Archive | February 2016

Living in Nature

How often do you notice the tree just beyond the gas station? The vineyards that march along beside the road, the green carpeting blanketing the ground?

So many times, I’m just driving. I see it, but don’t really SEE it. I don’t appreciate the beauty of it. Because, well… because I’m used to it.

I am so lucky to travel so many country roads, full of beautiful scenery, both at the start and the end of my day. It takes me about 15 minutes of driving on those country roads to get to the freeway.

And yet, i stopped really seeing what’s around me.

Recently, one of my friends tagged me on the 7 days of Nature challenge on Facebook (**hi Rie!**). I love it. I could just use one of my many, many pictures from the beach. Instead, I started opening my eyes.

Day 1, I posted a picture of the bark on the pine tree in our front yard. It was very pretty, different…

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Day 2’s post got ate my my iPhone, so i used the back up of one of my beach photos… and then they were both there. It was of a very cool tree by the gas station where I go in the morning. Friday’s got eaten completely, a flower blooming unexpectedly.

Today’s picture? Well… it was from a Mini Hike the boyo’s and I took (the princeling and his cousin). About 5 minutes, like I said a mini hike. But so pretty!

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The mini hike was because we were going to a museum on free museum day… along with everyone else is the whole area. But the hike from the overflow parking lot to the museum? A nice little treat.

Most of the time, Facebook feels kind of disconnected from real life. But this challenge? It’s brought me back to looking for the beauty in every day life.

And, it brought me back to a place that centers me. This morning, during Mommy time, I took the time to go to the river and… breathe.

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Flash Fiction Contest

Hello, my lovelies! I know many of you write, whether to publish or just for fun right now. Why not get your feet wet with a Flash Fiction Contest, sponsored by Mocha Memoirs Press? It’s for Women in Horror Month, but it is open to all writers. Information on the contest and rules are below.

Hope to see your work soon!

Good luck!!

 

Women in horror month:

February Flash Fiction Contest

February is Women in Horror Month, and we here at Mocha Memoirs Press love our ladies of horror! In celebration of “Ghoul Power,” MMP is hosting a February Flash Fiction contest! Flash fiction is quickly becoming popular on the eBook scene. They’re super short pieces (usually less than 1000 words) that you can read on your phone, tablet, or eReader while you’re waiting your turn at the salon, stuck in traffic, or right before bed. So here’s how it works:

  1. Write a short horror story with a female POV character that’s 1000 words or less.
  2. Submit your story to mochamemoirs.marketing@gmail.com with WIH FLASH FICTION_Title_YourName in the subject line (Example: Re: WIH FLASH FICTION_BathtubOfDestiny_AlexandraChristian) by February 15, 2016. Please take note that all stories must be submitted as a Word document attachment!
  3. All stories will be posted on the Mocha Memoirs Press blog**:  http://mochamemoirspress.blogspot.com/  by Feb. 17th.
  4. Our panel of judges will choose the top ten finalists’ stories by Feb. 22nd. Voting will open on Feb. 23rd, allowing readers to vote for their favorite finalists.
  5. Grand Prize Winner: $20 Amazon Gift Card.
  6. All TOP TEN FINALISTS will have their stories featured in a promotional mini-anthology used to promote Mocha Memoirs Press.

Even though it is Women in Horror month, authors of all genders may submit. Just remember:  FEMALE PROTAGONISTS! So there, that’s not so complicated! Now, the submission window is narrow, so get to work on those stories!

** Please note that all standard MMP guidelines concerning content apply.  While this is horror, stories that feature explicit descriptions of rape, bestiality or abuse will not be accepted. Also stories that glorify violence, racism, or misogyny will not be accepted. Violence and sex are acceptable but make them integral to the plot. Remember, these stories are for Women in Horror Month and therefore we are all about empowering women!

About our “Ladies of Horror” Panelists…

Eden Royce: Eden Royce is descended from women who practiced root, a type of conjure magic in her native Charleston, South Carolina. She now lives in Kent, The Garden of England, and writes stories loosely based on her childhood. She has had over a dozen short stories published in various anthologies and her current release, Spook Lights: Southern Gothic Horror was on the Horror Writers’ Association’s recommended reading list for 2015. Eden is one of the writers for The 7 Magpies project, a first of its kind: a short horror film anthology written and directed entirely by black women.

 

She is also the horror submissions editor for Mocha Memoirs Press where she conceived and edited several anthologies, one of which is The Grotesquerie, twenty-one horror short stories written by women. She also writes a regular feature for Graveyard Shift Sisters, a site dedicated to purging the black female horror fan from the margins, where she interviews female authors and reviews their latest work.

 

In her dwindling free time, she is a proofreader, book reviewer, and ice cream connoisseur. Learn more about her at edenroyce.com.

Selah Janel: Selah Janel has been blessed with a giant imagination since she was little and convinced that fairies lived in the nearby state park or vampires hid in the abandoned barns outside of town. The many people around her that supported her love of reading and curiosity probably made it worse. Her e-books The Other Man, Holly and Ivy, and Mooner are published through Mocha Memoirs Press. Lost in the Shadows, a collection of short stories celebrating the edges of ideas and the spaces between genres was co-written with S.H. Roddey. Her work has also been included in The MacGuffin, The Realm Beyond, Stories for Children Magazine, The Big Bad: an Anthology of Evil, The Big Bad 2, The Grotesquerie, and Thunder on the Battlefield: Sorcery. Olde School is the first book in her series, The Kingdom City Chronicles, published through Seventh Star Press. She likes her music to rock, her vampires lethal, her fairies to play mind games, and her princesses to hold their own. Catch up with Selah at http://www.selahjanel.wordpress.com

S.H. Roddey:  South Carolina native S.H. Roddey has been writing for fun since she was a child and still enjoys building worlds across the speculative fiction spectrum filled with mystery and intrigue.  She brings to the literary world a unique blend of humor, emotion, and wild ideas filled with dark themes and strong characters. She is a voracious reader, wannabe chef, and video game addict with two full-time jobs: administrative professional and mom to a cat, teenager, and pair of precocious little girls. She also enjoys being married to her best friend and full-time muse and moonlighting as romance author Siobhan Kinkade. Visit her at http://www.shroddey.com.

Sumiko Saulson: Born to African-American and Russian-Jewish parents, she is a native Californian, and has spent most of her adult life in the Bay Area. She is a horror blogger and journalist, graphic novelist, horror, sci-fi and dark fantasy writer. Her works include “60 Black Women in Horror,”“Death’s Cafe: Ashes and Coffee,” “Solitude,” “Warmth”, “Happiness and Other Diseases,” “Somnalia,” “Insatiable,”  the Young Adult horror novella series “The Moon Cried Blood”, and the short story anthology “Things That Go Bump in My Head.” Visit her at http://www.SumikoSaulson.com

Writer Shame

I was filled with writerly shame today. Not imposed by an outside source, no one made fun of me.

I realized that my 9year old son’s “book” had more words to it than mine did. And, to add insult to injury? He has me type it for him.

Forehead, meet the smack!

I changed that tonight, btw. But it’s so easy to let our writing time get chipped away by other things. And while yes, my son is important… God, yes, he’s the most important thing.. maybe, just maybe I should make important too.

So tonight I took some time just for me. I wrote in my novel, and the word total grew even though I had to delete part of the scene. (Deletion occurred because of research, finding out how hard it really is to get yourself up on a roof lol).

I think my word count now exceeds his.

I took a pledge floating around facebook that says I’ll write 1 page a day in February. I can do that. As long as I learn to say no.

No, sweetie, I’m writing. I’m not going down the research hole for Minecraft.

No, sweetie, I’m writing. You cannot use my computer right now.

I love you sweetie. But this is my hour to write.

We shall see how it goes. But if I want to get a draft done, then this needs to  start happen a lot more.

My file, Dragon Queen, is at 715 words.

His file, Galactic Guardians, is 450 words.

Now… if I can just keep all of them growing.

 

Ta my lovelies!