Ways to Support the Author in Your Life

Writing can be crazy-making. We read posts making fun of the writing life, our quirks and insecurities, our endless search for balance. I’m blessed to live with a person who supports my passion, values my work, and stays out of my creative way. Charles Yallowitz wrote this great post with another take on how to support the writer(s) in your life. In case you missed it…

Flood Moon

pixabay tpsdave

pixabay tpsdave

In my fantasy world, the month of the Flood Moon slides into fullness as winter wanes. The snow begins to melt, gorging streams and unleashing ice floes in swollen rivers.  The cold isn’t over and the snow still falls between sheeting rains, but as the days grow longer, bulbs thrust their green fingers from the loam in a sunny corner.

If the sky is clear, the full Flood Moon will shine tonight.

en.wikimedia.org

en.wikimedia.org

Excerpt from Flood Moon, Eye of Blind

Gallard and Percy joined brothers Hywel and Malven at the Crow’s Nest tavern. The flaxen-haired pair from Glanmor had sailed with the Seabourne for four years with nothing to show for it except callouses. Coin dripped through their fingers like seawater. The two crewmen sat half in the cask already and Percy downed his first ale, intent on catching up. Gallard ordered a slab of beef, buttered potato mash and a stinky mushroom soup. He’d swig a tankard on the backside to wash it down.

“Woulda been here afore,” Percy complained, scratching his cow-licked head. “But Gallard makin’ me tramp up and down the hill like a grounder.”

“Lookin’ for Meriel still?” the older brother, Hywel, asked.

“She’s disappeared,” Gallard replied, unsure of his next step.

“She’ll find the Seabourne if she can,” Malven said. The brothers were hard to tell apart, except where Hywel boasted the start of a thick beard, Malven’s chin refused to grow a single pale whisker. “We’re here every week. Don’t seem like she’d miss us.”

“That’s what worries me.” Gallard’s food arrived, and he swatted away Percy’s finger that scooped at his potatoes.

“Shame puttin’ her in the locks.” Percy slugged down his ale and ordered more for the table. “Too old fer me but pretty elsewise.”

The brothers guffawed, slopping their ale, and Gallard frowned as the brew doused his supper.

Tears in his eyes, Hywel patted Percy’s shoulder. “She wouldn’t give you a wink, Perce, even if she were an old sea hag with green teeth. You’re no looker.”

“My teeth isn’t green.” Percy scowled. “They’re barely near yellow.”

Hywel and Malven bent over laughing, and Gallard pushed his supper away. “You need another drink, Percy. The teasing won’t hurt so bad.” He filled Percy’s tankard and poured one for himself. Percy swallowed it down and Gallard poured him another.

The Crow’s Nest filled as the day lengthened, crewmen and yardsmen finding seats on sturdy benches. Voices rose, ale spilled across the tables and floor, and there remained enough good-natured tolerance for stumbling drunkards to keep the peace. Gallard figured Percy was already sloshed beyond the borders of hope, and Hywel and Malven made sloppy drunks, reminiscing about the old days in Glanmor when they stole crabs from  traps and steamed them on the rocky shore. Gallard remained mildly sober, enough to get them back to the ship without drowning.

**

Today I head home to the rainy Northwest, timely with the start of the Flood Moon – Hawaii’s forecast predicts high seas and, well, flooding of beaches and low-lying roads. I’ll be winging over the Pacific for much of the day, losing time as my planetary destination spins away from me. I’ve been remiss in keeping up my blogging duties, but I’ll catch up quickly tomorrow. Enjoy the full moon tonight!

Under the Sea – Shark Tales and Manta Rays

pixabay - skeeze

pixabay – skeeze

I was 16 years old when Steven Spielberg released the movie Jaws. After watching that film, I didn’t go in the ocean for 15 years. I guess I’ve always had a vivid imagination and being featured on the seafood menu didn’t appeal to me.

When my first marriage fell apart I was 31 and suddenly alone. Our friends were his friends. My family lived thousands of miles away. I gave up the house for a small apartment, didn’t ask for alimony or child support – anything to break free of a relationship that had run its course.

I was adrift.

I needed to “get a life.”

With nothing to do besides climb the walls, I decided to try a “discover scuba” event. We blew bubbles at the bottom of a community swimming pool, and I won a door prize of a mask and pair of fins. Three years later, I had not only discovered a fun group of friends but had worked my way up to rescue diver and divemaster. I went on three shark dives in the Caymans.

Yep, I patted a shark.

Diving was my cure-all for divorce.

When I met my husband, Randy, we made a deal. I would become a Boston Celtics basketball fan and he would learn to dive. So began a successful decades-long marriage.

The last time we dove was in 2001, our last vacation. This trip is long overdue. To celebrate, this is what we did last night:

I once again apologize for closing comments. We have a couple days left in paradise before returning to the rain … and perhaps a glimpse of the coming spring. Hope your weekend is full of joy and peace 🙂

On Vacation in Hawaii (without the girls)

My husband and I are on vacation, our first in 15 years. Why has it been so long? We could blame it on kids, work, unemployment, lack of funds, family obligations, broken down cars and leaky roofs, college educations, and a host of other excuses. Here’s the real reason- my husband has two girlfriends.

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Honey and Lulu

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Honey and Lulu are sisters. The “girls” haven’t spent one day in a kennel since we rescued them in 2004. I think they might be spoiled.

Well, one of our human kids offered to fly up from LA and dog-sit for a week. It was the only way my husband would agree to leave his loves. I’ve dragged him reluctantly off to Hawaii for a long overdue vacation. We arrived yesterday afternoon and my husband has only called home four times 🙂

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We arrived to wind and cloudy skies

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The sun turned the Pacific silver.

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The sky began to clear as the day waned.

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Sunset over the Pacific

I closed comments for this one, so the hubby gets a bit of undivided attention. Wishing everyone a wonderful week. ❤

 

Love Is In The Air

Children’s author Mike Allegra cracks me up. I’ve never been much into the Valentine’s Day hoopla. Well, that changed with Mike’s take on those chubby little cupids that flit around shooting love arrows. Yet two days away, this will put a grin on your face and some Valentine’s fun in your heart. Enjoy.

heylookawriterfellow

The lovely and talented Susanna Leonard Hill is having another blog contest! I like to enter those. So I did.

The rules are simple: In 214 words or fewer, entrants must write a Valentine’s Day story where one of the characters is grumpy.

Enjoy!

Be-Suited CupidCranky Cupid

Corky smiled down on his loyal platoon. “Today’s the day! Today we launch our arrows in a war against loneliness!”

The cupids cheered. Well, most of them:

“Harrumph.”

Corky ignored this. “Today we make the world a happier place!”

“Harrumph!” the heckler repeated. He followed it up with worst swear word he could think of:

“Stinkypooperpot!”

“Gerald!” Corky barked. “Watch your language!”

“Why do we have to wear this?” Gerald grouched.

“You’re not wearing anything.”

“I know! Why do cupids need to be naked? Why must we show the world our creased caboodles? Why do we let everyone peep at our dingle wingle do-dahs?”

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Eye of the Beholder

pixabay - natureworks

pixabay – natureworks

I don’t know why the science of light and color caught my attention. Perhaps it’s the fantastical element of how this intricate world works that intrigues me. The initial leap sent my imagination cartwheeling. Another perceptual shift in reality and possibility. More inspiration.

My first memory of the nature of color is the moment I learned that when we interpret something as being “red,” the object is actually all the colors except “red.” Red is the merely the wavelength of light the object reflects. This rule applies to every person and thing entering our vision – we see reflected light, not what is absorbed, not the “color” they are, not the solid objects at all.

Well, in my little pea-brain, that’s mind-blowing.

pixabay public domain pictures

pixabay public domain pictures

Waves of light are received by the unique cones and rods in our retinas and interpreted by our one-of-a-kind brains. Each eye has about 6-7 million cones that receive intense levels of light and create the sensation of color. Each eye also has about 120 million peripheral rods, which are more sensitive to dim light and transmit black and white information to the brain. This is why nightfall drains the color of the day. It’s not magic after all.

Biologically, what I see is different from what you see. Red to me is different from red to you. It’s all interpretation, perception, not of solid objects and entities but of waves of light. As I look around my living room this morning, I shift my perception, aware that I see only light beams.

It’s all light, all perception, beauty in the eye of the beholder.

So where does this science take me? Straight into fantasy, of course.

pixabaystevebidmead

pixabay – stevebidmead

When writing The Melding of Aeris, I researched the visual perception of animals. In the book, humans have developed the ability to graft animal skin, scale, horns, other stuff, and eyes to their bodies. (I know, weird, but that’s me). I learned that although humans discern a broader spectrum of colors than most mammals, many animals perceive color better than we, see sharper and farther or have vision highly attuned to movement. A variety of birds, fish and insects see the shorter wavelengths of ultraviolet light invisible to the human eye.

Well that’s cool. What else can’t we “see?”

pixabay geralt

pixabay geralt

Centuries after Newton first observed that color is not inherent in objects, our scientists experiment with bending waves of light. Since all we see is reflected light, it makes sense that if we bend it around something, we render that thing invisible. In The Bone Wall, a few characters have developed the ability to manipulate light waves. Of course, to my thinking, if we have the skill to bend light, why not waves of sound and heat as well? I travel that path without a second thought.

I’ve always liked musing about perception, chipping away at the borders of what I imagine is real. I like watching science “discover” what ancient wisdom has been teaching for thousands of years. We all experience those laughable moments when science proves a truth we already know. At the same time, I relish my eye-opening moments when science flints a spark of creativity and leaves me with the question, “What if?”

 

 

Vanished – 50 Word Story

commonswikimediaorg2

commons.wikimedi.org

Blue sails pearl her dreams. Perhaps, he’d become a seafarer without time for farewell. He’d debark with a sack of treasure on his back, moonstones harvested from night mines, urns of green oil smelling like summer grass, a wooden box of promises kept, a smile on his lovesick face.

***

Short and sweet today as the Overlord is joining grammy and grampy for the weekend (his mama has a cold). Bear with me as my blog presence will be somewhat curtailed by a requirement to play 🙂