April 18 – International Juggler’s Day

Today is International Jugglers’ Day, Newspaper Columnists’ Day and the birthday of George Henry Lewes, Richard Harding Davis, Etheridge Knight, Thomas MiddletonWaldemar HammenhogClaire MartinJoy DavidmanRichard Bausch

Thought: “The last thing we decide about a book is what to put first.” – Blaise Pascal

Teaser: Your house is on fire. You live alone and have no pets so there is nobody else to worry about but yourself. What would you risk going back inside for? (Note – this teaser came about when I was staying at a hotel with a group of writer friends and there was a fire in the hotel. All of us gathered in the parking lot and what did we save from our rooms? Our laptops!)

April 17 – Dyngus Day

Today is Bat Appreciation Day, Blah, Blah, Blah Day, Dyngus Day, National Cheeseball Day, Patriot’s Day, Pet Owners Independence Day and the birthday of: Thornton Wilder, Cynthia Ozick, Karen Blixen, John FordHerve BazinNick Hornby

Tip: Cut pictures of characters out of newspapers and magazines (only your own, please) or bookmark sites on the web for visualizing your characters. Don’t pick just the pretty people. Not everyone is gorgeous and you need quirky sidekicks sometimes as well. Pick a wide variety.

Thought: “The beginning of a novel is a time of awful torment, when you’re dealing with a lot of dead pieces and you have to wait and wait for some sort of animation.” – Iris Murdoch

Teaser: Write a scene using words of only one syllable and short sentences, ala “See Spot run.” But do it as an adult murder mystery.

April 16 – Happy Easter!

To those who celebrate today, may you have a blessed day. Happy Easter.

Today is Easter, Mushroom Day, National Eggs Benedict Day, National Librarian Day,  National Stress Awareness Day, Save the Elephant Day, and the birthday of: Kingsley Amis, Anatole France, John Synge, Sebastian Barker, Dorothy Lathrop, Berton Roueche

Tip: Writing is not supposed to be torture. Yes, there are days when it is difficult but if you are dreading it, then you may be writing the wrong thing. Try changing your point of view and have fun with it.

Thought: “Edit, edit, edit. Scrape off the dirt so that the diamonds can shine. A lot of writing is knowing what to take away.” Erica Jong

Teaser: Your character is being chased by a madman. Cornered in a room in her house, what can she use as a weapon? What room is she in? Some rooms have more “weapons” than others (kitchen vs. bedroom). What does she do?

April 15 – World Art Day

Today is Husband Appreciation Day, Rubber Eraser Day, That Sucks Day (taxes!), Titanic Remembrance Day, World Art Day and the birthday of Leonardo da Vinci, Henry James

Thought: “Be not merely good. Be good for something.” – Cicero

mona lisaTeaser: This day is more important than just for having your taxes in. It’s also Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday. Write a scene with Mona Lisa as the main character.

April 14 – National Pecan Day

Today is Ex Spouse Day, International Moment of Laughter Day, Look up at the Sky Day,  National Dolphin Day, National Pecan Day, Reach as High as You Can Day, and the birthday of James CabellJohn Sergeant, Mireille Guiliano, Tina Rosenberg

Tip: Don’t be your own worst enemy. Forget about “But first syndrome (I want to do this, but first I need to do this…but first, I need to do that…but first…). The mind can find five hundred different excuses that stop you from writing. Tell it to shut up and let you get to work.

Thought: “Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing and learn as you go.” – E.L. Doctorow

Teaser: Write a scene using the following: favorite song, banana, longing

Guest Poster – KG Fletcher

Today, I’m welcoming KG Fletcher to my blog. If you’re looking for the challenge – check under “15 minutes to write.”  Have a good one!

Love Song
Love Song Cover (1)By KG Flectcher
ISBN: 978-1-945910-06-7

Buy Links:
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/love-song-25
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XFVWQR2

Blurb:
Her heart searched for a melody. Will the love song she finally hears be loud enough to drown out the screaming memories of her past?
Back-up singer Casey lived the old anthem, “work hard, play harder.” When she meets handsome sub-drummer, Sam Wildner on a gig, their attraction is immediate. The two musicians forge ahead in a dizzy rhythm of passion and music, both impressed by each other’s harmonious abilities. When Sam learns of Casey’s family trauma involving her sister’s abusive ex-boyfriend, he commits to being there for her and her young niece who is caught in the middle.
The melody of their love song rings loudly in Casey’s ears as she and Sam navigate the precarious fast lane of jealousy, murder and rock ‘n roll.
Excerpt:
Casey stared at her reflection in the hotel bathroom in disbelief. Her false eyelashes from the show the night before clung haphazardly to her eyelids, looking more like insects than lashes. She pulled them off quickly, shaking her head in disgust. She covered her face in makeup remover and started to clean off the heavy show makeup just as her phone pinged with a text message. Sitting on the toilet lid, she woozily looking at the screen.

“I won…” It was a message from Sam that included a smiley face emoji.
She immediately texted back. “How did I get to my room? OMG, I’m mortified!”
Her phone rang. She hesitated before answering, not sure if she was ready to hear about her after-hours escapades. She was disgusted with herself for letting her drinking get away from her—again. She usually only drank beer and had no idea why she’d started drinking the hard stuff in front of her friends. Perhaps she was trying to feel relaxed around Sam, whom she was genuinely attracted to. And then, of course, he started egging her on in their little impromptu drinking contest. Why did she play along? What had gotten into her?

“Hello?” Her voice was raspy and she realized she was dying of thirst, the very thought of gin making her gag.

“Hey you. How ya feeling darlin’’?” She could tell that Sam was smiling on the other end.

“Ummm. How do you think I’m feeling?”

He laughed.

“Was I a complete idiot? Did I embarrass you in any way?” She suddenly felt nauseous thinking about all the drunken scenarios that could have happened in her vulnerable state. If her overprotective sister knew what she had done, she’d be livid.

“No. You were a very good girl. A little drunk and quiet, but very good. Rocky and I helped you back to your room. I hope you don’t mind that I had to look through your little purse to get out your room key.”

“Oh…. yes, that’s okay. That’s fine.” She fingered the soiled washcloth in her hand, not sure what to say.

“I have your jacket. You left it in my room—”

“I was in your room?” She started to panic.

April 12 – birthday of Beverly Cleary

Today is Big Wind Day, Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day, National Licorice Day, Walk on Your Wild Side Day, and the birthday of Beverly Cleary (Publisher HarperCollins recognizes her birthday as National Drop Everything and Read Day (DEAR)), Tom Clancy, Scott Turow, KA Bedford

Tip: Get a book by Beverly Cleary and read it. Even after 70 years (her first book was published in 1950), her stories still hold true. Look at what she does with characters and story. She makes them real. Strive to do that with your characters as well.

Thought: “I find the greatest thing in this world is not so much where we stand as in what direction we are moving.” Oliver Wendell Holmes

Teaser: Write a scene about something you’re doing – perhaps a walk you take. Write it both from your perspective as an adult, and from a child’s perspective.

April 11 – National Submarine Day

Today is National Submarine Day (the boat, not the sandwich), Barbershop Quartet Day submarineand the birthday of: Glenway Wescott, Leo Rosten

Tip: Be consistent. If your character has green eyes in chapter one, make sure they’re not blue in chapter ten (or give a very good and plausible reason for the change).

Thought: “There are no menial jobs, only menial attitudes.” – William John Bennett

Teaser: Your character is given the chance to win a million dollars. All s/he has to do is spend the night alone in a horror house where multiple murders are known to have happened. Does s/he do it? Why or why not? What happens?

April 9 – Name Yourself Day

Today is Name Yourself Day, Winston Churchill Day, and the birthday of: Charles-Pierre Baudelaire, Paule Marshall

Tip: When creating setting/character, don’t forget about the way the people dress. Clothing can help define not only character, but when and where we are.

Thought: “Writing fiction is … an endless and always defeated effort to capture some quality of life without killing it.” – Rose Wilder Lane

Teaser: While walking through a parking garage, you hear a thump coming from the trunk of a car. What do you do?