Halloween Treats

220px-Friendly_pumpkinAll that’s left of Halloween here in North America is to clean up the smashed pumpkins and tuck away the leftover candy before you can eat it all. I wanted to share one of my submissions to JD Mader’s Two-minute Flash Fiction. A little treat that won’t send you to the dentist. Happy November! Continue reading

Thump: Flash Fiction Hangover

Cardinal_2The Flash Fiction Friday Fandango and Fiesta Bake-off on JD Mader’s website keeps getting better and better. More writers join; more magic happens. If you want to read a bunch of great instant flash (just add phosphorus), check out what everyone wrote this week. My three two-minute pieces, some a little longer than two minutes, are here. Note: no small red birds were harmed in the writing of these stories.

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Flash Dance Fiction

iStock_000006569517XSmallThe Friday Flash Fiction Happy Hour at JD Mader’s website is just getting happier…well, when it’s not being check-under-the-bed creepy. So many amazing stories, so much creativity in once place I swear I saw the Internet dip down in one corner. Here are a few of my pieces, inspired by changing seasons and changing lives. Maybe next week you’ll join us for some two-minute freewriting fun.

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Flash-Fried Fiction

IMG_2749LeavesWe didn’t didn’t completely break JD Mader’s blog this week, but we did succeed at bending it at an uncomfortable angle. Maybe next time. Here are four of my entries. It’s good to stretch a little. Even if the end result doesn’t turn out the way you intended. As usual, only lightly edited for your protection.

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The prime directive cannot be disobeyed. I must not interfere. Even though the tiny creature feeds golden thread with pinprick feet toward the twitching whiskers and tail, it is not in my purview to stop it. I can distract for only so long with ear scratches and gentle murmurs, but the instinct must be honored, the shiny object glittering in the sun as it spins toward oblivion must be hunted. Physics does its work; gravity and tensile strength meet the swipe of a claw, shredding hours of labor. Pinprick feet scurry away; the work must be recreated, the silk spooled out, the dance begun again. Continue reading

Flash (back) Fiction

Typewriter - Once upon a timeAck! Almost forgot to post my two-minute bits from JD Mader’s Friday Flash Fiction luau and quilting bee. Definitely run over there and see the awesome-on-a-stick going on from these amazing writers. It’s weird how once we all get going, and the whatever juice starts flowing, that we get stronger. Themes sometimes emerge. Or we riff off each other. Don’t know which. But at 250 comments, we came pretty close to breaking the blog. Maybe next week. I went for four this time. Must have been the coffee. Or the power. Continue reading

A Glance in The Rear-view Mirror

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAdvice is a funny thing. More often it has to do with the person giving it than the person it’s directed toward. I’ve been advised frequently not to look back. That history is in the past, and we are all supposed to move forward. Sharks have to keep swimming or die. Lot’s poor wife chanced a glimpse over her shoulder, and look what happened to her. Salt city. Continue reading

My Favorite Banned Books: The Grapes of Wrath

Banned BooksLike most people trundled through the American public school system, I was coerced into reading a selection of “classical” literature as a teen. Because I didn’t like the way it was taught in my district—all this emphasis on theme and metaphor the author might not even have intended—I didn’t enjoy it all that much, little goody-two-shoes rebel that I’d been. As much as I grumbled when teachers said that the tree at the end of the book meant crucifixion and the way the moon hung in the sky was a symbol of the protagonist’s ennui about his impending marriage, I loved reading. I loved the places a good story took me to and the opportunity to see life through someone else’s eyes. Without someone telling me what it all meant. Only now, some (mumble mumble) decades later, rereading some of those works, am I more deeply appreciating the opportunity I’d been given. Some students have had wonderful books like Moby-Dick, The Catcher in the Rye (banned as late as 2001), Cat’s Cradle, and The Sun Also Rises (also banned, and burned in Nazi bonfires) removed from their libraries and school districts. Some countries do not permit their distribution at all. Continue reading