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Welcome!



*Star*In 2011, my main focus will be on writing a novel. Since I'm a novice novelist, I've decided to come at the project from different angles, exploring the genre and experimenting with its elements. This blog and its offsite sister blog will be my journals where I attack novel-writing one day at a time.

As I was creating my BlogSpot page, the inspiration for the blog solidified in my mind. I named that blog "One Significant Moment at a Time." In essence, I want to use the format as a reminder to walk through my life with my author's eyes open, taking in the details, feeling the emotions of the day. As moments unfold and I feel their affects on me as a person, a woman, a mother, a sister, a member of the world community, I'll let the writer in me talk about it.

Creative Nonfiction is the genre most fitting to describe what I envision accomplishing here, moreso than blogging or journaling. The style is best suited, I feel, for my ambitions as a novelist.

In addition, Friday entries will not be written by me. Instead, I'll turn the keyboard over to one of the characters in my novel. He or she will relate the events of the day as s/he saw them, through the filter of his or her perception.


** Image ID #1779494 Unavailable **
*Up* Click this image to visit my Blog City neighbors! *Up*



*Star* I'd Love Your Help *Star*

If you've read my blog before, and find yourself here again, won't you click this link and check out my BlogSpot?

http://www.nicoleducleroir.blogspot.com

*Star* Leave me a comment there, and I'll send you a WDC token of my appreciation!

*Star* Become a Follower there, and I'll send you a Supportive Merit Badge! -- You don't have to go to blogspot.com each day; in fact, I post much of the same entries here in this WDC blog. But building up a verifiable readership may prove important one day when I'm knocking on literary agent/publishers' doors!

*Right* To Follow, just click "Follow" on the right margin of my blog page. You'll have to sign in using, or create, a Google account (it's free and only takes two minutes!), and then follow the short instructions. It's easy, and I'd appreciate it so much!!


Merit Badges Sent To:

*Bullet**Heart*~Noelle ~ TY Anon! ~*Heart**Bullet*
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*Bullet**Heart*~Adriana Noir ~*Heart**Bullet*
*Bullet**Heart*~Jeff ~*Heart**Bullet*
*Bullet**Heart*~Carol St. Ann ~*Heart**Bullet*






2011 Reading Goal = 25 Books in 52 Weeks. To see the list of books I've read so far, CLICK HERE  





*Star**Bullet* Leave me a comment anytime ~ even on older postings! *Bullet**Star*



Thanks for reading!!




Previous ... 1 -2- 3 4 5 6 7 8 ... Next
June 14, 2011 at 5:51pm
June 14, 2011 at 5:51pm
#726201
It's the final round of WDC Survivor, and Fynanew and I have our work cut out for us with the prompt. We are to write a story/scene about a character who receives devastating news in a telephone conversation. The first part of the story must be dialogue-only, but then we have to write the same story/scene only the second time, we can't use any dialogue.

Tough, tough, tough! And my child had a birthday sleepover party last night and a friend has invited us to her pool tomorrow -- and I'm freaking out a bit with this entry!

The good news: I've just now finished the first draft. And I've been editing and revising as I go, so even though it's a first draft, I have much of the work done. Now, I have tonight and early tomorrow to polish the thing up and submit.

The great thing about this final round is our entries will be anonymous. In other words, we submit to Sara Jean privately, and she'll put our stories in her port with our names taken off them. This is brilliant because voting will be based solely on the merits of the writing and not on whose group turns out the most voters.

I'll link voting info here when I have it. Deadline for our submissions is tomorrow night. Any well-wishes are greatly appreciated! And drop Fyn a note too. She's amazing and I'm thrilled to have my bar raised so high by competing in a contest with her.

Until next time, have a wonderful evening!
*Smile* Nicki *Peace*
June 13, 2011 at 5:27pm
June 13, 2011 at 5:27pm
#726142
Today we reached a milestone in my family. My son is officially a teenager. And it's his Golden Birthday, because he is 13 years old on June 13th. (I didn't celebrate my own...my birthday is October 3rd *Pthb*)

So there you have it: I'm the mother of a teenager. I guess this is when the fun starts!

*gulp*

*Bigsmile*
June 11, 2011 at 1:41pm
June 11, 2011 at 1:41pm
#726019
If you are a teen writer, or you're an adult who supports teen writers, you may be interested in a group I created. TWIST's mission is to share information with our youngest members, whether discussing writing tips, teaching WDC site features, or pointing out contests, activities, groups and forums for (or created by) teen writers.

Interested in learning more? Please check us out:

Teen Writers Info-Sharing Team (TWIST)  (E)
~ON HIATUS~
#1618331 by NickiD89



If you have any questions, contact me NickiD89

Have a wonderful weekend!
*Peace* Nicki
June 10, 2011 at 1:55pm
June 10, 2011 at 1:55pm
#725956
This morning at the pool I overheard a young boy about ten years old say to a group of kids, "One thing I've learned from my mom and dad is: never trust a girl."

Wait, what???

*Laugh*
June 9, 2011 at 4:54pm
June 9, 2011 at 4:54pm
#725904
I've begun my Italian lessons -- nothing fancy, just CDs I picked up at the library. It's fun though, trying to parrot the pronunciation and cadence of the speakers on the discs. Fifteen years of speaking French has definitely helped my lips and tongue loosen up to form the Italian words.

Is this really happening? Am I really going to be over there for fifteen whole days?

No one pinch me. I never want to wake up!

*Smile*
June 8, 2011 at 9:05pm
June 8, 2011 at 9:05pm
#725836
I'm so grateful to all the wonderful WDC friends who voted for me in the WDC Survivor polls. Thanks to you, I racked up the most votes and wasn't "voted off the island!" Since this is a fundraiser game, I'm thrilled beyond words to hang in there for one more round in the hopes of bringing even more GPs home to Rising Stars.

There are just two of us left now. The incomparable Fynanew is my inspiration and my competition in the finale. We've been cheering each other on over the past two months or so. When I held the Immunity Idol one week and was safe from elimination, I rallied votes to boost Fyn's standings. I know I don't consider us in competition with each other. Rather, we're nudging each others bars ever higher. What a great thing!

But, in the end there will be only one winner who brings the final 575K+ grand prize home for her charity group. Rising Stars have been so incredibly supportive of me during this adventure, and I really want to be able to thank them with all those GPs.

The final prompt isn't posted yet. So for now, I'll just say thank you for voting for me, for reading and reviewing my entries, and for making me feel like an appreciated writer. I've grown yet again in my craft, thanks to your support. Come on, now; group hug!

*Smile* Nicki *Heart*
June 7, 2011 at 3:22pm
June 7, 2011 at 3:22pm
#725773
Challenger entries go in the book with this logo :))


I'm participating in "WdC Survivor! to raise much needed GPs for "Rising Stars of WdC and help fund the group's amazing writing and reviewing programs. I will be donating all of my earnings in the contest, as well the GPs I'll earn for the group -- doubling the number of GPs that will go to Rising Stars.

Won't you help secure my place in the final round? Pleeeeeease? *Bigsmile*

All you have to do is click the link below and vote for me. Only the participant with the most number of votes moves on to the final round and goes up against Fynanew . Fyn is one of my favorite WDC authors and competing with her is an honor. My fingers are crossed!

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This item number is not valid.
#1782171 by Not Available.

*Up* Hurry -- Polls stay open until tonight only! *Up*

Please let me know you voted, so I can thank you! *Delight*

*Heart*~ Thanks in advance for your support!! ~*Heart*
June 4, 2011 at 10:54am
June 4, 2011 at 10:54am
#725407
I'm raising GPs for "Rising Stars of WdC in the "WdC Survivor! contest. So far, my total Rising Stars winnings are 87,966 gps! We're getting down to the wire, and after five rounds of prompted writing challenges there are just five competitors left.

Fynanew won the Immunity Idol and has secured her place in the final round. Now your votes will determine which of the other four competitors will go up against her.

I'd really like to keep funneling funds into Rising Stars programs, so I'm shamelessly asking you to vote for me. *Bigsmile* It only takes a second! Here's the link:

 Invalid Item 
This item number is not valid.
#1782171 by Not Available.

*Up* Hurry, voting ends on Tuesday! *Up*



And to read my Round 5 entry, a short story in which I didn't use one word that contained an 'O,' click this link: ""Miss Match" ~Round Five Entry~. Tough challenge, for sure!

Thanks for supporting me and Rising Stars!!!!!!!

Happy Weekend *Sun*

June 3, 2011 at 10:39am
June 3, 2011 at 10:39am
#725336
I'm very excited about our summer vacation plans and have been preparing for the past two weeks. We don't leave until mid-July, but considering we're going to Italy, there's a lot to get ready for. The first few days we'll be at my sister's new house in Tuscany. My parents may be there the same time we are, so Mom and I have decided to read Eat, Pray, Love "together" between now and then, to get extra excited about it (if that's possible!).

On the fourth day, we're flying down to Naples where we'll board my sister's boyfriend's yacht. Between the 18th and the 30th we'll sail down Italy's Mediterranean coast, taking our time and docking in seaside towns and island ports. Gah!! I can't wait!

I'm fluent in French but don't speak a word of Italian. The local library didn't have How To Learn Italian audio tapes, but have ordered them for me from another location. As soon as they come, my lessons begin. The kids want to do the tapes with me. Fun!

More to come about our trip as details are settled. For now, the whole thing is surreal. Trips like this just don't happen to me!

Until tomorrow...have a great day!
June 2, 2011 at 6:43am
June 2, 2011 at 6:43am
#725274
Up early, the kids are still abed...I #amwriting! *Bigsmile*
June 1, 2011 at 2:18pm
June 1, 2011 at 2:18pm
#725239
I'm going to have a blue blogging month. There. That's my goal. Jot down what I'm up to for the day.

I'm finishing up the trim in the kitchen and dining room. The detail work is my favorite -- and luckily I have a steady hand. It's going to look fan-tabulous once we get all the art back on the walls and the decorations back in place. What a project!

The kids and I just got back from the public library. My 11 yo. daughter took out a YA book on her summer reading list. But my (nearly) 13 yo? He took out Melville's Moby Dick, and an audio book to learn Mandarin Chinese. *Pthb*

I was disappointed there wasn't an audio book for learning Italian. I ordered a copy from a neighboring library, which should be here within a week. I picked up a travel book on Tuscany and Eat, Pray, Love. Getting ready for our Italian vacation -- can't wait!

Okay, no more stalling. Off to paint. Ciao!
May 19, 2011 at 2:45pm
May 19, 2011 at 2:45pm
#724303
Challenger entries go in the book with this logo :))


So far, I've raised 49,966 GPs for "Rising Stars of WdC. But I want to raise that number!


Won't you help me by clicking the link below and voting for me? Pretty please?? There are only eight participants left, and the four with the least number of votes will be sent "off the island." I don't want to be one of them! *Bigsmile*

 Invalid Item 
This item number is not valid.
#1777652 by Not Available.


*Up* Cast your vote here! *Up*

Hurry! Voting ends on Saturday, May 21st


Thank you for your awesome support!!!!!!

*Heart* Nicki
April 30, 2011 at 9:35am
April 30, 2011 at 9:35am
#723267
I made it to ‘Z’!! I’ve really enjoyed the A-Z Blogfest because it’s had me writing flash fiction every single day. I’m horribly burnt out and need a serious break, but it’s been a wonderful and wild ride. My heartfelt thanks to the talented Jessica Bell   for coming up with the idea to practice ‘show, don’t tell’ skills using an A-Z list of emotion/feeling/state of mind prompt words. It was a brilliant concept, Jess!

And so, for the last time this year, you will find below a short excerpt in which a character depicts an emotion/feeling/state of mind, this time beginning with the letter ‘Z’. Can you guess, based on my writing, what that prompt word is? Leave your guess in the comments, and then follow the link to Jessica’s blog. Easy-peesy!

Here we go:

The parade snaked its way down the block toward the intersection of Piedmont and First. Colors sparkled under the morning sun, brightening the city as thumping Euro-dance music ebbed and flowed on the breeze. A cop stood under the traffic lights, directing the marchers around the right hand turn. His stoic face was chiseled in stone, his eyes hidden behind black aviator shades.

In the advancing crowd, a bearded man in a fluffy, flowered skirt passed by. Graying chest hair peeked out over the edge of his yellow tube top, and silver socks twinkled in the sun. He pushed a neon pink stroller with a beagle wearing a Hawaiian lei for a collar riding inside.

Behind him rode five scooters side-by-side. Each was a different color from the rainbow, and each driver was shirtless, his torso body-painted to match the color of his ride.

Partial nudity was a common sight. Some of the marchers wore chaps paired with g-string thongs. One opted for simply a pair of bootie shorts and a peacock tail, fashioned out of long, colorful, balloon artist’s balloons.

The cop stood, statue-still, silent. Three men dressed like butterflies flit over to him. “Here, honey!” one sang. “Here’s a little sparkle to brighten you up!” He dropped a beauty queen-style sash over the policeman’s head and let it drape across his chest before dancing off to rejoin his friends.

The cop looked down at the yellow sash with its rainbow sequin border. It bore one word: Pride. Despite himself, the cop grinned.



~~~~~~~~~~~


Any idea what ‘Z’ word I’ve depicted here? I look forward to your comments!


And a special, heartfelt shoutout to Happy New Year! : Thanks so much for sharing this blogfest experience with me! Your thoughts and comments each day have made it so enjoyable. Your support has meant the world to me!! *Heart*
April 29, 2011 at 9:07am
April 29, 2011 at 9:07am
#723208
Thanks for all the wonderful Blogger/WDC visits yesterday! The prompt word was 'Xenophobia' -- and almost everyone got it right! Whoot!

Today, I have the Royal Wedding on my mind and had to tear myself from the TV to post this. I love watching happy history unfold! So, I've used a piece of flash fiction I wrote last year for today's excerpt. Although the piece overall reflects the prompt, I'm putting the section that best depicts the 'Y' emotion/feeling/state of mind word in colored text. (I hope it isn't distracting as you read!) Leave me a guess in the comments telling me what 'Y' word comes to mind.

Here goes:


Nora’s fingertips grazed the silky fabric on the bed. Grasping the nylon tank top, she straightened, then hyper-extended her back just enough to lay the shirt on her chest and fold it properly. Her nose twitched, and she stiffened.

She’d smelled Bradley’s sour scent before she heard him enter the doorway behind her. Laying the folded tank in the suitcase before her, she said, “No use sneaking up. I know you’re there.”

Willing her hand to steady, she reached for another fistful of clothing. A zipper jingled from the heavy fabric. Hoodie. She felt along the garment to locate the sleeves, and then laid it -- arms open wide -- across the suitcase. She imagined herself like that, living in the hoodie’s pose, embracing life. Her heart raced at the thought.

As Nora brought one sleeve across to fold the jacket in half, the weight of Bradley’s hand suddenly fell on her arm, fingers closing on Nora’s wrist with an iron grip. She jumped and winced, cowering.

He shook her. “I don’t remember telling you I said it was okay to go.”

His hot, ashtray breath chilled the beads of sweat that’d sprung across her upper lip. She pulled to free her arm but he yanked hard, jerking her forward. Pain shot up the inside to her armpit.

“Let her go.”

Nora’s head snapped in the direction of the doorway and her brother’s voice. The vice released her, and she stumbled against the bed.

“Who the hell do you think you are, Ron?” Bradley spat. “You can’t just waltz into my friggin’ house.”

“It’s my sister’s house too. She asked me to come up and help her with her packing.” Ron returned Bradley’s glare for two beats before he walked to Nora and kissed her cheek. “You ready to go?" he asked softly. Nora heard a smile enter his voice as he went on. "I’ve been waiting six months for you to cash in my birthday present to you.”

“What kind of a friggin' idiot takes a blind person rafting?” Bradley said with a sneer.

Ron snapped the suitcase shut and offered Nora his elbow. As she took it, he said, “I guess this kind does.”

The next afternoon, adrenalin pumping through her veins with a ferocity she’d never known, Nora grasped Ron’s hand as they stumbled out of the raft.

“That was fucking amazing!” Nora screeched. Her laughter melded with the sound of the bubbling river rushing through the canyon they’d just descended.

Ron hugged her. “See little sis, you can do anything you set your mind to. Your real handicap all these years hasn’t been your eyes.”

Nora stepped back and drew in a deep breath. Slowly, she reached her arms wide open, tilting her chin so the sun warmed the whole of her face. “When we get back to the hotel, make the call,” she said.

“Good,” Ron said. “My secretary has the papers drawn up. He’ll be served tomorrow.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Any idea what feeling or emotion I'm hinting at here with Nora? Looking forward to your comments. Happy Royal Wedding Day!
April 28, 2011 at 8:22am
April 28, 2011 at 8:22am
#723141
Yesterday's A-Z prompt word was 'Wanton.' That was a fun one to write!!

It's the final stretch!! Today's 'X' prompt word is depicted by a character in the excerpt below. See if you can guess what emotion/feeling/state of mind I've described that begins with 'X'. (There really aren't many 'x' states of mind!) Can't wait to read your comments!

So without further ado, here is my entry for the day:


Las Vegas, Nevada. July 13, 1991. Ten o'clock a.m.

Brenda glared from behind the safety of her register counter at the crowd in the convenience store. Every aisle was clogged with wiry, dirty-looking young people, many dressed in ridiculous assortments of tie-dyed clothing. Long lines of them snaked from the restroom doors and down the length of coolers. Her eyes shifted when the men's room door opened and two barefoot girls in tube tops and peasant skirts emerged.

The bell over the entryway jingled and she turned her head in that direction. A tall man with no shirt and ratty dreadlocks to his waist bounced in, carrying a boom box on his shoulder. Sugar Magnolia blared. Heads began to bob. The girls in the tube tops broke out in a swaying dance that had their skirts swirling and jingle-bell anklets jangling.

"Hey you!" Brenda called out. "Turn that thing off in here!"

Damn you Mikey for calling in sick today. And damn you Jerry Garcia for spawning this generation of filthy, free-loading, hippie throw-backs. Once a year this circus descended for a weekend of Vegas shows, and every year it was the same. Not one of these losers will buy anything. They're here to take a piss and shove as many moon pies and beef jerky sticks down their pants as possible.

"Excuse me, miss?"

Brenda jumped, her heart clawing its way to her throat as her glare shot down to the man standing at the counter. His gray t-shirt may have started out green, but it was tattered and stained and looked like it hadn't seen a washing machine in months. Emerald eyes gazed at her from a bronzed and heavily bearded face. The faint aroma of marijuana floated around him.

"Yes, what do you want?" Brenda's voice quavered.

"I was just wondering if you could give me directions to the post office? I want to send my mom a post card. Tour's only half over and I miss her like crazy, you know?" His smiled sheepishly.

Brenda narrowed her eyes and wondered what he was up to.


~~~~~~~~~~~~



So what do you think? What state of mind/emotion/feeling have I described here?

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!

April 27, 2011 at 8:39am
April 27, 2011 at 8:39am
#723093
Yesterday's A-Z prompt word was 'Vanity.' So many of you here and on Blogger.com guessed right, which is awesome feedback for me! Thanks everyone *Delight*!

Today's 'W' prompt word is depicted by a character in the excerpt below. See if you can guess what emotion/feeling/state of mind I've described that begins with 'W'. (This one may be tough, but I hope not!) Can't wait to read your comments!

Here's my 'W' entry:


Gobi Chanel breezed through the crowded nightclub as if she were the only person in the place. The Red Sea of dancing, drinking patrons sensed her presence or perhaps they smelled her perfume, for they parted before her, opening a pathway to the dance floor.

Under the sparkling mirrored ball, she began to move her hips. Her body swayed with serpentine grace, drawing every mesmerized eye in the room.

As the music regained its control on the crowd, it moved in and collapsed Gobi’s corridor. A tall man with mocha skin shimmied up to her. She narrowed her eyes in a gaze of seduction which the man acknowledged by placing his hands on her hips. They moved together, her hips grinding against his. When the song ended, he spun her into a dip.

The next song was up-tempo, and Gobi added some popping moves to her gyrations. She turned and found herself face-to-face with a muscular blond. Her moves mirrored his, and when he pulled her close to him, she pressed her curves against his chiseled chest.

And Gobi began to grind her hips.




Any ideas what emotion/feeling/state of mind I've described here? Love to hear your guesses! Thanks for reading and have a splendid day!

April 26, 2011 at 8:39am
April 26, 2011 at 8:39am
#723038
Today's 'V' prompt word is depicted by a character in the excerpt below. See if you can guess what emotion/feeling/state of mind I've described that begins with 'V'. Can't wait to read your comments!

Here's my 'V' word entry:


The baby’s cries drifted into the room like smoke from the hallway.

Céline shifted her jaw, catching a mound of slick inner cheek flesh between her teeth, and concentrated all her effort on the task at hand. In the mirror, she watched.

The ivory handle of the brush felt warm in her hand. She relished the way the stiff bristles raked her head, massaging her scalp from the part at the center all the way to the base of her skull. Then as the brush sailed down the zip-line of long locks, she savored the delicious tug of follicles resisting the pressure, until the brush dropped off near her waist.

The baby’s cries were louder. He’d have to be patient. She was on the one hundred and sixty-nineth stroke; almost finished.

Céline tilted her head as she brushed. From this angle, the light played from the right, illuminating shimmers of scarlet flecks in the curtain of her chestnut hair. It gleamed, smooth and silky, like new Barbie doll hair.

She brushed from the back, dragging her hair forward and letting it drape around her. Stroke after stroke, she smoothed every strand into place until the bodice of her white nightgown was completely hidden beneath her hair. Five more strokes on each side and, there, she was finished.

In the mirror, Céline’s eyes roved her reflection, her crowning glory in a state of utter perfection. The baby continued to cry.

Céline sighed and stood up. “Coming, love.”


~~~~~~~~~~


Any ideas what emotion/feeling/state of mind Céline depicted in this excerpt? Looking forward to your guesses! And here's a link to Jessica's blog to read her 'V' word entry. See you over there!

Have a grand day and thanks for reading!


April 25, 2011 at 8:40am
April 25, 2011 at 8:40am
#722975
I hope you had a wonderful weekend, and that those of you who celebrated Easter had a special holiday! Saturday's word was 'Terror' -- thanks for all your comments and guesses!

Today's 'U' prompt word is depicted by a character in the excerpt below. See if you can guess what emotion/feeling/state of mind I've described that begins with 'U'. Can't wait to read your comments!

Here's my excerpt:


“I don’t know why we chose this dreary restaurant. Do you remember? Is that so? A five-star chef, is he? Well, I just hope his food is better than the abominable service we’re getting. Where is that waitress? It doesn’t take a university level education to recognize a table full of hungry, wealthy people! Surely she knows her tip will be proportionate to her ability to get what we’ve ordered to us quickly. Yes, you’re right. I shouldn’t make assumptions! What’s that old adage? Makes an ass out of you and me? Ah, speaking of, here she is now.

“Miss, when you’re serving a table of women, like ours, do you know whose wine glass to fill first? No, I didn’t think you did. Here’s a tip. Serve the lady wearing the most expensive-looking jewelry!

“Joking! Just a little humor, ladies, come on. I always say, if you can’t giggle a little, you—hang on. Excuse me? What do you think you’re doing, miss? Yes, I can see you’re pouring the wine, but that doesn’t answer my question, does it now? Haven’t you any idea how to pour wine correctly? Don’t they train you people? No, I won’t let it slide, darling. This is supposed to be a fine dining establishment, with a reputable chef, and this silly waitress is pouring me expensive Bordeaux in a white wine glass.

“Miss, I’d like to speak to your manager. Yes, right now. Run along and fetch him, this instant. Unbelievable, am I right? Darling! I just noticed your handbag. My goodness, it’s gorgeous. Is that from Gucci’s spring line? It’s been under wraps, how on earth did you manage to…?”


*******



Any idea what emotion/feeling/state of mind I've 'shown' in the dialog above? I'd love to read your guess in the comments.

Have a wonderful day and thanks for reading!!

April 23, 2011 at 8:31am
April 23, 2011 at 8:31am
#722866
Thanks to those who popped in yesterday! The prompt word I worked from was 'Selfishness.'

Today I'm borrowing a little scene from a short story I wrote a couple years back, starring characters Michael and Kaitlyn. This excerpt depicts the 'T' word Jessica Bell and I are using to prompt our entries today. Can you guess what emotion/feeling/state of mind that begins with 'T' it showcases?

Looking forward to your guesses! Here goes:


Melted snow from higher elevations had swelled the river to twice its normal size. Above them, raging water rushed over a promontory and crashed in billows of roiling white foam fifteen feet below. The noise was deafening. Kaitlyn pulled her camera from her pack and began snapping pictures. The air was much cooler here, and after a few minutes they turned to go.

"God! It's beautiful here," Kaitlyn sighed when they could hear each other again. Then, she sucked in her breath.

Following her gaze, Michael saw the brightly colored butterfly she had spotted. She raised the camera to her eye as it settled on a trillium bush. No sooner had she focused the lens than the butterfly took flight again. Kaitlyn stepped off the path in pursuit of it.

Closer and closer to the river, the insect flitted from one blossom to the next. Finally, it landed on a branch at the water's edge. Looking through the lens of the camera, Kaitlyn edged closer.

Michael called out, "That's close enough, Kait," but his voice was lost to the river.

As she snapped the picture, her foot slipped on the moist embankment. She let out a high-pitched yelp that barely made it to Michael's ears. All he saw was one of Kaitlyn's arms shoot out awkwardly before she disappeared below the bank.

Michael sprang into action even before his mind had time to process what had happened. He sprinted toward the river, ploughing through branches that tore at his face, shouting Kaitlyn's name. She was nowhere to be seen. He searched the white water churning with the vengeance of a stampede of beasts, mirroring the panic coursing through his body. Suddenly, Kaitlyn's head broke the surface of the water several yards away. There was an outcropping of rock visible further downstream, and Michael bolted for it.

"Swim for me!" he shouted as he ran, never taking his eyes off her. He threw himself onto the rock's edge, yelling, "Kaitlyn! Grab my hand!" He was flat on his stomach, reaching as far out over the water as he could manage, as the fast-paced current carried Kaitlyn toward him.

Fright etched furrows into her contorted face. She could see Michael's hand but she was powerless over the current dictating her trajectory. The river slammed her like a rag doll against a rock, pitching her violently under the water. When she resurfaced moments later, she was heading straight for Michael.

Kaitlyn was floating impotently past Michael, but she managed to stretch her hand out. With astonishing timing, Michael heaved his weight forward and caught her firmly around the wrist. She dangled heavily there, her frightened eyes locked with his. Michael's nightmare from years ago was brutally triggered, and fear threatened to rob him of brawn and confidence. He forced the old memory out of his mind and his resolution stoked his strength.

"I've got you, baby! I've got you!" he gasped. Fighting the current and the water-logged weight of her pack, he struggled to pull her in. It wasn't until he got his hand around the back of her belt, that he realized he had denied the arrogating river of its quarry.




I'd love to read which emotion/feeling/state of mind that begins with 'T' you've guessed.

Thanks for reading!!
April 22, 2011 at 9:59am
April 22, 2011 at 9:59am
#722821
Today, I'm combining my A-Z blogfest challenge with Jessica Bell and the third and final writing challenge for the Writer's Platform Building Crusade. So, my prompt today is:


In 300 words or less, write a passage that shows (rather than tells) a character exhibiting an emotion/feeling/state of mind that begins with the letter 'S', and that incorporates the following additional prompts:
· you're scared and hungry
· it's dusk
· you think someone is following you
· and just for fun, see if you can involve all five senses AND include these random words: shimmer, saccadic, substance, and salt.


Here's my offering:

Carmen’s stomach rumbling cut through the stillness of the darkening park. She’d left raw steaks out when she’d stormed off. A scolding voice whispered it was messed up to be more concerned about that than about hurting Ted’s feelings. She shushed that voice.

Scowling up at the last shimmer of pink in the sky, Carmen pictured Ted at home, lounging in his comfortable Lay-Z-Boy, that stupid textbook in his hand. In her diva voice, the one she normally reserved for the stage, she sang out, “His eyes dancing a seductive saccade across the pages.” How many seductive dances did she have to perform to get him to notice her again? Since he started back at school, she’d become invisible, just a person to cook and clean for him. Well, to hell with him and his dreams of being a scholar, a man of substance. Please.

She kicked a rock on the path as she walked, listening to it tumble along the cobblestone. A twig snapped.

The hairs on the back of her neck bristled. She spun around, but no one was there.

Carmen breathed deep. Get a grip. She fancied she smelled the briny mist of the seashore, but that was impossible this far inland. She probably just craved salt. She could almost taste those steaks – damn you, Ted -- and another peal of thunder rolled through her stomach.

Snap

Carmen turned, eyes wide. “Who’s there?” she demanded. Her cotton t-shirt felt damp under the arms.

Movement, in the shadows.

An explosion of panic burst in Carmen’s gut and she bolted for the park entrance. As she ran, her thoughts cut to Ted. Won’t he be sorry if something tragic happened to her? Misery would eat at him each time he’d speak her name, or tell people how important she'd been to him, all the while knowing in his heart how he’d ignored her, treated her like a common possession. He’d realize he’d lost the precious thing she was.

Carmen slowed, and then stopped. Turning, she peered back into the shadows.


********



Any guesses what 'S' emotion/feeling/state of mind Carmen has exhibited? Won't you leave your guesses in the comment section? I love hearing from you!


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