Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 181

Freya and Chloe

Yesterday was a bit nerve-wracking because both dogs had to undergo surgery. They had their regular checkup last week, and since they’re getting older, the visit was not as routine as it used to be. Turns out Freya’s mouth is a mess (yes, I’m a terrible mom, but the few times I tried to brush her teeth it was traumatizing for both of us), so she needed a major teeth/gum cleaning and the vet thought she might have to pull some teeth. Even scarier, Chloe had a lump on her leg that the vet was very concerned about. Thinking they might be slightly less scared if they were there together, we decided do both procedures the same morning.
 
Fortunately, everything went well. Freya did not have to have any teeth pulled, so I don’t have to change her name to Toofless. And the vet thinks she removed all of Chloe’s lump, although results from the lab are still pending. After she got home, Freya spent the rest of the day lying around moaning. It was pretty pathetic (and just a little funny). I told her, "Suck it up, buttercup! Your sister had a lot worse done, and she's not complaining." Chloe just sat around with a look on her face like the kid in the Youtube video after the dental procedure, "Is this real life?" My poor silly babies! The picture is from a much happier day.
 
And now here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales: 
 
7/8 - "Mazel tov." The words burn, forced from my aching heart. I thought he'd eventually realize I was the one, but now he's chained to her.
 
7/9 - She seduced the renowned chef to have nouvelle cuisine at every meal, so she's pissed when he only eats frozen pizzas when not at work.
 
7/10 - Despite her hardened heart, she falls for her john poco a poco. But "Pretty Woman" dreams are dashed when he moves on to younger girl.
 
7/11 - A bite of bagel puts schmeer on her cheek. She leaves it there. She needs to know if he's the type of guy who'll tell her these things.
 
15 Minute Tweet Tales7/12 - If she didn't want tout le monde to know about her third boob, she probably shouldn't have sent a guy she met online a revealing selfie.
 
7/13 - A plus sign appears on the stick, and she starts to cry as a wave of angst overwhelms her. Is the father her husband or his brother?
 
7/14 - Her heart flutters when a hot guy gives her his seat on the crowded bus. Turns out it's a beau geste, since he gets off at the next stop.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 180

15 Minute Tweet TalesI hope everyone had a fabulous 4th of July weekend! My family did our usual thing at the lake house: swimming with the pups, grilling, watermelon margaritas, homemade peach ice cream, and watching the fireworks show over the water. It was a lot of fun, but not at all conducive to writing, so as usual I am in a deep word hole this first week of NaNo. But I’m not worried, since I’m always more productive when the pressure is on!
 
And now here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the week:
 
7/1 - "How about an apéritif?" She meets his eyes and gasps. She doesn't need her appetite whetted for the meal she wants to make of him.
 
7/2 - His girlfriend adores her cat, but it's his bête noire. He tries being nice to it, but it barfs in his shoes and trips him on the stairs.
 
7/3 - She must convince everyone that aliens have landed AND that she's compos mentis. She flushes her meds. It's up to her to save humanity.
 
7/4 - She has gum on her derrière, but he doesn't tell her – he doesn't want to seem like a creep. He hopes she doesn't end up too embarrassed.
 
7/5 - Beautiful woman at the bar surprised him by being en rapport with his likes. Also surprised him later when she charged for her services.
 
7/6 - He tries not to grimace as he unwraps his festschrift, but his colleagues are such poor academics, he'd hoped for a gold watch instead.
 
7/7 - As a camp counselor, she must act in loco parentis, which seems like a terrible idea for 16yo who can't even keep her hamster alive.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 179

15 Minute Tweet TalesTomorrow is the start of July (wha?!?!), which means it’s the start of another Camp NaNo session. I’ve signed up again, since I’m always super productive during NaNo, but this time I’m revising a novel rather then writing a new draft. Camp NaNo allows for flexible goals both in terms of word count and what you work on, although I’m not exactly sure how to track revision progress since it involves adding, deleting, changing and lots of jumping around. But regardless of how I track it, I’m looking forward to digging into this novel and pounding it into a more presentable shape.
 
And now here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the week:
 
6/24 - As soldiers unpack the matériel, they ignore the small, scurrying spiders. Although they aren't really spiders but bots sent to conquer.
 
6/25 - His wife crying by his bedside, he whispers, "Nil desperandum," with his last breath. She laughs. "You fool, these are tears of joy."
 
6/26 - "How do I get to the art museum, por favor?" That accent. That face! And he enjoyed art? She offered to direct him in person. He grinned.
 
6/27 - The Extractor charges extra yet still complains the entire time he saws about unwieldy rigor mortis having set in before I called him.
 
6/28 - As her crush heads toward them, she says sotto voce to her baby brother, "Don't embarrass me or I'll kill you." He grins. She's serious.
 
6/29 - "Your body is terra incognita & tonight I'm Christopher Columbus." Tim hopes sounding fancy will work but still gets a drink thrown in face.
 
6/30 - Several guys snicker as he waits for his wife holding her purse. "She conquered my heart, so vae victis," he says, hoisting it up his arm.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 178

As some of you may know, I’m from Charleston. Well, technically I’m from Summerville, which is 25 miles away, but when talking to anyone outside of South Carolina, it’s easier to say I’m from Charleston. So I felt like I should say something before launching into my usual tweet tales, but I don’t have the words. Instead, I’m going to post the pictures of the victims, since they are the ones we should be thinking and talking about rather than the coward who killed them.
 
Charleston victims
 
I’ll also mention how proud I am of my city for coming together. The pictures from the Unity Chain on Sunday evening still give me chills. 
Unity Chain - Charleston
Unity Chain - Charleston
Charleston Strong

 
And even though it feels silly to post them in light of everything else, here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the past week:
 
6/17 - She spent years working the con, determined to live the dolce vita, but then committed the ultimate sin: she fell in love with her mark.
 
6/18 - "Entre nous, I think Tom is cheating on Pam." "No way!" Ivy exclaims with feigned shock, having left Tom's hotel room a few hours ago.
 
6/19 - At the dentist, she thumbs through a tabloid faute de mieux and sees own face staring back at her. A long lost twin or something creepier?
 
6/20 - She named her blog Glasnost but friends didn't realize how honest she'd be. Some had secrets they'd kill for. So which one of them did?
 
15 Minute Tweet Tales6/21 - The thief's punch renders him hors de combat. His wife knocks the guy out with her purse. He'll never tease her about its heftiness again.
 
6/22 - For 12 years, whenever he passed old Ms. Lee's, she'd wave from her window. On the day she's not in situ, he calls 911 with a heavy heart.
 
6/23 - Wanting to confer during truce talks, they switch from the lingua franca to their village's dialect, not realizing the enemy learned it.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 177

15 Minute Tweet TalesWell, summer has finally struck with a vengeance! It’s currently 98 degrees and the heat index is 105. I knew all my complaining about the extra long and cold winter was going to come back and bite me in the butt. Going outside just feels nasty, so it looks like I will be even more of a homebody than usual.
 
And now for my 15 Minute Tweet Tales:
 
6/10 - When son came home from college she thought would plotz: first from joy at having him back, then from shock at seeing 5 rings in his face.
 
6/11 - She reads horrid brother's bestselling novel. Shrieks. It's actually a roman à clef of their childhood with him reframed as the hero.
 
6/12 - Angry, she packs a bag, then schleps it all over town not knowing where to go. Tired, she sits. Dad's been trailing her. Carries her home.
 
6/13 - "Nuh uh, you're stupid!" he says. "Touché," she replies, rolling her eyes, aware he doesn't know what it means or that it's sarcasm.
 
6/14 - "You're so contrary, if I said my grass is green, you'd say it is blue." "Au contraire, due to lack of rain, I'd say your grass is brown."
 
6/15 - At the start of the truce talk, he gave up his gun to prove his bona fides. He only escaped alive because he kept a pistol in his boot.
 
6/16 - The cognoscenti call his paintings raw and emotional. He laughs, tosses paint on a canvas, and has his toddler wriggle around on it.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 176

15 Minute Tweet TalesIt’s a rainy Tuesday here in the Lowcountry. But sadly it’s not the gentle kind that makes me want to curl up with a book. It’s doing that crazy fierce thundering that makes me cringe at each snap, rattle, and roll. And the lights keep blinking. Here’s hoping the electricity holds out and that the storm moves on soon. 
 
And now here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the week:
 
6/3 - Their love is toxic, shredding each other's souls, but they can't part due to folie à deux that they've been lovers through many lives.
 
6/4 - When the gemeinschaft formed, it espouse peaceful ideals, but the day she escaped, the others swallowed pills to bring ultimate peace.
 
6/5 - "While it's horribile dictu, as your sister, I think I should tell you your husband's cheating on you." "With who?!" "Well...with me."
 
6/6 - He planned to tell cops how a giant circle got burned in his yard in toto, then saw alien worms under their skin, so claimed he didn't know.
 
6/7 - The jester thought it was hilarious to mock the king's stutter. After his lèse–majesté, he's now a mime act since he lacks a tongue.
 
6/8 - He knows he owes her a mea culpa, but to admit he's lost will forever tip the balance, so he keeps driving until they run out of gas.
 
6/9 - "Sue's dress is an abomination, n'est–ce pas?" Kim wants to be part of Ivy's inner circle but can't agree with teary Sue looking at her.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 175

15 Minute Tweet TalesI almost forgot to post my tweet tales today. I’m working on a screenplay for a contest deadline and lost track of time. So without further ado, here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the past week:
 
5/27 - She loved showing off the painting where the eyes followed you. She thought it a trompe l'oeil. One night she discovered the deadly truth.
 
5/28 - Dad's parenting skills vis–à–vis Mom's are sorely lacking, making weekends with him tons of fun. But Mom keeps her from self-destructing.
 
5/29 - He whips off his glasses, hoping it will reveal his powerful self, Superman style. But his alter ego is as weak as he is. Plus he can't see.
 
5/30 - She tells her mistress she's repairing her gown but wears it to a ball. Is one night among the beau monde enough magic for a lifetime?
 
5/31 - The dog hangs a cave canem sign to intimidate the neighborhood cats. But cats speak French not Latin, so they ignore it. Like cats do.
 
6/1 - Tim says his dog is a dummkopf because she won't do tricks, so he always gives her treats just for being cute. One of them is really smart.
 
6/2 - "Eureka, I finally found the spell for everlasting life!" She ran out to gather the ingredients. Never saw the truck barreling at her.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 174

15 Minute Tweet TalesI hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend! My youngest cousin got married on Saturday (so now I feel OLD!), and there was a gorgeous outdoor reception in his parents’ yard. But they live out in the country, so when I say yard, I’m talking about a huge area with various outdoor games (including a person-sized game of Jenga) and tables and chairs set up to look like something out of a magazine spread. It was picture perfect, and the bride and groom seemed blissfully happy. I’m thrilled for them as they start their new lives together. 
 
And now for this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales.
 
5/20 - You cheated with her. You begged forgiveness and said it would never happen again. It happened again. Ipso facto her death is your fault.
 
5/21 - Her cheeks flame at her lapsus linguae. He fights back a besotted grin. She might be dating Tim, but she's clearly thinking about him.
 
5/22 - She's terrified of public speaking but new job requires a lot of it. She chants mantra 'please don't barf.' It usually works. Usually.
 
5/23 - Diva screeches, "I'm tired of saying this! Nota bene, I only eat green M&Ms!" Assistant sighs and picks out the greens. Then licks each one.
 
5/24 - Accidentally hit Reply All on an email detailing her opinion of Jan in accounting, so now Tina is persona non grata in the break room.
 
5/25 - Classmates call her piggie because of her retroussé nose. Trying to keep teasing from getting worse, she diets herself into sickness.
 
5/26 - The invitation was for Sara's Surprise Soirée. Jan found the alliteration so pretentious, she 'accidentally' mentioned the party to Sara.
 
Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

The Writer's Voice Contest Entry

I was lucky enough to be randomly selected as one of the entries for The Writer's Voice contest, so I’m interrupting my regular blogging schedule to add my entry. Thank you to Krista Van Dolzer, Brenda Drake, Mónica Bustamante Wagner, Elizabeth Briggs, and their assistants for hosting such a fun contest! Here’s my entry:
 
QUERY
 
Dear Writer's Voice Judges,
 
When sixteen-year-old Brea stumbles upon a body in the woods, she can’t wait to tell the entire school – heck, the entire town – about her gruesome discovery. This time she has proof to back up one of her stories, so they can’t dismiss it as her overactive imagination. One problem: when she leads the police back to the body, it’s gone.
 
Now Brea’s reputation is completely destroyed, and the police refuse to believe there’s a killer on the loose. That’s okay, she’s watched a few CSI episodes, she'll just solve the murder herself. Decked out in yellow kitchen gloves, she searches the woods and finds evidence implicating Ryker, a classmate fresh out of juvie. The bad news? He now seems to be stalking her. Brea needs a way to investigate him with witnesses present, so she schemes to get him on her team for the annual video scavenger hunt.
 
Soon Brea, Ryker, and three other friends are performing cringeworthy tasks like modeling lingerie and juggling hemorrhoid cream. Despite her mission to expose a murderer, Brea starts to enjoy herself. After all, who would have guessed Ryker would look so adorable in a negligee? But when Brea and a teammate are almost killed, she realizes the murderer is using the hunt as a pretext to take out the entire team. With no idea who to trust, Brea must look past her embellished view of reality to uncover the truth that will save them all. 
 
THE DRAMA QUEEN WHO CRIED WOLF is a 77,000-word young adult mystery with series potential. The twists and turns pay homage to early Christopher Pike, while Brea's witty narration would make her fast friends with Veronica Mars.
 
THE DRAMA QUEEN WHO CRIED WOLF won the SCBWI 2013 Work-in-Progress Grant for Contemporary Novel for Young People. I am also one of the winners of the 2009 Highlights Fiction Contest and a 2008 South Carolina Fiction Project winner. Also, two of my screenplays won generous grants to produce them into award-winning short films. I’m also the Interview Coordinator for Adventures in YA Publishing, which has been a Writer's Digest 101 Best Websites for Writers for the past three years.
 
Thank you for your time,
Jocelyn Rish
 
 
FIRST 250
 
A white towel was a terrible outfit for trying to outrun a homicidal maniac. Although I had to admit, the woman racing through the dark forest made it look easy.
 
Until she tripped and crashed to the ground.
 
I leaned forward on the couch. “Get up! Get up!”
 
Instead of scrambling to her feet, she cowered in the leaves.
 
“Come on.” My fingers dug into the worn leather cushion. “At least grab a tree branch to defend yourself.”
 
But she only whimpered, “No, please, no,” while the killer stood over her adjusting his grip on the machete. Like begging was going to change his mind.
 
His blade whistled through the air. Thwack! Blood spurted. I grimaced and flopped back against my favorite seat in the house.
 
Something cold and wet touched my hand.
 
I yelped before my brain remembered the psycho couldn’t crawl through the TV screen to attack me. I glared at Maximus, my seventy-pound Frankenstein mutt taking up more than his fair share of the couch. “Holy crap, Max, are you trying to give me a heart attack?”
 
He chuffed in a way that sounded suspiciously like a yes and nosed my hand again.
 
“Really? You have to go out just when the movie’s getting exciting?”
 
Max blinked like he’d never do something so obnoxious. Then he barked at me.
 
I sighed, but before I could push myself off the couch, Max’s giant German Shepherd ears swiveled toward a sound that sent my heart into Riverdance mode: footsteps on the stairs.
 
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Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 173

I had a fun weekend hanging out with my sister. On Saturday we enjoyed Black-Eyed Susans (the official drink of the Preakness), while watching the gorgeous horsies race on TV. I was so nervous something bad would happen with all the rain and slop, but thankfully they all made it safely across the finish line. 
Drinking Black-Eyed Susans
 
Then on Sunday we went to see Pitch Perfect 2. I loved the first one. I loved it so much I wrote two blog posts about writing pitches using quotes from the movie:
 
 
But as much as I loved it, I rolled my eyes when I heard there was going to be a sequel, figuring there was no way lightning would strike twice. But it was actually a lot of fun. It didn't quite have the magic of the first one, but there were plenty of laughs, lots of head-bobbing and toe-tapping, and I grinned like a maniac through the entire final competition. I'm already looking forward to getting the DVD, so I can watch the performances again and again. 
 
Hope y'all had a fun-filled weekend, too! And now here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the week:
 
5/13 - With each bon mot he spouts at the party, his wife rolls her eyes. He'd spent hours researching and revising to appear spontaneously clever.
 
5/14 - They both cry as she pulls the trigger, but with no zombie cure available, a coup de grâce is the only way to save her husband's soul.
 
5/15 - His cries sound painful as they surge de profundis, but Mom's not ordering him pie. Patrons shoot them dirty looks; she gets him a piece.
 
5/16 - "I say this ex animo: you are horrible, and I hope you burn in hell." Sue blinked. She'd only told Ivy she liked her hair better long.
 
15 Minute Tweet Tales5/17 - Mom always nagged him to festina lente. Now he'd gotten three speeding tickets, arrived late anyway, and would have to admit she was right.
 
5/18 - The genius loci of the house caused most owners to move within weeks,but he found it peaceful. He was even smiling when they found his body.
 
5/19 - She prepares a romantic dinner; he shows up with friends. She finds some Cheetos to serve as hors d'oeuvres then dumps him after dessert.
 
What fun things did you get up to this weekend? Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?