Posted in Post a Day/Week, Writing

Meeting George

Sisterhood “I give up Emma. This place is impossible to find.” Carrianne slumped down into the leather booth and peered at her friend over the table.

“Nothing is impossible!” Emma raised her fist in the air. “We will –“

“Emma!” Carrianne sat up quickly and batted at Emma’s arm. “You don’t have to shout. I’m sitting in front of you.”

Emma smiled sheepishly. “Sorry.”

“You’re forgiven,” Carrianne said while rolling her eyes. “Just remember to use your indoor voice.”

“Yeah, yeah.” Emma waved off Carrianne’s words.

“Excuse me ladies.” An elderly man with coke-bottle glasses stood by the table and handed the girls menus. “Can I get you anything to drink?”

“I’ll have a coffee, black,” Carrianne said with a light smile.

“Do you have milkshakes?” Emma asked as she batted her eyelashes.

“Yes we do.” The man’s voice had a slight country twang to it. “We’ve got vanilla, chocolate or strawberry. I recommend the strawberry as we get them fresh from the field this time of year.”

“Excellent.” Emma peered at the man’s name tag. “George, I will have a strawberry milkshake.”

George left, presumably to make their drinks, and the girls went back to their conversation.

“Do you remember anything about Winterwood?” Emma asked.

Carrianne shook her head. “I was only five. The only thing I remember was one of the older kids kept teasing me. I think it was a boy; Matt or Mark. Something like that. I use to call him the terror.”

Emma giggled. “You? Call someone a terror? Never.”

“Oh, be quiet.” Carrianne looked over at the counter and noticed George staring at them. “People are staring.”

Emma looked around. “No they aren’t. There’s no one here to stare. Pity, I was hoping they would be cute.”

“Not customers. That old man was staring at you.”

“Who? George? He can stare if he wants. He’s sweet.”

Carrianne slapped her forehead. “Emma! We just met the man. How can you know if he’s sweet or a murderous maniac with a chainsaw?”

“Easy, he doesn’t have a chainsaw.”

“That’s because it’s getting repaired; Puts a damper on the killing.” George set a bright pink milkshake in front of Emma and a steaming cup of coffee in front of Carrianne, who had turned red with embarrassment.

“Sorry about that. I’m trying to teach her to be careful around strangers.”

“No offense.” George laughed which made his brown eyes sparkle like melted chocolate. “I grew up with a friend like her. She kept me on my toes before she moved to the city.”

“That’s sad,” Emma said while frowning. “What happened to her?”

“Well, she got married and had a little girl. Settled down better than anyone else I know.”

“That’s ‘cuz she got out all her crazy.” Emma nodded sagely.

Carrianne rolled her eyes. “George, I was wondering if you might help us. We managed to get a little lost.”

“Most people do ‘round here. Where’re ya looking for?”

“Winterwood! Home of adventure!” Emma said between slurps of her milkshake.

“Well, that is a tricky one. Not many people come through looking for that. I reckon you passed it long ago.”

“Thanks, George,” Carrianne said dismissively.

“Now hold on. I didn’t say I couldn’t help. Why are you looking for Winterwood anyway?” George pulled over a chair from a nearby table and sat down.

“Adventure, treasure –“

“My family is from there,” Carrianne interrupted Emma with a cold glance.

“What did you say your name was little one?”

Carrianne’s eyes narrowed as she subtly slipped further into the booth, away from George.

“I didn’t but my family name is Picketts.”

“You’re not Wilhelmina’s daughter by any chance?” George said, his demeanor seeming a lot more friendly.

“Yes, she was the one that told me to come. Why? Did you know her?”

“Bet she’s the friend. Your mom seems like the crazy in her youth type.”

“She was.” George laughed. “Use to talk to her all the time. But I haven’t heard from her in over a year now. Funny that she sent you. I remember her saying that she would never send her Carrie back to Winterwood.”

“You haven’t heard from her because she died,” Carrianne stated. “She had cancer.”

“May she rest in peace.” George made the sign of the cross on his body.

Carrianne frowned. “You’re catholic? I never would have expected that.”

“Because I work on the reservation or because I look Native? I am a Catholic Native though. I even go to Mass twice a week.”

“No, it’s not either of those things. It’s just something Mom said about Winterwood. I thought everyone around here was part of a crazy religious cult. You seem surprisingly normal.”

George laughed and stood up. “Sit tight, I’ll draw you a map and make you some breakfast. It would have been a long drive from the city to get here.”

Posted in A.P. Roberts, Post a Day/Week

Happy Canada Day!

Today is Canada Day. Soon the fireworks will go off and I will happily be watching from the apartment window with my Sweety.

But until that time I am celebrating by finishing the planning for my Camp NaNo story. Rather than trying to write a completely new story, I’ve decided to go with The Sisterhood storyline that I started through Prompts for the Promptless.

I realize that today starts Camp Nano and I should be writing instead of planning. But I’m planning in a very lazy way and writing would take more time away from the celebrations. I can’t run the risk of getting caught up in writing and forgetting about the fireworks.

So, for all my fellow Canadians have a happy Canada Day. For my fellow writers who are taking part in the Camp NaNo challenge I wish you luck on your word counts.

Posted in Writing

Watching Clouds

Watching CloudsIf anyone were to come looking for her, they would find her watching clouds. She had wanted to watch clouds ever since she could remember. If she thought about it, she had wanted to watch clouds since she had first read about it in the shelter library.

She never thought that she would be one of the lucky few allowed out of the shelter. She never thought that she would be lucky enough to see what the world looked like without watching movies or reading books.

Of course, if she wasn’t a biosphere engineer, she wouldn’t have had the chance to walk in the open air. If she hadn’t specialized in atmospheric chemicals she wouldn’t have been chosen to fix the bio-analysis unit. If she hadn’t taken the courses in bio-chem hazards she would be relaying the information to someone else through the communications units.

Unfortunately, the atmospheric chemicals were at an unexpected high. The chemicals had already eaten through half of her bio-chem suit by the time she finished with the repairs.

She may have been able to return to base with the suit intact, but she had been ordered to stay. They needed to know that the repairs would hold. Checking the repairs would take at least another hour

By that time, the suit would be more of a decoration than a barrier. Parts of the suit were already becoming transparent, disappearing before her eyes.

And so she decided to watch the clouds. To watch the colours swirl in the sky, dark colours of blue and purple mixed with lighter shades of red and white.

She could feel the chemicals burning her skin. She knew that she didn’t have long to live. But as she lie down on the hillside, she wasn’t afraid of death. Because, in this last day, she had finally lived.

Planner or Pantser?

I was recently going through Limyaael’s Rants (which I highly suggest to anyone who is interested in writing) and came across one about writing without an outline. Which, of course, made me think about planning versus pantsing when writing.

For anyone who knows me, I am a planner. When I try to write without a plan, I write maybe a paragraph before I start making an outline.

I’m not saying that all of my outlines are complex with no room for derivation. Some of my outlines consist of three lines or a beginning, middle and end. But they always give me a sense of where I am going.

Some of my outlines are for a complete work while others are only good for a scene or two. In fact, the majority of my outlines are only good for a few scenes at best.

I suppose that, by creating outlines for only a few scenes, I am trying to be a pantser. However, it is ingrained into my being that lists and plans are required for life. So, by making smaller outlines, my story can retain the spontaneity that pantser stories have while keeping the structure of an outline.

For this month’s Camp Nano, I am trying to fly by the seat of my pants. I am trying to completely avoid writing out any sort of outline. It’s not going as well as I would like but I’m hoping that I can at least get through the month.

So what about you? Are you a planner or a pantser when it comes to your writing?

Posted in A.P. Roberts, Challenges, Photo

A Day In The Life: Photo Edition

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I realize that I don’t have the most exciting life. Especially now that Scott and I are waiting on his bone marrow transplant. Most days are either spent in the house or at the hospital. However, as I am a big kid, I usually find ways to amuse myself and considering Camp NaNobegins in 4 hours and 40 minutes, I am even busier than normal.

Written as a response to the Weekly Photo Challenge: A Day In My Life