“You Call this a Vacation?” #amwriting Friday Fictioneers

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PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bulltot

 

“This used to be a hospital?”  Roma asked, pictures flashing through his head.

“Yes, in fact…” the guide continued.

“Big deal,”  Billy grunted.  He should’ve known better than to come all the way here with Roma and his hippy mother and foreign dad, from, where was it again?  To stay in a room with no cable t.v., no pool, no cell service…

“I love History!”  Roma jogged over to a tour guide in costume.

“Let me tell you the horrors of this inner chamber!” The man said, ghoulishly.

An hour later, Billy emerged from the building a converted History buff.

~100 words~

 

**Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle at https://rochellewisoff.com/ and restarts every Friday with a new photo prompt.  Flash fiction stories are to be 100 words or less, with a beginning, middle, and an end.  Proper credit must be given to the owner of the photo.  Add your own by clicking the Inlinks button at the Sept. 1 post at rochellewisoff.com.  Thanks for visiting my blog!

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#WeekendCoffeeShare. Who Says I Can’t Still Vacation? #amwriting

cappuccino-1149061_1280 Images via Pixabay.com

Welcome to the #WeekendCoffeeShare, hosted by Diana at parttimemonsterblog.com!  If we were having coffee today, on 8/13, I’d tell you…

Summer’s over, but I can still visit Endless Summer in my mind!  I’ve been back to work this past week, getting ready for the new school year, trying to stay on the positive bus.  I know how to do it, so I’m going to try.  For me, it certainly involves relaxing, getting away (even if only in my imagination), and to avoid workplace negativity/ burnout or dwelling on national and world news (Ugh).  So, this morning for coffee, I’m visiting Italy with a dark roast and a bit of almond milk with sweetener.   Yes, it’s 11 a.m. and I’m still working on my coffee. Don’t judge! I like where I am.  So, in my imagination, I’m sitting, sipping my coffee and staring out at this.  Ahh.

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In reality, I’m sitting here choosing that as my reality by using my words and my keyboard.  You see how this writing thing works?  It has saved my life on occasion.

I must confess, I’m drinking coffee late because I slept in due to being out last night dancing with friends.  One of them was in town so I knew I’d see her and a few other mutual friends.  My boyfriend and I met them.  It was a great escape, talking about non-work stuff, watching a crowd of people I don’t know, who all seem impossibly younger than I but not caring or worrying that I look a fool when I hear a song I’ve got the nerve to dance to.  I  know, that seems like a run-on sentence, right?  I’ll leave it be this time.  Anyway, wearing sneakers helped a lot.  I’m at an age where comfort is key, and a t-shirt, sneakers, jeans combo is my go-to attire.

Funny, I was going to mention how I am empty in the writing area lately, but it is doing me right today.  I don’t know if you like it, but I like where it’s taking me.  Yes, my thoughts seem a little disorganized, and I apologize.  Summer left me unfocused, but I really needed to relax.  The writing I’m doing right now is helping me keep my state of mind positive.  The purposeful writing that I need to do to get my ideas channeled into writing projects will likely come when it truly feels like fall.

Since summer’s over, and fall is on its way, let me share my letter to fellow teachers.  I see an epidemic with new teachers and some veterans that leaves them with little personal life, children who long for them to come home, or neglected friendships and relationships.  Some of them work during the summer to set up a room, only to find they were re-assigned to a different school.  Others are just so tired that they take it personally when kids don’t respond to them (the latter is me; I did that).   Really, those long days will happen in the fall, when you have to reach a parent right away or some other urgency occurs.  Right now it is too soon to stress out.  So, here it is:

 

Dear teacher,
Yes, your classroom looks good enough. Go home! Yes, you’ll likely forget some little detail. It means you’re like the rest of us. Go home and remember you’re a human being with friends, family, hobbies. Relax. It will make your first day smile much more genuine when you meet those kids.
Signed, 
A 17 year veteran teacher who has been there.

 

I plan to be the teacher who is all about positive energy this year, and it will happen because my brain is calm and relaxed.  That’s my goal.  I’m also planning on things going smoothly with the family, so that my brain energy is focused on being all that I can be for myself and for the needs of others.  Yet, if someone in my family needs me, this calm state of mind could only be helpful at that point, as well.

Have a great week, everyone!

**Please visit Diana’s blog at parttimemonsterblog.com to check out other Coffee Shares or to share your own by clicking on the blue linky button.  You may also feel free to leave me a comment about your week, your taste in coffee, vacation experiences, writing progress, etc.

Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. “My Friend.”

Photo credit, (c) Louise at The Story Teller’s Abode

We’d been friends for many years.  That year, our families took a vacation together.  The sights were beautiful.

Michael was not sleeping.  He was constantly on the go.  His dad wouldn’t let him go alone for fear he’d not return, so I tried to keep up with him.  Once, his dad accompanied him, and they’d both come back angry.

I was tired.

It was sunrise.  He grasped my hand and raced us toward the water.  “A boat!  We’ll sail in a boat!”

He looked crestfallen as we saw that the tide was low.  Michael sat in the wet sand.  “I’m sorry.  I think I’m out of control.  I never asked what you want to do.”

I smiled.  “I want to sit still with you, and watch the tide come in.”

“Still my friend?”

“Yes, still friends, Michael.”

He put his arm around me and said, “Thank you for looking out for me.”

I sat pondering, knowing that someday I’d need my space, hoping he’d understand.

~The End~

 

165 words

A prompt photo will be provided each Monday pm to be used as a base to your story. Please include photo prompt with your story.

2. Linking for this challenge begins on Monday pm and runs to the following Monday pm.

3. Please credit photo to photographer.

4. The story word limit is 100 – 150 words (+ – 25 words). Please try and stay within this limit.

5. Please indicate the number of words in your story at the end of your story. (It doesn’t count into the amount of words).

6. This is a flash fiction challenge (stories in 100-175 words or less) and each story should have a beginning, a middle, and an end. 

You can join the flash fiction fun at flashfictionforaspiringwriters.wordpress.com

FFfAW: A New Alliance, Flash Fiction

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Photo credit:  Louise at Storyteller’s Abode

She walked over and Henry bristled.  “I’m here to be alone,” he said, curtly.

“Oh, I’ll just have a seat.  You won’t bite.  I can tell. Your body language says it all.”  She set down her huge bag and sat, carefully holding her dress down.  “You’re definitely overdressed.”

“So are you,” Henry said, realizing he’d been sized up.  He moved his equally stuffed bag to the other side.

“How long since you cut yourself loose of your chains?” She asked.

“A year,” Henry replied, smiling.  He thought he’d figured her out.  “How about you?  A pretty young woman, walking the beach, overstuffed bag.  Do you sleep here?”

“Do I look crumpled and wrinkly? Of course not.  This is how I pass the days.  Two years.”

“Sorry, no offense.”

“Okay.  Are you free for lunch?”  She replied.

“Why not?”

Two years and twenty beaches later, Henry was still wandering the shores with Kaitlynn.

 

**This Flash Fiction challenge is hosted by Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers, https://flashfictionforaspiringwriters.wordpress.com/2017/05/22/fffaw-challenge-week-of-may-23-2017/

How it works:  A prompt photo will be provided each Tuesday to be used as a base to your story. Please include photo prompt with your story.   Linking for this challenge begins on Tuesday and runs to the following Monday evening.   Please credit photo to photographer.  The story word limit is 100 – 150 words (+ – 25 words). Please try and stay within this limit.

Please check out other stories inspired by this prompt.  I hope you like what I cooked up.  No two are ever alike!

Summer Time Promises

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I woke up before 7 this morning.  The trouble is, I was up until 12:00 last night and I was tired.  The bright sunlight was hitting my sensitive eyes, and even though I still saw faces of my dream people from last night, my brain was telling me, “You can’t sleep much longer.”  It’s just as well.  Those dream faces were spooky.  So maybe I don’t need to get thicker drapes after all!  I certainly need to re-adjust my sleep habits.  Lack of sleep can make a person anxious.  I’d much rather wake up calm, feeling well-rested.  As an educator, I get the summer off (Or, I work a fun job for the summer, but not this year).  This leads into my first promise to myself.  I am creating a list of promises that I must keep this summer, since they are all related to my mental and physical health.  Putting them in writing is the first step to making them a reality.  So, here they are:

  1.  Start going to bed earlier.  My son will be getting up early for work anyway, so I might as well.  Plus, if I get up earlier, I can get in on the beauty of morning sunlight!
  2. Witness at least one sunrise this summer.  It could be on a walk with my dog, or an early trip to the beach, very early, that is.
  3. Since I am bothered by the morning light in my eyes, having a bedroom that gets light from the east in the a.m., I won’t write (or edit) as much at that time; I think I’ll get myself on a schedule, and these morning hours would be great for, an outdoor walk with the dog!  Reading on the treadmill at the gym! Reading on the couch! Maybe I’ll watch my X-files reruns or Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix in the other room.  That’s just a few.
  4. Cleaning and organizing around the house.  Because of writing my latest ebook and setting a goal that my pride wouldn’t let me forget, I kind of let a few things go.  It’s time to sweep up again, to say the least!
  5. Yoga, twice a week, or more
  6. Work on the 200 page manuscript I hope to publish in a year
  7. Blog more regularly.  I’d like to contribute to Jacqueline’s Thursday “Around the Neighborhood” photo posts! (She is the blogger behind acookingpotandtwistedtales.com)
  8. Send a short story to a paying publication
  9. Get a little sun, without getting sunburned
  10. Fun!  Hear an awesome live band
  11. That spa day I have been putting off
  12.  Spend social time with some friends I haven’t spent time with in a while
  13. Dance.  Even if just once!

14. Number 14 is pretty ambitious and I may have to let it go if it doesn’t work out.  My 20 year old son does not converse with me much anymore.  I would like to get him to read one of my stories, and/or, get him to perhaps write a story of his own.  He has a way with words, and the imagination, but it has been seriously blocked for a few years.  The other option is to have him help contribute to my manuscript, because I am writing an explosion scene and really want to get it right!  He has read all sorts of military dramas and told me he’d be able to explain it.

15. Let’s not forget:  reading!  I am part of a book club.  I love to read.  Summer is the best time to do this!

16. This follows on the tail of #15, because reading is just about the only thing I do without trying to multi-task.  I want to spend more time giving all of my attention to doing one thing, and doing it well.  Be it writing, promoting my writing, cooking dinner, and talking on the phone (I have to get better about that)!  I will be so much more relaxed if I can follow through on this goal, even if just for the summer.

17.  Get a passport to replace the one that expired years ago.  This is important to my mental health, because it is part of a dream.  I want to travel abroad.  Maybe this one little step will motivate me to work and save for it.  It most certainly is a practice in optimism!

Is that all?  Well, I am sure something else will be added, but I have to make sure I meet all of these first!