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Grief

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from February 24th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: Grief

after it’s over
and we’ve said our last goodbyes
grief knocks on our door

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

You can purchase this book on Amazon here.

Feedback Fun: Boxes in the Closet #3

Nels Bruseth0001For the next few months I will be sharing bits of my works-in-progress. This month I’m featuring “The Boxes in the Closet”, a memoir of my parents’ love story set during World War II. The book has four “voices” – first person in my voice in the Introduction and Epilog; a narrative written in third-person; first person in the voice of my father Armond; and first person in the voice of my mother Lois. The “bits” I’m sharing are all opening paragraphs of chapters or sub-heads in chapters.

This is because I want reader feedback. Opening paragraphs are always the most important. Without a good opening, many people won’t read the rest. That’s the question I’d like answered – would you read on?

Here are Chapter Two’s opening paragraph and first paragraph of a first person narrative:

Chapter Two:  In the Shadow of White Horse

Seventy-five miles northeast of Seattle, thirty miles northeast of the small town of Arlington, and about five hundred feet of elevation into the Cascade Mountains, is the even smaller town of Darrington. Nestled amid thousands of acres of dense forest, Darrington is encircled by the unruly Sauk, Suiattle, and Whitechuck rivers, and six thousand feet overhead looms the town’s ever-present snowy guardian, White Horse Mountain. It was, and is, a wild, rough, and beautiful place.

and

Lois: The Postmistress’ Daughter

I guess I was kind of spoiled. In Darrington I was almost like a celebrity, and so were my folks. We knew everyone in town and everyone knew us. It was an idyllic life. I knew times were supposed to be bad, and I knew Mums and Daddy worked hard, but in Darrington you didn’t need much money, and everyone worked hard. I was happy.

Thank you for reading. I’d love to know if you want to read on.

Slobber

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from February 17th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: Slobber

whining is ugly
just suffer on your own time
slobber somewhere else

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

You can purchase this book on Amazon here.

Warm Nose

dog nose, close-up, front view,  29Alex Terrgi here. Yesterday my nose was warm. This makes my human nervous. She kept feeling my nose then shaking her head. Meanwhile all I wanted to do was sleep, and her continual nose-touching was kinda irritating. Even though I knew she meant well.

Today my nose is back to its usual temperature. Thank goodness. If it had stayed warm she might have decided to take me to that horrible awful no-good place called The Vet.

I think sleep is the answer to everything.

Feedback Fun: Boxes in the Closet #2

Retro toned rural railroad tracksFor the next few months I will be sharing bits of my works-in-progress. This month I’m featuring “The Boxes in the Closet”, a memoir of my parents’ love story set during World War II. The book has four “voices” – first person in my voice in the Introduction and Epilog; a narrative written in third-person; first person in the voice of my father Armond; and first person in the voice of my mother Lois. The “bits” I’m sharing are all opening paragraphs of chapters or sub-heads in chapters.

This is because I want reader feedback. Opening paragraphs are always the most important. Without a good opening, many people won’t read the rest. That’s the question I’d like answered – would you read on?

Here are Chapter One’s opening paragraph and first paragraph of a first person narrative:

Chapter One: Going Somewhere

Armond Delos Pearson was a skinny kid of seventeen in 1935, just beginning his growth spurt to his full height, which one day would be almost six foot two. Despite his fancy name, he was from a working class family who’d been dirt poor even before the Depression.

and

Armond: Riding the Rails

It was a day in late spring 1935 that I kissed Mother goodbye and told her I was going off to look for work. I didn’t tell her where I was going to look. She gave me some bread and cheese and a couple of dimes, and didn’t ask.

Thank you for reading. I’d love to know if you want to read on.

Giving Up

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from February 10th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: Giving Up

just because it’s hard
doesn’t mean it can’t be done
you must not give up

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

You can purchase this book on Amazon here.

Feedback Fun: Boxes in the Closet #1

Wedding Day portrait0001For the next few months I will be sharing bits of my works-in-progress. This month I’m featuring “The Boxes in the Closet”, a memoir of my parents’ love story set during World War II. The book has four “voices” – first person in my voice in the Introduction and Epilog; a narrative written in third-person; first person in the voice of my father Armond; and first person in the voice of my mother Lois. The “bits” I’m sharing are all opening paragraphs of chapters or sub-heads in chapters.

This is because I want reader feedback. Opening paragraphs are always the most important. Without a good opening, many people won’t read the rest. That’s the question I’d like answered – would you read on?

Here’s the opening paragraphs of the Introduction, in my voice:

Introduction: The End

After our parents died, Mom first and Dad two years later, my brothers and I cleared out the house they’d lived in for 45 years. Their deaths were not unexpected – Mom was 87 and Dad 94. To die at 94 cannot be called a tragedy. It is a triumph. But it is also an emptiness.

I would not have called my father a sentimental man – he was a realistic hardheaded businessman who liked to discuss (we won’t call it argue) politics, economics, business – you know, topics for “real men.” Yet in his bedroom closet, way in the back, we found scrapbooks of memories and boxes full of his letters to his brothers, nephews, and old army buddies, as well as battered notebooks full of written musings about life, love, romance, babies, art, poetry, nature, religion – what he would have categorized aloud as “mushy.”

Thank you for reading. I’d love to know if you want to read on.

Invention

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from February 3rd of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: Invention

is anything new?
is discovering the same
as an invention?

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

You can purchase this book on Amazon here.

Deliciousness

Cat litter box Alex Terrgi here. My human says everyone’s tastes are different, which makes her sound like she’s easy to get along with. But I know this is not always true.

Take her attitude toward one of my favorite things: cat poop. I love cat poop – its taste, its smell, its shape, its general wonderfulness. So rich, so meaty. It makes me happy to roll in it, lick it, swallow it. In my opinion it’s the best thing about cats.

I have no idea why my human does not approve. So much for tolerance.

Feedback Fun #5: Relief

adult-distractionsFor this January, every Monday here on the blog I’m sharing the opening paragraphs of one of my short stories (available as an eBook on Amazon.) In February I’ll share bits of my unfinished current writing projects. In March, who knows?

I’m asking for reader feedback. Because this month I’m sharing just the opening paragraph or paragraphs of short stories, you might wonder how to give feedback on such a small sample. But the opening paragraphs are always the most important. Without a good opening, many people won’t read the rest.

Here is the first paragraph in my short story Relief, from my collection Adult Distractions.

“Oh Stanley!” said Stanley Jeffries in pretended irritation.  His voice rose in a mincing falsetto, a poor but satisfying imitation of Margie’s clipped, sniffy tones.  He smiled.  He was alone in the darkened living room, facing a screen illuminated by the slide projector standing by his side.  Margie’s captured likeness stared down at him from the screen.  Stanley slouched deeper into his armchair and placed his hands on his hips in mock disgust.  He tossed his head, just as Margie had when confronted with a vulgarity.

So what do you think? Do you have an image of Stanley or Margie in your mind? Do you identify with Stanley? What do you think will happen next? Will Margie come in the room? And of course, the most important question of all: do you want to read the rest of the story?

If you want to find out more about Stanley and Margie, the eBook Adult Distractions is available on Amazon here.