Isn’t it Someone Else’s Turn?

**Note: I’m currently SUPER-busy cleaning, preparing for visitors, filming videos, getting a bunch of affairs in order, doing my taxes, etc etc etc, so for today you get a drabble, one of the cuter ones I think I’ve written in the past. Enjoy!**


Flash Fiction Fridays

Why does Godzilla always attack Japan?

As a young monster growing up I idolized Godzilla. He always seemed like the biggest and baddest of all the monsters. Even when he lost the battle he was still the coolest because he always came back.

But I did always wonder what exactly he had against the Japanese. I mean, with so many other countries just ripe for the picking, some of them even very close by, why constantly torment the same poor nation over and over again?

I’m all grown up now, a fully grown monster, and I’m going to attack Canada.

A Brief Tale

wpid-writing-101-june-2014-class-badge-2-1.png.pngToday’s assignment will be a piece of fiction, so welcome to the first ever Writing 101/Fiction Fragment Friday conglomeration!

Today the name of the game is brevity, which can mean something different depending on how you’re used to writing. I’m no stranger to the drabble (100-word story), as you all know, but in my everyday writing I tend to be a lot more talkative. This is something I’ve actually been working on because, depending on the scene in question, sometimes fewer words is better. So this assignment should be good exercise!

You stumble upon a random letter on the path. You read it. It affects you deeply, and you wish it could be returned to the person to which it’s addressed. Write a story about this encounter. Today’s twist: approach this post in as few words as possible.

It was just laying there on the walking path: an envelope with the name “Kevin” written on the front. I couldn’t resist. I picked it up and pulled out the single sheet of paper.

The handwriting was loopy and feminine, and appeared to have been written in a rush.

My dearest Kevin,
I am so sorry. I wanted to wait for you, but I’ve run out of time. I’ve gone. I pray that our paths will cross again. Please know that I love you, and I always will.
Your Ashley

Unbidden, tears appeared at the corners of my eyes. I folded the letter back into the envelope. For a moment I thought to place it back where I’d found it, but instead I found a spot to sit under a tree and wait. I thought, perhaps, Kevin might need a friend when he came.

Fiction Fragment Fri- Er…Saturday: Pervert

My dear, lovely readers, I want it put on record that I have no idea what happened to my Fiction Fragment Friday post for yesterday. It wasn’t until I looked at my blog stats this morning and noticed a distinct lull in traffic for yesterday that I realized no post was made. Since I had scheduled the post over a week ago I looked into it and found no post anywhere in my records. It simply…vanished. I can’t honestly say that it was the fault of WordPress and not myself, but I am gloriously infallible, so I’ll let you make your own judgements from there.

Since I had (presumably) scheduled another section of Erased, but I don’t have a copy of that file out West with me I’m going to have to go with something quick and dirty that I can type out on my iPhone since I don’t have Internet access on my tablet right now. It’s a but of a ridiculous go-ahead really, but I want to give you something since yesterday got screwed up.

With that said, here’s a Drabble I wrote a while back:


Jake liked to hang out at fitness gyms. He wasn’t particularly into weights or cardio, and he didn’t really need the exercise; he liked to hang out and watch the women. There were the chubby ladies in jogging pants, panting and practically sweating blood in their attempts to shed the extra pounds, and there were the super skinny girls in designer exercise clothes who looked like they probably ate wheat grass and soy milk for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Both types had their own particular kind of…appeal.

Jake got kicked out of fitness gyms at least three times a week.

Accountability Tuesdays – Week 6

Excuse me for a moment while I get something out of the way:

*does a little song and dance* I’m going home today, I’m going home today~!

Okay, now that I’ve got that out, it looks like its time for another round of accountability. [whine] Do I have to? [/whine] Yes, yes I do. Shut up, me! Do better and you won’t dread these posts!

Health and Body Image Goal
I’m not really sure if I should report a good week or a bad week for this one. I didn’t eat particularly well (although I did have some pretty healthy breakfasts) but I ate less and I actually took it upon myself to get up early Sunday morning and squeeze in a P90X video. It was only one day yes, but I know it was a good one because I was too sore Monday morning to do another one. The plan is to check out some Jillian Michaels vids when I get home, so look forward to hearing about that venture.

Editing Goal
Remember two weeks ago when I said I was taking my manuscript out to work with me and that I would find the time to look at it at some point? Well I finally looked at it…last night…for about five minutes…while I was packing.

It’s not that I don’t want to get the damn thing edited, it’s just that I’m so thoroughly obsessed with the writing aspect that I’m having a really hard time convincing myself to go back over to editing. Writing is fun and joyful. Editing is pain and misery. Okay, some parts of writing are pain and misery too, but all of editing is pain and misery.

No excuse, I know. Feel free to flog me now. ~_~

1,000,000 Word Goal
It wasn’t an excellent week because work got really busy in the second half, but I still feel I did pretty decently, all things considered. I wrote a measly 404 words toward blogging, 4585 words toward my current work in progress, and another little grouping of 286 toward a new mini-project that might end up as a contest entry. So that’s a total of 5275 words for the week. Nothing to turn up your nose at!

As an add-on to this Tuesday post I would like to announce that I’m going to simplify my blogging “schedule” a bit. From now on I’m only going to blog through the weekdays and give myself the weekends off (unless there’s some specific reason I wish to blog on a particular weekend), and from now on Fridays will be Fiction Fragment Fridays. On this last day of the weekdays I will share a fragment of my written fiction, whether it be a drabble, part of one of my fanfictions, or a scene from my manuscript or current work in progress. It’s time to start sharing my actual work rather than just my personal thoughts and feelings. Look forward to it!

Fried Like Yesterday’s Bacon

A reminder: This post courtesy of Julie Jarnagin’s 101 Blog Post Ideas for Writers.

51. Avoiding burnout

Rest and relaxation are underrated. The world in which we live today drives us to be productive every moment of the day. If we aren’t working, doing housework, or contributing to something in some way we tend to feel lazy or as though we’re wasting time just sitting around. Even when we actively choose to sit down and watch tv or browse the internet, there is a constant nagging hum in the back of our heads listing all the things we should be doing instead.

I recently talked about how writers should Write Everyday, and I meant it, but we do not have to spend every day writing. Just as you wouldn’t expect someone to spend 16 hours a day at their job every single day, neither should you expect yourself to write constantly every day. We need downtime for our brains to rest and reboot, or the creative juices will run dry and what we are writing will no longer be worth putting to paper. Ask anyone who has ever taken part in NaNoWriMo. They will all tell you that the experience of trying to write 50,000 words in a month is a wonderful one that everyone should try, but I guarantee that they will also tell you that continuing that frantic pace for another month, and another, would drive you to madness and be detrimental to your writing in the end.

Look at it this way. Pick up a small object, say a soup can or a bottle of water. Now, while holding the object, raise your arm so that it is straight out in front of you. Now lift a few inches higher, then lower a few inches. Continue this motion back and forth so that you are lifting your arm up and down – only by a few inches, mind you – over and over again. At first it’s simple; your object is light and the motion is small. But over time it gets harder…and harder still…until your arm begins to ache…and then before you know it the muscles are pulsing and you feel like they’re going to explode unless you drop your arm right now. So you drop your arm but it’s still sore and useless and there’s no way you’re repeating that exercise for a good while. It’s no different with your brain. If you keep writing and writing and writing without ever taking any breaks it may seem fine and dandy at first, but over time your brain will ache and seize and you’ll find yourself (metaphorically, I hope) writhing on the ground in pain, your brain absolutely useless to you.

You need rest. Repeat the arm exercise again, but only do ten repetitions, then rest for a few minutes before doing another ten reps. At this pace you could probably continue the exercise indefinitely because you never do enough at once to burn out your muscle. Again, it’s the same with your brain. If you write for a while, and then rest for a while, you allow your brain the time to recuperate so that it doesn’t give out on you. You can absolutely Write Everyday, but it doesn’t have to be a whole book! Write a blog entry, a letter to someone, a drabble…some small chunk that exercises your brain without overloading it. And if you do burnout, admit it, accept it, and force yourself to take it easy until your brain restarts and all the proper programs start running smoothly again. Your stories will wait, I promise.

Can Someone Please Invent a 36-hour Day?

Because time seems to be slipping away from me at an ever-increasing rate and I’ve been completely unable to find the time for any decent posts over my recent days off, here are a couple of drabbles for you. They’re fanfic drabbles based on the Harry Potter universe:
The Godfather

Sirius couldn’t remember the last time he’d felt so happy. Not that he was unhappy on a regular basis – on the contrary, he was a very cheerful person. Nevertheless, at this particular moment he was what he would have described as ecstatic.

“You….you’re sure?” he asked, nervousness in his voice, “You’re both absolutely positive?”

Lily and James smiled at him, her from her hospital bed, and he from her side. “Yes, you idiot,” James insisted, “Of course we’re sure!”

Sirius couldn’t keep the grin off his face as he looked down at the newborn baby in Lily’s arms.

“Hello, Godson!”


Sybil shook her head a little. The headache had come on suddenly, a most unwelcome distraction from her interview with Headmaster Dumbledore.

“Excuse me, I just…” she started, but before she could pardon herself she found the pain had intensified tenfold and she clutched her temples.

If you told her afterwards that she’d been speaking in a most disturbing voice, she’d never believe you. To her, mere seconds passed before she looked back up to the Headmaster and apologized for her transgression. However, as she did, Dumbledore was staring at her with a thoughtful and calculating gaze.

“Congratulations. You’re hired.”

Hey! When did that happen?

Those who have been paying attention know that I’ve been pre-writing posts and scheduling them to pop up on the days while I’m working out West, to ensure that posts are made even if the camp internet is so awful that I can’t even load Google (i.e. always). This system is great for a number of reasons, but there’s one tiny little thing I’ve noticed…just an eetsy little thing that niggles at me. See, when writing an entry and posting it immediately, a little WordPress sidebar pops up with a progress bar on it that shows how many posts you’ve made. It’s nothing special, but it sorta urges you on by saying things like, “You’ve written 50 posts! Your next goal is 55!” or something like that. When scheduling posts in advance, you don’t get to see that little progress bar. Your post is written beforehand and pops up automatically at the time you’ve set it for, so you don’t get to see whether or not you’ve hit a goal.

Why does this matter to me at all? Well, basically, it matters to me because without it I’ve completely lost track of how many posts I’ve made. And it turns out that sometime during my work rotation, about halfway through my first batch of 101 Blog Ideas posts, I hit 100 posts. I missed it completely, and now I’m actually at 108.

Okay, so it’s not the end of the world or anything, but I am a little pouty that I missed it. Milestones are fun and motivational to me. It’s why I enjoy writing drabbles, trying to squeeze that little story into exactly 100 words. It’s why I keep going back to NaNoWriMo to see if I can pluck out another 50000 words in a month. And it’s part of what keeps me writing blog entries…so that I can say “Ooh! I’ve hit a milestone! Let’s see if I can hit another!” And really, come on…100 posts is kinda a big deal, right? Right?

So I guess what I’m trying to get at here is, someone warn me the next time I’m getting close to an important milestone!! lol

You Can Trust Us

Have you ever felt like someone was asking you too many questions? Have you ever filled out a form or a job application and thought, “Now seriously, why the hell do they need to know that?” Well I have, and that regularly-occurring experience is what lead me to write the following drabble, entitled ‘You Can Trust Us’.

Mental Heath Questionnaire

Please answer honestly.

What is your age?

Are you currently taking any prescription medication?

Is there any history of mental instability in your family?

Do you suffer from any form of mental instability?

Are you sure?

You wouldn’t lie to us, would you?

It’s okay. You can trust us.

Seriously, we aren’t trying to trick you into lowering your guard.

Why must you think poorly of us? We’re only trying to help.

Okay, that’s it. You’ve forced us to take matters into our own hands. Orderlies are on their way to detain you. Have a nice day.

Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar?

I’ve been a little busy lately, what with the hubby coming home, and preparing for my upcoming trip to my new job. I was subjected to a drug test on Monday (always fun), and had to take my Construction Safety course yesterday, so this is the first time I’ve really sat down at my computer since before hubby came home.

Regularly scheduled updates will resume at some point, but for now I thought I’d share another drabble. This one comes from a small collection of Harry Potter fanfic drabbles that I wrote a while ago. I was attempting to write a drabble for each important character in the book. I stopped at 18, but maybe I’ll get around to finishing the series someday.

Anyway, here’s the one I did for Harry:

It was quiet for a moment. Then a earthshaking howl echoed through the house. Harry cringed and sunk himself deeper into the space between the bath and the sink in the washroom.

He couldn’t understand what he’d done…one minute the cookie jar was on top of the refrigerator where it always was, the next it was on the floor, spilling out more cookies than logically could have fit in it. There must have been a hundred chocolate chips all over the floor.

There came another howl and thundering footfalls up the stairs.

Uncle Vernon didn’t like chocolate chip cookies.

Punishment Required

I’ve been a bad writer this past week.

I don’t mean that my writing has been bad (although I suppose that’s up to interpretation). What I mean is that my dedication has been bad.

Let’s start with the first 6 days of last week and their respective word counts:

Sunday – 421 words
Monday – 0 words
Tuesday – 449 words
Wednesday – 1235 words
Thursday – 0 words
Friday – 445 words

As you can see, during those 6 days I only reached my goal once. I had three days of less than half of my daily word goal, and I even had two days during which I didn’t write a single, solitary word (unless you count Facebook statuses, which I unfortunately do not). Disappointing! Oh my gosh, disappointing! I’m absolutely disgusted with myself!

But the worst thing of all is my word count for Saturday….I wrote 2811 words yesterday. What the hell is wrong with that? Well it’s not the word count itself…it’s where those words were applied. They were neither blogging words, nor words added to the ever-nearing-completion zombie novel I’m (supposedly) dedicated to finishing. No…those 2811 words were added to (…wait for it…) my Final Fantasy VI fanfiction*.

*Herein referred to as “Shit I shouldn’t be wasting time on”

In my defense, let me provide you with a little bit of information on my writing style:

I currently have 7 ‘stories’ in the works. One is the zombie novel I’m (supposed to be) working on, one is the drabble collection I mentioned in a few other posts, one is a supernatural romance that is mostly finished but requires an overwhelming level of editing, one is a sci-fi adventure featuring characters based on people I’ve come across in real life, one is the fantasy adventure I’ve been working on since mid-college, and the remaining two are fanfictions (i.e. things I’ll probably never get legal permission to publish) based on the video game worlds of Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy VI (North American version III). I’ve been working on two of these stories for more than seven years, three have come up on me in the past three years or so, and the other two I’ve only been working on for between one and two years. The reason I have yet to actually complete any of these stories is because I have what I like to call “Author’s ADHD”.

See, when it comes to writing, I have a ridiculously hard time staying focused and interested in what I’m currently working on. I’ll get super excited and dedicated to one story for a little while, but then as I’m writing I’ll slowly get bored and annoyed. I’ll get stuck on hard scenes, frustrated with boring scenes, and just downright bored with the overall story. Then something else will catch my eye…I’ll start thinking about one of those other 6 stories and I’ll long to work on it. All of a sudden I’ll have a hundred awesome ideas for fun and interesting scenes for that story…the one I’m not supposed to be even thinking about because dammit I have to work on this story! Eventually I give in. The piece I’m supposed to be working on gets left in the dust, and after a while I get bored with the piece I’ve moved to and get similarly seduced by one of the others. It’s a vicious cycle that never seems to end for me.

Recently I’d been doing really well. I dedicated myself to my zombie novel, told myself I was going to damn well finish it. I set a goal of 1000 words a day, and said that the only other words that would could would be my blog posts. And I was doing half-decently, I believe! And then…I let myself get seduced by that damn fanfiction. I wanted to write something fun and easy, and I gave in. Now I have to try to pull myself away from the seductress and slink sullenly back to my zombies, begging forgiveness.

I need Author Ritalin.