New Story! “Ebb and Flow” up at Daily Science Fiction!

My first SWFA sale! It’s a flash story called “Ebb and Flow” and you can read it now for free at Daily Science Fiction!

I wrote this story for a flash contest, back when I was wrestling with feelings of trying for another child. I’m really glad DSF picked it up. Head on over and check it out!

Flash Fiction Fun

I’m almost a week away from officially working on my Weeping of the Willows edits.

I look at the past couple of weeks, and I’m glad that I’ve given myself a month to rest. If you’ve been following me on Facebook the past couple of weeks, you’ve noticed I mentioned entering a Flash Fiction contest 8 minutes before the deadline. It wasn’t a planned thing; the deadline for this contest was January 1, but instead, it got extended to the 15. I had been toying with a story I wrote back in December, so I thought, I bet if I trim this down to 500 words, I can send it in.

Mind you, I learned about the extension on the 11th.

My friends, that was the most brutal writing experience I ever did. I thought working on She’s All Light was hard. This was flash fiction–something I’ve done a couple of times, but not that seriously–and it had to be done within four days. I worked on that sucker day and night. My hubby donned his editing cap to help me make sure it flowed well and made sense. He also donned his cheerleading cape (which is invisible, because if he really did have a cape, I would be a little nervous) to give me encouragement when I was all ready to forget the whole thing because writing flash-fiction is harrrrrrrrd and I just couldn’t do it anymore and forget the stupid prize–we don’t need $500 bucks. Well we do, but I’d rather file for 8 hours straight than put all my energy into writing

It’s really nice to have a supporting husband who tells you to: “aww quit your whining and get back to the computer. You said you were going to do this; you put all your energy into it; so you’re gonna finish it, dammit, or else I’ll never hear the end of it!”

Paraphrased, of course.

I got the flash story off, and I have to say, I don’t think I ever pushed myself to work that hard before. What came out really impressed me. Time will tell if it will actually win anything, but it feels nice knowing that I didn’t just write a story haphazardly and threw it into the contest bin just to have something there. This was all sweat and blood and tears, baby. Then again, I could open it back up next week and think it’s the worst crap I’ve ever written. Ah, the joys of being a writer.

So after all that work, my creative side pretty much crashed and I couldn’t do any writing at all for a few days. No surprise there: what I did was equivalent to having the flu during midterms and pulling an all-nighter on Mountain Dew and Nyquil (which I don’t recommend–it’s a brutal combination, especially when you wake up in the dorm’s lounge in your pajamas with absolutely no idea how you got there). So instead of pushing myself to write, I decided to be good to myself and take it easy. I finished reading a bunch of books. I got back into my podcasts. And I spent some quality time with Daniel (which will be talked about in a separate post).

But most of all, I’ve been psyching myself up to work on Willow again. This week, I’ll gather some resources together so I’ll have them at hand when I open up Willow next week. I’ve also been backing up files–I do that anyway–because my hubby plans to rebuild my computer this week. Normally, that throws me out in a loop, but this time around I’m glad he’s doing it. I want my computer to be in the best shape possible when I start working on Willow, and it gives me more time to refill my creativity well.

One more week, folks, and then the fun begins again.

“Crimson” is up at Tales from the Moonlight Path!

And now a lighter bit of news…or darker, as the case may be.

I got another short story published…more of a flash really. You can read it at the online mag Tales from the Moonlight Path.

I was actually surprised that this one got published, because

1) it was the first market on the list I had researched. I had read all the stories on it and figured that this piece would fit right in. I didn’t expect the editor to agree–which goes to show you should always check out what stories are at a mag you want to send to.

Enya Amarantine2) The story started off as a writing exercise. I do short freewriting exercise to music from time to time to limber up my creativity, so I picked Enya’s “Amarantine” and started writing a story to match each of her songs. The title song particularly caught me; because the word “amarantine” is derived from “amaranth”, a flower noted for its red color, I wanted to play with the color and see what came out. What came out was not exactly a vampire story, but a nice, dark, moody piece of a woman waiting for her lover…or apocalypse, whichever came first. I liked it so much that I cleaned it up and sent it out.

I guess this can be considered my first horror story, though there’s nothing overly scary in it–it’s more dark than scary. But it’s a very short read, and I hope you enjoy it. Check out “Crimson” now!

Oh, and if you do want to check out the inspiration for the story, you can find the Amarantine video here. It’s not dark like the story (I have yet to see any Enya video that’s considered ‘dark’), but the dress is divine.