It All Started With the “Fight” #WOW555

The prompt this week is “Your story must include some form of romance.” I decided to combine a couple of ideas and look at things from a more innocent side. I hope you enjoy it.

I love the bigger birds, but mating rituals of all the birds fascinated me. When I saw the mockingbirds going at it, I stopped and watched with wonder. I raised my camera to get a few shots. Then, the silence was shattered.

“Look auntie! Birdies fighting!” The toddler’s yell scared the birds and they flew off, perhaps to a more secluded spot for their romantic encounter. I sighed with disappointment.

“Yes, dear. They shouldn’t be fighting, should they?” I looked back and saw a cute young lady who shrugged as she caught my glance as if to ask, “How else do I explain it to a three year old?” Then she turned to her niece and said, “Honey, head on back to your mommy. I’d like to talk with this man here. I’ll watch you run!”

As her niece ran back, she watched her and then headed towards me. I tried not to let her see that I was upset, how can you be upset with a three year old kid, and got off my knees and walked to her.

“I’m so sorry,” she said.

I shrugged. Then, I laughed at the absurdity. “Fighting?” I raised my eyebrows like my old teacher used to whenever I gave a stupid answer.

She laughed. “Her mom can tell her about the birds and the bees.” Then she looked like she was debating her next line. The temptation got the best of her and she said it. “Besides, make up sex is best, isn’t it?”

I felt the burning in my cheeks. I didn’t talk about sex much, especially with a beautiful girl I didn’t know! “I wouldn’t know,” I finally managed to stammer.

“Sorry to make you uncomfortable,” she said. Her apology even sounded genuine. “I don’t know why I said it.”

“That’s ok,” I mumbled.

The silence was awkward. “Can I see your camera? Did you get any good shots?”

We were back on comfortable ground again. She came close enough to look and I never did take the camera off my neck. “Sure, I got a few good pics during the ‘fight.’” I laughed a bit. Her smile lit up my day. She looked genuinely happy to be looking at my pics. Her breath made the hairs on my neck stand up as she flipped through more pics than I got of the mating. She not only appreciated the camera work, she seemed to know her birds, too.

She turned and looked at me. Our lips almost touched we were so close. “This is going to sound like a bad pickup line, but my sister was holding my camera while I walked with Elaine. Can I invite you over to see my pictures? I’m not half bad as a photographer myself.”

I was finally beginning to feel at ease. “I’d love to,” I said as I smiled.

“Come with me, then,” she said. She reached out and took my hand. “I think we’re going to like each other.”

Advertisements

Hunting the Great Whites #WOW555

And here’s the rationale and the prompt for this week. “…recent events in the real world have made this month not quite a great one for me and I could use a little of your company if you can spare the time. Who knows? It might even help you stick to a writing resolution you might think of starting in a week or so!

This week, tell me something uplifting. A moment of kindness between strangers, a child experiencing the joy of giving, a happy surprise for someone deserving. It might seem a little sappy, but if it does, fix it to suit you. As always, interpretation is in the eye of the beholder. I always love to see the creative ways you drift. Hope you have a wonderful holiday celebration filled with light and love and togetherness! And hope to see you Friday with some lovely stories for everyone to read!”

What could be more uplifting than a father and son spending time together. This week’s story goes into a flashback as dad and son wake up early to “hunt the great whites.” Enjoy. Oh and you should still have time to create your own entry! Head on over to Wendy’s place and find out what you need to do to enter.

“’Vegetarian’ is just an old Indian word for ‘lousy hunter.’” My co-worker had been giving me a rough time for the last five minutes. That’s why I didn’t mention my eating choice very often. People just didn’t understand.

“I’m actually a very good hunter,” I said. I smiled as I thought about it. “I just don’t eat what I shoot.”

His eyes narrowed. “That’s just disgusting. I can’t imagine killing an animal and just wasting it.”

I smiled. “I don’t waste any animals. And, you might like to know that I’m taking my daughter shooting this weekend.”

He looked at me suspiciously. “Well, I’ve heard about hunters donating the meat from their kills, so maybe you’re telling the truth.” He shook his head as he walked away. “I still don’t understand vegetarians.”

I smiled as he walked away. My mind drifted back many years.

————————————-

“Jesse, wake up.” My dad was whispering as he shook me gently.

“Mmmnn uhmmmm,” I moaned. I didn’t want to wake up.

“They’re here. We have to go now. We don’t have long to hunt.”

I let him drag me out of bed and threw some old clothes on. He handed me a Pop-Tart as we headed towards the car. I ate it slowly as dad drove us to our blind. As I began to wake up during the drive, I began to get excited. My dad had told me about these birds forever, and now I was going to get my chance to shoot them. Slowly I began to start talking to my dad as discussed what we might see and how we might shoot these birds.

We got to the parking place and grabbed our gear from the car. Our breath fogged the way in front of us as our feet crunched on the frosty grass as we walked to the blind. Talking not only wasn’t needed here, it would have broken the magic of the moment. We could see the birds dancing in the distance, but they were too far away to shoot right now. My dad has prepared for this night all year. The entrance to the blind had been set back far enough away that we could enter and get to the main area without disturbing the whooping cranes.

We got to the main blind area. I looked through the window before getting my gear out. “Whoopers!” I whispered to my dad. I was entranced with the beauty of their dance. I had heard about them ever since I was old enough to understand, and now my dad was taking me to shoot them.

I put the bag on the bench and almost reverently took the gear out. My dad had bought me a new Canon just for this shoot. He let me borrow his telephoto lens for this occasion. I slowly fit it to the camera and raised it to shoot. I clicked with abandon, making sure that I would get some good shots. No picture could capture the beauty of these animals and their dance. After a while I stopped taking pictures and looked up at my dad. “Thanks, dad,” I said. I wiped a tear away from my eye. We stood there watching for a few more minutes before it was time to head back home.

 

 

#ROW80 – Plodding – It’s Slow But It’s Progress

The Row 80 Logo

This accountability thing is nerve wracking! I mean…how long do I keep using excuses? Actually, some progress being made. Monday and Tuesday are slow days, but I got some things done. Wednesday – it’s a full day already. I’m posting this early because I won’t get to it later. Besides – I’ve got an offer for you that is more fun that voting. Ok, well, really it’s voting so technically, it can’t be more fun than voting. (Ah, but too late. The offer has now expired.)

My ROW80 Goals beginning this week:

  • I will work on editing my novels. I have neglected editing for too long. I will spend at least 5 hours this week on editing.
    • I’ve gotten about 30 minutes in so far this week. The next three days will be editing days. 
  • Limit Blog Time. I have already given up Facebook for Lent in order to work on promoting my blogs. I will limit that work to 90 minutes or less per day.
    • I did pretty good at limiting my blog time. Most of my time was spent reading the posts from others in this challenge. Hopefully that will build up my writing blog/platform. I need to work on time to use for building my Devotional Blog as well. 
  • New writing. I will engage in 2 hours this week of new writing. New writing may be anything from #5MinuteFiction to song writing to work on a novel or prep work for Nano 2014. (I won’t count editing the other books as prep work even if it is a series and I am doing my world building!)
    • Two things totaling an hour so far. One is #5MinuteFiction. I like that challenge because it forces me to get outside my writing box and look at things in a far different manner than I normally would. I made the finals this week. with the writing you might see in the post just before this one.  If you are looking at this before 6:30 CDT, you can actually go, read the stories and vote for your favorite – which will, of course, be mine. (Ok, maybe not.) Isn’t that a great opportunity for you? I told you it was coming… Next, I got something resembling verse 3 on my poem/song. With any poetic writing I do, the mental blank spaces are an important part of the writing! On my way to my goal.
  • Photography. – I will categorize (star and label) at least 100 pictures per week. I will fully edit at least 5 pics per week.
    • Got a start with the categorizing at about 25. I should have more time the rest of this week to complete this goal. 

Powered by Linky Tools

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…

#ROW80 – The First Update

The Row 80 Logo

I got a head start on the next round pf ROW80 which is supposed to begin April 7. I don’t like to think of myself as being too late for the game. I put in goals for the next week, forgetting it would be better to do things for the half week. So, aside from goal #2, everything should be halved. I should really have had no problem meeting my goals during Spring Break, right? /whistles innocently. Lets see how I did on my goals.

My ROW80 Goals beginning this week:

  • I will work on editing my novels. I have neglected editing for too long. I will spend at least 5 hours this week on editing.
    • I should have gotten in 2.5 hours editing. I got in, at most, 45 minutes to an hour. Excuses will be made later.
  • Limit Blog Time. I have already given up Facebook for Lent in order to work on promoting my blogs. I will limit that work to 90 minutes or less per day.
    • I did pretty good at limiting my blog time. I would say I was at about 90 minutes per day – after Wednesday. (But see excuses for not making my goals that will explain this.)
  • New writing. I will engage in 2 hours this week of new writing. New writing may be anything from #5MinuteFiction to song writing to work on a novel or prep work for Nano 2014. (I won’t count editing the other books as prep work even if it is a series and I am doing my world building!)
    • If sitting and staring at a blank spot on the file where the new writing is supposed to be counts I came close to the half way mark on this goal. I had almost an hour of new writing and trying to write – but did not get a lot down on paper. Songs/poems are a lot harder to write. Especially the third verse! 

Excuses – I told you they were coming. As my pastor noted this morning in his sermon, the excuses may be good excuses, but they are still excuses.

  1. Grading. I had all kinds of grading I needed to get done this week, so that took away some of the time I would have spent on writing. That, however, is not a blanket excuse because I didn’t get all my grading done.
  2. My photography hobby. I spent a lot of time working on my photography and editing. I should have spent some of that time writing. I love bird photography and had an amazing time at the local bird sanctuary the day before I started. Lots of editing that needed to be done! (And that kind of editing I REALLY enjoy!) (A new goal is being created for this.)
  3. Family time. Some days, the family needs time together. For a variety of reasons, that became an issue this week. My wife deserved some of my best time. That will happen again.

Accomplishments – Even with the excuses I did accomplish a few things.

  1. I did get a little more written on the new song I am working on. Poetry is not my normal forte, but I am enjoying the work.
  2. I did see more traffic on my Devotional Blog. I don’t count the new writing I do every day for that in the above goal. I write about 15-20 minutes every day for that blog and I began building traffic and meeting some new people this week. I also met a number of new people on this writing blog. (Thanks to all of you who stopped by!)
  3. Lots of photo editing/categorizing.
  4. I actually opened up the NANO 2012 novel and got some editing/rewriting done. I have been working on editing/rewriting the opening. I’ll put the original and the beginning of the rewrite here. Please feel free to criticize and or make suggestions

All in all, #ROW80 gave me a kick start to get back to what I really want to do. Thanks for that!

Writing excerpt:

Original Rewrite
Seppe’s nose wrinkled as he looked at the body lying in the dark alley. He couldn’t remember  seeing any other victim hacked up as bad as this one. It was gruesome and he recoiled a little in disgust. Seppe looked at his partner, Aiden, and shook his head. Aiden was a twenty-five cycle veteran of the Wesdanian Police Force and was looking at retirement before the disbanding process had started. Aiden, veteran that he was, was still very queasy. Seppe wasn’t doing much better himself and wondered how the crowd might react if he let his stomach take control. He silently fought back against the waves of nausea as they continued to survey the scene.

The stiff’s head had been severed from the body and had been thrown violently against the wall under the fire escape on the west side of the alley. The main part of the torso was splayed against the trash cans belonging to the Kroll Rader Bar and Grill. Both legs were cut off at the knees: one foot was about ten meters south of the body; the other foot was close to the fire escape as if it had been used to dropkick his own head. The left arm was partly severed and the body lay on top of it. His right arm was extended as if he had seen the attack coming at the last minute and had been surprised by his attacker. Blood was spattered everywhere.

 

Seppe looked to the eastern sky as Darwinda rose over the Wesdanian skyline. The silver light from the second moon combined with the golden glow from Granset, the first moon, and made navigation around the streets of Wesdania simple. Seppe loved this time of night and took in all the beauty as he absent-mindedly moved his hand up to stroke his tendrils. Then he sighed. The smell reminded him that it was time to get to the ugliness of his work. The body waited.He turned his gaze back towards the waiting body. And the blood. Blood was spattered everywhere just like the body parts were. Seppe had never seen a body in such a wretched condition. That and the overwhelming smell of the fresh kill made him gag. He fought back the urge before his partner could see him. It wouldn’t do to wretch before a 25 cycle veteran.He needn’t have worried. When he looked over at Aiden, Seppe noted that Aiden looked a little queasy himself.  Seppe wondered how the crowd might react if he let his stomach lose control. He didn’t like the idea and silently fought back against the waves of nausea as he and Aiden continued to survey the scene.

The stiff’s head had been severed. Someone had thrown it violently against the wall under the fire escape on the west side of the alley. The main part of the torso was splayed against the trash cans belonging to the Kroll Rader Bar and Grill. Both legs were cut off at the knees: one foot was about ten meters south of the body; the other foot was close to the fire escape as if it had been used to dropkick its own head. The left arm was partly severed and the body lay on top of it. His right arm was extended as if he had been surprised by his attacker and had only seen the attack coming at the last minute.

And then, just for grins – one of my photos:

Taken at Hans Suter Park and Bird Sanctuary

Taken at Hans Suter Park and Bird Sanctuary

I post my bird pics on my tumblr blog.

While all other goals remain the same, I am adding a Photography Goal – I will categorize (star and label) at least 100 pictures per week. I will fully edit at least 5 pics per week. (Some pics I categorize so I can find them later. I only edit the pics I really like.)

Here is the “Linky” site for other blogs in the #ROW80 challenge.

Powered by Linky Tools

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…