Writing 365

Warning – May Emit High Levels of Random

Archive for the month “December, 2016”

Writing 365 – Missing Half

I have been absent, but I’m back! My next prompt: “Write a mystery.”44583444 - detective adjusting his hat standing in the dark, film noir

Missing Half

Half of Red lay there, cold and inanimate. Detective Ankle knew that Red would never move again unless his other half was found. It had to be found, stat, or it still wouldn’t matter. They’d be too mismatched to be of any use.

Detective Ankle started his investigation as soon as he could, following Red’s steps from the time he was whole to the moment he was split. It was the same story as all the others – a string of disappearances and subsequent murders spanning all the way back to when the detective had first moved in at 239 N. Caraway Ct.

The basket they all rode in was clean – no second half of Red detectable amongst everyone else. Detective Ankle had done a lot of pushing and shoving, asked a lot of questions, but no one had seen Red’s other half. They all tried to convince him to settle back – told him Red was just gone. Detective Ankle wasn’t having it.

Next, he checked the bathhouse. It was sudsy and warm, but Detective Ankle suspected foul play beneath those calm waters. He dived down deep into the bath, eyes peeled for a flash of red anywhere. Nothing.

Finally, Detective Ankle checked the last place he wanted to look. That hot, steaming, confusing room where so many of his friends had gone missing. He asked around as he tumbled, telling his friends to stay on the look out for Red’s other half. They all plead ignorance. He covered every inch of the room, steeling himself to look in every crevice, anywhere Red could have been torn in twain. It was like Red’s mate had just… vanished.

Detective Ankle finally returned home, ready to mourn his friend like all the others. But Red wasn’t there. He’d been removed, taken to the place they were all dumped in eventually. If Detective Ankle had tear ducts, he would have cried. If he had a voice, he would have screamed. Instead, he just clutched his other half and waited with all the other socks in the drawer, hoping no one else would go missing but knowing deep down – someone would.

End

I hope you enjoyed it! See you tomorrow!

 

Advertisements

Writing 365 – Leftovers

I am going to try to make most of these stories into drabbles, which means they will be around 100 words. I don’t know if that’ll make them easier or harder, but I guess we’ll see!

Today’s prompt comes from my friend Arlette H. She gave me the word “Saucy” to go with. I know she probably meant the traditional meanings of the word, but my mind immediately goes to food. So… that’s where I’m taking this prompt.

Leftovers

Roasted garlic and tomatoes, red onion, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper pulse in the food processor with a spicy red wine. Everything is poured into a pot and simmers for thirty minutes, stirred occasionally. Once cooked, a bowl of sauce is set aside.

They eat the spaghetti al dente, each noodle perfectly coated in flavor. After dinner, the leftover sauce is placed on a small side table beside a loaf of ciabatta bread, mozzarella cheese, and the leftover wine. The family goes to bed, hoping the house Brownie doesn’t get too tipsy while cleaning up the dinner dishes.

End

I just love the idea of a super classy, Italian Brownie getting an incredible meal for making the house look lovely after a messy dinner. Le sigh. I miss Italy.

See you tomorrow!

Writing 365 -Purge Night Pizza Delivery

I found this fun writing prompt on a Reddit page:

“On Purge Night part time employees get paid 50 times the hourly rate. You are a pizza delivery guy looking to make big bucks.”

PS: I haven’t actually seen The Purge, but I’ve seen previews and I think I get the gist.

Purge Night Pizza Delivery

One night a year, I load up on armor and guns. I head out on the streets. I feed the hungry. And my pay increases by 50 times.

We get our orders from the boss. He expects us to come up with our own modes of transportation and defense. He only provides the pizza.

Tonight is such a night. It’s Purge night. I head out on my first delivery. It’s twenty blocks away. I put the pizza in its armored bag, strap the bag firmly to the back of my bike and head out.

My motorcycle has been turned into a mini convertible. It is armored on all four sides, bullet proof glass shielding my face as the wind sweeps over me. The puncture-proof tires grip the road, allowing me to turn on a dime. I’m ready to deliver.

The route is relatively quiet, which makes me suspicious. I find out why when I get to the house. Spike strips are set at 1-yard intervals down the entire block. People are going hand-to-hand, facing off in an uncontrolled melee. The house I want is half way up the block. It’s time to get in on the action.

I strap the kevlar box containing the hot pie to my back. I need to get this delivery there within thirty minutes or my fee is cut by half. I check my watch. Only fifteen minutes until time is up. I eye the street. I can make it in ten.

I leave my bike on sleep mode. It will only respond to my fingerprint and retinal scan. If someone wants the bike, they’ll have to kill me first and drag my cooling body to the bike – which is always a possibility on Purge night.

The spikes make it impossible to run through the mob, but that doesn’t bother me. I’m wearing fitted armor plating and my bullet proof bike helmet. It’s going to be hard to cut me down.

I launch myself into the crowd, finding gaps and paths between fighters. I know I’m drawing attention, but these pies are prepaid and, as long as the bag signals my boss with a safe delivery in under 30 minutes, I don’t care what happens to the customer.

On a lawn two houses into the block, I find myself faced with my first opponent. He’s a huge man carrying a 9MM pump-action shotgun. I see the gleam in his eye as he begins to raise the weapon, so I step in close before he can get the gun up fully and push him into the hand-to-hand fight going on behind him. Distracted, he disappears in the struggle.

I am not able to dodge my next opponent so handily. She bursts out from the bushes lining the house next door to my target, bearing a cleaver and an ax. She looks like she’s practiced all year for this. I throw up my hands and tell her “I’m just here to deliver the pizza.”

That confuses her for a moment. Her split second hesitation is all I need to bring my blowgun up. I dart her in the neck and she passes out. The toxin lining my darts isn’t poisonous. It just puts my opponent to sleep. I drag her back under the bushes, where she will likely be safe from random violence and gingerly pluck out the dart with my gloved fingers.

At the target house, I follow the instructions given to me by my boss. I find the armored slot and type 5193 into the keypad. The slot opens and I pull out the pie.

“Pizza delivery!” I call as I slide the box through. I re-sling my pizza box and type in my code to tell my boss the delivery is completed five minutes early. My phone buzzes and I see the money transfer for only 30 minutes of work. The client apparently left a hefty tip. Some people will do anything for a large meat lover’s.

The End

That one went a little long, but I really enjoyed writing it. See you tomorrow for another short!

Writing 365 – Election

I, like everyone else in America, got pretty into the election all throughout 2016. Recent info on fake news sites, foreign influencers, and more has gotten me thinking about how this year’s election was different from the 2012 and 2008 elections. I have only voted in four elections, so I don’t have as much experience as others may have. But I do have a checklist I go through each election – one which I have had to modify for the 2016 election. I thought I’d write it down and see where that takes me.

Original Election Checklist

1. Treat the candidate like you are hiring him/her for a job.

2. Review the candidate’s history. Does he/she keep promises – is he/she an effective politician?

3. Find out who is supporting/funding the candidate. Do you agree with their policies and statements?

4. Make a list of three issues that you care about deeply (mine: human rights, war, global warming). Does the candidate share your stance? Can you live with his/her differences of opinion?

5. Are they any good at politicking? (Debates, rubbing elbows, personality, etc.).

Election Checklist: A Story

1. Treat the candidate like you are hiring him/her for a job.

She walked into her brightly lit office, a mug of coffee in hand. Sitting in her ergonomic chair, she sighed. It was going to be a long week of looking through candidate resumes, trying to find the perfect person for president.

Scrolling through emails, she read cover letters from hopefuls. Some were unique, but many were obviously from a template with information ripped off from the appropriate party’s website.

“I can’t stand these copycats. I want someone unique, someone who seems to do what they say, but who isn’t obviously funded by huge conglomerates. Someone who doesn’t seem to sacrifice his or her principles.”

Out of the thousands of emails sent, she picked one hundred potentials to pass on. Once vetted through her, these potential candidates would have their social media presence scrutinized, their backgrounds checked, and their secrets uncovered. It was going to be a long year.

2. Review the candidate’s history. Does he/she keep promises – is he/she an effective politician?

The vetter came into her office and slammed the folder on her desk, tipping over her coffee and sloshing it into her keyboard. He ignored the mess.

“These candidates are ridiculous!” he yelled. “One has the social media presence of a 9-year-old while the other appears to be just learning what the internet is. One has no history of campaigning, so we have no idea if promises will be kept or not. What am I supposed to do with this mess?”

She glared at him.

“I can only work with what I’ve been given. You do your job, and I’ll do mine.”

“I don’t know how any of these people will appeal to voters.”

“That’s not your job. Just vet them and send them along. The spinners will work out the right cover story for the right candidate.”

He let out a growl, but grabbed his file and stomped out of her office. She stared at her keyboard. What a damn mess.

3. Find out who is supporting/funding the candidate. Do you agree with their policies and statements?

Leaving her office for the day, she carefully removed her company id and replaced it with the company name on the building where she worked. The huge conglomerate fell under many names, holding many shell companies so as to avoid monopoly lawsuits. She was looking forward to a hot bath and a glass of wine when her boss stopped her in the hallway.

“Nice work on candidate selection.”

“Thank you, sir.”

“You’re driving the vetters and spinners crazy, but I want you to know I think you did a great job. Do you know who you’re going to root for in the office pool?”

“I have a couple of ideas on who I think will get to the finals, but I’m going to hold out until they get through the vetters.”

“Good call,” he said. “Well, have a great night!”

4. Make a list of three issues that you care about deeply (mine: human rights, war, global warming). Does the candidate share your stance? Can you live with his/her differences of opinion?

The final conference was always nerve wracking. She had bet $30 on the two candidates she thought most likely to get through the finals, but when entering the conference room, she wavered. Maybe it was going to be the long-term politicians or perhaps the youngest in the group. After all, the Committee liked to work with those who they had not yet sucked dry.

She seated herself in the chair farthest down the conference room table from the old men ringed in cigar smoke. They lounged comfortably at their end, protected by bulletproof glass.

When everyone sat and snifters of brandy were filled on the other side of the glass, the conference began.

“We have made our final decision,” said the eldest man, chewing at the end of his cigar. His face was softened by smoke, but she always imagined deep, wrinkled clefts covering his face, making his skin sag.

Another of the men, the one in the dark gray suit, spoke next.

“We have decided that, for the good of the company, we will go with the candidate that will free up our ability to mine the last of the natural resources. Our pet scientists tell us that, as long as other countries continue to reduce emissions, we can afford to splurge a little and plumb the depths of our shale oil fields. We will have to work fast. We don’t think putting business interests in front of human interests so obviously will work for very long.”

One of the men from management on her side of the glass began typing frantically, sending messages to all of the conglomerate’s companies.

The man in the dark gray suit continued, “We will need our spinners to make up news, to falsify claims, and to work with out of country allies to pull this off without a hitch.”

The Lead Spinner nodded and scribbled frantically on her notepad. She didn’t trust computers, no matter how secure a line was.

5. Are they any good at politicking? (Debates, rubbing elbows, personality, etc.)

One of her candidates won the election. She earned $50 from the office pool and clinked champagne glasses with her officemates. The celebration was shortlived, however. She had work to do, combing the files for all of the other candidates in other key positions – and of course she couldn’t start early enough on the next set of finals.

“Four years can simply fly by,” she thought.

End

That’s about it! See you tomorrow!

Writing 365 – Snow

We don’t get a lot of snow here in Portland, Oregon, so the fact that it’s snowing right now is a huge deal. Today, I’m going to write a little vignette about taking my dog out in the snow.

Snow

Quiet feet pad across the crystalline white. My dog’s furry body is just right for this kind of weather. I am bundled up with a long sleeve shirt, sweater, scarf, hat, big jacket, and gloves – and I’m still cold. I wish I was wearing long johns.

The world has remade itself for my dog. His tail wags as he snuffles through the gleaming flakes, finding the smells dampened and buried. I forgot my phone, so I’m just listening to the world around me. The wind whistles across the creek, whipping flakes from the trees. Soon, this snow will turn to icy rain.

Clouds above me are tinged blue and gray with the early decline of the winter sun. A crow caws and for a second there is nothing else in the world but the snow, my dog, the endless sky, and me.

That’s about it! I’m excited because not only is it a snowy day, but it’s my bday! I hope everyone else is having a fabulous afternoon.

See you tomorrow!

Writing 365 – Day 7

I didn’t end up writing yesterday, which was a bummer, but I’m back on track today. Today’s story was suggested by my Facebook friend, Eva G. Here’s the prompt:

“THE ROADS ARE ICY!” he screamed from his rocking chair at the hospital window. Outside it was a balmy 89 degrees.

Since I woke up today to a world covered in frost, this one seemed particularly appropriate.

Skidding

I

“THE ROADS ARE ICY!” the old man screamed. He swayed back and forth in his rocking chair, staring out the condensation-covered window into a world of snow and ice. He could picture children sledding down the small hill outside of the hospital, slipping and sliding through the snow. He could almost see the car skid across the road and into the hill – narrowly missing a sledder.

“Mr. Aldridge, please,” said a female voice from behind him. He craned his head back and saw Marie, his young Polynesian nurse, at the doorway.

“That man needs to look out!” he told her.

“Let me help you to your bed,” said Marie, sighing. In spite of herself, her eyes slid to the window. Nothing was going on outside, as usual. Just the huge hospital parking lot stretching out to the road, where traffic flowed smoothly in the warm sunlight. She’d checked the weather before she left for work that morning and she remembered that at 11 am- now – the highs were 89 degrees.

Mr. Aldridge grabbed both handles of his walker. He could smell the snow now, that fresh, frozen scent. His eyebrows furrowed. “Someone should tell those kids to be careful, or they’ll sled right into traffic.”

Marie sighed and guided him to his bed.

II

Mr. Aldridge woke to a darkened room. He looked at his watch. It was only 1 PM, but the snow piling along his windowsill was blocking out most of the sunlight. He struggled for a moment, thrashing around in his sheets until he became untangled.

“Those youngsters out there better be careful,” he thought. Indoors was toasty and warm, but he could feel the cold air coating the window and trickling over to his bed. He pressed the buzzer for Marie.

“Yes, Mr. Aldridge, what….” Marie stopped midsentence and stared at the window. She took a step back, her hand to her mouth.

“Do you think you could rustle up some extra blankets, Marie, and maybe a hot cocoa?” asked Mr. Aldridge, still looking at the snow covered window.

The nurse straightened her spine. There was no way she was seeing what she thought she was seeing. It was September in Los Angles, hardly a chilly season even during an El Nino. This year had been exceptionally hot, not just in L.A., but in the entire world. There was no way on god’s green earth that snow was piling up on that window. She stepped back into the room and forced her legs to keep moving.

As Marie got closer to the window, she felt the cold pouring off of the glass and smelled a crisp, frozen scent. She touched the freezing window, rubbing the condensation off the glass and peering through. Across the parking lot and the road was a small hill covered in children and their sleds. She saw a little boy sledding down the hill toward the busy road. A car wavered and skidded out of control, heading for the hill. She put her hands on the glass and screamed a warning to the man on a collision course, “THE ROADS ARE ICY!”

END

Thanks to Eva G. for the great prompt! I’ll see you all again tomorrow.

© 2016-2017 JULIA SHAW, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Writing 365 – A Haiku

I am a little pressed for time and feeling a tad uninspired today. BUT, I did do some baking yesterday, so I thought I’d write a little haiku about that.

Homemade Hot Pocket

Pastry stuffed with eggs

and cheese turned out great last week.

This week, not so much.

End

As you can tell, some weeks are better than others. I think the pastries will still taste pretty great, but they don’t look pretty.

Anyway, see ya tomorrow!

Writing 365 – Day Four

Today I’m not writing off a prompt. I’m exploring an idea I had years ago – back when I lived in L.A. I actually had this idea jangling around in my head, and then I read a book by (I think) Robin Cook and I got really excited that other authors had thoughts along the same lines.

I did list this idea rather vaguely as a prompt here: “A pill that is supposed to cure something causes something terrible instead.”

Because my original idea was that this could, one day, turn into a novel, I am going to try to write just one scene of it – the scene I initially envisioned. I don’t yet have the rest of my ideas in place, but I think that I or someone inspired by this could create something amazing from this vignette.

The Perfect Pill

I

The day everything changed seemed like any other. It was mid-January, chilly as only a Los  Angeles winter can be. At exactly 5 PM, Alice locked the doors to her office and headed to her car. The sun was rapidly sinking, cloaking Bruno Realty’s parking lot in shadow. Alice’s Prius was the only car in the lot, parked close to her building. She always felt creeped out on nights like this, when she was the last person in the complex. Another real estate agent had told her that one night when she was working late, two large men tried to get into the building through the back door. Since then, Alice made sure her keychain pepper spray was in her hand before she headed out.

Despite the worry clutching at her stomach, Alice made it to her car safely, clicking the locks open and hopping into the driver’s seat.

“I probably shouldn’t be so paranoid,” she thought as she locked the car doors behind her.

Alice drove through the dark, above ground lot, wishing for the thousandth time that it was lit by more than two street lamps. She turned on her brights to compensate for the poor lighting, and that’s when she saw the man, standing in the middle of the driveway.

“Jesus!” she shouted. She eased around the man, who didn’t appear to see her. He was staring straight down the sidewalk. Alice turned on her indicator light and peered in the direction the man was staring. Nothing. She thought about rolling down her window and asking if he was okay, but she didn’t. Who knows who this guy was; if he was harmless or if he was a murderous psychopath. She turned out of her lot.

The traffic on Foothill Blvd was usually bumper to bumper, but that night it was light and easy flowing. The change made Alice’s hands relax on the wheel, and the tension drain out of her neck and shoulders. Sitting at a light, she glanced over to the cars parked on the side of the road. Drivers sat, still as mannequins, in the two she could see next to her. She craned her head back, trying to peer into the windows of the other parked cars lining the street, but she could only see shadows.

The light changed, and Alice turned right, her hands once again clutching the steering wheel. She tried not to look at the parked cars she was passing, but couldn’t help seeing the still shadows sitting behind the wheel of each one.

Alice made it onto the freeway onramp, sighing with relief as she navigated down the steep decline onto the 210 freeway. She almost slammed on the brakes when she saw him. A man, standing on the grassy embankment at the end of the merge lane. He seemed to be wobbling between the safety of the turf and the oncoming traffic. Alice whizzed by him, her eyes facing forward. She hit her Bluetooth call button when she heard the slam and screech behind her.

“Siri, call 911,” Alice said.

“Calling 911.”

The phone rang three times, and then the world around her exploded in insanity.

Alice’s breath came in short gasps, her foot slammed down on the gas as cars around her weaved in and out of traffic, several smashing into each other. She whipped the wheel left, and then right, her car careening across lanes and around wrecks happening in real-time.

“What the fuck!” she shouted as a lifted pickup truck with wheels as big as her car came within a centimeter of obliterating her Prius against the center lane divider.

“911, what is your emergency?” asked the voice at the end of the line.

“I’m on the 210 East, and it’s insane! I think I’ve seen about fifteen accidents in the last, I don’t know, minute and a half. We need CHP, we need I don’t know, the military or something.”

The 911 operator started laughing.

“What the hell is going on?” yelled Alice.

“Doesn’t it feel,” the woman paused to let out another whoop of laughter, “exhilarating?”

“What are you talking about?” Alice tasted bile in the back of her throat. She didn’t have time to throw up, she’d be killed by the chaos going on around her.

The woman didn’t answer. She just laughed until her voice ran raw. Alice didn’t have a free hand the end the call, so all she could do was listen as the woman croaked out laughs. She was helpless to do anything when the laughter died, and the banging started, hollow thumps that sounded like a head smashing into something. A wet, gurgling laugh accompanied each thud. Alice wanted to scream. She wanted to cry. Instead, she kept her white-knuckled grip on the steering wheel and rammed her car through the maze of vehicles crisscrossing the freeway.

II

Alice wasn’t sure how she made it home, but she did. There were so many accidents blocking the freeway exit that she’d had to drive on the embankment. Something had lodged in the Prius’s undercarriage, creating a constant grinding noise. But at least she had been able to turn off her phone before navigating down the dark side streets to her little duplex.

Generally, she was supposed to leave the spots in front of her building free for guests or in case of emergency, but that wasn’t going to happen tonight. She parked right in front of her gate, wishing she could drive over the chainlink fencing that surrounded her postage-stamp-sized yard.

Instead, Alice unlocked her driver’s side door and bolted out of the car. Fumbling with her keys, she made it to the fence without incident. Her hands shook as she tried to stick her key into the lock at the gate. Instead of getting the right key into the lock, she scratched the key across the gate, almost dropping it. She clutched her right wrist with her left hand and rammed the key into the hole, twisting it and opening the door in the same motion. She slammed the gate behind her. Hearing the automatic lock click home, she slumped down against the fence into the cold, damp grass.

“What is going on?” she asked herself. She shook her head, trying to clear it. “What the hell is happening?”

“I’ll tell you what’s happening,” said a voice on the other side of the gate. “If you’ll let me in.”

Alice turned to see a face peering through the chain link. The woman on the other side was short, her head pressing into the fence, wide eyes staring down at Alice. Her hands came up and clawed at the gate, her fingers pushing through and yanking at the metal.

“Let me in, and I’ll show you how to be happy like the rest of us.”

One hand loosened its hold on the fencing and Alice scooted away from the woman, her throat locking around a scream. The woman threw something. It hit the grass next to Alice, who shrunk away from it.

“Don’t worry, it won’t hurt you. It’ll make you feel goooooood.” The woman’s voice slurred, her smile growing impossibly wide.

Alice grabbed the pill bottle, shaking it and trying to see the label in the dark.

“Thake one,” said the woman, the left side of her face drooping. She looked like a comedy/tragedy mask all on one head.

Alice ran to her front door. She found her keys and scrabbled at the lock. The woman behind her called “Leth me unn,” and began bashing the gate. Alice got her key in the lock, turned it and bolted inside, securing the door behind her. She put on the chain lock just in case, then went to each window in her darkened home, checking to make sure they were all latched securely. She did not turn on the lights.

III

Once the banging at her fence died down, Alice took a chance. She had no rooms in her house that didn’t face an exterior wall, nothing that didn’t have a window where light could leak out. So, she turned on the oven light in the kitchen. There was one window in the kitchen, and it looked out on a wall of tightly packed cypress trees. Behind the trees was another fence, and beyond that was the recess area of the school next door. She was fairly sure no one would be back there since the school entrance was on a different block entirely.

Alice sat on the floor in front of the oven, facing away from the window. That way, if anyone did get past the fence and trees, they wouldn’t see her. She looked at the bottle the woman had given her. According to the label, it was a bottle of Citavenlafaxine and you were supposed to take it once daily.

She pulled out her phone and looked up the drug. The first article was from the FDA:

“FDA approves new antidepressant/anti-anxiety medication with minimal side effects.”

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved new two-in-one antidepressant/anti-anxiety medication Citavenlafaxine. Almost 7% of the US population suffers depression while 18% suffers from anxiety disorders, with nearly 50% of those suffering from depression also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. New Citavenlafaxine has been proven to help those suffering from depression, anxiety, and those suffering from both depression and anxiety.

“We are happy to give the public a new option in their mental health care,” said Alexandra Gronich, CEO of Pharma Inc. “In our testing, we have found that Citavenlafaxine has no-to-minimal side effects, giving doctors a once in a lifetime chance to provide their patients with pure, unadulterated, alleviation of suffering.”

The article went on, but Alice got the idea. Why would that crazy lady throw the bottle at her? And if this drug was causing all the chaos, how did it have “minimal” side effects? Alice’s head was spinning.

She opened her browser again and started searching. She looked up traffic accidents with no real results, she scoured the LA news, there was no mention of what she’d driven through to get home. For a moment, she wondered if she was insane. She wondered if she’d hallucinated everything. But there was the bottle in her hand, as real as could be.

End

That’s the end of the scene I have in my head. I would be happy to hear your thoughts about the story and where it could go from here. I am working on a novel at the moment, so little dribs and drabs like this is what I am going to give you until I’m done with final edits (I know I’ve said I’m done with edits before, but my writer’s group gave me more to work on).

See you tomorrow!

 

 

Writing 365 -Flash Fiction

Hemmingway once wrote the “shortest novel ever.” It goes “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” This is the most extreme piece of flash fiction I’ve ever seen, but I love the brevity of this type of story, so I wanted to challenge myself today and write an ultra short story – in 100 words.

The topic: An astrologer waltzes with the sun inside a marble city. I got this one off of Twitter, courtesy of Magical Realism Bot.

Dawn 

Predawn light is the only illumination in the shivery chamber. The King, his astrologer, and twenty of his closest advisors listen as the screams of the Queen echo through the castle, waiting for the first wails of an heir. The newborn howls just as the sun flashes into the room, dancing off each vein in the marble. The astrologer exults, waltzing with the effervescent sun. This child will usher in the age of plenty and, though the old man knows he will not see this dream unfold, he is ebullient. His spirit capers with the sun one last time before a cloud snuffs the light.

End

Okay, this is 105 words. Pretty close though, right? I hope you enjoyed this piece of flash fiction. See you tomorrow!

© 2016-2017 JULIA SHAW, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

PS: The photo used was found on Flickr at the profile of Photo courtesy of Aurelien Villette. This photo is not owned by me and should only be attributed to Mr. Villette, who does amazing work.

 

Writing 365 – Writing Prompt “Serenity”

I was taking a walk in my backyard yesterday and that inspired me to write this short vignette of serenity. Thanks to my Facebook friend Farrel L. for this prompt.

Creekside

Steam plumes into the frosty air as I blow across my coffee. The morning is crisp, finally feeling like fall, even though it’s now the cusp of winter. Only a few soggy leaves clutch the gray-barked trees lining the creek.

I set up a folding camp chair on my weathered porch, enjoying the song of the rushing creek. In the summer, the water goes down to a trickle, but recent rains have whipped the steel colored waters into a torrent.

The world smells crisp and damp. An undercurrent of loamy soil, rain, and duck dung seep into my nose. Only a couple of yards away, ducks stand by the creek, some quacking and foraging, others content to stand perfectly still, like duck statues. The stillness won’t last long. Once they see me, they will babble themselves into an uproar before heading my direction, hoping for a handout. But for now, the ducks are happy to sit or scrounge in the rain-heavy grass.

The cold seeps into my skin, and I know I will go indoors soon. But for now, I will cup my hot mug, sip my coffee, and listen to the creek as it shushes its way over rocks and roots, waiting for the ducks to come.

End

Thanks for reading! I look forward to writing another story, vignette, or poem for you tomorrow.

© 2016-2017 JULIA SHAW, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Post Navigation

Shaw Marketing

Sharing Your Business with the World

Sharon Rawlette

Memoirist. Essayist. Philosopher.

Interesting Literature

A Library of Literary Interestingness

Ray Ferrer - Emotion on Canvas

** OFFICIAL Site of Artist Ray Ferrer **

My Blog

Warning - May Emit High Levels of Random

Manifest Photo Blog

Photography And Evidence-Based Art Information By Peter C. Blanchard

NERDSTEAK

Food and Culture Shenanigans

The Bully Pulpit

(n): An office or position that provides its occupant with an outstanding opportunity to speak out on any issue.

Kev's Great Indie Authors

Supporting Indie Authors Worldwide

The Bewildered 20-Something Writer

The ramblings of a 20-something writer fresh out of graduate school as she ventures out of the classroom and into the real world.