Writing Prompts

SoCS & WOD Challenges-Digging in the Dirt

Flip Urban for Unsplash

I’m not ready to do it yet, but if I was, I would tackle Linda G Hill’s prompt for SoCS-which is this:

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “comp.” Find a word that starts with or contains “comp” and use it in your post. Enjoy!

-like this: I think digging in the dirt is as therapeutic as writing. That’s why I can hardly wait to get the compost on the bed for the garden, and start the planting. However, I refuse to until the Easter cold snap that I just KNOW is coming is over and there is no more danger of frost.

Last year, we had tomatoes that barely produced, so we need to start them earlier. We had peppers that produced to the point we were freezing some as well as giving them to friends and family. We also had squash and zucchini, but only the latter produced any vegetables.

I don’t know what we will be planting this year, but I have a feeling it will do better because of our compost we’ve been curing for the last year. I know there will be tomatoes, and probably another attempt at the squashes, maybe some habaneros because the ghost peppers were too hot! In fact, does anyone know how to dry and grind the peppers if they have been frozen? We think we’d rather use them as a spice than a fresh or frozen ingredient.

I like to plant flowers and green things too. I want to redo my corner garden, maybe with something fragrant like roses 🌹or gardenias. Hyacinth are nice but they attract so many bees and I don’t want my dogs to get stung. Maybe Jasmine or Freesia? I can’t wait to shop around and plan a new garden.

If David doesn’t replace our worn out decking on the patio soon, I’m going to plant flowers in the open spaces that normally are a catch-all for the leaves, lol! 🤣

Writing, Writing Prompts

WOD Challenge 3-18-22 Balter Like Elaine

Any other Seinfeld fans in the house?

Photo credit: Tenor

As soon as I saw the meaning of today’s Word of the Day- Balter, all I could picture was Elaine in that famous scene where she is dancing to an Earth, Wind, and Fire song, and now every time I hear that song, that is all that comes to mind.

Have you ever danced with careless abandon, like no one is watching? Jay-lyn I’m talking to you, 🤣😂

Similar dance move 🤣

Seriously though, I used to be like that. So much so, that I did the high kicks and everything, thinking everyone was as into watching me as I was having the time of my life while doing it. It wasn’t until I went to a club one night with my brother that I was told I looked like a fool. I didn’t care! I definitely didn’t look like Elaine, but I DID have my own signature moves, and when I was in the service, guys always wanted to dance with me.

Maybe it was cool at the time, or maybe I was the butt of a secret joke, either way, I didn’t let it change me or the way I danced. Plenty of guys wanted pictures with me after seeing me dance, and I still have them. They don’t look like they are making fun of me as far as I can see.

To balter is to “dance clumsily with no particular skill but usually with enjoyment.” Well, I certainly enjoyed myself back then but I thought I had skills and still do. But isn’t enjoyment the bottom line, the real reason we dance to begin with? I like to think so. I sure embarrassed the heck out of my brother, though, and that kinda makes me laugh to this day.

Changing gears and speaking of my brother, yesterday, he invited me to come to his house for lunch and we ate and had a good talk…some more grief therapy for me-and maybe him-too. Then, we got into a sort of biblical conversation and as we were talking, he told me about a very cool app called Verse by Verse Ministry that you can download from the app store that “teaches you God’s word, clearly and boldly in it’s proper historical and theological context, and for the purposes God has ordained: to persuade the unbeliever of the truth of the Gospel.” I am a believer by the way, but it’s good to study the Scripture in any case.

I started on it today with the current chapter and verse, which was Mark Chapter 2:18-22. I don’t know if I want to keep going with that or dive into Revelation, but the beauty is, you can start where you want to. It’s free, and let me tell you, it breaks each scripture down to the point where anyone patient enough to get through each lesson will come away knowing more than they ever thought they would! My lesson today was around an hour long, and I really enjoyed it. I did it while I was doing my Diamond Art instead of watching something on Hulu…certainly a more wholesome choice! (not that watching Hulu is bad)

I encourage anyone who wants to learn more about the Word of God or just wants a spiritual experience to check into it. I have read the Bible, but not this way. This is studying the Bible, there’s a difference! I’m so glad my brother shared it with me, therefore, I’m excited to share it with you.

Have a spectacular weekend everyone! May you be blessed by the grace of God.

Word of the Day Challenge
Writing, Writing Prompts

Masterclass and New Assignment

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Last night was my second class in creative writing at the church’s masterclass.

I have to admit, I almost didn’t go, yet I’m so glad I did. I had not been feeling well yesterday and I now have an appointment with my eye doctor because I am also not seeing well. Anyway, I think I heard the one thing I needed to hear in class last night which might explain why I keep getting so many rejections from the editors I send my work to.

  1. BARF!
  2. Rewrite/revise
  3. Polish

That’s it!

BARF is another way of saying “get it on the page.” I don’t do that. It’s kind of like a brain dump where you take all your ideas and just write them down in no particular order. Then you move on to the next step where you rewrite and revise. I don’t do that enough either. I tend to write a story, edit for basic grammar and punctuation and then I hit send with no real revision. I guess I hate to “kill my darlings” or something, but it must be that to keep on getting rejected as much as I do. (I’m talking about paying markets, not platforms like Medium) Then polish. Nope. I haven’t been doing that either. I write the story and if it moves me, I hit send. UGH! I feel really dumb and kind of full of myself. How could I think I don’t need editing? That is why you should take classes or be involved in a writing group that can give you positive (or negative) feedback.

On top of all that, I have not exactly been following the proper 5-step structure of a short story. More like a 3-step process: Introduce the setting and characters, state the “problem” or conflict, write the ending. NEVERMIND steps 3 and 4; 3 being the stakes are raised and 4 being the climax or big moment. THEN, comes the resolution/reflection or number 5 in the process. I have a lot of work to do.

For next week, we are to write a shorter version of a short story so that all four of us have time to share them. Somewhere around 600-800 words, I would guess. So now I have to create something and I am not good at that. I will give it a shot though. I did share my poem from last week and it was well-received. If I just slow down and take my time, stop worrying that I should be doing something else, I will get it done. And this time, I won’t share it unless it goes over well in class. 😉

I’m also ashamed that I shared the address to my blog without prefacing that it is not always the best example of my writing, it’s more like a mishmash of things. I save creative writing for Medium publications or paying markets and I keep it pretty real here and write about more daily life kinds of things. Although I do share stories and poems every now and then. I need to make more of an effort to get my work in front of you, my fellow bloggers, so you can give me that constructive criticism I obviously need!! I’ll try to do better!

The other important takeaway from the class was that we should never forget “The ultimate job of a story is to entertain.”

With that, I leave you this!


Writing Prompts

WOD Challenge 3-11-22 Curling Up

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It’s cold outside with a wintry mix going on and I’d rather be curled up in bed reading a good book.

However, I have too much to do…or I should be, anyway. I’m up and dressed in any case.

I need to do my exercise, I’ve got three more days to go to make a week in a row, I need to go to the store, because I’m out of almond milk, coconut flakes, low on stick butter, Mio, and peanut butter, but like I said, it’s cold and sleeting outside. I plan on making myself some fat bombs today, since I’m nearly out of sugar-free Russell Stovers, and it’s time to make another pot of doggy stew. See, I got things to do.

But I’d still rather be curled up on the couch with my iPad reading or playing stupid games.

Can you believe I actually made some money this week playing games and taking surveys?? My paypal account is up to $13 and some change, not much, but more than I expected for a few weeks accumulation.

Tomorrow is my birthday and I actually have plans! If the weather doesn’t go too crazy, my bro is taking me to a movie tonight and tomorrow, I’m meeting people for drinks and dinner and a band we all know from our school days. The festivities are to celebrate the band’s March birthdays, but my friend-Elise-and I both are this month too! ☺️ Then Sunday, the family should be over for dinner. I don’t know if the boys will remember it’s my birthday or not, but that’s ok, we will all be together. 😀


Word of the Day Challenge
Writing, Writing Prompts

WOD Challenge 3-9-22 A Surprise Class at Church

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I have a few things to cover today, so let’s dive in!

When we went back to church on Sunday, I opened the bulletin, and there inside was a separate paper detailing the new Masterclasses being offered by the church, one being creative writing! I vowed to sign up immediately, which I did as soon as I went home. The classes are being offered every Tuesday for the next month, and last night was my first one. It was on poetry, but that’s ok, I’ve been writing more poetry than ever since joining Medium several years ago.

I was excited to be doing something not only through my church but in my chosen field. When I got there, we all met in the fellowship hall to eat our brown bag dinners, and then we were led to our prospective classes. (There are several going on, including DIY, Art, and Journaling) I was surprised that our instructor for the Creative Writing class was our associate pastor Holly’s husband. I’d never met him or the three other people in the class, so here is another benefit: getting to know more people at church!

The first thing he talked about was the poetry of two different people so he could compare their styles and give a brief history on both. I was instantly intrigued by the work of Dorothy Parker (the queen of satire) and when I got home, I googled her for more in-depth info. What a woman! For being a poet from the 20s and 30’s era, she was quite an outspoken and brash sort of woman, yet funny too. Check out her poem, Comment:

Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
A medley of extemporanea;
And love is a thing that can never go wrong;
And I am Marie of Romania.

She’s a hoot, isn’t she? Read more here.

The next poet was William Carlos Williams, whose poem was super simplistic, yet said a lot:

This Is Just to Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

What a difference in style and tone, right?! After those two were discussed and their styles explained, we moved on to meter, rhyme, and metaphor. He talked about hymns and how to identify the meter, rhythm, and syllabic structure in each one. I don’t want to bore you with everything, but it was a very interesting class, and we were even given an assignment for next time! I can’t wait!

On a totally different subject, yesterday I got busy cleaning out and straightening a couple of cabinets and the closet in the game room that holds all the boxes we never unpacked, plus a few we brought home from Claudette’s house after she passed away. I was mainly trying to downsize the boxes, which I did, and reduce some clutter. I seem to be in spring cleaning mode. It is probably still me dealing with the grieving process, and that’s ok. It’s better for me to stay busy so I don’t have time to think or dwell on things that make me sad. One good thing that came out of it was that I found another beautiful box I had previously used to hold junk or something, that I can now use to store mementos and pictures of Dad. I already had one for Mom, so this was a perfect find.

The next and hardest task will be to go through pictures and make albums and frame up some pictures to hang up.

In due time. 😉

Word of the Day Challenge