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Feedback Fun #3: Miss Maud and the Three Bears

For 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 Miss Maud and the Three Bears, from my collection Creature Discomforts.

Miss Maud McKay often said that she was as though as cougar manure and twice as nasty. Miss Maud spoke the truth in colorful, pithy phrases guaranteed to stick in the mind.

Miss Maud was born nasty, but she had learned her toughness the hard way. She was born nearly a hundred years ago, and had lived since then in a small logging town nestled high in the Cascade mountains of Washington state. Miss Maud was a logger, and owned her own logging company for exactly fifty years. Even after she sold the business, in 1980, she kept in shape by cutting down a tree now and then, just to prove that she could still do it.

So what do you think? Are you curious about this nasty old lady? Do you wonder how bears will appear in the story? Are there enough details about Miss Maud for you to have an image of her in your mind? 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 Miss Maud, the eBbook Creature Discomforts is available on Amazon here.

Milk

HistoriansToday my haiku is from January 13th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Historians, Storytellers, and Other Guardians of Truth, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: Milk

in the long ago
women with enormous breasts
fed the earth with milk

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 #2: Plenty of Time

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 Plenty of Time, from my collection Adult Distractions.

He dropped her off at the airport ten minutes before her plane was supposed to leave.  His BMW glided to a smooth stop in the departure zone, finding a space with no difficulty among the frantic comings and goings. A fly was trapped in the car and buzzed against the windshield. She had been watching it during the entire drive to the airport.  “Late, late, late,” buzzed in her head in harmony with the fly.

“Plenty of time,” he said, grinning at her, not noticing the anxious wrinkles in her forehead. His grin was directed at her but his eyes were on the rear view mirror, watching for a break in the traffic. His fingers tapped the steering wheel in a whispery beat. She leaned toward him to kiss his cheek. “Hurry, Hurry,” droned in her head, and another thought, innocent and sweet, rose in her mind: “I’ll miss the plane.  I’ll have to stay.”

So what do you think? Do you have a sense of who these two people are, and what their relationship is like? Do you wonder what the source of her anxiety is? Do you think she’s going to miss her plane or not? Do you want to find out? 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 this couple, the eBook Adult Distractions is available on Amazon here.

Fossils

HistoriansToday my haiku is from January 6th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Historians, Storytellers, and Other Guardians of Truth, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: Fossils

the old days aren’t gone
fossils still send messages
if you’ve learned to read

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.   http://bit.ly/HaikuHistorians

THE Best Dog Ever

Alex Terrgi hzipperere. I like to cuddle with my human. She is soft and warm and good-smelling. Most of all, she is mine. I’m pretty sure she feels the same way about me. She tells me how much she loves me all the time. One of the things she says a lot is, “Alex, you are one of the best dogs of all time.” This is nice to hear, but sometimes she feels it necessary to add, “You are in the top three, Alex. You, and Goody, and Zipper are the best three dogs the world has ever seen.”

Hmm. I sort of understand about my fur-sister Goody, who died a few years ago. Goody was a great dog, no doubt about it. Best smeller I ever met. So I guess I can share the honor of Best Dog Ever with Goody.

But this Zipper dude, I don’t know. I never met him. He was my human’s dog when she was a little girl, from when she was 5 until she was 13. She told me all about him. He was a wiener dog. You know, short legs, long body, floppy ears. She has written lots of nice stuff about him and about how much she loved him. She even has a picture of Zipper in a frame on her writing desk.

But here’s the deal – this was a Very Long Time Ago. Zipper is dead. There is no way I can win Best Dog Ever when I have to compete with beautiful memories of a dead wiener dog.

I’m here NOW!

Feedback Fun #1: The Sandwich

ChildishDiscoveriesCover1I’m starting a new offering for my blog readers today. I will be sharing bits of my work, both complete/published, and new stuff I’m writing now. For this January, every Monday I’ll share the opening paragraphs of some short stories, all of them available as eBooks on Amazon. In February I’ll share bits of my unedited current work. In March, who knows?

And I’m asking for 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 The Sandwich, from my short story collection Childish Discoveries.

When Andy sulked he made a good job of it. Sulking was one of the things he did best. His pout was truly magnificent; his lips were full and pinky-red, the lips of a sensuous woman placed incongruously in the face of a seven-year-old boy. His full-blown pout thrust his lower lip out so far that it made his facial muscles ache and his older brother Tommy said his mouth looked exactly like a toilet seat.

So what do you think? Do you have a picture of Andy in your mind? Are you curious about why Andy pouts and sulks? Do you wonder if his older brother is to blame? Do you get a sense of Tommy from what he said about Andy? Do you wonder why the story’s title is The Sandwich?

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 Andy, the eBook Childish Discoveries is available on Amazon here.

Shadows

SpiritualToday my haiku is from December 30th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Spiritual Seekers, Dreamers, and Other Lovers of Magic and Mystery, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: “Shadows”

watching the shadows
something is alive in there
hoping to stay dark

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.

Light

SpiritualToday my haiku is from December 23rd of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Spiritual Seekers, Dreamers, and Other Lovers of Magic and Mystery, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: “Light”

the season of Light
here in the midst of Darkness
do not be afraid

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.

Trust

SpiritualToday my haiku is from December 16th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Spiritual Seekers, Dreamers, and Other Lovers of Magic and Mystery, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: “Trust”

cries from the cold dark
babies and the old must trust
somebody will come

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.

Mud

SpiritualToday my haiku is from December 9th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Spiritual Seekers, Dreamers, and Other Lovers of Magic and Mystery, one of a 7-book series. The topic for today is: “Mud”

when you fly away
remember us back on earth
still stuck in the mud

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.