Thursday, August 29, 2013

FSF Challenge - Thunder



Lillie McFerrin Writes
This week's writing challenge from
Five Sentence Fiction
( Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt:

Thunder



Kill the wabbit, kill the wabbit... (well, just read the story and you'll understand). But be vewy, vewy qwiet - I'm hunting weaders...




It's Not Over


Modified image "Hairdresser Trimming Hair" courtesy of Stuart Miles at www.freedigitalphotos.net



     She was a big girl for her age, and received more than the usual amount of teasing from the other kids, partly due to her sturdy physique, but also for her outdated clothes and the red hair she wore in pigtails, looking more like a miniature Brünnhilde from a Wagner opera than Brenda, an eight-year old child from Albuquerque. The boys in her class, always plotting ways of tormenting her, decided one Tuesday during recess that it would be exquisitely entertaining to snip a lengthy lock from one of those pigtails, and William, acting the part of the impetuous urchin, volunteered enthusiastically for the job. Being extraordinarily quiet as he crept up behind her, Brenda heard only the sound of the scissors and didn't immediately realize its connection, or disconnection, as it were, with her hair. Once she saw the boy dangling the bisected braid in front of her, however, the incensed girl released a storm of unprecedented fury in his direction. As lightning shot from her eyes accompanied by the thunder in her voice, she explained, in the rather direct and simplistic terms of an adolescent, how a slightly asymmetrical Valkyrie was about to provide William with a one-way trip to Valhalla.



OK, I know there's no wabbit, uh, I mean, rabbit in the story, but if you still don't understand, check out THIS LINK and maybe THIS ONE, TOO. And I know it's a bit of a stretch to tie a cartoon, opera, and an eight-year child together in a single FSF post, but surely you've heard of artistic license? Yeah, I know, it's not a painting, either... never mind.



Modified image "Hairdresser Trimming Hair" by Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Monday Mixer - Recipe For Disaster



This week's writing challenge from
Monday Mixer
( The Latinum Vault )
Note: Original link no longer works
 Update: I got an honorable mention for this one! 



All spaced out on this week's Monday Mixer...

Here are the choices for the location, thing & adjective (my choices in red):
Things:       1) flux       2) luminary   3) compendium

Verbs:        1) predicate  2) actuate    3) chirrup

Adjectives:   1) slapdash   2) gustatory  3) ethereal




Recipe For Disaster


Image "Fried Squids" courtesy of rakratchada torsap at www.freedigitalphotos.net


     With the political and military boundaries of the outer worlds being in a state of flux, and communication among them intermittent at best, the Ogamites predicated the slapdash ceremony for the exalted luminary from Aurealius upon a compendium of formalities and rituals known of its sister planet in a neighboring star system. There was a chirrup from the crowd as the guest made her way down the stairs into the main greeting hall, looking ethereal as she glided over the steps with all four feet, and smiles were on at least one of the Ogamite's mouths as they welcomed her. There were great hopes for an end to hostilities. Everything was going well as she joined the dignitaries in an offering of gustatory delicacies, but when presented with a platter of boiled traglung tentacles, indignantly informed them this was very insult that had started the war nearly five generations ago.




Image "Fried Squids" by rakratchada torsap / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Thursday, August 22, 2013

FSF Challenge - Travel



Lillie McFerrin Writes
This week's writing challenge from
Five Sentence Fiction
( Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt:

Travel



We're having a 2-for-1 sale this week...




Transcendental Medication


Image "travel-switzerland-jungfrau-railway" courtesy of loomagoo.com


     Logan loved the mountains. The crisp air, the vistas, the feeling of peace and solitude that came over him as he followed the paths through the steep valleys. But it was getting late, and the orderlies were turning out the lights in the rehabilitation center for the night. He closed the book, laying it on the stand next to his wheelchair, his finger sliding across the glossy cover. He would go back again tomorrow, if only for a little while.




Escape


Image "Senior Woman's Hand" courtesy of Photokanok at www.freedigitalphotos.net


     "Come with me," the girl pleaded, a warm smile on her face.
     "I-I don't know if I can," the old woman said, her voice expressing a fear she could not speak. "It's so far."
     "I promise you'll be alright."
     The old woman peered out of the door, one eye spying the sign of a store nearly a block away, then reached for the young girl's hand and took her first step to freedom.



For Transcendental Medication: Image "travel-switzerland-jungfrau-railway" courtesy of loomagoo.com / loomagoo.com

For Escape: Image "Senior Woman's Hand" by Photokanok / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Monday, August 19, 2013

Poetry In Motion®



Yes, I had to include the little "®" in the blog title. If you read all the way to the bottom, you'll understand... and you'll understand why I chose that title!

This is an update to my previous update because I have some news to report!

Note: Before I could get this post finished I received two bits of news about items listed below, so this is an update to my update (of my previous update). Those items affected are now, uh, updated.
.


Image "Feathered Quill And Ink Pot" courtesy of Simon Howden at www.freedigitalphotos.net


The Fisherman and His Wife: (Short story - humor/fairy tale) This short story was submitted (and accepted for edits!) to Fringeworks for their multi-volume Grimm & Grimmer anthology a long time ago. They've got the first two volumes out, and they are waiting for their cover artist to return for the rest. My story is supposed to published in Grim & Grimmer IV which was originally to come out in August. Then it was pushed back to October, and now, according to their latest newsletter, doesn't have a fixed publication date. It's listed as "editing in progress." The folks at Fringeworks seem to be trying to do a lot, and I hope they're not taking too much on. They have done their best to keep me informed, and do put out some nice work, so I'm still involved and hoping for a good outcome here.

Skarett's Treasure: (Short story - humor/horror/pirates) This was also submitted to Fringeworks for publication through their Knightwatch Press imprint to be included in their Dead Men's Tales anthology. It has not yet been accepted (or rejected! I have to be the optimist here...), but they've let me know they will soon be reading them to sort out which stories they want to include. They say they want to have this out in the September/October time frame, so I hope to hear one way or another soon. So nothing's changed from last time.

Note! As mentioned near the top of this page, I received an update on this from Adrian Middleton about the events leading to the delay:
  • The first event was the temporary loss of our cover artist between June and the end of August, which facilitated putting the publication back (but not the submissions deadline). This led the imprint publishing the story to change from Fringeworks to KnightWatch Press, and also saw our publication date get put back to September/October;
  • The second event was the discovery the anthology had been promoted in June's issue of Writing Magazine. We knew nothing about this, but it led to an unprecedented number of submissions which required a preliminary sift. That sift was completed recently, whittling down the number of submissions into double figures!
  • The third event was the need to change editor. I am currently simultaneously editing several novellas, three other anthologies, and four novels, as well as writing for some of those projects. There was no way, beyond the initial sift, that I would have been able to get Dead Men's Tales ready for publication by this September/October.
So there is now a new editor, Mellisa Black, and it looks like my story made it through the "first sift."

Neersville: (Short story - horror/ghost) This was submitted to Burial Day Books via Submittable.

Image of a frown
Unfortunately, they have decided not to publish the story. I had a few concerns about this when I sent it in - the point of view I chose, the subject matter, a few other issues, including the length - any of which may have contributed to their decision. Submittable shows it to be "Declined," so I'll withdrawn it from there at some point.

However.... (see next item)


The Ballad of Drunken Jack: (Poetry - horror) This was also submitted to Burial Day Books via Submittable, again for their Gothic Blue Book III anthology.

Image of a smiley face
Submittable still shows it to be "In Process" but I have a contract in hand for this as they've accepted my poem! And the fools, uh, I mean the kind, generous, highly intelligent, and physically attractive folks at Burial Day Books are even going to pay me for it! Now, selling poetry of any kind is difficult enough, but old-style narrative poetry like this has become nearly impossible to even give away, so I'm rather tickled. I'm thinking of heading up to Alaska next winter to see if I can sell some snow during a blizzard...


Among The Stones: (Poetry - horror) This was submitted to Scarlett River Press quite a while back. Their web site is still just a shell, so this is the last mention about this. If you folks are listening out there, consider my poem withdrawn.

A Tinker's Damn (horror - flash fiction/steampunk, sort of...), has been submitted to The Were-traveler's The Little Magazine of Magnificent Monsters issue. They have had some technical difficulties with their blog/website, but have assured me they are making progress. They've told me they are going to push back their publication schedule due to this. They've been good to work with, so I hope they get things worked out!


Maria Kelley has posted an update on The Were-traveler site.

I'm also working on a poem (horror), as yet untitled (but may be called "The Other Side of the Door"), for submission to James Ward Kirk Fiction for their anthology, The Cellar Door.

I had to give up on my short story, Final Judgement (horror - short story), for the Horrified Press anthology, Tales of the Undead – Suffer Eternal Volume III. I just don't have the time to work on it right now.

I have perhaps a dozen other short stories and a number of poems in various stages of completion, so I have plenty to keep me busy!



Image "Feathered Quill And Ink Pot" by Simon Howden / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Poetry in Motion® is a joint registered trademark of the Poetry Society of America and MTA/New York City Transit Authority. I'm not sure how Johnny Tillotson feels about this, and I'm not affiliated with any of these folks, so I'm not getting anything from this other than a title for my blog post.


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Friday, August 16, 2013

FSF Challenge - Fabric



Lillie McFerrin Writes
This week's writing challenge from
Five Sentence Fiction
Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt:

Fabric




Something a little more colorful the time around!





The Rainbows of Chinchero


Peruvian weaver. Image source: http://lilliemcferrin.com/five-sentence-fiction-fabric/


     It had been a long journey to reach Chinchero and the sacred valley of the Incas. This was, if legend is to be believed, the birthplace of the rainbow, and I wanted to experience one as I might have before the time of the Conquistadors, the ephemeral colors materializing within the swirling mists surrounding the steep mountains, but the weather wouldn't cooperate, my time here paradoxically plagued by bright and sun-filled days.
     As I strolled through the cobbled streets of the town with nothing more on my mind than to kill time before departing, I came across the outdoor workshop of some local artisans. I stood amongst them as they quietly toiled and realized I had indeed found what I came for. The descendants of those ancient Inca had provided a multitude of rainbows, woven from a thousand years of memories, and put them on display as if only for me.




Image source: http://lilliemcferrin.com/five-sentence-fiction-fabric/


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Saturday, August 10, 2013

FSF Challenge - Learning



Lillie McFerrin Writes
This week's writing challenge from
Five Sentence Fiction
Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt:

 Learning




Learning can be a painful experience...





The Garden of Knowledge


Image "Blue Butterfly" courtesy of dan at www.freedigitalphotos.net


     With her mother watching nearby, young Kayla stood transfixed by the sight of an iridescent blue butterfly that had landed on her finger. Although she tried her best not to frighten it, the insect eventually began to open and close its wings, taking flight on a sudden breeze to flutter off in the direction of a large blossoming bush. 
     Kayla's mother turned to her friend and said, "She gets to experience so much here in your garden." 
     Kayla, now intrigued by the colorful inhabitants of the plantings, held out her finger to another in hopes of finding a similar playmate, but became distracted by the alarmed screaming of her name.
     As the frightened mother reached for her child, she advised, "You can learn about bumblebees when you're a bit older!"




Image "Blue Butterfly" by dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Monday Mixer - Parkin'



This week's writing challenge from
Monday Mixer
( The Latinum Vault )
Note: Original link no longer works



Back to Earth for this week's Monday Mixer...

Here are the choices for the location, thing & adjective (my choices in red):
Things:      1) zephyr    2) plonk      3) billhook

Verbs:       1) ruminate  2) sparge     3) blench

Adjectives:  1) pawky     2) somnolent  3) insular

Also, for disclosure purposes, I do drive a Mercury, but it's not a Zephyr... Oh, and I don't know anyone named Cheryl.




Parkin'


Mercury Zephyr front


     "Cheryl and I, we was in the back of my Mercury Zephyr sharin' a bottle of plonk when she begins to ruminate about how maybe we should get married. I start shakin' and nearly sparge my wine, and Cheryl gives me one of those looks. So I suggest we give it a little trial run, you know? I put my hand on her leg and she giggles and says, 'Not with those pants on.'"
     "That don't explain this," Ray laughed.
     "Well, I didn't have room to get my pants off, so I check the street, step out of the car, drop em', and toss 'em on the other side. That's when Cheryl gets all pawky, jumps behind the wheel, locks the damn doors, and starts drivin' off.  I yell out, 'It's my car!' to which she yells back, 'It's my ass!'"
     "But dude, seriously. Little red hearts on your boxers?"



Image by dave_7 (Flickr: Mercury Zephyr) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Saturday, August 3, 2013

An Update On My Submissions



I thought I'd post an update on my submissions so I (as much as anyone else) could get an idea of what is going on with my writing.


Image "Feathered Quill And Ink Pot" courtesy of Simon Howden at www.freedigitalphotos.net


The Fisherman and His Wife: (Short story - humor/fairy tale) This short story was submitted (and accepted for edits!) to Fringeworks for their multi-volume Grimm & Grimmer anthology a long time ago. They've got the first two volumes out, and they are waiting for their cover artist to return for the rest. My story is supposed to published in Grim & Grimmer IV which was originally to come out in August. Then it was pushed back to October, and now, according to their latest newsletter, doesn't have a fixed publication date. It's listed as "editing in progress." The folks at Fringeworks seem to be trying to do a lot, and I hope they're not taking too much on. They have done their best to keep me informed, and do put out some nice work, so I'm still involved and hoping for a good outcome here.

Skarett's Treasure: (Short story - humor/horror/pirates) This was also submitted to Fringeworks for publication through their Knightwatch Press imprint to be included in their Dead Men's Tales anthology. It has not yet been accepted (or rejected! I have to be the optimist here...), but they've let me know they will soon be reading them to sort out which stories they want to include. They say they want to have this out in the September/October time frame, so I hope to hear one way or another soon.

Neersville: (Short story - horror/ghost) This was submitted to Burial Day Books via Submittable (the first time I've done this, and I rather like it) for their Gothic Blue Book III anthology. Submittable shows it to be "In progress."

The Ballad of Drunken Jack: (Poetry - horror) This was also submitted to Burial Day Books via Submittable, again for their Gothic Blue Book III anthology. Sumbittable shows it to be "Received."


Submittable status for Neersville and The Ballad of Drunken Jack
 
 
Update 08/07/2013: Submittable now shows both Neersville and The Ballad of Drunken Jack to be "in progress."

Among The Stones: (Poetry - horror) This was submitted to Scarlett River Press quite a while back. Their web site keeps going up and down (at one point it came up with a screen from the host saying it was "suspended"). Right now, it's just full of "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet," and it hasn't changed for a while. Also, you can't see their Facebook site without logging in (I am not on Facebook, so I can't) and there hasn't been much twitter activity, so I think it's time to move on. If they ever get their act together, I may consider them again, but for now, thanks, but I have better ways to spend my time...

Miscellaneous items: I hope to get a story, Tinker's Damn (horror - flash fiction/steampunk, sort of...), ready for The Weretraveler's The Little Magazine of Magnificent Monsters issue - running out of time here. I'm also working on a poem (horror), as yet untitled, for submission to James Ward Kirk Fiction for their anthology, The Cellar Door. I would also like to finish my short story, Final Judgement (horror - short story), for the Horrified Press anthology, Tales of the Undead – Suffer Eternal Volume III.

I have perhaps a dozen other short stories and a number of poems in various stages of completion, so I have plenty to keep me busy!



Image "Feathered Quill And Ink Pot" by Simon Howden / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

Thursday, August 1, 2013

FSF Challenge - Bliss



Lillie McFerrin Writes
This week's writing challenge from
Five Sentence Fiction
( Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt:

 Bliss




Nobody dies in this post. Well, at least not right away...





The Last One


 Image "Hand" courtesy of kibsri at www.freedigitalphotos.net


Gwendolyn gingerly pushed her hand in deeper, rationalizing her actions, telling herself she fully deserved what was hidden within. Yet all she'd found so far was worthless—hard and round, with the occasional sharp edge to scratch her skin. She looked up when footsteps echoed nearby, and though most everyone should have been away, stealth was the order of the day if she didn't want to be caught. Then the tips of her fingers touched the rectangular edges of the treasure she sought, a prize to be slowly and carefully extracted lest it be lost among the detritus that remained. Pulling her hand out while keeping a tenuous grip on the object of her desires, Gwendolyn smiled as she held what was surely the last piece of chocolate from the candy jar on her boss's desk.



Image "Hand" courtesy of kibsri / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012-2013 K. R. Smith All rights reserved