#Fi50 Heads-Up

   Just a reminder--I'll be posting the February Fiction in 50 post on the 18th. Grab your blogs and join the fun!   What is #Fi50? In the words of founder Bruce Gargoyle, "Fiction in 50: think of it as the anti-NaNoWriMo experience!" Pack a beginning, middle and end of story into 50 words or less (bonus points for hitting exactly 50 words). I post a theme for each month's Fi50 here . The rules for participation are simple : 1. Create a piece of fictional writing in 50 words or less. That’s it!  But for those who wish to challenge themselves further, here’s an additional rule: 2. Post your piece of flash fiction on your blog or (for those poor blog-less souls) add it as a comment on the Ninja Librarian’s post for everyone to enjoy.  And for those thrill-seekers who really like to go the extra mile (ie: perfectionists): 3. Add the nifty little picture above (credit for which goes entirely to ideflex over at ) to your post (or one of them) or c

Children's Classic: Harriet the Spy

  Title: Harriet the Spy Author: Louise Fitzhugh; read by Anne Bobby Publisher: Penguin Random House Audio, 2003. Originally published by Harper & Row, 1964. 298 pages. Source: Library Digital resources Awards: Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award Nominee (1966) , Oklahoma Sequoyah Award (1967) Publisher's Summary: Harriet M. Welsch is a spy. In her notebook, she writes down everything she knows about everyone, even her classmates and her best friends. Then Harriet loses track of her notebook, and it ends up in the wrong hands. Before she can stop them, her friends have read the always truthful, sometimes awful things she’s written about each of them. Will Harriet find a way to put her life and her friendships back together? 
 My Review:   Somehow I was never tempted to read this as a kid. Since lately I've been going back and picking up some classics I missed, when I saw this available as an audio book download through my library, I dec

Friday Flash: 333

We were back this week to one of my favorite flash fiction challenges, over there in Wendig land: the subgenre mash-up. After a few tries (to avoid some genres I don't deal in), the magic dice gave me "comic fantasy" and "occult detective." That seemed to go nicely with a story I had already begun, based on some half-sleeping idea that came to me early one morning. 1000 words exactly. 333 “Really, 333, you must try harder.” Disturbed from his reading, the demon pushed his glasses up and folded the morning edition of The Infernal Times into a better position for reading. “I must?” “You aren’t half the demon your father was, may he rest in pieces.” 333 raised a chiseled eyebrow. “No one is half the demon Dear Old Dad was.” “But we had such hopes of you! That’s why they gave you that number!”
 “To remind me every day that I’m at best half of what old 666 was?” The Demonic Division Chief ground his teeth. He did that a lot, especially around 333. That was why he had

IWSG: Updates and Writing Genre Fiction

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time - and return comments. This group is all about connecting! Be sure to link to the IWSG page and display the badge in your post. And please be sure your avatar links back to your blog! If it links to Google+, be sure your blog is listed there. Otherwise, when you leave a comment, people can't find you to comment back. Let’s rock the neurotic writing

Meta Review Wild Things:The Joy of Reading Children's Literature as an Adult

  Title: Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children's Literature as an Adult Author: Bruce Handy Publisher: Simon and Schuster, 2017. 307 pages. Source: Library Publisher's Summary: An irresistible, nostalgic, and insightful -- and totally original -- ramble through classic children's literature from Vanity Fair contributing editor (and father) Bruce Handy. In 1690, the dour New England Primer , thought to be the first American children's book, was published in Boston. Offering children gems of advice such as "Strive to learn" and "Be not a dunce," it was no fun at all. So how did we get from there to "Let the wild rumpus start"? And now that we're living in a golden age of children's literature, what can adults get out of reading Where the Wild Things Are and Goodnight Moon , or Charlotte's Web and Little House on the Prairie ? In Wild Things , Bruce Handy revisits the classics of every American childhood, from fairy tale

Friday Flash: Revisiting Hell

Chuck Wendig challenged us this week to write a story about travel woes. I'm kind of busy working on those pesky novel edits, but I remembered this story, and hunted through the archives to find it. I know I just did a flashback last week, but sometimes you just have to go with it. 853 words. The Devil’s in the Details “Watch your step as you exit the bus. The ground may be uneven or extremely hot. Watch your step…” The guide droned on, words and intonation exactly the same as each person stepped down out of the tour bus. He seemed unaffected by the exclamations of the tourists. “It’s sure hot here!” “Hope the hotel has AC.” “Darling, I don’t know…” “Well you said you wanted to go someplace warm.” The man and woman, dressed in plaid Bermuda shorts (him) and a hibiscus-print sundress (her) clutched each other’s arms as they looked around the blasted volcanic landscape. It all looked very close. “Hey! Keep moving!” Someone behind them called. “We want to get off

Cozy Review and Tour: The Phantom of Oz

Title: The Phantom of Oz (5th in series) Author: Cindy Brown Publisher: Henery Press, 2018. 268 pages (paperback) Source: Electronic ARC from Great Escapes Book Tours Publisher's Blurb: Creepy munchkins. A mysterious phantom. And a real Wicked Witch. Are you ready for it? Actress and part-time PI Ivy Meadows has been hired to uncover the cause of the creepy accidents that plague the roadshow The Wizard: A Space OZpera and find out who dropped a chandelier on the Wicked Witch of the East. Was it the ghost who haunts the Grand Phoenician Theatre? A “wicked witch” in the cast? Or is it someone—or something—more sinister? It’s Ivy’s most personal case so far. Her best friend Candy, who’s touring with the show, is caught in a downward spiral of self-destruction, and is in more danger than she knows. To save her friend and the show, Ivy must answer even tougher questions: Do spirits really exist? What is real beauty? What does friendship mean? Ivy needs to learn the answers, an