started looking…

View original 228 more words

When (Fate/Destiny, Choose One) Hands You Lemons…

lemon bucket orkestra lume lumeIf FATE hands you lemons, as the saying goes, you are to remember to stay positive and be clever enough to turn a supposed bad thing into a good thing by making lemonade.

If DESTINY hands you lemons, then it’s probably because you have a notion of becoming a farmer or a grocer or a chef or a bartender, in which case you are probably very happy with what you’ve got in hand (which morphs into the equally well-known saying about a bird in-hand being better than opting for the two still hanging out in the bush, etc. etc.).

“Do you believe in fate or do you believe you can control your own destiny?”

Yes. I’d just leave it at that, but a single word response isn’t a blog post. So, I will expand:

Everything in life is a situation. And every outcome of a situation is attributed to either a deliberate effect, or to happenstance. I don’t place real faith in either providence or best laid plans of action to deliver an outcome. However, I do know—which is something like belief, based on something I’ve proved through deliberate action—that focus, determination, ambition and command of certain skills will often result in an outcome that I have controlled from the outset. I equally know that circumstances over which I have had absolutely no influence impose themselves routinely on my life, forcing me to react accordingly.

Unless, of course, I’m writing a bit of fiction, in which case all my unfortunate characters are victims of cruel fate, slaves to their idea of manifest destiny, or metaphysically tortured with trying to sort out which of the two is to blame for their wretched lives. Angst is a much more interesting read than my blah-blah-blah above, and goes down more smoothly with the Lemon Drop martini.

Originally posted March 2014 when the prompt first came around. I liked it well enough to re-post it as-is on the prompt’s second orbit. Well, OK, yes. With a couple of edits.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Que Sera Sera.”

Stop the Bus!


“Hello. I see you are reading a book. Ever thought of writing one? How about just a chapter? A half of a chapter? I ask, because, you see, I am a blog propellant…hmm? Propellant. No, not ‘repellent’…Anyway, I encourage people…hmm? Blog. It’s an online…no, not ‘bog.’ I am not a bog repellent. Anyway, as I started to say, I encourage people to write, in blogs, and I represent a group of people who…(bus starts to pull over at a stop)….Oh, sure. Yeah. Sorry, I’ll just get out of your…(oof)…wait a sec, just lemme swing my legs into the aisle…Oh! Ouch!…No, no, it’s…yeah. I’m OK. No, really, I….it’s all good. I have another foot. OK, well, you have a good day, too….(ouch, ouch, ouch, she mutters rubbing her foot)…Oh, but, hey! (calling out across the bus as the passenger quickly exits,) think about responding to a blog prompt, OK? (She looks around) Hello. I see you are writing something on your computer…”

There are number of writing and blog prompts out there, all of them with something to offer your needs/wants as a writer or photographer. Do you participate in writing or blog prompt you enjoy? Share with the rest of us! This is just a few I’ve encountered, and all of them are fun and challenging: The Grammar Ghouls | Monday Finish the Story | Sunday Photo Fiction | Write Anything Wednesday | Friday Fictioneers | Flash!Friday | Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers | Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie | Picture it & Write |Finish That Thought | Finish It | Micro Book Ends and, of course, my own: The Blog Propellant.



muertos musicians by monika suska“How about some music?” my Muse asked.

“No. Good with the quiet right now,” I replied.

“Ummm…I’m thinking, jazz.”

“Ummm…I’m thinking, silence.”

“Oo! What about this album?”


“Don’t feel like dancing, then?”

“See, the thing about being good with quiet is also being good with stillness.”

“Hmm. Yes, well, your brain is thrashing itself against your skull like a mad woman in a straight jacket locked in a padded room. I prescribe loud music and dancing.”

“I’m quite used to taming her.  Just…(sigh)…wait.”

“Yes, yes, yes. Quite the lion tamer you are.”

“Hey, I got nothin’ to write, so I don’t know why you’re here. I mean, I do, I just…I don’t have anything that’s…Look, for all her thrashing around…I mean, she’s just thrashing around. The crazy, wild thing that she sometimes is. Just, let her be.”

“I’m thinking jazz.”

“Oh, for God’s sake! Fine. Then, I’ll draw a bath. That way we’ll both get what we want.”

“87 degrees, and you’re going to take a bath.”

“Just put on the music, OK? Whatever, only make it mellow, relaxing, bath soaking music.”

“Kenny G, Roxy Music and indigenous flute and musical bones guy it is… OO-OO-OO! Here’s that Twin Peaks soundtrack!”

“(sigh…) Whatever.

“Dem bones, dem bones, dem crazy bones…doowap a-dap a-dapado…GIRL! It cuts right to the bone, the way you…doo-wa do… they know, know, know…mm-mm-mm…AND VACATION DOWN THE GULF OF MEXICO-O! OH YEAH!….I’m bone dry, dry as a bone, Dr. saw bones…Why you talkin’ to him, he’s such a bonehead! Chilled to the bone, ya bone yard…HA! Funny bones…WHOO WHEE! I am on a ROLE! You gettin’ this?

(from a distance) “NO.”

“No, really, this is good…He could really wail on da ‘bone! I gotta bone to pick with you because I gotta bone of contention after workin’ my fingers to the bone all day. And what’a I got to show for it? Bare bones! That’s what! Hoo, man! I really crack myself up.”

I gently closed the door to my bedroom, sat on the bed with a book, a tall iced drink, my laptop and the fan on full blast, and let “DJ Muse-ician” go on entertaining him/herself and the cat.

[The Blog Propellant: dem bones]