Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Lilies of the Valley

spring’s green shields
brought forth
winter’s last breath

a budding princess
or two
- worth fighting for

This is for Geraldine’s Woven Dreams Prompts.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Micro Weird: (Excellent) Tiny Tales of the Strange, by Charles Allen Gramlich

I posted this review on Amazon, but I thought that it wouldn’t hurt posting it here too with the hope it might reach a few more people. I really loved this book! I had acquired it earlier, when I only had Kindle for PC, but it was the first book I read now on my not-even-a-week-old Kindle Paperwhite. Too bad Kindle doesn’t show the colours. I love the cover art, by the very talented Lana Gramlich. In colour or in black and white, this photo gives me an eerie feeling that’s perfect for the stories.

Here goes:

In this aptly titled collection, Charles Gramlich has gathered fifteen very short stories. In them, there are ghosts, aliens, planets, spaceships, or just human beings whose bizarre behaviour or circumstances warrant them a place in this anthology of the weird.

Out of the fifteen stories, some are lyrical, some are humorous, some are tinged with sadness, most are disturbing, one was downright scary, and all of them have a delightful twist in the end. As a bonus, in the end we get a bit of history about the author’s early literary influences and a bit of history about each piece – this is a part I enjoyed just as much as reading the stories themselves

Flash fiction is not easy to write, but Mr. Gramlich is a master storyteller and I very highly recommend this collection.

Visit Charles at Razored Zen.

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

An Anniversary

A bit more than six years ago, I was reading an article about some famous blogs that had turned into book deals and thought Hmmm...

One of them was Girl with a One-Track Mind, the other one Wife in the North. There were others too. I didn’t think I could find something constantly interesting to write about, in my life or in the place where I live, nor have the stamina to do it daily, but the idea of writing a bit of my soul and let it float away on a tiny paper (or rather, electronic) boat on the river of the World Wide Web, felt kind of exciting. Scary, but exciting.

So, exactly six years ago today, I took the plunge. (Or maybe the first shaky step.)

A link from Wife in the North had taken me to the Inner Minx, the blog of Minx, aka Kate Bousfield, author of “Coven of One.” Minx was just blogging about some lions (not just any lions, but lions of Lyon) up for adoption at Seamus Kearney’s site. Go take a look, they’re still there and they are beautiful!

(Seamus is an Irishman from New Zealand living and working as a journalist in France. Also a short-story writer, novelist, musician, blogger…)

One could “adopt” a lion, name him, write a short poem or text about him, and become a member of the group of writers called The Shameless Lions WritingCircle, initiated by Seamus. Got it? Seamus – Shameless :-)

At the time, Seamus believed –I’m sure that he still does- that powerful writing can be found in many places on the internet. The Circle and the award “A Roar for Powerful Words” were developed by him to put forth that belief and to encourage writers to roar. I completely agree with this.

I chose my lion, which you can see on the right side bar of my blog (yes, go lower, much lower), wrote my poem, actually I wrote two because the first one was too long (also on the side bar, below Alexander’s photo) and Seamus very gracefully accepted me into the Shameless Lions Circle.

This is how I met a bunch of great people. Some have since retired from blogging, some have become successfully published authors, a few are still going on.

I guess I’m one of those still going on…

The Shameless Lions Writing Circle was the first leap for me. The second was The Clarity of Night. In fact, it was Minx again who suggested to me I should check it out. I’m so glad I did.

Jason Evans’s blog, the beauty of his writings, and the high quality contests that he held on his blog have all meant tremendously to me. The blogosphere is certainly poorer without them. I surely miss them. But although Jason’s isn’t an active blog anymore, the goodies are still all there, just a few clicks away.

It is, in a way, mind-boggling to see how paths open one from another, taking you to wonderful places where you can meet wonderful, incredibly talented, like-minded people, and how unbelievably enriching this experience, this communion can be. Not to mention the exceptional quality of the poetry, prose, photography, etc. –art in one word- that these people are posting on their blogs.

This is why I’m still here…