How To Be A Writer

FlashNano a challenge to write 30 stories in 30 days with a daily story prompt.

FlashNano Day 3: Write a story in the form of an instruction manual



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FlashNano a challenge to write 30 stories in 30 days with a daily story prompt.

FlashNano Day 2: Write a story that takes place on an airplane


“Mommy, what’s Canada like… when’s mama Sue going to get there? Will she bring all my toys? Will I go to a new school… will the kids be nice? Do they care I have two mommies?” Timmy asked in rapid-fire kid fashion.

Linda ruffled Timmy’s hair, “sssh, baby, don’t worry so much. Remember, it’s an adventure. Mama Sue will be on the next flight she had to finish some work.”

“Ok, but… how come the news made you and mama cry last night. I… I snuck out of bed when I heard you. That man was yelling on TV and you and mama were hugging and crying.”

“Oh honey, I’m sorry you heard all that. Remember when we talked about elections and presidents?”

“Yeah, did Pussy Man win?”

“Oh geezus, baby, lower your voice… we told you not to use that word.”

“But, the man on TV said it…”

“I know, but he shouldn’t have said that. It’s not a nice word.”

“Pussy cat is a bad word?” Timmy asked innocently.

“Well, no, but… do you want some juice?” Linda asked trying to change the subject.

“Yes! Orange juice… and peanuts!”

Waving the flight attendant over, Linda ordered juice and peanuts. “How soon until we land?”

“Twenty minutes, ma’am.” The attendant responded while pouring Timmy’s juice and handing him a small bag of peanuts.

“Thank you,” Timmy responded, “Do you like Pussy man?”

“Oh my God! Timmy! What did I just tell you?! I’m so sorry!”

Holding back a laugh, the flight attendant leaned down to whisper, “No, little fella, not so much,” winking at Linda, the flight attendant moved down the aisle.

“Timmy, you can’t use that word. I don’t want to punish you, but…”

“Ok, mommy, I’ll try to remember…”

Quoting Yoda, Linda responded, “Do, not try”.

Laughing, Timmy asked, “Is Pu– oops, that man, bad like Darth Vader?”

“Well, maybe not quite as bad as that, but…”

“Please fasten your seatbelts and put your seats in the upright position. We are making our descent into Vancouver International Airport”.

Waiting to depart the plane a few minutes later, Timmy looked up and asked, “Will we move back to America, mommy?”

Glancing at the empty seat in front of her where a newspaper blared the headline, “Trump Wins!” Linda could only clutch Timmy’s hand a bit tighter and respond, “Hopefully, in four years, baby… just four years.”

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Seasons Change



I’m beautiful, regal and tall. I raise my arms to the sky and feel the warmth of the sun on my body. I’ve grown taller this year, my leaves are lush and green. The grass around me is soft and begs you to come sit for a spell.

Every day – for months – you come outside and lean against me while writing in your journal. Some days you write nothing, you just nibble the end of your pen and stare blankly off into the distance lost in your thoughts. Other days you write so fast you barely look up.

Days pass and a chill sets in. The sun isn’t as warm, but you still come. You wear thick sweaters, scarves and hats pulled snugly over your ears, but you come. You often bring a camera along with your notebook, and take pictures of my colorful leaves. Your excitement is palpable as you circle my vibrant display snapping picture after picture. You lean against me, I wish I could wrap my arms around you to keep you warm, but you shiver. You begin spending less time with me, but I understand.

You no longer come and I’m alone. My brown leaves lay dry and scattered around me. I stand stark and naked as the snow begins to fall. I see you in the frosty window looking out at me. You raise your hand to the glass, as if to wave, you mouth, “soon”.

We wait out winter together, but apart. Spring will be here before you know it and the warm sun will bring my green leaves back and you’ll be back too.

We wait… together, but apart.

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Are People Really Good at Heart?

Every time a new tragic event happens my mind goes back to this quote by Anne Frank:

Terrible as they’ve been, and my God, they’ve been terrible…Nothing we’ve seen, so far, has been as horrific as what she experienced, but somehow from her hiding place in that tiny attic she remained hopeful and believed “people are really good at heart”.

I like… no, I love that notion, but as I get older and see the world changing and truly turning into a wilderness full of hate and vitriol, I wonder… Will the approaching thunder be too powerful for those of us who believe we have a good heart?

My fear is, all of us believe our hearts are good, our ideas are right, our religion is the one, our political views are the answer and our path is righteous. Most of us believe that about ourselves. But, we can’t all be right and therein lies the problem. If we believe we’re right, then everyone else must be wrong.

Us against them. We’ve taken that to the extreme and that’s where my fear lives. We can’t all be right and we’ve become less inclined to respectfully agree to disagree. Hating each other is easier than accepting differences. The internet connects us in wonderful ways, but it also makes an army out of like-minded people. Ranting in an echo chamber leaves little room to listen.

Compromise is a dirty word now and love is conditional. It feels so meaningless to look up into the heavens and think it will all come out right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again. But, I guess if a young girl hiding in an attic, writing her diary in the dark of night as atrocities beyond our imagination played out around her still believed people were really good at heart who am I to doubt her.

So, I’ll keep trying to believe, and hope you will too. An army of love could be really strong. Foolish idea? Yeah, probably… But, what’s the alternative?

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Durango, Colorado

Home isn’t just a place where your things reside. Home is a feeling of belonging, a connection to the earth and space around you. I walk along the dusty trails where the pine trees reach towards the heavens and wildflowers grow chaotically here and there as if they just picked a spot, sighed and said, “Yes, this will do nicely”. Maybe next spring their home will be somewhere else, but today they’ve chosen this spot to grow roots and warm their faces in the sun.

I continue my walk, a slight breeze rustles my hair. In the distance I can hear the rushing river. A fat, red breasted Robin lands nearby, pokes around a bit and flies off. As I come around the bend there’s a  boulder a few feet off the trail. It beckons me to sit and I do. From my perch there is a break in the trees and the majestic mountains show through. Bluer than blue skies as far as the eye can see. My soul is quiet and welcomes the respite. This is home to me. Like the wildflower, I don’t know where I’ll be next spring, but for this moment I just sigh, “Yes, this will do nicely”.


The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be. ~ Anne Frank

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The Writing Well

My writer’s block has writer’s block. Plus side, I’ve been drawing more.



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My Home Ocean


“The Pacific is my home ocean; I knew it first, grew up on its shore, collected marine animals along the coast. I know its moods, its color, its nature.”
~John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America

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