Thursday, March 31, 2011

Hopefully the Last

As you can see, I've changed the layout and design of my blog, again. I'm hoping this will be the last time, I like this one. Anyway, I felt like, with the A to Z Challenge beginning tomorrow, that it might be nice to have something different going on with the blog. So, I hope you like it, and I can't wait to get started tomorrow. Hope to see y'all there!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

They Call Me Their Crazy Mom

I avoid mentioning the family in the blogging as much as possible. It's not that I'm ashamed of them, or that they aren't a huge important part of my life, its just that--this is a blog about writing, and I feel its a little more professional to keep the personal life out of it. That, and it makes me a little more anonymous. That is... unless your reading this from the link I put up on facebook, then you probably know exactly what I'm talking about and can give me some crap about it the next time you see me. Whatever works for ya!

So, what did that long winded rambling have to do with the post? Well, today, my topic is completely relevant, especially the part dealing with my poor children.

Always I'm going on and on about making your writing as believable as possible. There are many ways to do this: pulling from personal experience, getting a degree, or some of my favorites, acting and speaking lines for characters.

Well, I started a new book today, and all the things that entails. You know--nailing down the synopsis (because it works better when you start with it, rather than finish), the major plot lines, a quick outline, and figuring out those pesky characters who will, no doubt, annoy me at the worst possible moments until I can finish writing this book. So, what do I do after I get those things done? I start talking to myself.

Sadly, I do not need to involve the children here. This is so normal for them, that when they hear me muttering odd things that don't make sense, they do the polite thing and they leave the room so "Mom can talk to her 'friends.'"

 What happens when they don't leave the room, though? Well, things get odd. I don't like to ask them for help, mainly because they are proud of what I'm trying to do, and well... let's face it, the material I write is not intended, nor should be read by their age group. I know these kids, and how they've been raised, and I know they know what they see and what they hear, is generally either false, or not something they should go around repeating as far as tv, radio, and books are concerned. But, as I was saying...

I have this tendency to, when I'm really stuck on a description, to make faces. I know what I'm feeling when I experience an emotion, and how it pulls the muscles around in my face and body in order to convey that emotion. Sometimes, though, I have to ask. "Do I look angry to you?" Usually met with a laugh, that is the hardest for me to do, as they seem to think its more ridiculous than angry looking.

Occasionally, it is embarrasing for them. Other children (their friends) are constantly at our house (still not sure if that's good or bad) and I'm not exactly the "cool" mom when they see me talking to myself or making odd faces at the kids. Mostly, its just passed off as something weird their crazy mom is doing, but I sometimes think, maybe I should stay away from the writitng when it isn't just them around.

So, please make me feel a little better here. What crazy things do you enlist your friends and family into doing in the name of good descriptions? How crazy are you when it comes to wording something just right?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Lady-lyc Chapter 1 Preview

Now, I'm not usually the kind to post up an entire chapter for the world to see, especially in its primal form, but I'm already in love with this story. This would be my first werewolf novel, and I'm about half way through, so I thought, eh why not? Anyway, hope you enjoy it.

Chapter 1

A black sedan drove along an upward sloping dirt path toward snow covered peaks of a mountain ahead. Towering white spruce trees, along with a few shorter aspens and poplars, created a tunnel over the old foresting route only allowing intermittent glimpses of the inky black sky above dotted by millions of brilliant pin-points of light. The vehicle moved slowly over the winding, bumpy road toward its destination—a clearing three miles in the direction it headed.

The man driving the car leaned over the steering wheel. Occasionally he ran a hand through his wild mane of grey hair combed back and covered with a snow cap. His eyes darted back and forth across the narrow passageway while the tip of his boot inched down on the pedal. To his right, sat a woman turned all the way around in her seat, smiling kindly at the two passengers in the back, both talking quietly on cell phones.

The woman sighed and ran her slight fingers along her thick, dark hair, catching a couple tangles before she opened her mouth. “Kids, could you please get off the phones now? I think you’re making your dad nervous.”

The driver instantly sat back and frowned at her. “They’re fine, Nancy. I’m watching for moose. We’re almost to the campsite.”

Nancy patted him on the shoulder and turned her attention to the young man behind her. “Garret, will you help your dad with the tent while Ely and I gather firewood?”

Even in the dark, his grey-blue eyes sparkled with excitement. “Sure, Mom,” he grinned at her before speaking back into the phone. “I’ll be back in town in three days, Sue. We’ll go to that movie then.”

A gruff sigh resonated in the driver’s chest. The stiff set of his shoulders relaxed and he smiled at his wife. “Here it is!”

She leaned forward and peered through the windshield. “Oh, John, we haven’t been here since before your last season. I’ve always loved the view of the mountains in the morning from here.”

He nodded and pulled the car to the side of the clearing. In one fluid movement, they all emerged from the car and went to the back, mist rising from their mouths and noses with each breath despite being July. One by one, they pulled bags and boxes from the trunk of the vehicle, setting them on the driver’s side of the car in turn.

Nancy squatted before a red case and pulled a box of matches from her jacket pocket. She unlatched the tall square container at the bottom and lifted the lid off, revealing a dusty lantern. Lifting the glass from the base, she screwed a small cylinder of gas to the bottom. She opened the valve and lit a match, holding it to an opening at the bottom of the glass and waiting for the mantles to catch fire.

Bright, white light filled the small clearing, allowing the four to see the space clearly. Their shadows danced across the limbs of the trees while they moved around and began setting up the site. While the two men went to work on putting together tent poles, Nancy and her daughter walked around the edges of the circle picking up branches that had fallen from the trees above.

Elyse stooped to grab a branch and turned at a rustle in the trees next to her. She searched the darkness for some sign of an animal, finding nothing. Standing with the tinder in her hand, she cradled it in her arm and straightened her cap. With a fleeting glance at the space where the noise came from she went back to the center of the clearing and dropped the load of branches. “Is this going to be enough?”

Her dad walked over and inspected the pile. “We’ll see what your mom got, but it should be enough for a couple hours. Good job, Ely.”

She smiled up at her dad. “Thanks. How’s the tent coming?”

He glanced over his shoulder. “Garret has it. Let’s go get the chairs, shall we?”

She nodded and leaned into him when he put his arm around her shoulders. At the car, he handed her two chairs and carried the other two back to where they planned to make the fire.

After setting them up in a half circle around the pile of twigs and branches, John kneeled on the ground and sorted through the wood. Leaving a couple of the larger pieces in a cross, he arranged the rest into a cone on top. He pulled a lighter and a wax covered cardboard tube from his pocket and lit the end of it on fire. Placing it carefully inside the twig teepee, he watched it to make sure it would continue before sitting back on his knees.

Nancy deposited her firewood next to the chair at the end of the semicircle and took a seat. “That’s going to be a great fire. How soon can we get the marshmallows out?”

John smiled at his wife. “I would give it a little longer. We should get our sleeping bags into the tent and lock the food in the car. It should be safe from bears there.”

Ely’s eyes widened. “There are bears out here? This time of year?”

John laughed. He rumpled her hair and sat down in the chair next to Nancy. “And wolves. We can’t forget about them.”

A whimper escaped Ely. “I think I’ll sleep in the car.”

“Relax, Ely. Dad’s just messing with you.” Garret rolled his eyes as he passed his little sister.

She looked at all of them, a pout forming on her lips. “Not funny, Dad. I’m going to go get my sleeping bag.”

She stomped away toward the car and sat in the driver’s seat searching for the latch for the trunk. When her fingers fumbled across it, she lifted the lever and there came a pop behind her. Pulling herself out, she smoothed her coat to cover the exposed skin on her back and shut the door. Somewhere beyond the light of the fire and lantern, a twig snapped in the forest. Her head jerked toward the sound and she paused. A small flash of light reflected back at her for a moment and her breath caught in her throat.

“Dad,” she called, not looking away from where she saw a bright green eye a moment ago. “You were joking about the wolves, right?”

“The wolves will be farther North this time of the year. Stop worrying, Ely.” John called back.

She released the air in her lungs and shook her head. “I must have imagined it,” she muttered.

Ducking her head into the trunk, she shoved aside the fishing poles and tackle box. Pushing up on her toes, she reached further back into the spacious trunk. Her fingers brushed the soft fabric of her sleeping bag and she stuck her tongue out as she swiped at it.

With a groan, she put her knee on the bumper and half climbed into the space. Her hand clamped down on the fabric and she tugged it toward her, letting her foot fall back to the earth.

Another crack close by made her head shoot up. She groaned and rubbed the back of her skull after it bounced off the trunk lid. “Ow!”

She stared into the forest again, the sleeping bag forgotten for the moment. Her eyes swept slowly from one side to the other.

Behind her, a blood curdling scream rose in the night, echoing off the trees. Ely turned slowly, her eyes wide. On the other side of the clearing stood five wolves, crouched with teeth bared and hackles standing. Her parents stood clutching each other, while Garret lay on the ground, his chair toppled over beside him.

In a blur of grey and white fur, two of the wolves shot forward. The muscles in their legs bunched and released with their lithe movements. In a matter of seconds, the first reached John and Nancy. It bounded from the ground, its claws coming up to its face as it hit John in the chest, and let out a vicious snarl. Another scream erupted from Nancy as he was ripped from her arms.

His legs flailed and he lifted his arms to block the beast from tearing into his throat and face. He screamed as it bit his arm, jerking its head back and forth. When it pulled away, it licked its blood-covered muzzle before scraping its claws along his chest. It ducked its head, ripping into his side. John’s hands swung toward it, beating at its head, moaning in agony. The grey wolf snarled at him and bit into his hand. John shrieked and grasped his hand and the wolf continued shredding his chest with its teeth. Soon, his groans quieted and he lay still.

The second wolf stayed low; its white fur shining bright in the fire light. It caught Nancy’s ankle between its jaws and blood spurted from the wound as she fell to her knees on the ground. Tears streamed down her face as it came in for the kill. Its jaws locked on her throat and her cry ended in a gurgle.

Garret pushed himself backward toward the tent, not looking away from the small tan beast that broke ranks from the last three and stalked slowly toward him. His forehead creased further with every step it took until his entire face crumpled. “Oh, God, please.”

Ely continued to stare, frozen in place while her family died before her. At the last second, the tan wolf paused while Garret came closer to the dark forest behind him. From the darkness, Ely glimpsed a flash of green reflected from the fire behind him. Her limbs unlocked and a scream tore up her throat. “No!”

She bolted toward him as the final two wolves in the clearing came at her. She leapt toward him as a black wolf came up behind him, and sunk its teeth into the side of his neck.

The other two collided with her midair, hitting her in the chest. Her breath rushed out of her and she fell to the ground with a thump. Sharp canines sunk into her flesh and sinew like butter and she cried out as she tried to shake them off her chest and legs. She twisted and the teeth dragged across her skin, piercing her anew when she stopped to roll the other way.

Off in the distance, a howl rent the night and all the wolves stopped their assault. Their noses lifted toward the sky. Ely gasped for air while the world shimmered before her eyes. She squeezed them shut and shook her head slowly.

Opening her eyes, she watched the six wolves race from the clearing. Warm, sticky liquid gushed from her thigh and side, and she grasped at her wounds in an attempt to hold herself together. She looked around for her family, her breath hissing through her teeth, seeing them all lying still on the ground.

Clenching her teeth, she pulled herself along the ground by her elbows toward her brother. Hot tears streamed down her cheeks as she closed the distance. Crimson pooled around his head and neck. She draped herself over his lifeless body and wept into his chest as she looked into his eyes, open wide, staring blankly at the night sky.

Her limbs were heavy and her head swam as she tried to lift herself from the ground and her brother to check on her dad. Her chest heaved, and the air scraping up and down her throat became wet and tinged with copper. She reached into her pocket and grasped her phone. She shook her head and pulled it out. Blinking several times to see the screen, she dialed 911 and hefted her arm to her face.

“Please help me,” she whispered into it when dispatch answered. “My family and I were attacked by wolves.”

Phillip K. Dick: A Salute

I have immersed myself in the writing world. Searching for artists who have really had an impact, I ran across the name Phillip K. Dick, a man that many may not know. His influence in the science fiction genre is huge, though. How is it that I've never heard of him?

Well, for starters, he's dead. He overdosed on amphetamines. That should hardly matter though. He was writing in the 50's and 60's when he was a very paranoid schitzophrenic. In all honesty, though, he wouldn't really be considered all that odd by todays standards. As writers, most of us invite the voices into our heads, making them as real as possible and exploiting them for our own gain as characters in our books and stories. Not strange at all!

The amazing thing about this man, is that the majority of his great works are being turned into movies today. Ever seen Blade Runner? How about The Minority Report? Or you may have heard of Total Recall, A Scanner Darkly, Next, Paycheck, or The Adjustment Bureau? All of these are based on (some more loosely than others) his work.

Phillip K. Dick was an amazing author, pulling from personal experiences, much of his writing gave readers (or viewers of the adapted screenplays) a huge question in the back of their minds wondering what reality really was. His characters often lived in alternate realms of this reality, and were usually an everyman.

Even more impressive, his stories were very realistic views of the future compared to others of his time (remember we're talking about his stories coming from the 50's and 60's) and I'm sure, because of this, he was considered even more dillusional than he really was.

If you've never heard of Phillip K. Dick, you should really search for some information about him. He really was an amazing man, though he died broke, never getting to see all his hard work making it to the big screen.  And for all his hard work, I would like to salute you, Mr. Phillip K. Dick, for being the awesome author that you were.

Works Cited

"Phillip K. Dick" Wikipedia. 27 Mar 2011. 27 Mar 2011 .

Friday, March 25, 2011


So, I've been itching to get back to editing my two "finished" novels, A Place Called Earth, and Beginning Near the End. The problem is, my beta reader and outside editor is taking her precious time with them. I don't mind that, except its making me super impatient. So, I read. You'll probably see at least one or two more book reviews posted up before the A to Z Challenge starts. Unless I can't find anything and start working on something new again. Who knows?

Last night, I had a bit of a breakdown. Anyone from facebook reading this, or even my closer twitter friends may know a bit of what's been going on this week. If not, here's a bit of the skinny. The fam and I went up to Minneapolis this weekend for a minication. It was fun, we did some shopping, swam at an indoor water park. Then Monday night, I got the flu. I missed work tuesday and wednesday. Wednesday, I had to take my older daughter to the doctor to try and get the back of her earring removed from her earlobe, it had sunk all the way in. It was a mess, they couldn't help her in pediatrics, so they set up an appointment with the ear, nose and throat specialist (ENT). It would only be a consult though, so I took her to the clinic at the hospital how also got her into the ENT because they didn't want to do it. The ENT wanted to have her come in today for surgery! By that evening I was a nervous wreck, so I took her to the emergency room where they gave her a shot, cut open the back of her ear and took it out.

Last night, thinking about all the things that could have gone wrong in surgery, that was my nightmare. No monsters or bad guys, none of that. I had an anxiety attack.

Anyway, all that got me thinking. I don't spend enough thought on that realm of my story that is sleep. When a character goes to sleep in a scene, I give it that special double space and then they wake. Dreams and nightmares are important, though. They are how we sort through and proccess information every day. Sometimes they can be important though. I remember when I was young, having the occasional snippet of dream that would seem out of place only to relive it the next day (I know that seems hard to believe, but I swear, I can think of at least six different occasions throughout my life).

Dreams can foreshadow a story well, especially when your talking about fantasy. You want them to remain vague (like they are for us) to give it an air of mystery and excitement. And then to add all the details and let them fall into place to reveal what the dream meant pulls a reader in. Its great! It should be done slowly though, or it won't hold interest.

To give you an example, I started reading the Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan. I had just finished the Percy Jackson series and wanted to see what else he had to offer. In my quest to find something on the second book in the new series, The Son of Neptune, I started reading some fanfic. Some of the stories and chapters were all right, but a few of them, with their own prophecies for this new camp were revealing information too quickly. I lost interest in them right away. Too much was given leaving me no need to read further to find out what this would mean. It all fit too easily.

These are things you need to keep in mind with dreams and foreshadowing. They can both do amazing things for your story, but only if you do them the right way!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Review of Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice

Bear with me on this one, I'm sick and it may not all come out right.


Interview with the VampireIn the now-classic novel Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice refreshed the archetypal vampire myth for a late-20th-century audience. The story is ostensibly a simple one: having suffered a tremendous personal loss, an 18th-century Louisiana plantation owner named Louis Pointe du Lac descends into an alcoholic stupor. At his emotional nadir, he is confronted by Lestat, a charismatic and powerful vampire who chooses Louis to be his fledgling. The two prey on innocents, give their "dark gift" to a young girl, and seek out others of their kind (notably the ancient vampire Armand) in Paris. But a summary of this story bypasses the central attractions of the novel. First and foremost, the method Rice chose to tell her tale--with Louis' first-person confession to a skeptical boy--transformed the vampire from a hideous predator into a highly sympathetic, seductive, and all-too-human figure. Second, by entering the experience of an immortal character, one raised with a deep Catholic faith, Rice was able to explore profound philosophical concerns--the nature of evil, the reality of death, and the limits of human perception--in ways not possible from the perspective of a more finite narrator.

My Thoughts:

If you've never seen the movie (let's face it, though, who hasn't) this book is amazing. The picture that Louis sets when he describes where he is, or how it differs from today is just beautiful. The pacing can be a little slow in places, but its forgiveable with how much information your getting. It really helps to pull you into the story.

I love that throughout the whole story, when in present tense, the two in the room are always named the vampire and the boy. And though we learn the vampire's name, we never get a name for the boy. Mrs. Rice had a flare for this romantic horror that she brings through with her vampires. They're frightening to be sure, but you can't help but fall for them. I'm a fan, and I can't wait to get to "The Vampire Lestat"

Rating: R for adult themes

Recommended for: Anyone that needs a GOOD vampire novel with strong characters thats been thuroughly researched.

Not Recommended for: Children and young adults, anyone who needs constant fast pace in writing.

Stars: 4/5

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sneak Peek of 50 Follower Prizes!

With more followers showing up, I felt it was about time to nail down the formalities of the Giveaway when I finally reach 50. I have tracked down prizes I like, and also started working on a form. This is the official notice!

When follower number five-oh hits that button, I will post the form. The giveaway will only work for about a day, and you will need to fill out the form attached to the post I make that day, thus ensuring that you have a chance at the prizes.

I will not tell you all of what you will be recieving, but it has to do with And one of the items you have a chance of recieving is a title that I have recently reviewed. Any guesses?

Also, I have a hint for you if you'd like an extra chance to win the prize for the giveaway. If you refer someone to my blog and they become a follower, you're chances of winning are going to be a bit better. We'll say, if a person only filled out the form, their  chances would only be half as good as someone who referred another person.

Anyway, that's it for now. I wish you all luck!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Impatiently Yours

I have no patience whatsoever. It has always been a problem when searching for a lost item, trying a new exercise routine, going on vacation, and in my writing. I guess I should probably include reading in that too. If I couldn't get into a book by the first few chapters, I didn't read it, and if I did, I wouldn't sit it down til I finished it.

My writing, has been one of my biggest sources of impatience though. When I start a book, I immediately want it to be finished. So much so, NaNoWriMo is perfect for me. It allows me to write that book in a month. I actually save most of my story writing for November now.

Even with the editing, I want it to be done and over with as soon as I start. Not that I don't enjoy doing the editing. I know that dreading of editing is shared by a lot of writers.

Sadly, there is one process I just can't hurry along no matter how much I want to. Getting a book published takes so much time! Find the agent, agent finds the publisher, editor takes apart your story that you feel is about perfect at this point, they cut you a deal, release date is months in the future, book signings, deals, blah blah blah... so much time! Its things like these that make me appreciate the self publishing route because it happens right now.

So, heres my big question. How do you deal with all the waiting that is involved with writing?

Friday, March 4, 2011

Review of The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure by William Goldman


The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High AdventureThe Princess Bride is a true fantasy classic. William Goldman describes it as a "good parts version" of "S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure." Morgenstern's original was filled with details of Florinese history, court etiquette, and Mrs. Morgenstern's mostly complimentary views of the text. Much admired by academics, the "Classic Tale" nonetheless obscured what Mr. Goldman feels is a story that has everything: "Fencing. Fighting. Torture. Poison. True love. Hate. Revenge. Giants. Hunters. Bad men. Good men. Beautifulest ladies. Snakes. Spiders. Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passion. Miracles."

Goldman frames the fairy tale with an "autobiographical" story: his father, who came from Florin, abridged the book as he read it to his son. Now, Goldman is publishing an abridged version, interspersed with comments on the parts he cut out.

Is The Princess Bride a critique of classics like Ivanhoe and The Three Musketeers, that smother a ripping yarn under elaborate prose? A wry look at the differences between fairy tales and real life? Simply a funny, frenetic adventure? No matter how you read it, you'll put it on your "keeper" shelf. --Nona Vero

My Thoughts:

As someone who watched the movie when I was little and fell in love with it, I honestly didn't know it was a book first. How thrilled I was to find out that one of my all-time favorites was adapted to a film from a novel.

I started reading whatever I could find about the book and I came up with a few simple things. 1) S. Morgenstern, Florin, and all the characters are fake. 2) The book was originally done in the 60's. 3) That he abridged a novel that he created tells me that Mr. Goldman is a genius. And 4) I had to have this book.

After scouring the web (Amazon) I finally found a few used copies of the 25th Anniversary print. I had to continue my shopping further to make sure that the money I was spending wasn't absurd (trust me, if you look it up, you'd be astounded by the price of some of these) and ended up buying it!

Now, I read this book as soon as it arrived, sparing little time for daily life. I was so pleased. The characters I loved from the movie were written nearly word-for-word from the book! Sure, there are a few missed scenes that would have added perfectly, but none the less.

Truly, knowing that S. Morgenstern didn't exist, as well as Mr. Goldman's son, Jason, and an interesting conversation with Stephen King (though they are friends) about the sequel, Buttercup's baby (which you will find Chapter 1 in the 25th anniversary), didn't matter in the least. By the time I set the book down finished, I believed they were all real! Mr. Goldman is a master of imagry!

Book Rating: PG. There are fight scenes and love scenes, all of course, tastefully done.

Recommended For: Anyone and everyone. If you haven't read this book yet, you absolutely need to. If you have read it, yay you! and you should read it again.

Not Recommended For: I don't believe that this book is something anyone should pass up.

My Rating: 6/5 stars!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Short Story Contest!

So, I'm a little late in awarding the winner of the short story contest. I had extended the deadline hoping to get another entry. Just one. But alas, it didn't happen. That's okay though. Susan Kane's story based on the picture was pretty awesome.

So, as promised, this post is dedicated to her, and I will post her little story now!

Sheila was not pleased. No, not pleased at all.

Her BFF Brenda said that flying down to Florida in October would be a real hoot, and all the gang would be there. So Sheila, Brenda, Kimberly, and all the other damsels headed down to their winter spot in Florida. “Eddie will be there!” Brenda had said.

So they went, and hit the water at high speed, skimming over the shimmering glassy pond, trying out new maneuvers, out-spinning the other. It had all started so perfectly. The dragons, including Eddie, were keeping all their eyes on the damsels as they made the first pass-by. Brenda turned to give Eddie that coy look that said so much.

That was her mistake. Out from the depths of the quiet waters came a wide-mouth bass, and gulped her down in one smooth motion before sinking down into the waters. Gone, just like that. Brenda was gone.

The tragedy hit them all like a strong wind, and the damsels headed to the shade of the cypress at the edge of the water. “What happened to her?! Didn’t she see that one coming?” Kimberly spoke bitterly. She was always that way, so quick to speak, to judge the other damsels. The others hushed her, while Sheila came to terms with the loss of her friend. Kimberly was right. Brenda knew better, but dammit, Eddie caught her eyes, and that was all it took.

This was to be their season, their time to connect with the dragons and leave some larvae in the quiet waters. Brenda let that get in the way of survival, and see what happened to her. Sheila shook out her gossamer wings, and turned to face Kimberly. “Brenda was a fool. We know that. But, we have to watch out for each other, and we forgot that.” All the lenses in her eyes scanned the water, the trees, the sky, the grass—looking for the predators that came so quietly. “Now, let’s get out there, and do what we do best: feast on mosquitoes and bugs, shake the air with our wings, and be the damsels we were born to be!”

As if one, the damsels rose into the air, and skimmed down across the swamp grass, catching insects as their laughter rang behind them.

Some dragons angled in to catch up with them. Eddie grew level with Sheila, “Say, uh, Sheila,” he stammered. “Awful sorry about Brenda. She seemed a good sort. Uhm, would you like to go over to the willow, and check out some lower branches with me?” Eddie’s eyes glistened with deeper meaning.

Sheila kept her course and eyes searching around, but she devoted a few lenses to observe Eddie. He was attractive in that bad-boy way, and she could see what made Brenda focus on him. She gave the matter some thought, and then gave him the only answer she could.

Wasn't that great! I think so. Now, for the little award!

Ms. Susan Kane, this is for you to do with what you will. Congrats!