NaNoWriMo 2016!!

NaNoWriMo_logo

 

I mentioned last year that November is National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo. What is it, you ask? For the whole month of November people challenge themselves to write a 50,000 word novel. You can sign up at their website, nanowrimo.com and keep track of your progress, get some useful tools that could help or connect with other writers.

NaNoWriMo starts November 1st and ends November 30th. For any writers looking to challenge and motivate themselves to write that novel they’ve been wanting to get to, this the perfect setup.

For all the writers out there looking to do this challenge officially and unofficially, best of luck and happy writing!!

 

Spring Fever

I was thinking of putting this up as a page on my blog. In honor of the first day of Spring, a tidbit from a story I wrote a few years ago. 

March 1st

Spring sat sprawled in his lazy-boy armchair staring grimly at the calendar in his hand. It was the beginning of March and the Vernal Equinox was getting closer. Normally he would have been thrilled at the arrival of the warm season and carefully planned on how best to get it started. Lately, however, things had been taking a down turn with the frozen season. It seemed like his brother Winter felt entitled to run a longer term than the other seasons. Every year when Spring came out to melt the ice and get the flowers blooming, Winter would come up and do something childish. Like last year, Winter kicked him in the balls. No, literally, Winter came right up to Spring and land a well-aimed foot square in the nuts. And Spring hadn’t saw it coming! Every year he would be on guard, waiting for Winter to attack but for some reason, his frosty sibling always got the better of him. The year before last, Winter had come up behind Spring and given him an atomic wedgie. Then while Spring was down, Winter would lay on a new coat of ice and snow and winter would continue another month.

It wasn’t fair! Spring only got two months’ worth of warm days and cool nights and lately he’d been begging Summer to let him stay on another few weeks. She’d been a good sport about it since they were both warm seasons and she like to heat things up when the children and college kids got out of school. “You can make it up to me by taking me on Spring Break!” She’d said, which meant she wanted to go to Mardi Gras and didn‘t want to go there by herself.  She had honestly never been there and usually spent that time in Miami with the old people and attending some fashion institute. But never mind that. This year was going to be different; he was going to get Winter and really stick it to him. He just needed a plan.

While he was thinking, his wife, April came in with a tray of assorted cookies and a tall glass of milk. Today some soap marathon was on. General Hospital, One Life to Live, he forgot which, they were all the same. She turned her head to him as she walked in, noticing his gloomy aura. Setting the tray down, April went over to her husband’s side and sat down on the chair’s arm. “What’s wrong, sweetie? You’re usually so happy this time of year.”

“Not this time,” Spring replied. “Why bother getting excited for the first day of a new season if Winter’s just going to come in and ruin it. Christ, ever year now he’s been butting in on my time of the year. No one likes a Winter Wonderland at the beginning of my season so he can just shove it!” The millenniums-year old bringer of greenery folded his arms and pouted.

“Have you tried talking to him? This could just be a misunderstanding.”

“How is kicking me below the belt a misunderstanding?”

“Maybe he’s having some problems. His clothing business isn’t doing so well, his wife told me,” April informed. “I wouldn’t be surprised if he started neglecting his season duties and didn’t show up for Winter Solstice!”

That sparked an idea. Not show up huh? Spring rubbed his clean shaven chin thoughtfully, trying to will the idea into form. Then he had it! He was going to beat Winter at his own game. He jumped up and kissed his wife’s cheek. “April, my lovely, you are a genius!” Then he headed to his private study to plan, leaving April sitting on the recliner’s arm with a confused expression.

Vernal Equinox

Over the next few weeks since, Spring continued his usual duties of warming the climate where necessary. Melting things here, sending a warm breeze there. Now it was finally here, the First Day and where was Spring? At home in his pajamas with this month’s subscription of Men’s Health. The weather report was on and chances of snow were 40 % ignoring the fact that already it was flurrying outside. Spring held the magazine to his face and chuckled to himself. The last phase in his plan was just hours away. All he had to do was wait.

April came in on her way out to work. “Shouldn’t you have left an hour ago? It’s the First Day of Spring. Shouldn’t you be out there spreading the Fever?”

“Oh, just you wait April, my dear. Right now my brother is out there keeping the dead season alive. Well as soon as he’s done, my revenge will be at hand!” He made the last declaration triumphantly and turned the TV to AMC where Mortal Kombat was on. April left him to his movie shaking her head.

 

Later that night

Spring pulled his black wool coat tighter around him as he headed for the park. It was situated near the center of the city and the perfect place to enact his plan. Man, this coat was warm! April had given it to him; he wondered where she got it from. Winter’s Coat Factory the tag said…. He left the coat on a bench for some homeless person to find. Tugging his scarf tight around his neck, he stood near the frozen bridge and set about doing his job. It took him an hour to melt everything and get his breeze going. After surveying his work, Spring checked his watch and realized it was almost midnight! He hopped off the bench and turned toward the park entrance.

As he did, a massive pain hit him below the belt. Spring doubled over and fell on his side. Looking up he saw his older brother Winter looking down at him dispassionately with his glacier blue eyes. Winter watched him writhe on the ground clutching his injured package before walking off, a chilly breeze ruffling his black trench coat and red scarf. Gingerly, Spring got up willing his green eyes not to water. The expensive, Armani-wearing bastard! What did he ever do to him to warrant such childish behavior? Well it was on now. Now it was war!

 

A Work in Progress

Here’s a little tidbit of a short story I had started from a writing prompt. If you don’t remember, here’s the post where I put it.

Any Given Pyscho

Bates Motel was on. I hate that show but Andrea likes it; kind of ironic. She says I’m a spaz for hating it and calls me Queen of DeNile. I just don’t like the reminder to our own situation especially the movie it’s based off of. Andrea will make me watch it with her so I go in the kitchen and make us some popcorn. While I’m in there I take out Jessica’s green mug and set it on the counter for her in the morning. She always shows up on a Thursday and stays until Sunday. Which is fine but you’d think she’d stay longer since she’s got a guest staying. I mean, I don’t know what to do with him. He stays in our guestroom.

“Forget the bowl,” Andrea says. “Just grab the bag and let’s go!”

I roll my eyes. I take the bag out of the microwave and we plop down on the couch together.

“God, I hate this show,” I grouch.

“Then don’t watch it,” Andrea huffs.

“I wouldn’t but you’re always like, ‘hey Katie, come watch this show with me!'”

“Well, because it’s no fun watching TV alone. C’mon Katie be a sport! What’s the point of roommates if we don’t do stuff together?”

I slump further into the cushions. Yeah, roommates are nice-when they aren’t forcing you to watch stupid shows on television.

“And besides,” Andrea went on. “You know you’re lucky to have me. Without me, you’d be sittin’ in the house all day alone starin’ at the walls!”

“Pardon me for not being so outgoing.”

“Yeah, you wish you were like me,” she smirked.

That sparked an amused grin from me. When I was in high school I often did wish I was more outgoing like some of the popular girls. I was always hiding in the library, keeping my head down. I was a real target for the popular kids when they deigned to notice me. When Andrea came along they learned pretty quick messing with me was a mistake.

Now they don’t mess with anyone anymore.

A thump is heard from upstairs. We look up. I guess Jessica’s guest is up and about; I haven’t heard a peep out of him since he first got here. I wonder if he’s her boyfriend or something. He just showed up last week when I noticed the note from Jess on the door asking to bring him food and leave him alone.

“Aah, leave it alone,” Andrea says. “Just let Jess handle him. He ain’t goin’ nowhere.”

Shrugging, I turn back to the TV.

“And so when she untied you that was when you escaped?” the officer asked.

“Yes,” Tony answered. He was lying in a hospital bed having been brought there a couple hours ago. “But I wasn’t tied, I was handcuffed. The other two, they were the ones who handcuffed me.”

“The other two?” the officer scratched his head. “I thought you said it was one girl.”

“The personalities,” Tony said. “I think there were at least three. I figured she had these multiple personalities because she would be dressed all different and would talk different. When she came in the night she handcuffed me, she was arguing to herself—well, I guess, the two personalities were—mentioning ‘Andrea’ and ‘Katie’. They also mentioned someone named ‘Jess’. I think that was the one who held me there. When she moved into that house I thought she looked like someone. Then I saw a report on the news about that crazy girl escaping from the mental institution. When I was about to call the police I was hit from behind. That Jess girl had broken into my house, said she noticed me watching her too closely and decided to watch me.”

Word count for this post is 666. Wow.