Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Welcome to the end of another week.   The days are getting noticeably shorter, which makes my after-work walks a bit of a challenge.  At this rate, I’ll be taking my walks at lunch time.  On the plus side, at least I won’t have to worry about melting in the heat.

Shorter days also mean that November and NaNoWriMo are both on the horizon.  Looks like I have about a week to gather the Fall decorations from the garage and outline the story I’ll be working on for the month.  I’m cautiously optimistic about the success of both activities, though there is a definite chance I might be distracted or sidelined by one of the books in my TBR pile.  Especially one of the mysteries.  I don’t know about you, but I have the devil’s own time putting one of those down once started.

Providing I manage to log off work at a reasonable time and avoid the lure of the TBR pile, I plan to give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me?

For those of you working away on a story (whether a first draft or a polished version on its way to publication), if you’re not feeling random, we’d love to hear a bit – whether it’s a scene, a paragraph, or even a phrase that you are especially pleased with and would like to share.

If you don’t have a story in progress, or just want to work on something new, I hope either today’s random words or writing prompt will catch your creative fancy.

Ready?

What if: “Your character wins a big prize?

Feel free to interpret the “What” any way you choose (or ignore it completely) and include any (or all) of the following random words:

landscape         flight                 evidence           crazy

ambitious         dozen               cryptic               recent

parrot               nightfall          limousine          comfortable

diamond          cottage             divine                 crayon

I look forward to seeing your stories in the comments.  If you’re not feeling in the writing mood today, or don’t have time, feel free to post suggestions you might have for future “what-if” prompts.  Ideas are always welcome.

Happy writing to all!

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Hi there and Happy Friday.  I was under the impression that we had moved on to cooler weather a week or so ago.  I even wore a shirt with long sleeves one day (okay, technically they were rolled up), but summer is apparently making one more curtain call.  Either that or Mother Nature is having hot flashes.

Whatever the explanation, I am currently stuck with both warm-weather and cool-weather clothes competing for space in the bedroom.  I started the annual transition last week from one season’s clothes to the next, including the traditional “I can’t remember when I wore this last, so it’s going in the charity pile” activity, but that is on hold while I wait for the weather to pick a lane and stick to it.

On the plus side, at least the skies are no longer smoky, thanks to the containment of various fires and some mysterious off-shore wind patterns.  Let’s hope that’s the end of fire season and it’s “nothing but good times” ahead.

I’m glad I procrastinated about putting the portable fan back in the attic last weekend, since it is definitely still necessary.  Of all the things I’ve purchased in my lifetime, that fan is something (along with the Cuisinart) that I’ve assuredly gotten my money’s worth out of.  It’s a FisherPrice fan I bought for the baby’s room almost three decades ago and it is still working like a trouper.  I guess some things really are made to last.

While I wait for the weather to sort itself out I’ll probably be spending some quality “staring off into space” time, but I also plan to give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Welcome to the end of another week.  Mine didn’t get off to the best of starts, but it is ending on a much better note, and not just because my internet is up and running again.

The weather has taken a turn for the fall-ish today–cool enough for me to pull out my favorite light-weight flannel shirt.  True, I’m still barefoot, but I’m cozy and not in danger of melting into a puddle of sweat, so that is a good thing. 

The leaves are preparing for their final descent and during my evening walk, the lawn of my nearby park was sporting drifts of crimson and gold even though the landscaping crew had been by earlier in the day to rake and mow.  My flowers, however, are convinced we’re still in the midst of summer and are busily blooming away.  As I work, I can see a pot of colorful flowers that are very popular with bees and hummingbirds alike.

The only thing on my agenda today–other than work and some quality “staring off into space” time–is to give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy “I hope your internet is up” Friday.  As I write this, painstakingly on my phone, mine is not.

I guess I should be grateful that I have a phone to type on and that the internet did not go out until after my morning meetings, but I’m mostly frustrated at not being able to do all the things I needed to do today.  Life in “the cloud” has its definite drawbacks.

Whether I accomplish anything else is debateable, but I do at least plan to give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me?

For those of you working away on a story (whether a first draft or a polished version on its way to publication), if you’re not feeling random, we’d love to hear a bit – whether it’s a scene, a paragraph, or even a phrase that you are especially pleased with and would like to share.

If you don’t have a story in progress, or just want to work on something new, I hope either today’s random words or writing prompt will catch your creative fancy.

Ready?

What if: “Your character’s internet connection is down?

Feel free to interpret the “What” any way you choose (or ignore it completely) and include any (or all) of the following random words:

accountable     hack              harm          greed

desolate           expansion     binge         social

absurd             apology         spider           boast

abattoir            future           afternoon     bankroll

I look forward to seeing your stories in the comments.  If you’re not feeling in the writing mood today, or don’t have time, feel free to post suggestions you might have for future “what-if” prompts.  Ideas are always welcome.

Happy writing to all!

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

I can’t beleive I almost forgot it was Friday.  Pretty ironic since all day Wednesday I thought it actually was Friday.

I blame it on the pandemic.

To be fair, I’m in the midst of a few days off from work, so it’s not as surprising as one might think that I can’t keep track of the days.

As always, I’ve had big plans for taking care of ALL OF THE THINGS during my time away from the day job but, alas, that hasn’t quite happened.  Somehow, working remotely and still keeping my social distance means it is very easy for work issues to find me, even when I’m “off”.  Plus, there was that long nap I took this afternoon—I’m sure I’d have accomplished tons of things if I had only stayed awake.

I did at least organize my TBR pile and found my next new read, as well as a few books that I didn’t even remember I had, so that’s something.  Whether I accomplish anything else today is debateable, but I do at least plan to give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy Friday or, according to my Calendar of Days, happy Cheeseburger Day.  Yesterday was National Monty Cristo Day–one of my favorite sandwiches.  Had I only known, I’d have rustled one up, though my BLT made with applewood smoked bacon and heirloom tomatoes was an excellent substitute.

I often wonder where all of the “National Day of . . .” ideas come from and why some days seem to be overflowing with things to celebrate while others have very little.  Friday also appears to be Hug Your Boss Day, which is hardly likely to be popular in the midst of the pandemic.  Saturday is the popular Talk Like A Pirate Day.  The local doughnut shop normally offers a free doughnut to anyone who orders in pirate-speak that day, but I’m guessing not this year when it has been such a challenge to just stay in business.

My week has been full of meetings–I’ve got to stop giving people my phone number/email address–and virtual conferences.  The most recent conference was so tedious I had to keep getting up and jogging in place to avoid dozing off.  Fortunately I did not have my camera turned on for that.  It’s amazing how many conference sessions and meetings could be much more effectively replaced with a good PowerPoint deck or a brief email.  Ah well, at least I only had to attend the conference, not organize it. Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Did anyone happen to see four horsemen head past this way?  Just wondering since, as Kay mentioned yesterday, the skies here in beautiful California have taken on quite the Apocalyptic coloring.

At least it’s not blisteringly hot to boot.  A quick check of my thermometer shows that there has been a twenty degree temperature drop in the past two days.  If this was a competition though, beautiful Colorado would be the winner.  They had both record heat and then record snow, all within 48 hours.  That’s just crazy!

Nature is either going through a cranky phase or trying to get our attention.  I hope things calm down soon.  Nothing like breathing smokey air for a while to make you appreciate clear fresh skies.  Fortunately, other than air you can see and a fine dusting of ash all over the yard, everyone is fine here.  I can’t imagine how horrible it has been for those in the path of the flames.

Fortunately I was able to plant the flowering shrubs, which had been languishing in my kitchen sink, into the backyard the other day during a very brief patch of clear.  I didn’t do the best of jobs, but the plants are still alive, so I’m going to call it a win.  As long as the assorted wildlife that have been digging holes in my lawn and tunneling under my fence leave the plants alone, I’ll be able look forward to some pretty flowers in a few months.

With nothing left to plant (thank goodness) and no plans to actually leave the house for the next few days, I’ll have plenty of time to tackle some of those projects I’ve been meaning to get to for, well, quite some time.  The mending pile has been giving me the evil eye for weeks, so maybe I’ll start there.  Before wading into that delightful task, I think I’ll give today’s writing prompt and random words at shot.

Care to join me?

For those of you working away on a story (whether a first draft or a polished version on its way to publication), if you’re not feeling random, we’d love to hear a bit – whether it’s a scene, a paragraph, or even a phrase that you are especially pleased with and would like to share.

If you don’t have a story in progress, or just want to work on something new, I hope either today’s random words or writing prompt will catch your creative fancy.

Ready?

What if: “Your character is planning an escape?

Feel free to interpret the “What” any way you choose (or ignore it completely) and include any (or all) of the following random words:

phantom           clean              annual           damage

buffer               diamond        exchange       escape

cannon             passenger       seed               harmony

trust                 grey                sweat              lottery

I look forward to seeing your stories in the comments.  If you’re not feeling in the writing mood today, or don’t have time, feel free to post suggestions you might have for future “what-if” prompts.  Ideas are always welcome.

Happy writing to all!

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Well, another week is just about in the books and we’re getting ready here for a long-weekend and Labor Day.  Technically the holiday is a time to honor and recognize the American labor movement and the works and contributions of laborers to the development and achievements of the United States, but many view it instead as a celebration marking the end of summer.

Frankly, I’m just hoping it won’t be some kind of pandemic super-spreader event.

Fingers crossed on that.

I still haven’t managed to take my planned drive to the beach, what with the unhealthy smokey air still prevailing.  Perhaps in another week or two it will be okay plan an excursion.  I’ve still been going on my nightly walks, despite the less than optimal air quality, though working in the garden has been quite curtailed.  I did manage to clear a small patch of weeds the other day and plant a small flowering plant that had been living in my kitchen sink for a week or two.  I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to clear another patch of weeds and plant the companion flowering plant this weekend.  It will be nice to have use of my kitchen sink again.

Hardly an exciting holiday plan, but at least it will keep me out of trouble and make the backyard a little prettier in the process.  After that, I’ve nothing else definite on the agenda other than giving today’s writing prompt and random words at shot.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy “last Friday in August.”  Can that really be possible?  I guess so, since during my last visit to the Big Box Store I saw that they (optimistically) had Halloween costumes out; I’m sure it will be Christmas decorations by next week.

Here the weather has been alternating between “I’m melting” and “where’s my sweater?”  Today there’s a slight chill in the air, suggesting that Fall is not that far off, but temperatures are due to spike in the next few days, suggesting that Nature is still busy playing with the thermostat.

I’m off work for a few days, so I’m hoping the weather is just right for working out in the yard.  I have several plants that need to get out of my kitchen sink and go into the ground, not to mention a few bushes and shrubs that have experienced recent growth spurts lately and need to be given a good trim.  If all that doesn’t work out, I have a giant ToBeRead pile to keep me occupied, as well as a ToDo list that it’s highly unlikely I’ll even look at.

Regardless of what I wind up doing (or not doing), I’m going to make sure I give today’s writing prompt and random words at shot.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprints

Happy Friday or, what feels like, the end of week 3,434 of 2020.  This year seems to have been going on forever.

And if a heatwave, politics, and a pandemic aren’t enough to deal with, my state has burst into flame, thanks in part to lightning storms earlier in the week.  Surely we must be reaching the end of the biblical plagues by now, aren’t we?

The air has a distinct campfire smell (with out the associated fun of s’mores) and my backyard has a dusting of ash from the fires which are, thankfully, fairly far from me.  I do worry about all of those in the path of the flames, as well as all those doing their best to keep the fires contained.  What a mess.

As often happens during fire season, especially in recent years, this is a time for folks to look around the house and mentally figure out “what to save in a fire” as well as to pack that emergency bag for “just in case evacuations.”  Being earthquake country we should already be prepared, but it’s always a good idea to update things.

I’m currently off work for a few days, though the plans to take photographs at the beach have been abandoned, since breathing outside is not a healthy option right now.  Instead, I think I’ll just putter around the house, read a little, and update the earthquake kit.

Before I check on the status of the emergency food rations that are probably 20 years old, I’m going to give today’s writing prompt and random words at shot.

Care to join me? Continue reading