Wednesday, June 16, 2021

WEP: Red or Green?


Red or Green was chosen for the Encouragement award by the WEP team. Thanks so much and congrats to the others. It was great to read new voices in the challenge this month and I hope those writers continue to join in the fun!


It started in her toes.

A tingle that ran from the baby toe on her right and grew across her body until it hit the final toe on the left.

The next wave reached her ankles, then legs. Each wave of tingles higher and stronger until her entire body shook with them. And it took only seconds.

When she’d lived on planet, she’d experienced earthquakes. This disorientation was similar but the specific directionality differed.

Momentum wanted Liane to move left, but the cause had to be on her right. At the rate the waves were growing, if she didn’t find and fix the cause soon, she’d be space dust before she handed over command to the next shift.

By the time she reached the engine room, the deck was buckling beneath her feet, comms were inoperative, and panic was trying to claw its way up her throat.

The door had been cracked and as she approached, the deck rolled in another wave and the door fractured into pieces.

The engine room itself was unrecognizable. Metal lifting and rolling. 

Screens shattered. And bodies trapped in the debris.

Grief and despair battled against her control but she moved forward into the chaos.

Walls weren’t supposed to buckle, floors weren’t supposed to roll.

And the engine wasn’t supposed to pulsing with an angry orange glow.

Nothing she’d seen in any of her decades had prepared her for this and Liane wasted precious seconds simply staring.

The next wave threw her into the bulkhead and brought her focus back. From this angle she could see the body of the engineer, arm outstretched toward the wall.

Crawling to the body of her friend, Liane saw he’d been reaching for a panel with two buttons.

Engineering gobbledygook covered the wall and she wished she’d paid more attention during those classes.

More waves. More cracks and breaks. More screams and anguish.

Red or green? Stop or go?

Which button was he trying to reach?

The entire ship shuddered around her.

Liane closed her eyes and pressed red.


This story is part of the WEP Challenge.

Click on the link to read the other entries.

Have you joined the challenge yourself? Jump on in -  the people are awesome. I've learned a ton by participating!

WEP Great Wave

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

IWSG & Marinating Stories

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.

IWSG badge

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! 

June 2 question - For how long do you shelve your first draft, before reading it and re-drafting? Is this dependent on your writing experience and the number of stories/books under your belt?

I NEED some time away from my draft. It has to marinate for a good while (about a month) before I set eyes on it again.

I have a bouncy brain that is often working on (worrying about) multiple stories at a time, so this is pretty easy to do.

At the moment, I have:

  • Bloo Moose #8 - awaiting final polish
  • New series #1 - awaiting a rewrite after a critique on draft 1
  • New series #2 - first draft about 1/2 complete
  • Bloo Moose #9 - making planning notes in Scrivener on plot & characters
Of course, there are also main characters for Bloo Moose #10 and New Series #3 & 4 who are walking around in my head letting me know who they are and what their stories will be about. That doesn't count Future Series characters knocking on my skull.

An author's head is never lonely!!!

So, with my Tigger Brain, I focus on one story's needs at a time. Then while that sits and waits for the next step, I do the next round of work on the next story. That gives me the 3 or 4 weeks I need away from the first story to see it with clearer eyes.

So far, my pattern has been pretty consistent - basically 3 or 4 stories in various stages at a time.

How about you? Do you have a Tigger Brain? Or, does you brain let you focus on one story from start to finish (I can't even imagine how that works!)? Anyone else have a head chock full of characters?

Reaching For Family is up for preorder at most retailers.
Google Play & Eden Books will be up soon!

Jenna learned early that family wasn’t safe. As Bloo Moose’s vet, she’s determined to find her patients loving homes even if she knows the same isn’t possible for her.
Noah Washington promised his adoptive parents he’d save their farm and now he’s bought almost all of it back. Only one acre to go but it belongs to a woman who makes his owned guarded heart seem vulnerable.
After a decade as an Army Ranger, Noah’s alpaca are supposed to ensure him of a peaceful life but someone is targeting them. Or Jenna. Or him.
As the danger escalates, Jenna and Noah build a wary trust, but they’ll need to learn the true meaning of family if they want the farm—and themselves—to survive.