Posted in Life, Uncategorized, Writing

Time to Do Some Writing….

My site is back and hopefully here to stay. I plan on doing a lot of writing, and hopefully it will be just what I need to elevate my craft. Thank you all for your patience while the site was in hiatus. I appreciate any and all follows and I do follow back as a common courtesy.

I took this week off from work and it was nice not having to worry about getting up early and to have an open schedule. I do feel for those out there that make their own schedules though. It was at times hard to get motivated. I wasted some time, but that was okay.

I kind of knew that was going to happen. It is like the kid who isn’t allowed to eat candy going to a friend’s house and an open candy dish is right there. Time has been like that for me. I never have enough of it it seems, and when I do I squander it like a lottery winner does their winnings.

I am trying not to be too hard on myself. But at the same time, we never know how much time we are allotted in this life. So, it is imperative to make it count.

With that in mind, be expecting some timed writes, writing prompts, and short stories of surprise and wonder coming your way. And, again, thank you. Your encouragement and inspiration is what keeps me posting.

Sincerely,

JennRae.

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Posted in Life, Writing

Happy September Everyone!

I hope everyone had a great summer filled with adventure and good times! Now  is my favorite time of year. I love the way the trees start to change color and it cools down just a little bit. The days are still long and it isn’t cold yet, but it is just right. A truly beautiful time of year.

If you are in pain or in a tough spot, I would also like to send positive thoughts your way. For some, this may be their least favorite time of year.

The people in Houston with the flooding, and the people in British Columbia and Eastern Washington that have been affected by wild fires come to mind. It can be a chaotic time of year as well. One that can offer great change, which also can mean a great deal of unpredictability.

Financially I am in a tight spot, so I will apologize ahead of time if this site should expire on me before I can renew it.

If it does expire, please be assured that it is a temporary blip and not meant to signal an end to its existence. I am trying to make better, smarter choices with my money, and that means paying a lot of things off, and sometimes, that means certain things have to wait. This blog is very important to me, but unfortunately it is one of those things that can wait.

I also suffered some computer issues recently, and of course, I have been working as much as possible. I try to post regularly but sometimes I need a rest. From myself most of all. So, to any that pass this way, good fortune, and I hope all is well with you!

 

JennRae

Posted in Fiction, Life, Uncategorized, Writing

The Secret

“What is life? Why are we here? I mean, what’s it all for anyhow?” The curious red head asked  her Uncle in all seriousness, her eyes squinting to avoid the glare of the campfire as the flames toyed  with each other in a never ending battle for supremacy. He laughed a deep, carefree laugh. She asked so many questions that he shook his head after awhile. She was a born inquisitor, and was tireless in her examinations. She wouldn’t quit, even after the rest of the children grew tired and went to sleep in their tents.

“Life,” began her Uncle choosing his words slowly, “is complicated. It can’t really be summed up in one word, nor can I explain it in a one night. It is one of those things that we do year after year. We search for the why’s and the what for’s. It wouldn’t be any fun if we started with all the answers, would it?”

She looked solemn a moment, her face puzzled, the words settling into the niches of her young brain. “Well, what if I want all the answers?” Her Uncle shook his head again, and chuckled. “Well, one of the first things you’ve got to learn, and this is a big secret. In fact, come closer.” He motioned with his hand gently for her to crane her head as near to him as she could conspiratorially.

“The secret?” She whispered hopefully when she deemed she was close enough. The fire warmed them both, and the crackling of the wood was soothing in its own way.

“Awh, yes, the secret. First, you must promise me something, then I will share the secret with you.” The red head gave a frown, unsure of the new conditions of this secret.

“All right, I promise.”

“Well, then. You promise? You promise this will be the last question tonight? Your Uncle is getting tired, and must get some sleep, too.”

She frowned, she didn’t like this promise, but since she had all ready agreed, she could do nothing but nod. “The secret is…,” he began again, watching her face light up in anticipation, “No one has all the answers, and the world doesn’t give you what you want, but dishes out what it has.”

“That can’t be the secret!” she shouted. Her Uncle laughed again.

“See? Not everything is as you would want it. Better to discover this now, then later. And, since you promised, you must go to bed. And, I can get some sleep.”

“But I didn’t promise to go to bed!” She cried, horrified at the thought.

“Well, I am tired, and I can’t stay up to watch you, so you must sleep like the others. Your mother is all ready asleep. It is only fair that I get to sleep too.”

She grudgingly agreed, and walked slowly to her tent with her little face turned toward the ground in disappointment. Her Uncle watched her in silence, as the fire started to die down. He absently added one more log, thinking. Who would be there to answer his questions when the time came? He got up stiffly, and made his way to his tent, contemplating life and its meaning.

 

Posted in Fiction, Life, Uncategorized, Writing

What in the Short Stories is Happening Around Here…

Figured I should explain why I am posting so many short stories. I had a booklet of short stories that I had been sitting on for a long time that I had wanted to publish. But, I figured since I also write newer material, I may as well self publish them here.

I did a sequel of sorts for Between the Cliffs on here,  the original which I had published in a  literary journal in college as Jennifer Rae, and I was looking for the first part since it has been over ten years I figured it would be harmless to put it out there now.

Instead, I found a treasure trove of other stories that I am editing slightly and posting here. Eventually, I will find Between the Cliffs as I kept the issue that it appeared in for my records.

So, as a disclaimer, a lot of these I must have written when I was in a sad mood. So many of them are tragedies, I am getting depressed re-writing them. I am not sad currently. I am not suicidal, or depressed. There is a ton of things to live for, not sure what I was processing at the time. But I am not in that frame of mind currently.

Posted in Life, Uncategorized

Catnip, Farmer’s Markets, and Other Random Occurrences…

Since I have been silent a while I feel I need to explain a few things. While I adore writing, and I love writing spontaneously on here the most, it isn’t what currently pays the bills. If only it was. Alas, I have been picking up hours here and there and working a lot and haven’t yet figured out a time management strategy that works in the new place.

I am attempting to make a sort of small writing area where I can be in the right mood. But, I also like to keep an eye on my kid and my furry kiddo which means I spend most of my time in the living area.

I just gave my furry child a ton of catnip just to see her antics. She is adjusting to a strictly indoor life pretty well. I had some concerns that she would try to escape or be destructive out of boredom, but so far, she is adjusting by playing with her toys a lot more. Which makes sense, no access to mice and birds and  a plethora of time on her paws. Why not give some of the toys more time, of course a couple of them might not survive many  more thrashings.

My un-furry son has also been keeping me busy with his numerous activities from music, to Judo, to hiking trips. I feel like my second job is planner / chauffeur. And, writing has fallen behind the postal service and my son’s errand running. I know I could find time. It is just a matter of will power and planning.

Plus, I am still deciding on things in this place. I kinda don’t like how my bedroom is laid out. I am thinking of rearranging all the furniture.

I made the mistake of reading something about Feng Shui, and now I can’t get it out of my head how my bed is by a door, a window and across from two other doors. I don’t think there is a way to sleep in that room and have good luck, so I guess I am kinda screwed, according to feng shui anyhow.

One of the upsides to moving is you get to start over; it’s much easier to change things up now before I get too used to things. I may rearrange the living room as well. There are some ideas that I won’t know if they suit me or not until I actually see it.

My son and I go on almost daily Pokemon walks about town. It is a sort of ritual that also gets us some exercise even though we stop walking every few feet or so because he “has to catch them all,” it is better than  watching YouTube videos all day, which he would also love to do, and on one such walk we stumbled onto the Farmer’s Market, which was awesome.

A man was there who makes chain mail and some steam punk style jewelry.  It just turned into something else and somehow we ended up buying honey and almost a hat. So, sometimes I get some good experiences out of random encounters.

There is something to be said for not having everything planned out; for having things up in the air. It is like a surprise gift, an aha moment. I like being surprised. I feel like I am not surprised enough.

I feel bad for missing Zelazny’s birthday post the most, because he was a writer that affected my style a lot and he is one of my favorites. Speaking of surprises, I briefly went into some of the books I have left, and saw a hard back of The Green Pearl by Jack Vance.

I thought I lost all my Vance because they were in paperback form. Sometimes you forget what you have and surprise yourself with long lost treasures. I know it is just stuff but it is amazing how often I get reminded.

I go to get my sunglasses, they are gone. I remember reading Le Morte D’Arthur, oh wait, it was a paperback, it is gone. Dracula, gone. I had it since I was in Middle School, I bought it at the book fair.

I still have How to Write Science-Fiction and Fantasy by Orson Scott Card. Which is good because I wrote in the cover of that one. I tried to make sure I kept the books like that, but I did get a bit rushed. So, someone going to Good Will might find some of my treasures unknowingly. If so, I hope it wasn’t one of my teenage angst notes.  Sorry in advance if some poor soul were to stumble upon those. There is a reason I don’t write much poetry.

 

 

Posted in Life, Uncategorized

Moving On With Life

I had plans to do a lot of posts around Zelazny and others, and it didn’t happen because I found out I had to move unexpectedly. I hadn’t moved in eight years and I always had a sentimental side anyway, so over time I accumulated a lot of unnecessary stuff.

Basically, I had to give up a lot. My entire paperback collection and other items. Some disappeared when some people helped me move. I can’t prove who but one box of valuable items that cannot be replaced was lost.

My only regret was not going through stuff at least once a year. It always seemed like tomorrow things would get done. Tomorrow was always a day away. I guess I would have liked to have done things with more planning and less suddenly but now I am moved I feel better. So that is what I have been up to, plus a camping trip and a birthday party for my son and father’s day. And, now back to the work week.

One thing I learned about this experience is that in the end the stuff is just stuff. The crystal vase from my now deceased Grandma isn’t my Grandma, but only a crystal vase. The rings I lost, an engagement and a wedding ring from a marriage that didn’t work out, well, maybe that needed to happen. Maybe this all had to happen to get me ready for a new life.

The phoenix needs to go through the fire to be reborn. The phoenix has always been one of my favorite mythological beasts, perhaps this constant rebirth is part of the reason why. I have tried to reinvent myself so many times.  Maybe letting go is the part that I haven’t fully completed. Maybe this time will be the best time. Here’s to hoping, and thank you all for following. More posts will be coming.

Posted in Fiction, Life, Writing

Stream of Consciousness And Why I Sometimes Wish I was a Poet…

Been reading the news online and it is filled with the usual mayhem and death and destruction, and then I proceeded to stare at an empty screen for a bit thinking about how I should be writing and maybe I should figure out what I am going to write about.

Sometimes things come to me naturally, effortlessly. Just add coffee. Other times I need to coerce myself a little. I guess this is one of the latter situations as I am not really feeling it, but I find myself with the perfect opportunity to write. And I know I will regret not taking this opportunity later.

Then I thought about the term ‘Stream of Consciousness.’ It is a type of writing which I have read and I kinda like. Roger Zelazny uses it in his Chronicles of Amber, usually when his characters are changing their surroundings in some manner. It can be effective. It is perhaps the only way I can do anything poetic. It just doesn’t come naturally to me. I love words, and I love stringing them together in interesting ways. So, I should love poetry.

And, I love reading poetry. But, if I try to write a poem, it ends up either being sappy or depressing or amateurish. Or all three. Perhaps it is because it isn’t something I have worked on extensively. It isn’t something that I have sat and thought I could do. If you don’t believe you can do something, it is usually a self fulfilling prophecy where you will convince yourself to the point where— surprise, surprise, you can’t do it.

So, it might be a mind over matter type of thing. I don’t think of myself as a poet, therefore I am not one. But there is something to be said for finding a sentence that works and is visually compelling. I could probably go through my works and cherry pick sentences and phrases that sound cool to me and create a poem from them. Whether it could have a cohesive meaning I am not sure, but I could take the time to find a meaning and make it work.

Ultimately, if you think you can, you probably can. If you think you can’t, you probably can’t. The power of the mind and how you identify yourself, how you think or perceive yourself as a being matters.

My attempt at stream of consciousness:

New Year’s

Red flowers blooming brilliantly over night time skies

where the stars shine down like little paper lanterns

illuminating the fierce nocturnal eyes of a million raccoons

and cats and weasels and varmints as they scurry amidst bushes and trees

looking for tiny prey that is also scurrying looking for nuts and seeds to eat

so they can continue another day and another night

so that the cycle can start anew another day and another night

as the earth turns slowly in space rewinding time

like a loom of silver thread until one day there will be no more

and some other thread will start spinning

in some other faraway place will begin instead.