Tell me a story

Today I think I want you to tell me a story. So I know how hard that is so I will ask questions to help. Hey, consider it a birthday present.next wednesday is my big day.

1.) Who is the story about? This is the most important part. Without a who, the story really will fall flat.

2.) What is the story about? Here is the reason, the details of it.

3.) When does the story take place?

These are three questions that every writer asks themselves with every story. Plot issues can be fixed in editing…but without these three answers the story doesn’t happen.

Submit your story. Email it to patti.mouse@gmail.com. I will feature the best one here on a future blog post. Also…you want to be a featured poet…email me with an example of your work to be considered.

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Winter Whimsy

A short story

By Serena Mossgraves

Ever wonder where snowflakes come from? The faeries have a history for all of the first events, even the first snowflake. History has a mischevious little frost faery making much of what is now winter standard.

She was created from the ice that ran down the mountainside. No other was like her, as winter was quite the desolate time. Dreary cold and ice had everyone else just hiding inside. She was named Snow after the mountain ice she came from. Oh the mountain snow was beautiful, just didn’t have the individuality we know today. The faery was gorgeous, tiny with skin like porcelin, eyes of the clearest blue. She was stunning to behold.

Snow was unlike any of her kind who had been made before. Most frost faerys were cold in nature, purposeful and driven to do what frost does…Snow was not. She was whimsical, and enjoyed fun things. She was creative, with a mischevious streak. This led her to get in a lot of trouble with the other fae.

Snow would lay traps, build statues from ice, and generally do things to have fun. Nothing harmful, just all in fun. She found the snow too hard to use in her jokes, so she looked for a way to soften it. She wanted to throw it at people, in balls to see the look on their faces. At first she tried to heat it, hoping it would soften. To her dismay, the ice melted, creating a slush that only got in the way. She decided that the heat was not what she needed, but was not sure what she did need.

Next, in her search, Snow thought perhaps a hammer! Let us shatter the ice to make it softer! The snow shattered, but it was sharper and made it more difficult to use for her pranks. She didn’t want to hurt anyone after all. She needed to find a way to soften it so she could throw it easily. She searched feverishly for a way to work out this problem.

Snow tried using magic, and found that the snow went white, and opaque. Though she found it to be more lovely, it was still too hard. She tried to use an axe, to find it did the same as a hammer. Frustrated, Snow sought out the wise owl of the forest for advice. She wanted to see if he could solve the dilemma that she faced. She was determined that she must find a way to soften the snow. She felt desperation, and it confused her. Faeries were rarely desperate. Nature kept faeries doing what they were born to do. Snow was an aberration. She was a frost faerie with a warm personality and a Whimsical sense of humor.

Not that being an aberration was really bad. It meant that she was unique, and special. Though each faerie was unique, so many were so similar that being this different was enough to create a feeling in her of being alone. The trip to the great owl was a scary one. Snow was small, and everything around the forest was so overpoweringly big. His home was in the great oak in the center of the forest, where even the sun had trouble being seen. All of the faeries knew that the old owl was great and wise. He was ancient like the trees he lived in. His feathers were all gray with the years he had lived. Faeries lived short little lives, so many did not understand age, nor the wisdom that went with. Snow understood that the owl knew things she could not. He would, she hoped, be able to tell her how to make the snow soft. She wanted to throw it. She thought it might be fun to play in.Snow felt like the faeries were too serious. None of the other frost faeries seemed to want to play. She felt like she could bring joy by teaching them how to play. For such a young faery Snow had a definite ideals about what was good and bad in the world around her. She saw it as a reason to be silly.
The owl was walking onto the outside branch of his home as Snow flew up. He ruffled his feathers as he settled onto the branch. Seeing the excitement in the young faery, he knew his hunt for the night would be postponed for a while. “Who are you? And why are you here?” He hooted at her. Snow did an overbalanced curtsy that nearly had her falling from the tree. After she caught herself and got situated on the branch, she answered the severe old owl. “I seek your wisdom, Old master owl. I am the frost faery named Snow. I want to use the snow for fun and for play. I have tried to soften it in multiple ways. Heat only made a slush, which wasn’t fun with which to play. Hammers sharpened it, cutting anything that touches it. All then becoming too uncomfortable with which to play. I tried my magic, without hesitation or delay. It colored white, and appeared quite opaque. Still, too hard with which to form and play. Please, master owl, what advice have you?”

Stunned, she mummered to herself. “Magic the inside, indeed. I should have thought of that all by myself. The old owl’s wisdom that was rumored has been proven true.” With that thought, Snow flew off herself. To the mountain she flew, high into the clouds. She settled herself where the snow she was named for lay about the ground.

Snow cast her magic, to poke little holes. The white ice shattered into flakes of soft and white. Making it perfect to have a snowball fight. She taught the faeries winter play, and is the reason for the snowflakes that we see today.


Word counts, Poetry and word faeries

Well Serena has been busy today. Final word count for Life, guilt, and undeath today gained 876. I have been penning many new poems, two of which are above.

Those of you who missed it, did you know that one of Serena’s stories was featured on a YouTube channel?here is part one & part two. Also both Serena and I will be featured in 2019 on the blog of a dear friend and fellow author. Author Deedra Mosley

Go check out her blog! I will be the featured author for January and Serena will be March.

I am lucky enough to have been accepted into the fall edition of Creatives Rising Ezine. My digital art will be there. Stay tuned for links as I get them for subscribing if you have not already. There is some truly amazing Creatives involved as usual with this edition. It is always an honor to be a part of such a wonderful zine.

I have been looking into local events and am seeing several in my region. I am hoping that transportation becomes a little easier and that I can try to attend a few. Any events that y’all want to see me at? Let me know and I will look into adding them to my possibilities.

Serena is also writing a short story for an anthology of dark faery stories. Watch here for more info on that as well.

Upcoming!

August is looking at being a extremely busy month for me. First thing is that one of Serena’s stories is being released on YouTube at Ether Realms. Go ahead check out the channel. Like, subscribe!

Second, I have opened up a storenvy. I am slowly adding stuff. Check it out!

Third, I am setting up a studio space for my art. It will be very time consuming, but it will allow me to be more organized.

Something that is coming up soon is I was accepted for the fall edition of the Creatives Rising E-zine! More information on that is upcoming.

I have released Poetry kisses. Again you can find it here.

Serena’s Rust, gore, and the Junkyard Zombie is available here!

Want to support my poetry or my art? I have a Patreon! Exclusive gifts for the ones who support me! It’s Here.

I will be posting reviews of books that I have read here at least monthly (though I hope to do it weekly.) At the end of the review will be the link to the book on Amazon. It will be an affiliate link.

I have been doing a few “Live ” videos on Facebook where I read my poetry. I am not sure if I will be changing the format to allow me to post it elsewhere easier… But I am thinking about it. I may do a YouTube channel of my own.

Serena has been working on the second zombie apocalypse novel. Current eta is sometime early 2020. But it may change. The title for it is Life, Guilt, and undeath.

Keep an eye here for details as they happen.

Also I had a curiosity…. What topics would you the reader like to see me discuss?

Serena is considering adding one short story a month to the blog rotation.

That is all of the news for now….

Soul’s Door

Another volume of my poetry has flown to Amazon…. Buy it here. And stay tuned. I will post a couple of the poems from my newest volume in progress over the weekend. There’s also a lot of exciting stuff that I am doing right now that I will be announcing soon. I may even be sharing a short story by Serena next week.

2017: Reflecting

I sat down to write this morning and realized that though this has been a rocky year personally…. It was a great year for my writing. I finished and published three volumes of poetry this year and am nearly done with a fourth. I put in play a pen name, Serena Mossgraves. As Serena I released a Novella (The Death of Neverland). I am nearly done with my first novel (Rust, Gore, and the Junkyard Zombie)… Just have to finish the editing, the writing is done. I have done several short stories and worked with two children’s stories. I also started collaboration with my sister on our Spiritual Gardening blog.

Looking it all over, it really does not seem like as much as it is. Still, it is more than I have accomplished before. With the end of the year nigh, I find myself looking back at the things that I wanted for 2017…and thinking ahead to what I want from 2018. I refuse to measure my life in regret, so I do not dwell on the things that went sideways. However, I do look at them and see what I can learn from what I have done. This year, though a personal hot mess, I was able to redirect myself back to my writing. I was able to make it a priority. That is behavior that I plan on continuing.

What about you? Was 2017 a good year? Why? What will be carried over into the new year?

Winter wishes

*picture not mine used for inspiration*

A short story

By Serena Mossgraves.

Another job, too many this year. It seems like I have taken so many bright lights across the river. Each one so unique, but all humbled by the sight of my river craft. It is never what they expect.
Some expect a religious experience, heaven or hell. That is not my domain. I am a simple guide. Taking each one from the last moment in physical form to a transition point in a more spiritual place.
The river that divides the two is my home. Glistening, it is the tears of grief that the gods cried when their children forgot them. A proper divider in my opinion. Myself, I have been called many names… Reaper, Charon, Death… Or my favorite is Apocalypse.
I am not a god, nor even a mortal creature. The name for what I am has been forgotten nearly as long ago as I was created. And I am fine with that. For naming something gives you power. I have grown accustomed to the freedom of anonymity.
Once the mortals pay for the journey, we move quickly. No, it has never been as the stories about me go, my payment is not coin. I have survived on either story or true emotion. Some are too afraid to give me their stories. Those are the ones who end up trapped. Haunted by the stories they cling to. Innocents, they pay with the grief of those who are left behind. I prefer not to take the joy of life from them.

Still even though each is unique, I didn’t expect what I found that day! Most of the other creatures left are mortal…. Mostly human. The angelic blood that is left is so watered down that most have forgotten that it even existed. The few actual angels remaining are immortal, so I am not supposed to see them. Yet, there one was. Somehow an immortal being had died. Angels are genderless, not in the absence but instead because they are true Hermaphrodites. I found myself staring into her beauty and feeling a sense of impending disaster. Her snow white hair, ashen skin and ice blue eyes were all so very compelling. Add in soft white wings and she seemed almost unreal.

If one of the immortal beings could die, what did that mean for me? For the first time, I considered refusing to ferry a soul across. There was nothing to force my hand, the choice was always mine. Finally, I sighed. “Tell your story to cross between, or do not, and here remain!“

It was the same thing I told everyone, though at that moment I found my desire waning for the story that was about to flow. I remembered every story, from the first to the last. It felt like I was doing a disservice by hearing the story of this soul. It was my catastrophe. For in her story I lost my self and the will to be impartial.

The angel hesitantly looked up at me. I believe that she was as worried about what her death meant as I was. Immortal beings were not meant to be able to die. Their bodies healed themselves more quickly than most were able to be injured. Her story would be one that would shake my world.

“I was given to protection of the innocent. It was my nature, so when the divine stepped back… It was what I decided my job was. I have served as caretaker for thousands of injured innocent. The children called me Frosty the Snowman. The ones who sought to harm the innocent would face my wrath. The children sang songs about me.

I had created a safe place for those who had been hurt. I was pleased that I was able to use my magic to freeze those who would hurt the children. They would try to run. Lock themselves in panic rooms and the like. It didn’t matter. I could see them and their guilt, no matter where they hid.

I have been doing this since society began. I became so very overconfident. I did not count on the pieces of faith that still remain. The last child I sought to protect was being chased by a creature who understood darkness. He has demons in his employ.“

I saw the sudden fear as the Angel trailed off. The fog that passed across her face. “Only the divine can kill the immortal… And demons are but fallen angels. Each of the immortal are shards of the divine. I had forgotten that. And it cost me… And those who I was protecting.“

She was lost in tears. She did not want to leave the children… I could see it. For the first time in my experience I was torn. Though I was nothing more than a guide, I wanted to play god. The river was divine in origin, a connection to the creators.

“How much are you willing to give up? What is most important to you? There is a way, but as with all magics… There will be a cost.” I warned.

Her reaction was knee jerk and emphatic. “Anything! For the children.“ I sighed, knowing what I was about to offer would be a regret for her later on.

Still, having warned her I offered her an option that I would never have offered to another. “Take this cup, and scoop out some of the divine tears. Drink, and should you be found worthy, then your life will be returned to you. Though it will not be as you expect it. The cost will be paid.“

There was no hesitation as she reached the cup down into the dark water. I couldn’t be sure what was going to happen, but I could guess. I was no longer an active participant in this tragedy, and for that I was grateful.

As she drank, she began to change slowly. First, a warmth to her coloring, then the air about her began to chill. There was a growing luminescent glow around her. Growing to a crescendo much like an orchestra, peaking with her turning a crystalline white, then in an instance she fell apart in a pile of snow on the deck of my ship.

The pile sat there, unmoving, for what seemed like an eternity. Then almost lazily a small wind funnel started lifting the snow. I watched the snowman form. I was not sure where the hat and pipe came from, but with magic it was not something that I really needed to know. “The magic returned the life to you, it granted the wish in your heart to return to being Frosty. Be cautious, for you are still vulnerable to that which the divine made. I wish you good stories, until we meet again.“ I dismissed her to return to the world of the living.

Every now and then I hear about the snowman, and the protector of the lost and broken children. Whether she regrets that choice, that I will only discover should she again come to me for the ride into the other side.