I’ve been in a slump lately, not wanting to go anywhere or do anything, including writing. It’s like my brain’s been wrapped in cotton, stuck in a glass jar, and placed on a high shelf in a dark room. There is no spark, no passion. I just want to be.

I’ve learned not to force it when I’m like that. It’s a rare mood, but it will pass. In the meantime, I plan to indulge my lazier habits without guilt.

The Kindle is loaded with books to read, and Netflix is only a remote click away. Every time I pass the dining room table, I stop to place a few puzzle pieces; I’ll finish it soon, but I’m in no hurry. Continue reading

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Monday Flash Fic: Year by Year

13707543_896903563765801_2914943945972349698_nHe was early. He was always early, but he couldn’t seem to help it.

Sitting on the bench’s backrest, his sneakered feet planted where his butt should be, he balanced the umbrella on his shoulder and gazed out across the lake to the mountains beyond. There, it was clear. Here, a light drizzle fell.

It wouldn’t have mattered what the weather was–thunderstorm, hurricane, raining toads and frogs–he’d still be here, getting a dent in his ass from the skinny edge of the board propping up his ass and smiling like a fool.

Not long now. The sun was only minutes from slipping out of sight. Another year of waiting over. Three-hundred-and sixty-four days of loneliness soon to be a memory.

Once each year, all he’d gotten was twenty-four hours in the arms of his lover before Dauid vanished until the next time.

John had been coming to this spot for a decade, ever since stumbling across the rift in time that drew back one day and one night to reveal the medieval Scots village of Lochloran.

The sun sank behind the mountains, and he got to his feet, excitement coursing through him. Not long now.

He stuck out his hand; the light rain had stopped. He closed the umbrella and put it on the bench. Picking up his backpack from where he’d lain it against a tree, he slung it over his shoulders. Continue reading

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Old Books

I’ve been writing since I was old enough to string words together. Most of those early stories are forgotten, and should be. I was learning. I was also young, so they revolved around horses and ranches and guys too cool to exist (or resist).

I married young to a high school sweetheart who was pretty damn cool. I was really practical about it: “I’ll try this once, and if it doesn’t work out, never again.” (I never married again.)

We lasted six years. It turned out he wasn’t as cool as I thought he was. In fact, he was kind of a dick, though we did have some good times, bought a house in south Minneapolis (he still lives there today, with his second wife, who happens to have the same first name as me), and he introduced me to a bunch of his friends, one of whom was R. Yup, that’s how far back my friendship with him goes–about forty years.

I wasn’t happy most of the time, so I wrote a lot. Finished four books. They were written on a typewriter. If I made a mistake, white-out was used. Remember those days? Jesus, I’m glad computers were invented!

My first “book” was a Star Trek fanfic. I still have it, albeit in a form that’s not easily read because I can’t even remember what program I used to create it. Not Word, though. Didn’t exist in the early days of desktops. Notepad opens it, except it does weird things to the formatting. I used the word impassive repetitively, and guess what? I didn’t have to re-read it to realize that. I remember, all these years later, overusing that word horribly. But it was written on a typewriter, and I never had a chance to fix that.

Then I wrote the Theo Fenraven book. For those of you who don’t know, I stole the name from myself. The book was named Fenraven and was a space opera similar to Star Wars. I have a print copy of this, and the first page is damn good. The writing is clean and lean, and I didn’t spot anything I’d change. Apparently, I had talent even then. Heh.

I’m considering rewriting the sucker and publishing it, because as I recall, it was fun. Very little hard science, just light entertainment when you’re in the mood for it. The scooters that ran on electric tracks in my book are now a reality in several cities, only it’s trolleys using them. We still don’t have personal spaceships, though. Bummer.  Continue reading

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Monday Flash Fic: The Raven

tumblr_muq9c8WgNS1s5dknio1_500 colorizedThe raven stuck his head out the window in the tree trunk. “Where are we going?”

The woman perched in the prow didn’t turn. “Across the great water to a place far away.”

“That doesn’t tell me much,” he grumbled.

“What else do you need to know?” She looked at him then and smiled. “I am taking you to a safe place, a new beginning. That’s what’s important.”

“What was wrong with where we were?”

“Nothing, until everything went wrong.” She faced forward again, though there was nothing to look at but water and more water.

He pushed the window all the way open and hopped out onto a branch. “Does this place have a name?”

“It does.”

“Well then? What is it?” He pecked at a leaf until it fell, twirling in graceful circles until it landed on her head. “You are contrary.”

“I am patient.”

“Not that patient. You destroyed the world, didn’t you?”

“Humans did that, not me.” She sighed and pulled the leaf from her hair, holding it with reverence. “It is your turn now, raven. Yours and the bees and the fish in the ocean.”

“But there is nothing in the–”

Even as he said it, a dolphin breached beside their boat. Water glistened in rainbow colors on its smooth gray skin.

“You just made that,” the raven said in delight. He’d always liked dolphins.

“I will make many more things when we get there,” she promised.

The raven hopped along the branch, all the way to the end. “But please, no more humans.”

“No more humans,” she agreed.

She waved a hand and ahead of them, a huge mist appeared, and in the mist, the raven saw green and gold and brown. “We’re almost there. So it was at the beginning, so it will be again.” The boat fairly flew toward the land.

The raven hopped up and down with excitement. He’d be glad to get out of the tree and onto something that didn’t rock. Like the rest of his family, he’d flown as much as possible during the journey, but even his great wings had grown tired and he’d had to rest.

The boat landed on a sandy shore. New birds appeared above an endless forest. Two horses raced to meet them, tossing their magnificent heads. A pack of wolves appeared, then rabbits and cats and deer, and then there were so many animals, he couldn’t keep track anymore.

“Where are we?” the raven asked, flying down to Gaia’s shoulder.



Word count: 416
Genre: dystopian fantasy
Read more flash fics here.

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A Little Late

I wasn’t going to write a post today but then decided to do a quick one.

Just returned from the doctor. The nurse said I had no infection. The PA said I had one. Meh. We’re gonna try another antibiotic. Oh joy.

There was one good thing though: no weight came back and my blood pressure was down twenty points. I absolutely think it’s due to a supplement I’ve been taking, along with my daily walks.

I’m over 20K words on the WIP, and I’m still excited about the story. The dreaded middle section is coming up; let’s see if I can get through it this time without thinking the whole thing is shit and I should throw it away.😉 Continue reading

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