Tuesday, April 18, 2017

When Love Meets, Write, Edit, Publish, blog hop.

Time once more for my favorite blog hop. Write, Edit, Publish, was founded by my friend, the awesome Aussie, Denise Covey. Joining her as moderator is Yolanda Renee, also awesome. To read other stories in this hop go here.

This challenged included a poem. Being inspired by the poem, I added two lines which have a * symbol before the quote. The poem is below my story.

For those who are new to my blog, I’ve been compared with Tolkien in writing style. A great honor since he is my favorite writer. If you haven’t yet purchased my epic fantasy you can do so. The title is, The Treasures of Carmelidrium. You will find it on my sidebar. Just 99 cents. At some point this year it will have a new book cover and the price will go up to $2.99.


When Love Meets

They fell together, distilled in time, transformed beyond love and hate. *Pleasure and Pain swear friendship leal and true.
            Grace lifted her arms above her head, her fingers met in an arch, heavenward. Tears, ran silent along her cheeks. On tiptoe she thrust upward, her faerie wings took flight. Beneath on the lily pad rested Storm, his wings tattered and grey. Their compassion strained beyond endurance, as *the vulture may be comrade to the dove.
            Grace called upon her healing powers. Twirling, her feathered skirt flew out, a kaleidoscope of colors. Magic shifted. Grace danced upon the air stream, casting her sparks overhead. The faerie dust floated downward, landing as soft whispers on Storm. He raised smoky gray eyes and met her crystal blue gaze.
            Anger rushed out of him. Striking the pond with flashes of thunder. Frogs leapt into the water, birds took flight, while Storm still stared skyward.
            Grace ignored his bad temper. She had empathy enough. Stored up. Measured strong. She held her love close. Gazing down, she saw her healing powers restore Storm’s ragged wings. Strong once more, his wings changed color to midnight blue. He launched himself from the lily pad and met her in flight.
She raised her voice in song.  “Born of God, my bitter foe. Take heed to measure your wild hostility. Peace with love will smooth your cares, until all is sweet, within your heart.”
Storm’s answer was heavy with his deep voice. “Grace. You who are named for all that is good fail to see evil. As bats beat their wings in rapid progression, the world will overtake you and whither your passion.” He flew close and plucked a tear, now turned into a crystal, from her cheek.
Grace smiled, fluttered close and pressed a kiss on his cheek. “Would that you could embrace the sunlight.”
“Shadows obscure its rays.”
She flew in a circle around him. “After the rain, the darkness will vanish. It is then that the rainbow appears.”
“Then we must live in the colors, and vanish when they fade.” Storm’s face softened and his regard turned thoughtful.
“Let it be so.” Grace smiled.
“We will make our home in a bilious cloud.” Storm took up the dance with Grace. His wings dripped cobalt blue while Grace shed white ivory.
“Nay, a grass bungalow beneath the evergreen on top of yonder knoll.”
“Sunlight doesn’t reach below the sturdy branches of the pine.” Storm allowed Grace’s fingers to entwine his own. She laughed then and the sound was like a whispered song through the breeze.

Word Count: 430

PEACE AND LOVE
There are two angels, messengers of light,
    Both born of God, who yet are bitterest foes.
    No human breast their dual presence knows.
As violently opposed as wrong and right,
When one draws near, the other takes swift flight,
    And when one enters, thence the other goes.
    Till mortal life in the immortal flows,
So must these two avoid each other's sight.
Despair and hope may meet within one heart,
The vulture may be comrade to the dove!
Pleasure and Pain swear friendship leal and true:
But till the grave unites them, still apart
Must dwell these angels known as Peace and Love,
For only Death can reconcile the two.

Poetical works of Ella Wheeler Wilcox. by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Edinburgh : W. P. Nimmo, Hay and Mitchell, 1917

I hope you enjoyed the story. Tell me what you liked.

Nancy

If you would like to read my other faerie stories, scroll down and select faerie from the list of post. P.S. Would you be interested in purchasing a collection of faerie stories? How many would you like to see included for your 99 cents? 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

April 2017 IWSG

April has arrived and it's time for another IWSG post. The Insecure Writer's Support Group was started by Alex J. Cavanaugh. We post on the first Wednesday of the month. To read other post go here.

April 5 Question: Have you taken advantage of the annual A to Z Challenge in terms of marketing, networking, publicity for your book? What were the results?

I did participate in the A through Z Challenge the first year, but after that my health took a nose dive. I had to decide, continue to blog as I had been, or devote my time to writing and critiquing my work and the work of my critique partners. I chose to write. that being said, I can't offer advice for selling my books based on blogging. When I did blog, I didn't notice a lot of sales from my efforts.

How about you? Do you participate in the A - Z Challenge? Does blogging help you sell your books? 

Nancy

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

IWSG Wed. 2017 Reworking a story

Welcome to the first Wednesday of March, 2017. This post is an ongoing blog hop titled, The Insecure Writers Support Group, (IWSG), started by Alex J. Cavanugh. The goal is to share either your insecurities or to encourage others. Recently, a question of the month was added which you may answer or not. For this post, I've chosen to answer the question. To read what others have written or to sign up and post something go here.



March Question of the month:

Have you ever pulled out a really old story and reworked it? Did it work out?

Indeed, I did. My first serious story. I say that because I wrote stories all through my youth. I didn’t get serious about writing until about 35 years ago. I had something happen to me and I needed a creative outlet to heal. Writing was it.

When I eventually joined a writers group, I was told repeatedly to set my first story aside and start something new. I couldn’t. The characters lived in my heart. So, I plodded on, learning all the lessons that writing something good demands and re-writing that story. I even took notes on the sequel. Soon the idea expanded into four stories. Now, I have a fifth story idea and several short stories. I even wrote a flash fiction piece in that same world for a Halloween blog hop.

Did it work out? You tell me.

I self-published. Here’s the story, and the link plus a few of my recent reviews.


(I’m in the middle of re-formatting to expand my market and have a paper book available, all with a new book cover. So, this particular e-book will only be available for another week or two. Same book, new cover.)


Friendship price of 99 cents.



Reviews are posted on Amazon.com

5 Stars
This book is the best book of the last decade! Very well written and the plot is nice. Thanks a lot!

5 Stars
Very well written book! I'm impressed. thanks a lot!

4 Stars
I AM HOOKED!!!!!!!!!!!!

There are 33 reviews in total. So, did I make the right decision to stick with this book? I can only tell you, I made the only decision I could.

How about you? Did you revise an old book or are you a reader who appreciates a well written book?
Nancy

The sequel is in the editing process. I hope to release it this Christmas. Title: The Rise of Lord Sinon








Thursday, February 16, 2017

Write, Edit Publish, Grandpa's Stories

Today is another WEP Challenge. Write, Edit, Publish was founded by Densie Covey and is a continuing blog hop. Densie's co-host, Yolanda Renee also helps. This challenge is open to everyone, writer, poet artist and more. Densie and Yolanda have the difficult task of picking a winner. So much talent that I'm sure it's difficult. Good luck ladies.We are to write about 'The Back of the Drawer.' I didn't write just about the back of the desk, but the whole desk.

To view other submissions go here.



This story is in honor of C. S. Lewis whose Narnia series had a big influence on me.

Grandpa’s Stories

I have so many happy memories of grandpa and his stories. Even as an adult, I treasured our Sunday visits to the nursing home with my own children. Grandpa would sit in his favorite rocker and spin a wild tale of strange talking animals and magical beasts, purple skies and golden grass. My children would sit around him listening just as I once did. Their eyes as big as saucers and many the occasional exclamation of, “Oh wow,” and, “Really?!” followed by, “Tell it again Grandpa.”
             One Christmas when I turned nine, grandpa gave me the Narnia series by C. S. Lewis. Inside the cover, it read, “Because you love my stories more than all my other grandchildren.” Oh, and I did.
            Now I dabble at my own fantastical stories, but none are as good as grandpa’s.
            My thoughts return to the moment as the furniture movers bring in grandpa’s old roll top desk. I had it placed in my study, along the wall that ran from the window to the door. I had bookshelves there once. Now those shelves were nestled in my closet and the junk was packed away in several boxes that my husband stashed in the attic. Grandpa’s old rocker had gone to my brother and his living room furniture had long since been auctioned off to help pay for final expenses.
            No matter, I got the best part. I knew the sight of grandpa’s old desk would inspire some wonderful tales. I got out the furniture polish and gave the treasured piece a good shine.
            Three days later, while I sat at my computer desk, in my office chair and a blank word document up on my laptop, inspiration had fled. I couldn’t think of a single thing. I turned the chair and gazed at grandpa’s old roll top.
            As a child, I’d never been allowed to open it. Now, the desk and its contents belonged to me. Did grandpa keep his stories in side? Or maybe in one of the locked drawers in front?
            When grandpa passed, his lawyer gave an envelope. It contained the keys to his roll top which was made of mahogany. Plain without decoration.
            I stood. I don’t know why I didn’t open it immediately when the desk had arrived. I guess it was out of respect for grandpa. He’d catch me trying to lift the roll top desk lid and laugh. “Not now Sugar Plum,” he’d say and pat my head.
            Surely, grandpa wouldn’t care anymore? He did leave them to me.
            I opened my computer desk drawer and retrieved the envelope and opened it.
            The long key was very similar to a skeleton key except more intricate with five cuts past the shoulder and before the squared off tip. A dragon head was carved into the head of the key and made of the same grey metal. I thought it odd that the desk should be so plain and the key so intricate. There was a drawer key as well with a little round tag that said so. Nothing special about it.
            Now that I held the keys in my hand the only thing left was to open the desk. I was nervous. No idea why.
            I opened the drawers first and found nothing. Well, there was a small paper clip in one of them. Putting the drawer key back on my computer desk I grabbed the dragon head key and went back to the top.
            There’s nothing in there, silly.
            But there was. All the cubie holes had little glass jars that were sealed and labeled. Faerie dust, unicorn hair, dragon whiskers…really?! Dragon whiskers? And I started humming the song, ‘Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.’ Don’t ask why, I don’t know.
            After reading each one and peering through the glass at what it contained, I put them all back inside their cubie hole. Grandpa’s imagination was great.
            In the drawer above were you sit I found a map. I pulled it out and walked to my computer desk so I could sit and read it. There were mountains and valleys, several volcanoes, rivers, streams and lakes. All of them named to fit one of grandpa’s stories. In the center was the town I’d heard about for years, Kalidan.
            Grandpa obviously collected items from living animals, rocks and dust, giving them each a fantastical name. He took the time to create a wonderfully detailed map and put it on parchment to add authenticity. But, nowhere could I find a single word written down. I really wanted to write his stories down and even publish them in honor of his memory. Would my memories be enough?
            I put his map back, shut the roll top, but I didn’t lock it. Super time. I had to cook and spend a little time with my husband and children. My son was in his last year of high school and the girls were right behind him. Teenagers. Are parents ever prepared?
*
            I awoke to an elephant’s trumpet and sat up in bed. Glancing at the clock I read 3 A.M. on the lit display.
            Another noise followed the elephant. Then giggles and a roar. They were close. Too close. I got up and put on my bathrobe to gaze out the bedroom window at the street below. Light from the street lamps told me no one, or animal was about. Glancing at my husband I could tell he hadn’t been disturbed.
            Another cry from that elephant told me something was going on. Had the T.V. been left running on Animal Planet?
            I slipped into my slippers and left the bedroom being careful to shut the door quietly. Descending the stares the voices got louder.
            “Where are we?”
            “The wizard moved.”
            Outside my study door I could hear a cacophony of noise coming from within. I opened the door. Immediately, three faeries flew past. A unicorn was eating papers in my trash. A dragon hunched in the corner while ash gray smoke lifted from his nostrils and tickled his whiskers. Whiskers!
            Glancing at the roll top desk I saw the lid open and an elephant pulling free of one of the drawers. I heard in my head Grandpa say, “I always keep my desk locked, especially at night.”

Word Count: 1,050
So, I’m a little over, sorry.
Did you enjoy my story?

Nancy

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

IWSG February 2017

The first Wednesday of February 2017 is also the first day of the month. Time for the monthly bloghop of Insecure Writer's. This group was the brain child of Alex J. Cavanaugh and now has quite the following. I am one writer in hundreds. To read other post go here.


Here's the question of the month:

How has being a writer changed your experience as a reader?

The answer is, a lot. When I read a book now I’m automatically aware of character perspective, back story, is there too much? Also, pacing, suspense, does the author invest in too many subplots, do the subplots work or detract. Grammar, spelling and much more. And if all that is on track do I fall in love with the characters? Is the story believable?

Trust me when I say, I hold myself to the same standard.

Other News:

I didn’t make it into the IWSG Anthology. I was bummed. It seems I can never break through that publishing standard. But I will simply take my story and self-publish it. I’m not sure I will try to get published by anyone else again.

I really don’t know what I’m doing wrong. My entire critique group and many friends love my writing. I mean, I have no sparkling characters, nor do I write in clichés. so it’s a mystery. I will press on.

How about you? Do you read books differently now? Are you published? Or do you self-publish as I do? 

Nancy