Updates!

As you can probably see…. Word-Maleerie is changing quite a bit. I’m working on getting everything a bit more organized and streamlined, and hopefully ending up with a “cleaner” look.

My main goal right now is trying to figure out if each post can have a “preview” rather than just the whole post itself. Right now, there’s A LOT of scrolling if, say, you want to staring reading Forthcoming from chapter one.

I’m also hoping to add a video to the homepage as a more proper introduction to the site. (And hopefully, as a way to introduce myself to publishers/agents beyond a query letter. Fingers crossed!)

Another feature I’m thinking about is linking my Goodreads to Word-Maleerie. I write quick little reviews of everything I read—mostly so I can keep track of what happens in each story (which is very helpful when you power through around 200 graphic novels a year….)—but I thought it might also be fun to add those reviews here.

At least, That all is the plan so far. It will take a lot of time… but anything is doable with a check list!

Wish me luck!

A Forthcoming End: Sneak Peek

Like I’ve said during my Friday posts: I’ve been busy at work planning for Summer Reading. What does that mean? It means I don’t have a lot of time to write–at least, not write chapters in my current stories that I think are up to the quality they should be. And yet it is story day on the schedule, so… quite a dilemma. But then I thought it might be fun to try my hand at some “flash fiction.” It would be a good writing exercise for me and still (hopefully) provide an enjoyable read. So I found a prompt and challenged myself to write that story in only 500 words or less.


As per the prompt, I decided to head back to Todd Everett the crazy world of spies and prophecies. To read the first story in the Forthcoming series, start here.

Prompt: Write a “sneak peek” of a story that you haven’t worked on in a while.

It wasn’t simply raining–torrents were lashing against the window, streaking along the glass like clear snakes across black sand.  The view outside the window was dark.  The trees that surrounded the small house were invisible to the storm outside–the only evidence that they even existed were the sounds of branches thrashing in the wind.  Nothing could be seen save for the reflection of the man staring fervently at the glass.  He was a rough man, with a beard as coarse as the thoughts racing through his mind. 

Henbane eyed his reflection, though he was hardly taking any notice of it.  He numbly realized that his blonde tresses were longer than he liked; some of the bristles were actually beginning to resemble hair.

            But time had been a precious commodity lately, and personal grooming was among the lowest of his priorities.  The highest priority, however, was the cell phone placed carefully on the table in front of him.  He refused to look at it, unsure of what sort of news he was really wanting–he knew what he was expecting.

            And what he was expecting would surely be a good report.

            For Cyrus, at least.

            Henbane turned his head slightly.  The image in the window copied the action, displaying the black patch that was placed over his eye.  Golden thread was finely woven into the material, but the elegance of the fabric did not detract from what it hid–a gaping hole where his eye used to be.  Henbane’s jaw clenched at the memory.

            Losing an eye was dramatic.  But a person was supposed to lose it because a bomb exploded, sending shards of glass into the retina.  Or a stray bullet struck the iris.  Heck, Henbane would’ve even settled for a bee-bee gun accident.

            He glowered, his fingers tightening reflexively into a fist.  It wasn’t the injury itself, it was how he’d gotten it–a pen shoved right into the socket.  Not dramatic at all. Not spectacular.  In fact, it was comedic. 

            Henbane didn’t do comedic.

            But, of course, there are some people that laugh at everything.  People who make jokes to hide their insecurities.

            Henbane thought this made those insecurities all the more visible; it was like putting a building in front of a neon sign–it might be concealed, but the sign’s light can still be seen, flashing dangerously below the surface.

            Henbane preferred fighting–there was no way anyone could doubt how he was feeling if his fist was connecting with someone’s jaw.

            He grinned.  Some people only feigned control over their emotions–and by “some people” he meant the exact person responsible for his missing eye.  Henbane breathed deeply.  That certain person (he thought each syllable with venom) had slipped past him too many times.  His luck was bound to wear out soon.

            Henbane would make certain of that.


Copyright Sarah Davidson 2021

First Summer Reading Program Down

Our library has officially held its first Summer Reading program… and wow! I think it’s safe to say that people are eager to get out now that COVID seems to winding down. (Knock on all the wood, cross my fingers, throw some salt over my shoulder, etc….) We had 73 total people (parents and kids) show up to our craft. In comparison, getting 50 patrons would normally be a big deal. So… wow!

And it was so much fun! We built birdhouses, and I was responsible for helping with the paint, glitter, and hot glue…. As evidenced by the below picture.

A big thank you to our community! Nothing makes a librarian happier than seeing people come together for something fun and positive! (And after last year… we need it)

I suppose it goes without saying that I didn’t get around to writing this week. Oh well… priorities. And, as a librarian, priority number one has to be Summer Reading.

And that just means… August will be a writing storm!

First Summer Reading Program Down

Two posts in one day, but I wanted to add a little bit about the fun we had last night at our library. We officially held our first Summer Reading program… and wow! I think it’s safe to say that people are eager to get out now that COVID seems to winding down. (Knock on all the wood, cross my fingers, throw some salt over my shoulder, etc….) We had 73 total people (parents and kids) show up to our craft. In comparison, getting 50 patrons would normally be a big deal. So… wow!

And it was so much fun! We built birdhouses, and I was responsible for helping with the paint, glitter, and hot glue…. As evidenced by the below picture.

A big thank you to our community! Nothing makes a librarian happier than seeing people come together for something fun and positive! (And after last year… we need it)

Some Springtime

Hey, everyone, so…. I don’t have a story update today. Honestly, I’ve had a bit of writer’s block and what I’ve written of Plugged In and I Remember Everything just isn’t up to quality yet.

Add into that a lot of time spent revising for query letters and a particularly busy time at work, and… well, like I said: I’m not going to post something that I don’t think is worth reading.

So instead… here are a few pictures I took this weekend during a hike. Signs of spring are all around in Ohio.

Maybe the sunny weather and warmer temperatures will shake my writer’s block away.

A Note on Snow

Anyone else have a hard time getting motivated when it’s cold out?

We’ve been hit with a significant amount of snow where I live. I heard somewhere that it was the most we’ve gotten in 10 years….and I believe it!

Snowy days are made for cuddling up with a cup of tea.

Not being productive.

And…um…yeah… I’ve not been very productive.

Not really a good excuse, but it’s the truth.

I did realize this week though that I haven’t posted a lot on social media, aside from sharing blog posts. I think it’s time to refocus my energy and make sure I keep those outlets up-to-date and fun. Maybe some snow pictures?

So, shameless plug—find me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Lots of Love!

No update… because it’s….

CHRISTMAS!

I love Christmas–and yes, this post was scheduled out because I’m definitely not doing anything except spending time with family and eating way too much delicious food today.

So Merry Christmas to all of you! And if you don’t celebrate Christmas, then I wish you a full-hearted Happy Holidays! (And if you don’t celebrate anything, then I wish you happiness to end this year and start the new one.)

Lots of love, everyone!

Is Anything Scarier than Human Nature?

When I started to make this list, I realized something kind of important: I haven’t read a ton of scary books. I mean, I’ve read my fair share, but a vast majority of them are by Stephen King. And, even though I’m a fan, I didn’t want this countdown to become a King-apalooza. So I had to go through my Goodreads and really ask myself what makes a story scary. I’ve read plenty of books that had me eagerly turning the pages, but were they actually scary? After some consideration, I narrowed it down to the four I needed. Agree? Disagree? Tell me more in the comments!

4) Lord of the Flies by William Golding

From Goodreads.com

Why this book?

For anyone who doesn’t know, this story *spoiler alert* is basically about a bunch of kids who get stranded on an island and slowly devolve into barbarians. Violence reigns supreme in this dark tale of human nature. And that right there is why this is number four in my countdown: Ghosts and monsters are scary, sure. But you know what’s really scary? Our basest desires–humanity at its very worst, stripped of conscience and compassion. And the question: Exactly how much (or how little) does it take to drive us to that point?

Scary Quote

“Maybe there is a beast… maybe it’s only us.”


Sources:

Book cover and quote from Goodreads.com. Lord of the Flies written by William Golding.

I Miss High-Fives (and 19 Other Things I’ll Appreciate Even More After 2020)

Last week, I made a list of the 20 things I discussed how “bogged down” 2020 can feel; so to lighten that feeling, I reminded myself of all the things I was still able to do. This week, I thought I would take some time to make a list of things that I miss, things that I realize now might have been taken for granted, and things that I will feel blessed to again have as a part of my life. (I’m also going to knock on a lot of wood; I’m not writing this list to jinx anything, I just wanted to take a moment to appreciate those things that maybe I didn’t appreciate enough prior to this year.)

Last week’s list helped to put life in perspective, but this week’s list is more like a reminder in optimism: If history has taught us anything, it’s that hard times don’t last. *knocking on even more wood* So let’s take a look at what isn’t a part of our lives right now and remember, when they come back, to appreciate them all the more.

20 Things We’ll Appreciate More

(20) Hanging out with friends. Skype has been a great tool and solid substitute, but it will be nice to actually be with people again. Bring on the movie marathons! The epic game nights!

(19) Hugs and high-fives. I’ve never realized before that my knee-jerk reaction for a job well-done is a high-five. And air high-fives just aren’t the same….

(18) Going out to eat.

This delectable dish came from Bubba Gump’s in Gatlinburg.

(17) Vacations and day trips.

St. Augustine, last year.

(16) Not thinking about germs 24/7. When was the last time I sanitized? Did I already wipe my phone down today? Should I do it again? I will not miss these incessant thoughts.

(15) Nerdy Camaraderie. This year, the Cincinnati Comic Expo was cancelled…. This massive event is a veritable “nerdvana” of fun that I’ve attended for the last several years. While I always have fun, I’ll relish it even more next year.

Cincy Comic Expo. Any other Blue Beetle fans out there?

(14) Theme Parks. *sigh* I miss roller coasters….

Universal Studios, last year. I was the only one brave enough to tackle this coaster! Now just going out takes a different kind of bravery.

(13) Trying on clothes rather than just guessing if they’ll fit.

(12) Going to the movies. There’s just something magical about being at a movie theater, especially if its with other fans. The last movie we saw before the pandemic was My Hero Academia: Two Heroes. Many moviegoers came dressed in costume. Everyone laughed at the same time, cheered at the same time. You just can’t get that sense of togetherness from streaming.

(11) Sending food to a friend who is sick or who has lost a loved one. This is a big tradition out here in the country. But, right now, with everyone worried about sharing germs, the best we can do are fast food gift cards or pre-made treats from the store–neither of which have as much love as your family’s famous homemade lasagna.

(10) Programming. As a librarian, I miss being able to do programs. In the past, my library has held “comic cons,” murder mystery parties, and has even featured live animals. We all miss seeing our patrons have fun!

(9) Flea markets. Buying things previously owned by someone else and touched by who-knows how many people before you purchase it? Yeah… that’s not a thing we’re doing right now. And that means countless treasures are being left undiscovered.

Found this “blast from the past” at a flea market last March. Obviously, this March was spent a little differently.

(8) Trying new things. Let’s face it… you can only be so adventurous at home.

A couple months before the quarantine, my husband and I tried a local Japanese restaurant. I’m eagerly awaiting the next adventure–culinary or otherwise.

(7) Being spontaneous. This goes hand-in-hand with the last one. But I miss waking up one day and doing something completely random. Last year, for instance, my family and I visited the Mothman Museum.

The Mothman Museum. A weird little treasure we have here in Ohio.

(6) Buying brands that you want–especially with toilet paper and paper towels–rather than just what’s available.

(5) Visiting family and friends in nursing homes and hospitals.

(4) Having a choice of hand sanitizer. I miss the scent of “tangerine dream”… though I’m getting used to “assault-your-nose alcohol.”

(3) Sporting events. I don’t even like sports, but I do miss seeing my dad and brother get excited about going to games.

(2) Any type of gathering. I already discussed the Comic Expo, but there are tons of other ways to get together and share in a sense of community: Festivals, fairs, graduations, weddings, Proms, birthday parties. Like everyone else, I miss these… a lot.

(1) Smiles. Masks are playing an important role right now, but I’ll be happy to see smiles again (and to smile back, too!)

The phrase “new normal,” has become prevalent, but remember this: Today is not normal. If you want to see normal, look back to the past or think ahead to the future.

Stay positive. Sending lots of love to everyone!

Is there something you’re looking forward to doing in the future? Share in the comments!