February Speculative Fiction Round-Up

Pixabay image by Marianne Sopala

Thank you to everyone who participated! Great stories and to those who stretched their imaginations, Congratulations. ❤ Below is the round-up of all the February poems, flashes, short stories, and some artwork too! If I missed yours for some reason, please add a link in the comments and I’ll happily reblog. I invite everyone to enjoy some unique stories and meet some wonderful writers. I’ll post March’s prompt on the 1st!

February Round-up

Pensivity – of Mice and Elephants

Frank Prem – a surprise (I do not like)

Ethan Eagar – This Spells Trouble

Jane Dougherty – A better place

Michnavs – Thump-poem

Jordy Fasheh- Lord Ganapati and his brother Lord Kartikeya

Cosistories – An Elephant Never Forgets

Sadje – A mis-adventure

Trent McDonald – When the Elephant bumps the Mouse House – Chapter 1

Violet Lentz – Another crack at it

Ellen Best – The Storm

Bette Stevens – So Long Sweet Dreams

Anita Dawes – Snow Storm

Dorinda Duclos – Up a Tree

Carol Forrester – The Ever-Changing Beast

Jessica Bakkers – Damaris the Elephant Goddess

Carol – A Trumpeting Sound

Frank Prem – We who are the mice (will dance)

Greg – The Magic of Whimsey

Sonia – Aiming for the Stars

Himani – The Kingdom of Elephantine

Sally Cronin – The “1812 Overture”

Barbara – The Case

Len – The Classroom Circus

Helene Vaillant – Disruption

Balroop Singh – Who is Weak?

Teagan Geneviene – Atonement Ganesha

Anneberly Andrews – A New Home

Andrea Stoeckel – Gesundheit

J. R. Shull – The Stormbringer

Louise – The Elephant in the Room

Robert Goldstein – Anjana and Trina

Zina – Elephant

Kerfe – Removing the Obstacles

Geoff LePard – House Proud

Betul Erbasi – When Friends Need Help

Hugh Roberts – The Battle

HRR Gorman – Elephant and the Lord of All

G.M. Cleary – Swiss

Marje Mallon – A Very Unusual House Warming Party

Jackie – The Gobi

Kelvin Knight – Elephant in a Snowstorm

Miriam Hurdle – The Land of Sweet

Ritu Bhathal – Random Elef-Act of Kind-Mouse

Colleen Chesebro – “Green Fairies”

Venky – A Melting Conscience

Fandango – Guess Who’s Coming

D. Wallace Peach – The Elephant Child

 

 

8 Reasons to love a Ninny Rhino

I told my husband it’s time for a mini-WriMo.

A ninny rhino?

No, a mi-ni-wri-mo.

He lost interest at that point, but maybe you want to know more.

What is a Mini-WriMo?

I first heard the term Mini-WriMo years ago after nearly collapsing from exhaustion after a full-fledged NaNoWriMo. And since that mention, I do various versions of mini writing bursts throughout the year.

It’s basically a time-limited, personal challenge to focus on writing. The best part? You set your own goals based on what’s achievable for you and what you want to accomplish.

Why does it work?

1. Because it’s supremely flexible. What we write, how we write, and the needs of our projects are all different and constantly evolving. A mini-WriMo can be whatever you wish based on your goals.

2. You pick the time period – a week, two weeks, a month.

3. You decide on the measure – a certain number of words, a finished outline, completed character bios, or an hour of writing 3 times a week. Perhaps daily journaling to brainstorm ideas. You can write a paragraph a day, or give yourself editing or blogging goals. How about developing a marketing plan (something I’ve been meaning to do for 10 years!).

4. You can under-promise and overachieve. If you think you can consistently write 1K words a day, make your goal 500. If you go over, that’s just fine. You want to make your goal easy to accomplish.

5. No one needs to validate your efforts – you’re only accountable to yourself, your muse, and the writing gods.

6. It can loosen a block. If you’re feeling blocked, it forces you to write at least a little bit, and sometimes, that’s all it takes to get the keyboard clacking.

7. It’s “official!” You get to explain to your family your “official” and “very important” challenge that you committed to as well as your “critical” time requirements.  This is extremely helpful in my family. If I simply want to write, I don’t get the same kind of time and space as when I sigh and inform them that I’ve made an “official commitment.”

8. You get a badge – even for an attempt to meet your goals. Here it is for your downloading pleasure (pixabay images):

Why am I telling you this?

Because I’m tending to a Ninny Rhino for the month of March. Want to join in? At the end of the month, I’ll set up a post so we can all share our successes in the comments. 🙂

 

 

Diana’s February Story: The Elephant Child

Pixabay image by Marianne Sopala

I actually recorded this if you want to listen along.

The Elephant Child

by D. Wallace Peach

An elephant child, carefree and wild
Walked into the wintry woods
He followed fox tails and jackrabbit trails
Ignoring his mother’s “shoulds”

Of course, he got lost and chilled by the frost
As night began to fall
To his rump he sunk and tooted his trunk
But no one answered his call

Oh, that cold night, to the elephant fright
The clouds began to snow
He sniffled and shivered, shook and quivered
His nose he needed to blow

The blizzard swirled and snowflakes twirled
He plodded on wobbly knees
His head grew stuffy, the snow so fluffy
He blew out a honking sneeze

Losing hope, he started to mope
When in an evergreen tree
He spied a house, just right for a mouse
And he let go a trumpet of glee

Alas the place hadn’t the space
To fit an elephant’s bulk
The lost little guy plunked down for a cry
His head hung low in a sulk

The house was quite nice, chock full of mice
Who whispered quiet and low
What was that? Did you hear a cat?
Lurking out in the snow?

Across the wood floor, they dashed to the door
Flicked on the outside light
In a rodent flurry, they squeaked and scurried
An elephant! What a sight!

Let’s offer a seat for a tea and a treat
Said a mouse who felt overly bold
I think he is lost so covered in frost
And surely his ears are cold.

Full of care and courage to spare
They crawled out on a limb
They slipped on the ice those brave little mice
And their mission turned quite grim

But they held on tight with all their might
And called to the elephant
Come in from the storm, come in and get warm
But the elephant said I can’t!

Though I’m only four, I’ll bust the door
I’ll break the branch from the tree
I’ll crack your stairs and squash your chairs
I’m far too heavy, you see.

You have to try, hurry in and dry
Get up! Please give it a go!
The elephant groaned, he mumbled and moaned
Though he longed to get out of the snow.

With strength galore, he pushed on the door
The tree branch started to bend
The home nearly fell, and the mice had to yell
Please stop, or we’re end-over-end!

The elephant frowned as the flakes tumbled down
His trunk a bright shade of blue
Oh, what a glitch, mice-whiskers did twitch.
What were the rodents to do?

Now, due to their size, mice aren’t very wise
Their brains are as tiny as seeds
They may not be smart, but they have lots of heart
And sometimes that’s all that you need.

They sketched out a plan as only mice can
And piled his back with sweaters
And blankets and sheets, and curtains with pleats
Tiny coats of wool and black leather

With the elephant warm, and safe from all harm
They dialed their old-fashioned phone
We’re seeking his mother, a father or brother!
This elephant’s all alone!

Well what do you know, because of the snow
His parents were suffering fits
They dashed to him fast and hugged him at last
And stayed for some tea and biscuits.

Thus ends the plight of the elephant’s night
Be careful when out in the woods
You might meet some mice who are caring and nice
But just in case…
Remember your mother’s shoulds.

Aether Prompt Winner: D. Wallace Peach

For all you speculative-fiction-prompt writers, Jason runs a micro-fiction (99-word or less) weekly prompt. He graciously gave me the win on this one. Stop by his site to read his stories and check out the weekly prompts. 🙂 Thanks, Jason!

Aethereal Engineer

The ever awesome D. Wallace Peach of Myths of the Mirror has won the January 23rd Aether Prompt with a haunting little passage about going home…

I couldn’t remember most of the day or when the blizzard started. But I knew my plane home from the war was leaving soon, and I’d be mighty sorry to miss it. My keys weren’t in my pocket, but my papers were—name, address, serial number—tucked there by my children. “Just show them to the officer,” they said.

Still in slippers, my feet ached with cold. I needed my boots, but there wasn’t time now. The airfield lights glowed through the snow, my plane’s props whirling. The old boys greeted me beneath the white wings and flew me home.

Congratulations! Now you’re in the running for the 2019 AETHEREAL ENGINEER WRITER SUPPORT PRIZE PACKAGE! How might she, or possibly you, perchance win such fabled treasure…

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Procrastination Plus!

Arrgh!

I’ve been procrastinating regarding my writing for the first time in 10 years. Why? Partly because of this dang speculative fiction prompt challenge I started. It’s not the busy-ness that’s holding me up. It’s that the responses are so creative and fun, and I’m all over the blogosphere reading and visiting old and new friends.

In terms of writing, my most productive time of day is first thing in the morning when I can indulge in big chunks of creative time. And here I sit at 5:00 AM writing this post… procrastinating!

I did finish the first draft of Book 2 in my current WIP trilogy, but it took me a month to write the last three chapters – instead of a week – ugh.  It was more fun to play with cover ideas. I can do that for days on end.

I don’t know the titles yet  – these are place-holders – and I’ll probably have covers done professionally, so this very likely is just more procrastination!

(I haven’t purchased these images, (thus the watermark). I certainly will if I decide to use them).

Okay, enough procrastinating, Diana. Time to start on Book 3. Knuckle under and get cracking! Or maybe I’ll quickly check on the blog first… See what I mean? Arrgh! Lol.

How do you procrastinate, and however do you get back on track?

 

Faded Valentines #Tanka Tuesday

pixabay

Faded Valentines

glued
glittered
valentines
gifts for mommy
scribbled words of love
fly from children’s fingers
to rest in attic boxes
while affections stray to others
and in the dawn of a winter’s day
she unfolds her faded hearts, loved anew

**

In honor of Valentine’s Day, an etheree for
Colleen’s #tanka Tuesday.
No prompt words this week.

**

And a bonus!
My Grandson’s Valentine’s Day Poem
(age 5)

Love is red
Love makes me happy
Love is connected to peace
Love is about Martin Luther King
I love my family
more than infinity

 

Up a Tree ~ #poetry #SpeculativeWriting

A third poem for the prompt today from Dorinda. Enjoy the kindness. 🙂

Night Owl Poetry - Dorinda Duclos

Diana, of Myths of the Mirror has a new feature on her blog called, “New Year, New Feature: a Speculative Fiction Writing Prompt.”  Please visit the link above to find out more about the challenge, then get to it!

I bet you thought they would frighten me

All those white mice, nestled in an old tree

But let me tell you, how they got up there

This is a scene, most think would be rare

I heard them holler, so I came, like thunder

Buried in the snow, was a house, gone under

I had to figure out a way, to help save the mice

There wasn’t much time, I couldn’t think twice

I picked up the house, and held it in my trunk

Lifted it up to the tree, dropped it down, plunk

Straightened it, carefully, in the bend of a branch

Those little mice, still, on top…

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