Category Archives: writing

MEETING THE WILD CHILD!

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MEETING THE WILD CHILD!

Not quite what I was expecting.

Well, actually that’s not true; I knew she would be beautiful (I’ve seen her photo), I knew she would be fit (she skis, plays competitive tennis… and dances, as we all know), I knew she would be interesting (I’ve read her stories and know she is writing a novel), and I knew she was tough (she’s a survivor). So I was surprised she was so tiny… well petite or svelte might sound better.

I flew into Denver with my daughter Krista so she could visit with her best friend, an actor who was starring in the musical Animal Crackers at the Denver Center Theater Company.

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Actors!

An accomplished actor and veteran song & dance man, Michael Fitzpatrick was playing multiple roles, as were the rest of the cast of this madcap zany musical, which first appeared on Broadway in 1928 starring the Marx Brothers. I knew of it as a movie and had no idea it had first been a play. While Krista and Michael relived their theatrical experiences and gossiped, I had other ideas.

michael as hives

As Hines the Butler

michael as cowboy

As Carlton with Groucho

I was on a quest to meet a special writer. She was the first to click like and comment on my initial foray into fiction writing on TedBook… in fact, it was more than that, it was the first time I had linked my blog to a group, and would be having strangers read my words (I think everyone will know the importance of that gesture… for someone scared to near-death for what they had just posted). I immediately read her blogs about kissing the Blarney Stone and seeing some frozen dead guy at a festival in Colorado. I liked her writing and instantly became a follower. I knew she lived near Boulder, which wasn’t far from Denver, so I wrote and invited her to lunch.

A short drive, on a beautiful sunny day in the Rockies, found me in my second Colorado city searching for her favorite restaurant. I found The Mediterranean, secured a table in the garden and awaited the arrival of The Wild Child.

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The Wild Child

I was not disappointed.

For my friends not acquainted with Susie, she writes Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride. We had become fellow bloggers and more importantly friends.  Every month she throws a party… drop by, say hello, and post a story you would like others to see… a great way to meet new writers.

Susie Lindeau 1

I had only met in person two blogging friends, Debra Kristi who introduced me to Thor Worship, and Douglas MacIlroy who took me to the top of Mona Loa to tour the Keck Observatory. So the chance to meet someone else I admired, enjoyed reading and sharing with, could not be passed up.

After a delightful luncheon getting to know each other and discussing family, blogging, writing and writer’s workshops, she took me on a tour of the historic Pearl District, pointing out some of her favorite places.

My Tour Guide

My Tour Guide

I saw a fabulous bookstore, where I’m sure the book she is writing will be on display in the front window someday. That will be a book signing for which I will return to Boulder, and hopefully also get to meet Roxy the Dog, Soul-mate Danny, Snowboarder Extraordinaire Courtney and Hit DJ K Smash… subjects of many of her stories, willing or otherwise.

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The Pearl District of Boulder

Susie returned to her home to do some writing and play in a tennis tournament that night… I returned to Denver to see a wild and crazy Broadway Musical, where Mr Fitzpatrick was at the top of his game, no doubt knowing his friend Krista was in the audience, and we laughed ourselves silly.

Animal Crackers

ANIMAL CRACKERS Photo by John Moore

I had a fabulous time in Boulder and Denver, Colorado.

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Since this post is about blogging and writing… I thought I would share it with some fellow writers at The Moonshine Still…

The Ending is here!

tedstrutz:

One of my favorite Canadian writers is writing a novel!  Check it out, and tell her I sent you!  Ted

Originally posted on Apoplectic Apostrophes:

Coralie

My dear readers, today I’m writing a different kind of post.

I have just launched a Kickstarter campaign to help me raise the money to finish writing my novel, The Ending. Those of you who have been following my blog for a while may have already met some of the characters. For everyone else, I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce you to the four main characters in my novel:

You can also find a link to an excerpt from the book on my Kickstarter page.

There are some cool perks for the people who contribute, including an acknowledgment on my blog (and in the book when it’s published), a copy of one of my other books (both of which you can find here), a special, limited edition hard copy of the four character sketches above, and a chance to immortalize…

View original 32 more words

“SUSIE STRONG”… Meet The Wild Child…

Once The Wild Child rides into your life, you are never the same again…

I don’t remember where I first met Susie. I have been clicking ‘like’ on her posts since early 2011.  I think it was the one about some frozen dead guy.  She was in black & white then, I almost prefer that, as she is colorful enough without color… but it does show off her home in Boulder, Co. to a nice advantage.   She actually prefers it all white, as she is an avid skier and has a white dog named Roxy.  Roxy is the victim/subject of many a post, along with DJ Slash, Courtney and her husband Danny.  She is a talented writer, artist, claims to be a tennis player, and has shown talent as a wannabe pole dancer… her dance numbers are legendary.  Here’s where to meet her… Susie Lindau.

Susie is a special blogging buddy, not only to me, but to many other writers.  Each month she throws a party on her blog.  It’s called  Use Me and Abuse Me Day, the purpose is to give her friends a forum to showcase their latest favorite piece of work.  It is quite a party, as usually about 100 show up to brag and view each other’s offerings.  I’ve met some talented writers and made some good  friends at Susie’s parties.  Do yourself a favor and come to the next one and add one of your stories.

This month Susie won’t be having a party.  Something more important has taken the party’s place.  She will be back soon (no, she is not in jail) and writing her blog again.  I will be looking forward to June’s party.  But for this month, her friend brickhousechick  suggested we hijack ‘Use Me and Abuse Me Day’ and have our own party, to honor Susie for a change.  

See you soon, Susie… I’ll be thinking of you today…  your pal, Ted

Fiction Relay – Part 9

My turn for the latest installment of… The Reclining Gentleman’s Fiction RelayTo see what went on before, check out… The Fiction Relay Homepage.

Suzi stared at Sam. With his malevolent look, any hope that he was a good guy quickly flickered out.

He didn’t see the man in the Panama hat until too late. “Sam!” Hope flickered back in, but Sam was now in no shape to help her. The Hat put away his sap, and hurried over to Suzi when he heard… “Shut that bitch up!”

Waking in a fog, Suzi could not recall what had happened. Too much discomfort to be dreaming, and it wasn’t at all like the dream she had recently. This one was all wrong, as she seemed to be laying on the cold bare floor of a van, her arms behind her back. Snatches of conversation from the front… “we’ll search her for them” “maybe a map” “be careful”. As the pain in her head subsided, she remembered Sam being bashed in the head, and the guy in the hat tying her hands.  Groping her breasts. Raj smirking. The pain in her skull told her The Hat must have used the sap on her also. After a fruitless struggle with her bonds, Suzi decided to wait it out and see what would happen. ‘Damn, shouldn’t have gone back to the apartment, but I couldn’t leave the clues.’ ‘Did Raj look in the bag, does Raj have my bag… God, I hope not’. ‘Poor Melissa, what part she was playing.’ ‘And Sam, what is with this guy?’ Thoughts danced in her head, as she weighed her options.  What to do with whoever was in the front of the van.

Blood seemed to be everywhere. His blood. Sam stopped it with a blouse from the floor, and surveyed the bedroom. Blood on the bedspread, where she had been standing when he entered the room. Suzi taken, Raj and the person who cold cocked him from behind, he assumed. Not much in the way of anything in Suzi’s apartment. A few photos and books, wine bottles, it looked more like a cheap motel room. A bag of sorts peeking out from the side of the bed. Inside, an iPad and some thumb drives… those now in his pocket. His gun still there. ‘Let’s see if she still has her phone.’

In need of smokes, the van slowed and swung to a stop behind a gas station. “Check on our passenger.” Playing asleep, Suzi waited for them to open the back door. Only the Panama hat came into view. As he reached in to check her bonds, she unleashed a vicious kick up under the throat, sending him backwards to the asphalt. Springing from the van, Suzi pinned him on the chest with one foot, while shoving his head over to the side, creating a loud snap. “How did you like that trick, mother fucker!” The inert hatless form did not answer. Spinning about, expecting Raj, she found only the empty van. ‘Must be in the store.’ Suzi passed a newspaper stand, the headline…

‘RESTAURANT MASSACRE…COOK FOUND HANGING IN WALK-IN COOLER!

Her stomach sickened. She slid down the street to an alley; where she could break into a run, put some distance, find a place to work on the rope.

Activating the location indicator, Sam saw her iPhone was moving away from Courtland and Winchester streets. A Shell station was noted. Not to far, hoped Suzi was moving with it.  Racing to his car… the blue ball slowly moving along the map.

She had run for blocks. Exhausted, she crouched between two cars and tried to cut the ropes on a rusting bumper.

The Jag pulled to a stop, the passenger door opened… “Get in! Now!”

To be continued…

To see what happens to Suzi next… go visit that noted Colorado romance writer Dawn

Friday Fictioneers… DISPLACED

It’s been three months now. The shakes have gotten worse. Chef dropped the plate off at the counter, and plodded back to the grill. 3 a.m., liver and onions, bacon and eggs, whores and drunks. Oh well, life at the Huddle House in Chicago.

Lit a cig and stirred the hash browns around. Needed a drink.

Have to remember to put cream down on the 86 board, so they order in the morning. At least he won’t be there listening to the customers bitch if they forget. At 3 a.m they don’t care about cream.

Big slide from the Palmer House.

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

Friday Fictioneers 100Word Flash Fiction…  with the debut of new head honcho Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  Her photo prompt gave me this story from my Chicago days.  To read her story, and find out more about the Friday Fictioneers… CLICK HERE … Why don’t you join us with one of your stories?  We would love to have you.

✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧ ✧

 

I closed my eyes and picked out a story from the past.  Maybe appropriate for the Moonshine Crowd.  We would go to this dive diner at 3am, after a night out at the bars in Chicago years ago.

Fiction Relay – 4

I was recently invited to take part in a Fiction Relay, by The Reclining Gentleman.  I had come across a chapter on my friend Chantel C’s  blog, and liking these sorts of things… (One of my favorite books is Naked Came the Manatee.  The first chapter was written by Dave Barry and the last by Carl Hiaasen, with eleven mystery writers in  between, each inserting their own hero into the story.  It was pretty wild.  But I digress)… CC had written part 2, so I clicked on part 1 to see how it started.  I had seen The Reclining Gentleman’s avatar (silhouette of a reclining gentleman) before, maybe you have too, and even read a few of his posts, first on Madison Woods’ Friday Fictioneers, I think.  I complimented him on the relay idea, and his story, which brought about an invite to take part.  After the usual “I’m not really a writer” BS, I decided to try it… and accepted.  While I patiently waited, Delilah finished part 3.  Here is my part of the ongoing story.  You might want to first read the 3 chapters before mine, links at the bottom of the page… feel free to join in… I don’t think TRG will mind, drop him a line.

*******

“What the Hell!” Startled from his rumination, the cigarette flew from Gino’s lips, creating an arc of sparks and ash across the stained tile. He ground it out, sending a glare at the new waitress.

Melissa caught Suzi, to save herself, wondering how Sam had rattled her so quickly.

“Who is this guy?” hissed Suzi.

Melissa uncoiled herself with pats and straightens. “Oh Hon, you’ll get to know him soon enough.”

“But, he knows me, he knows all about me. What does he want?” With hardening face, Melissa told her to fill another cup and finish her tables.

The booth by the window was empty.

After wiping the tables and refilling her station, Suzi got to experience the highlight of servers everywhere… counting tips. ‘This might not be such a bad job after all’ she thought, pocketing her day’s take. For a coffee shop, they added up. ‘Too bad Sam took up a booth all day. What was his deal, anyway?’

Melissa gave her a good-bye peck, “See you in the morning, and don’t you worry about Sam.” Gino just shot a black look, from behind the pass thru.

 
It was gray out, rain threatening, as Suzi scurried thru the early after work crowd, heading to her subway. It had been a busy day, she should have been exhausted, but her mind was full of questions, fueling an epinephrine release. Wanting to be home in her apartment behind a locked door, Suzi didn’t mind admitting, she was shaken by this Sam guy. Thoughts pounded her brain. ‘They told her she’d be safe coming to a big city, blend in, disappear. So, how does he know her, and what is her special ability? There is no possible way he could know about the Gold Club.’

She picked up a ‘Lean Cuisine’… Butternut Squash Ravioli… for later. Not as good as Gino’s cooking, but it will do, her Microwave du Jour. On top of the ‘Sam Thing’, Suzi could not figure out what she had done to offend the cook. She had been pleasant, complimenting him on his dishes, even tried to flirt a little. Maybe that’s how he treats the new girls. Another question for Melissa.  And, after the Sam one, and The Gino one, comes The Uniform One. Thank God she didn’t have to wear it home. She knew it was a diner, but it wasn’t Mel’s Diner for Christ’s sake.  Rocky Road ice cream for dessert… she deserved a  treat tonight.

A guy, in a battered Panama hat outside the market, seemed to be staring at her. She thought she had seen him on the other side of the street, walking even with her, and thought, ‘you don’t see that kind of hat too much in the big city’. He looked away quickly, and when she exited, he was gone. Laughing it off, ‘I must be getting paranoid, Sam’s henchmen are everywhere’.

The entrance to the subway couldn’t come soon enough… to disappear in the depths with the crowd. Descending the stairs to the platforms below, she scanned her pass and pushed thru the turnstile. Her red hair slapping her face as a train whooshed into the station. Still a thrill, taking the train, nothing like that in Florida. It was then that she saw him.

To be continued…

Fiction Relay -Part One        by The Reclining Gentleman

Fiction Relay- Part Two        by Discovery

Fiction Relay- Part Three     by Woman Who Writes Stuff

Dawn will write Part Five

俳句… HAIKU BOMBERS #1… Reflection

The prompt is REFLECTION…

looking in the pool
behind my eyes, I try to see
why for am I here?

Well, that’s my effort. I hope it’s a Haiku… not sure really. I don’t know what one is to be honest, and reading the Wiki explanation made me more confused than ever. I had heard the term and read some. I liked them, I think. I will tell you one thing… I have not thought of ‘syllables’ for 50 years. So, I am happy I tried, and will try to learn more about Haikus.

The Haiku Bomber is responsible for my sudden poetic turn… http://quillshiv.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/the-haiku-bombers-prompt-1/

Do have a look at Quill Shiv’s challenge and maybe you will find your inner haijin.

The photo is by Michal Fanta… http://www.redbubble.com/people/michalfanta/works/3777140-water-drop-photography-water-in-time-self-reflection

HOW AMY WINEHOUSE SAVED TedBook!

I never make New Years Resolutions.  1 ~ Because if you want to do something… do it. I think resolutions are a crutch to procrastinate and make yourself feel better… and you will never keep them.  2 ~ Because I never kept them.  So this year, my New Year’s Resolution is to reopen TedBook and write something in it.  I feel better already.

My friend Margie told me, “only 8% were ever kept”.  I read that if you put it in writing, it may actually have a chance of happening.  Okay, it’s in writing now… it’s all up to me… I want to be in that 8%!   Yesterday I looked to see when the last entry in TedBook occurred… yikes!  January 2, 2011… one whole year of silence!  Another friend, Keri, reminded me of that this morning, after I mentioned I might start blogging again.

Why the silence?  No one particular reason really… I think mostly procrastination.  It’s not like I didn’t have any ideas… I had many, and wrote a lot of blogs in my mind, complete with photos.  But, I never got to the point of transferring them into my computer.  A lot of my friends asked me where TedBook was, and why they were not seeing new blogs.  I would hear… “where’s your blog”, “what happened to TedBook”, “weren’t you writing a blog”… after a while it was down to two.  O’B would bug me about it when we saw each other.  Louisa would mention it… in November, I got a note from her… “Why aren’t you writing?”  I could tell she was disappointed in me.  I thought… “I’m disappointed in me too”.  I have friends with blogs… Jane in L.A., a champion fighting Autism … Aggie in Chicago who posts a quiz everyday, except Saturday when she’s shacked up with her boyfriend.

The straw that broke the camel’s back, so to speak, was when O’B started a blog!  She had moved back to Sacramento, after an absence of some 30 years, and she and Anthony had bought a house in Southside Park.  Southside is a downtrodden mostly Latino neighborhood, that I have a feeling is becoming Yuppified (not naming any names here).  Catherine is a curious and outgoing woman, who has undertaken the chronicling of Southside.  Hence her blog

                      Southside Park: Forty-Six City Blocks of Surprise 

       Join me as I explore urban living in Sacramento’s Smallest Neighborhood.                                                                                 

Lord knows I waste enough time on facebook and playing Words with Friends (Alec Baldwin has yet to challenge me), so I really have the time… I just have to do it.  I was jealous with every new post O’B made… and she is prolific.  So, that’s what had been in the back of my mind, and I don’t mind admitting I was feeling guilty.  My own daughter, Ashley, was now more of a writer than me.  She had taken a creative writing class, and had written some impressive pieces.  I had encouraged her to start a blog… and I can’t even do my own… at least she has two teenagers to blame, or maybe just the college classes she is doing.  Sure better reasons than my slacking.  So, this was where I was at on New Year’s Eve.

I don’t drink Champagne or go to New Year’s Eve parties anymore.  The last one I went to, about 10 years ago, my date and I snuck out early and welcomed in the New Year in private… my best New Years Party ever.  This year I watched a movie, and was saying Happy New Year to my facebook friends when I saw this post.

I had been meaning to check out Amy’s latest album, ‘Lioness: Hidden Treasures’, and was glad for the reminder.  I’ve always liked Amy and was saddened  by her death and the loss of such a talent.  After listening to “Our Day Will Come” and “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”, I was near tears.  Her day will never come, and there is no Tomorrow for Amy Winehouse.  It gave me pause to think… I was lucky, I had survived my drug of choice, which like her’s, was alcohol.  It’s destructive force had ruined relationships and created havoc in my life, but my biggest regret, is that I could have been and should have been a better father.  Unlike Amy, I was able to change my life for the better.  But, Amy made me face myself and make some choices that night.  One of those is to resume my blog.

                          Of course I bought the album and I reopened TedBook.

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This was an important post for me… another step in a bloggers life.  I thought I would share it with my friends at Yeah Write.

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