THE PERFECT MAN

 

river-and-boats-c-e-ayr-29-january-2017

Photo Copyright: C.E. Ayr

This story was written for Sunday Photo Fiction–January 29th, 2017. Each week the host, Al Forbes, provides or chooses a picture prompt. The challenge for each member of the group is to write an original story or poem with no more than 200 words, not including the title and inspired by the prompt. This week’s prompt was supplied by C.E. Ayr. Thanks, C.E.

To read the other stories written by group members, just click on the link below, then on the little blue frog in the blue box.

The link to the other stories this week is as follows:

https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2017/01/29/sunday-photo-fiction-january-29th-2017/

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 200 Words

THE PERFECT MAN by P.S. Joshi

When Dorothy started dating Frank she thought she really had a good catch. He wasn’t just handsome, smart, and educated but would inherit his father’s money.

“You should definitely marry him,” her mother said. “You’ll be rich one day.”

Her friend, Ruth, had introduced her to him. She seemed hesitant to do so, but couldn’t avoid it as they were all at a college picnic by the town river. Dorothy could never understand her friend’s attitude. It didn’t make sense. Frank seemed to have everything.

The only other thing she couldn’t understand were his disappearances. Every month he’d be gone for a couple weeks. When he came back he’d say nothing about it. She hesitated to ask and he never gave her the chance. He worked for his father so it didn’t matter.

About a year into the relationship, she began to have fears. One of his friends disappeared suddenly. The police found his body by some railroad tracks. His hands and feet were tied to his neck and he’d been tortured.

One evening in the paper Frank’s father was named as a gang leader.

When Dorothy told him she didn’t want to see him again, he broke her arm.

spf

anniversary-1x

purple-flowers-may-2013

Written Act of Kindness Award

tour-through-blogland-21

champions-awards

HARD TIMES

 

barnyard-rooster

Photo Copyright Free

New York Public Library

This is a three things story for Teagan’s blog at the following link:

Three Things Fire Rooster

The challenge is to write a story using the words fire, rooster, and calendar. Following is my story.

HARD TIMES

by P.S. Joshi

Mary hated to do it, but they did have an old rooster and a young rooster now and times were still hard. Pa finally was back to work in the coalmine after breaking his leg so the future looked brighter.

She checked the calendar on the kitchen wall where she’d circled tomorrow’s date, June 1, 1901, when Pa would get paid. For today she’d have to make due with what she had.

Mary took out a metal canister of flour and the big iron pot. With salt, pepper, and milk she could fix chicken and dumplings. The milk could stay in the ice box until needed. Yesterday she’d put the dried string beans from the garden to soak. With flour and milk she’d make a white sauce for them when they’d boiled.

She put wood from a box beside the stove inside it and lit a match starting the fire. Then she put two kettles of water on to boil. Resolutely she took out the hand ax and carried a chair outside into the back yard. She put down old newspaper and weighted it with rocks.

“Toby!” she shouted, “I need you.”

Her younger brother aged ten came running. Seeing the ax, he guessed what she wanted.

“Heck, Mary, we only got two chickens and two roosters. You gonna’ kill old Barney?”

She shook her head and he started looking. The darn bird could hide like anything.

Finally, the boy came running from behind the hen house, the rooster several feet ahead. He finally managed to grab the bird by the legs, taking it to the chopping block. In a moment it was over.

Mary sat on the chair and started plucking. When the bird was plucked free she took it into the kitchen and scalded it in the boiled water so the pin feathers would come off.

The next step was to clean out the inside back on the paper, saving some of the organs in a bowl to use for gravy and biscuits for breakfast the next day. She washed the bird under the outside pump as Toby worked the handle.

The cut up chicken went into the hot water of the second pot.

By the time Pa came home and washed up, she had a delicious dinner of chicken, dumplings, and cooked beans with white sauce ready to be served. They all said grace and sat down to dinner.

anniversary-1x

purple-flowers-may-2013

Written Act of Kindness Award

tour-through-blogland-21

champions-awards

seventy years…

Hugmamma clearly gives her opinion.

hugmamma's MIND, BODY and SOUL

…old. Trump is an old man who is showing his age.

Nearing seventy myself, I can speak with some authority on the dilemma of old-age. It’s not only a daily struggle to keep everything on my body from “going south,” it’s equally challenging to keep my mind from closing in on itself.

What we seem to be witnessing in warp speed is Trump’s mental capabilities disintegrating right before our eyes. His campaign rhetoric gave us clues as to his mental state, but very few took him at his word. We were told by his surrogates, like Kelly-Anne Conway, that his supporters knew not to take their candidate literally. On January 9, she advised us to “Judge Trump by what’s in his heart, not what comes out of his mouth.”

Trump has shown his heart to have all but stopped beating.

This president has split America to its core as Lyndon Johnson…

View original post 680 more words

FAITHFUL OLD CLOPPER

 

antique-care-being-towed-al-forbes-jan-25-2017

Photo Copyright: Al Forbes

Here we are again. Today we’re visiting a farm. We’ve gathered in this place to discuss our original stories for the week as the Friday Fictioneers group. This is actually a repeat of this prompt. I had a good story for it last February so decided to use it again. Our hostess for this gathering is the talented and gracious author and artist, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. The challenge for each of us this week and every week is to write a story with no more than 100 words not including the title. It’s supposed to have a beginning, middle, end, and follow the picture prompt for the week. This week’s  prompt was provided by Al Forbes. He writes for this group and for his own group, Sunday Photo Fiction. Thanks, Al.

To read the other stories by group members, just click on the link given below, then on the little blue frog in the blue box.

The link for this week’s stories is as follows:

https://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2017/01/25/27-january-2017/

Genre: Humor Fiction

Word Count: 100 Words

FAITHFUL OLD CLOPPER by P.S. Joshi

Old Clopper, or Clop for short, had been owned by the Rigleys for years. He’d grown up with their children.

His main job was pulling the family buggy, but he also helped old Blinker the plow horse.

Sometimes the children rode him bareback for fun. He had a good life.

“Yes sir,” Pa often emphasized, “I just don’t trust these newfangled automobiles. I bought a tractor but I needed that when Blinker died.”

Mr. Johnson at the next farm bought a Model T Ford, then Mr. Pitt. The next year so did Pa. Old Clop was finally retired to the pasture.

friday-fictioneers

anniversary-1x

purple-flowers-may-2013

Written Act of Kindness Award

tour-through-blogland-21

champions-awards

A HAUNTING LIFE

 

hotel-al-forbes-january-22nd-2017

Photo Copyright: Al Forbes

This story was written for Sunday Photo Fiction–January 24, 2017. Each week the host, Al Forbes, provides a picture prompt. The challenge for each member of the group is to write an original story or poem with no more than 200 words, not including the title and inspired by the prompt.

To read the other stories written by group members, just click on the link below, then on the little blue frog in the blue box.

The link to the other stories this week is as follows:

https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2017/01/22/sunday-photo-fiction-january-22nd-2017/

Genre: Speculative Humor

Word Count: 200 Words

A HAUNTING LIFE by P.S. Joshi

Bradford Hillcamp III had gone to stay at the Quayside Hotel, Room #205, in 1899. He was in the city on important business. He never left.

Shortly, he lost something people find vital, his mortal body. Relations came and gathered it up, burying it in the village he came from, Hillcamp, Massachusetts. His family had founded it.

Brad often thought I wish I could have gone to the funeral.

Over the years the Quayside became famous for his ghost and he felt obligated to keep up his nightly wanderings. He was a celebrity but rather lonely.

Then in 1920, he fell in love. Muriel Babbit was hired as a maid. He watched her as she cleaned the rooms and Cupid struck.

In 1921, a jealous waiter she’d been dating strangled Muriel and Brad came to the aid of her confused spirit. He got down on one ghostly knee and proposed, “Let’s haunt together.” Muriel accepted with relief.

After that, they haunted upstairs and downstairs. Now the Quayside was famous for two ghosts. Business picked up and a couple more ghosts joined their merry band. Mr. Crumple died of old age and Mrs. Ripple of a heart attack. The Quayside flourished.

spf

anniversary-1x

purple-flowers-may-2013

Written Act of Kindness Award

tour-through-blogland-21

champions-awards

…art covers for Authors?…there was a time, a time there was…

Seumas give good advice about about a fact of self-publishing

Seumas Gallacher

aaaaaa

…it seems not such an age ago that my frequency of trips from where I live in the Middle East to London was dictated by the need to stock up with physical copy books from Waterstones in Piccadilly… cover-for-violin-manI was what’s prob’ly known as a ‘weight purchaser’vwb-cover…I bought books by the kilo… of course, like most of us, I have my favourite writers, but their offerings weren’t the only tomes to occupy the sales basket… getting ‘lost’ in a huge bookstore is an indulgence… and one that I savour… notwithstanding my attraction to the Kindle products too, which I’ve also come to know and LUV… but back to the sorties in deepest Waterstones country… much gets bandied about as to ‘yeez can’t tell a book by its cover’front-view-spthat may well be the case in some instances, but here I have to partially disagree, on at…

View original post 239 more words

TRANSPORTED

 

modernistic-hallway-dale-rogerson-jan-2017

Photo Copyright: Dale Rogerson

NOTE: I’m returning to flash fiction after a short vacation I granted myself. It’s good to be back.

Here we are this week sitting near a modern hallway. We’ve gathered in this place today to discuss our original stories for the week. This is the Friday Fictioneers. Our hostess for this gathering is the talented and gracious author and artist, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. The challenge for each of us this week and every week is to write a story with no more than 100 words not including the title. It’s supposed to have a beginning, middle, end, and follow the picture prompt for the week. This week’s prompt was provided by Dale Rogerson. Thanks, Dale.

To read the other stories by group members, just click on the link given below, then on the little blue frog in the blue box.

The links for this week’s stories is as follows:

https://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2017/01/18/20-january-2017/

 Genre: Humor Fiction

Word Count: 100 Words

TRANSPORTED by P.S. Joshi

My ship was badly damaged and I alone had survived. I sent out an SOS and waited to see if any being in the galaxy would come to my rescue.

By the star charts, we were in the Miconian district. I had a small weapon on my person just in case.

I felt myself being transported and saw a hallway ahead. Walking down it, I found a room full of aliens drinking cocktails.

“Oh, Margo what a cute child.”

“Billy Richards, go right back to bed.”

“But Mom I’m not tired.”

friday-fictioneers

anniversary-1x

purple-flowers-may-2013

Written Act of Kindness Award

tour-through-blogland-21

champions-awards

How to Sneak In Any Amount of Information & Maintain the Fictive Dream

A great post on inserting information in a story.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Mike Licht Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Mike Licht

As an editor I have some pretty standard red flags I look for, but a REALLY common blunder is the dreaded information dump. Some genres are more prone to this than others. Science fiction and fantasy can be particularly vulnerable. How DO you keep the pace of the story and still relay about the prophecy, the starship, the dragons and the dragons prophesied to have starships?

It’s tough.

Once again we have Alex Limberg guest posting with us. And if you’re already tired of him? Suck it up, Buttercup, because I LIKE HIM. He’s helping me through the holiday season so I can dig out of the pile of work that buried me when I got the flu.

So Alex is here to share ways to help fold in information so that you (the author) don’t inadvertently shatter the fictive dream…

View original post 1,599 more words

A FEARSOME VOYAGE

 

skeleten-goblet-al-forbes-january-15th-20171

Photo Copyright: Al Forbes

NOTE: I’m returning to flash fiction after a short vacation I granted myself. I especially couldn’t resist Al’s prompt this week. It drew me back.

This story was written for Sunday Photo Fiction–January 15th, 2017. Each week the host, Al Forbes, provides a picture prompt. The challenge for each member of the group is to write an original story or poem with no more than 200 words, not including the title and inspired by the prompt.

To read the other stories written by group members, just click on the link below, then on the little blue frog in the blue box.

The link to the other stories this week is as follows:

https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2017/01/15/sunday-photo-fiction-january-15th-2017/

Genre: Humor Fiction

Word Count: 200 Words

A FEARSOME VOYAGE by P.S. Joshi

The captain, once pirate, Bearded John of the vessel Woe-Begone was a mystery to his men. Most of the crew had never sailed with him before.

He had a favorite goblet he always showed his crew before they started out. It consisted of what seemed to be a small human skull upon which rested the bowl. The stem appeared to be a human spine. It always had a numbing effect on the crew.

“Men,” he thundered, stroking his black beard, “take a good look. This here goblet would be the result of a man treating natives with disrespect. The natives on the Isle of The Shrunken Servent are a mite sensitive. If offended, they first kills the culprit. They next shrinks him from head to toe and sells his bones for such as this.

In fact, they took a special liking to me and taught me the trade. This be my handiwork. I’m a mite sensitive too.”

When the voyage was over the men always scattered hoping never to sail with him again unless shanghaied.

In truth, he’d won the goblet in a game of cards by cheating a traveling drunken ivory merchant. It was the captain’s favorite possession.

spf

anniversary-1x

purple-flowers-may-2013

Written Act of Kindness Award

tour-through-blogland-21

champions-awards

 

A painter’s palette

An inspiring post for all

The Silent Eye

dead-painters-palette

The faded flower caught my eye as I was trimming the potted plants on the windowsill. The rich shades of its life and death were so striking they would make an amazing watercolour. Appropriate, really, as the flower was an Anthurium, the painter’s palette. The heart shaped bloom seemed too beautiful to simply add to the compost so I reached for the camera, thinking that really, I should have reached for the paints.

Then I realised that I haven’t painted once since I moved house several months ago. In fact, I haven’t even unpacked them. Granted, there is a problem of space. There is no longer a spare room to serve as a studio and storage area, but that excuse only works for the oils and the big easel. The watercolours would slip in a drawer.

I used to paint something every day, just to keep learning, even if it…

View original post 817 more words