Category Archives: Writing

Writing 10: Day 2 A Room With a View

Writing 101: A Room with a View (or Just a View)

We’re all drawn to certain places. If you had the power to get somewhere — anywhere — where would you go right now? For your twist, focus on building a setting description

A View From My Room

After dinner, Myra walks to the beach. Mahogany and apple green coleus, line the cement path along 16th road, and Crêpe Myrtle, not in bloom provide shade, although the sun is soft and will set soon. Low tide gives the shore width and Myra removes her sandals to feel the tepid water on her feet and walks for exercise. Her mind is clear. She will leave tomorrow.

The beach is mostly empty and the waves peak white, then brush the water’s edge and give an upbeat tempo that match her mood. This must be heaven if there is a heaven, a place where bad does not happen.

Myra mentally packs and includes her books and writing-table, things she will need in her new writing room, a room with a view. A view of water, possibly lake water and trees, many trees, trees that change colors. A small lakeside cabin, minuscule will do. It is the view, fog lifting mornings a defining solemn moment of dawn, and new beginnings.

. . . Seriously just saying

Writing 101: Unlock the Mind

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I live a dull life, don’t get me wrong, I’m not a dull person but I have a dull life and that’s why I write, or attempt to write.

The clock reads 3:15 AM and I’ve been awake for a good hour, so I check the Writing 101 assignment and yuck, it’s to free write or write freely and if I knew how to do that I wouldn’t need Writing 101.

Free write for twenty minutes, you mean ramble, rant, complain, say what is on my mind, without editing checking spelling and for comma. Yes I have a serious editor going on but truth; I like the editing better than the writing. So I play Spider Solitaire to harness my anxiety and go back to bed. In the bathroom I bump into my husband who complains he’s been awake for hours, which isn’t true since I heard him snoring from the other room. Nevertheless, he’s up for the day and I’m returning to bed.

I wake at 7:11 AM, thankful for almost four hours sleep and find his note in the kitchen “Gone Fishing”. It’s not what you think he really does go fishing, although has never brought home a fish. I tease him about another woman, but he’s not a risk taker, happy to golf, fish and sit in a recliner for hours watching sports. He’d watch competition basket weaving if they showed it.

I have a good life, but it’s dull, so I write. I didn’t write until retired and then words and thoughts started creeping into my head. It came easily and was fun, I wrote in my mind, now not so much.

So back to the assignment, I’m task driven and do better writing towards a goal. And I get it, empty your head of annoyances and you’ll free up the creative parts. So I’m thinking of a character I’d like to be. A woman who gets in her car and drives until she gets where she is going. Or how about the woman who rallies the community to garden on property formerly occupied by trailers and builds The Pie Store, good title and in digging learns the trailer park history.

Well some might say I cheated with this first assignment because I hand wrote a  version in a spiral notebook, and I’m now typing it in but I  worry about dangling participles.

. . . Seriously Just Saying

Granny Tango

Voice Work

Your blog is about to be recorded into an audiobook. If you could choose anyone — from your grandma to Samuel L. Jackson — to narrate your posts, who would it be?

Granny Tango

Truly conflicted, Samuel L. Jackson and Grandma discuss who best can narrate “Seriouslyjustsaying.”

“So nice to meet you, Mr. Jackson.”

“Same here, Grandma or may I call you Gertrude?”

“Yes, Gertrude is fine, I’ve been told my granddaughter has a blog that will be recorded, will she be arrested, do I need a lawyer?”

“No Grandma, rather Gertrude, it’s nothing like that, a blog is a post, how can I explain this . . . your granddaughter is a writer and publishes her work online, she’s not in any trouble.”

“Oh petty, that is such a comfort, my brother Thomas was a writer, a lovely writer, so dear, why are we here?”

“Well Gert, they need someone to record, you know tape her stories, make an audiobook. It’s between you and me.”

“Oh petty, what’s an audiobook? I don’t want to do that.”

“F___, Granny I don’t want to do that either.”

“Well, Mr. Jackson, let’s get Mikey, he’ll do it!”

. . . Seriously just saying

 

 

 

 

 

Strange Beginnings

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Daily Prompt;You’re sitting at a Café when a stranger approaches you. This person asks what your name is, and, for some reason, you reply. The stranger nods, “I’ve been looking for you.” What happens next?

Strange Beginnings

The outdoor Café, was busy with after dinner customers, I had ordered a decaf cappuccino and waited, people watching; when the stranger appeared in the corner of my eye. His hat and turn upped collar a little dramatic for West New York, New Jersey. He stopped alongside my table, put his gloved hand on the back of the empty metal chair and said, “I’ve been looking for you, Mariah.”

“Me? Mariah Doherty? That can’t be? Why would you be looking for me?” The shadow from his hat concealed his identity, and made it impossible to determine if I knew him, so asked, ” Do I know you?”

“Mind if I sit,” was his reply; a statement not question, because he pulled out the chair and arranged his six-foot frame on the seat and his legs under the table. He removed his hat and starred, before announing “Your mother told me where I could find you.”

“Really, my mother? Now why would she do that?” I was growing more apprehensive by his arrogance and assumption and laughed a nervous laugh.

“Mariah, I’m your father.”

The waitress arrived with my coffee, I thanked her and then remained speechless, filled with anger for this  stranger.

 

. . . Seriously just saying

 

 

 

 

Dig Deeper

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Digging Up Your Digs

500 years from now, an archaeologist accidentally stumbles on the ruins of your home, long-buried underground. What will she learn about early 21st century humans by going through (what remains) of your stuff?

Dig Deeper

Terran 48 removed her head shell and spoke directly into the drone, “Contact the Archaeology Ministry, we unearthed a digital picture frame, manufactured by Kodak with humans of all ages laughing,smiling and dancing; evidence that Homo-sapiens were programmed for happiness as early as 1970. ”

. . . Seriously just saying

Not Happening!

Zoltar’s Revenge

In a reversal of Big, the Tom Hanks classic from the 80s, your adult self is suddenly locked in the body of a 12-year-old kid. How do you survive your first day back in school?

Not Happening!

I shake and shutter at the thought. The year would be 1960 and I’d be going into the seventh grade in WAJ Central.

You cannot make me do it, I am not going back.

I am, in fact, missing on the reunion list, although my name appears with the caption “Do you know where this graduate is?”

But I am not returning.

The school is named WAJ, after the sending towns; Windham, Ashland and Jewett. You can  locate it on a map, by looking for Green County above Kingston, New York. If you ski, perhaps you’ve been to the sloops of “Windham Mountain Resort.

WAJ is a small rural school with kindergarten through twelfth grade housed in one building. There were thirty-five students in my 1966 graduating class, one of which was my brother, because although older, he was left back twice.

Our move from Long Island to the Northern Catskills was a middle of the night move, motivated by our father’s belief it was better that constructing a bomb shelter.

Anyway, why go back as an adult, I was one of the few adults way back than.

Well I could go back and tell the science teacher, Mr. Christman, not to throw a frog reeking of formaldehyde out the window and comfort to Ms. Lazare, the French teacher, who after hearing a loud pop believed she’d been shot and fell to the ground clutching her chest. 

But I am not going back and you cannot make me!

. . . Seriously just saying

 

 

 

Black Cherry Berry

Pick Your Potion
Captain Picard was into Earl Grey tea; mention the Dude and we think: White Russians. What’s your signature beverage — and how did it achieve that status?
(Thanks, Bea Patricia, for inspiring this prompt!)

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Black Cherry Berry

He who likes cherries soon learns to climb!” German Proverb

May stood in the kitchen while the kettle boiled, reminding herself not to forget she had turn on the damn stove. She examined the package of herbal tea called “Black Cherry Berry,” to kill time. This was the only beverage she drank.

The box top showed a picture of a 1969 Ford pickup truck driving a dirt road with cherry trees in the backdrop. A wooden basket filled with cherries filled a bottom corner. White cherry blossoms decorated the adjacent corner. It was pretty.

Celestial Teas marked the bottom of the box along with the boast, “We’ve blended healthy teas with environmental consciousness since 1969.” The environmental consciousness pleased May.

Her arthritic hands struggled to remove the clear cellophane, open the cardboard, and unwrap the parchment paper. The message, “The famous cherry blossom trees of Washington DC, given as a gift by Japan in 1912, are ornamental trees and don’t produce cherries,” was printed across the box lip.

Good to know thought May. 

She turned off the stove, poured hot water into a two-cup Pyrex measuring cup and deposited two bags of Black Cherry Berry tea.

She would wait until the tea reached room temperature then pour the liquid into a plastic pitcher add the rest of the boiled water deposit the container in the refrigerator to chill. She had prepared her chilled drink of choice everyday for the past five years.

May glanced at the clock, it was eight o’clock in the morning.

. . . Seriously Just Saying

Money Money

 

Daily Prompt Work? Optional!
If money were out of the equation, would you still work? If yes, why, and how much? If not, what would you do with your free time?

 Money Money

Yes! Yes! Yes! But we need to define work.

If you mean out the door, dressed, hair, makeup done by seven or eight than; I don’t think so.
If you mean to “sustain physical or mental effort to overcome obstacles and achieve an objective or results,” than I’m in.

The question poises more about value and purpose than a job. Once a person has enough money to live the life style they are comfortable with, what are they going to do?

Really, what makes you happy?

In my case, with enough money not to work, I planned to party in retirement. I had followed the rules:

• Put others before yourself
• Volunteer to work long hours
• Spend less than you make
• Never take any sick days

Now good times and travel here I come.

Then my husband got sick, and a writing bug bit me.

Today, Bob is enjoying good health and we are traveling but, I like to write, damn I just enjoy it!

. . . Seriously Just Saying

Dyslexia of The Mouth

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 Uncanned Laughter
A misused word, a misremembered song lyric, a cream pie that just happened to be there: tell us about a time you (or someone else) said or did something unintentionally funny.

Dyslexia of the Mouth

Talk about hitting the hammer on the head or nailing the head of a hammer, well you hit the nail on the head. This is me and I blame my brother. In childhood, Victor hit me on the head with a baseball bat and on another happy occasion, a lead pipe. I hear him laughing now, and the laughter follows me.

Like a stroke victim, I think I am saying circumference, my mouth says circumcise and people laugh. “What? What’s so funny about a circumference?” I’m listening to my mind unaware my mouth is not cooperating.

This dyslexia of the mouth was brought to my attention by my boyfriend. We were twenty and playing the word game Geography. A graduate of private school, Iona Prep, he had a true advantage. I graduated from Windham Ashland Jewett Central and had traveled only once outside New York to Rhode Island.

We’d been through all the states and working on Countries. I was doing okay; until the letter, O.

Stumped to name a European City that began with O, Bob helped me saying, “It’s a city in Norway.”

I scream excitedly, “I know Openhagen!”

LOL, Openhagen? LOL,Openhagen?

Oslo is a city in Norway that begins with the letter O. Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark is close by. If the c is  scratched you have a European city that begins with O.

I wish I had a dollar for every time he has retold the story laughing very out loud.

We’ve been married for forty-three years.

. . . Seriously just saying

Betty Boop, My New Best Friend

 

The Name’s The Thing

Have you ever named an inanimate object? (Your car? Your laptop? The volleyball that kept you company while you were stranded in the ocean?) Share the story of at least one object with which you’re on a first-name basis.

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You ask writers to “Share the story of at least one object with which you’re on a first-name basis,” sounds kinky and similar to “Fifty Shades of Grey”.

I have never read the book, have no desire to have a relationship with an object, and have stopped apologizing for not owning a pet. However, the concept of having a low maintenance friend is appealing.

I glance around and focus on a favorite inanimate object on my desk, a Betty Boop coffee mug. Perhaps I will give her some life, make her my writing buddy, someone to laugh and encourage me as I struggle to write.

As a child, cartoons that featured ants running around and characters getting bopped on the head infuriated me. Betty Boop, the flapper with more than brains, made me laugh. The cartoons have a message and Betty solves problems.

In “The Practical Joker” Irving is annoying and prevents Betty from icing a cake, she asks Prof. Grampy “What can I do?”

Prof. Grampy says, “Send him to me!” and gets out his Bag of Tools to outsmart the practical joker.

I glance at Betty Boop and she says, “Now let’s write for an hour and we can eat donuts and drink coffee while Prof Grampy makes revisions.”

“Boop-Oop-A-Doop” I have a new best friend.

                                                                        . . .  Seriously Just Saying

 

More Betty Boop Cartoons