Unique. Prompt #301

What makes your fictional characters unique?  What makes one person different from others? Write about someone from real life or write about a fictional character who embodies a unique quality. You can use the following list to describe a special characteristic or trait that sets a person apart from others. Charisma: charm or personal magnetism (from the Greek word meaning “favor”) Chutzpah: admirable or excessive self-confidence; this word and ginger are the only ones on this list that have both positive and negative connotations (from Hebrew by way of Yiddish; several other spellings are used, but this one is the most common) Élan: enthusiasm Esprit: vivacious wit (French, from the Latin term spiritus, “spirit”) Flair: style, or talent or tendency Ginger: spirit, or temper Gumption: initiative Gusto: enthusiasm (the Italian word for “taste,” from the Latin term gustus) Je ne sais quoi: a quality not easily described or expressed (a…

Just Write

In troubled times . . . write.

Letter To A Young Activist During Troubled Times by Clarissa Pinkola Estes One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Soul on deck shines like gold in dark times. The light of the soul throws sparks, can send up flares, builds signal fires, causes proper matters to catch fire. To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these – to be fierce and to show mercy toward others, both, are acts of immense bravery and greatest necessity. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it. If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest things you can do. There will always be times when you feel discouraged. I too have felt despair many times in my life, but…


Your greatest fear. Prompt #300

Write about your greatest fear. Scary thought?  Well, yeah . . .  But, you know that writing about your greatest fear doesn’t make it come true. Take a deep breath and write.  Take many deep, nourishing breaths as you write. Emotional Freedom Technique tapping can help calm your fears and worries. Tap With Brad Yates   — hundreds of youtube videos, with an amazing array of topics for tapping. Brad Yates Videos

Just Write

Use your writing to heal.

Use the difficulties in your life and represent them in your writing.  Describe the difficulties as if writing a scene in a novel. Look at your situation from a different point of view – from that of a character in a story. Take A Break When your writing becomes too difficult, stop. Take a break. Take a walk. Treat yourself to a glass of iced tea or hot apple cider. Wash your hands with special scented soap. Do something physical to relax your mind. Use a focal point as a reminder to relax and breathe deeply. A focal point is anything you like to look at: in your home, your writing environment, or outside. Have A Plan Have a plan for when you are feeling overwhelmed and need relief from emotional tension while you are writing. Prepare a healthy snack before you begin to write. When the writing gets difficult,…

Book Reviews

The City Baker’s Guide To Country Living by Louise Miller

The City Baker’s Guide To Country Living, Reviewed by Heather Young: The City Baker’s Guide To Country Living by Louise Miller, a novel about a pastry chef running from her mistakes, is a confection. It’s sweet with just the right hints of tartness and salt, and, like a great dessert, it leaves you wanting more. Livvy is living and working in Boston with nothing but her abandonment issues and a married boyfriend. When she accidentally torches her employer’s posh club with an errant baked Alaska, she runs to her best friend’s home in a pastoral Vermont town. One thing leads to another, and soon this big-city baker finds herself making desserts at the quaint Sugar Maple B&B, whose crotchety owner, Margaret, is hell-bent on reclaiming the blue ribbon at the annual apple pie contest. I loved all the characters, especially prickly, funny, warmhearted Livvy, whose journey is never anything less…

Places to submit

Five Points is ready for your writing.

Five Points: A Journal of Literature and Art welcomes unsolicited submissions of fiction, poetry, and literary non-fiction. Deadline:  All categories have a December 1 deadline.  Entry fees range from $2.50 to $25. The James Dickey Prize for Poetry Send three previously unpublished poems no more than fifty lines each. Simultaneously submitted manuscripts are accepted. $25 Entry fee includes a one-year subscription. Winner receives $1000 and will be featured in an upcoming issue of Five Points. Essay Each essay should be no longer than 7500 words. Reading Period 2 is: Jan. 11 through March 31 Fiction    Each story should be no longer than 7500 words. Reading Period 2 is: Jan. 3 through March 31. Poetry Each poem should be no longer than fifty lines.  Reading Period 2 is: Jan. 3 through March 31. Very Short Prose (Fiction or Nonfiction)    Up to 500 words maximum. SPECIAL ISSUE – Flash Fiction Maximum 250 words….


Difficult Time Part 2 Prompt #299

Prompt 298  on The Write Spot Blog suggests that you write about a difficult time. Thinking about a difficult time: Take the role of counselor . . . If you could step out of the box that contains The Difficult Event and look at it from the point of view of a counselor: What would you advise this person, or these persons, to do? Then: Take the side of one of the persons involved. Write from his/her point of view. And then: Write about the situation from another person’s point of view. For a good read about an interesting point of view: Fire Angels by Elizabeth Kern.

Guest Bloggers

When Tough Love becomes True Love

This past year has been difficult for me (Marlene), not just during the long month of November. I have been playing catch up all year, trying to whittle down my never-ending to-do list. Susan Bono’s guest blog post reminds me to stop, notice, and savor the moment. Susan writes: Even those of us who start the day with a list know what it’s like when unplanned-for events start coming our way. In spite of our intentions, we start tackling the unscheduled instead of working on what we had planned. Emergencies come up, of course; we can’t control everything. No one can plan for bad news or times we are suddenly needed. But the list of unanticipated tasks is endless, and after a while, we just start doing what comes to us, instead of what we had intended. You should have days when you follow your bliss. In fact, have them…