April 24, 2015

Mermaid 30

The current made her fight to gain ground. The farther she went, the stronger the current became. The only grace came as the violent water carved out pockets in the shore, small place Cordelia could tuck herself into to rest.
Breaks weren’t abundant and she couldn’t sleep in the pockets of swirling water, so she rested until her tail no longer burned, only ached, and pressed on.
Where was her mother? It seemed she’d been swimming forever. One thing was certain, when she returned to the ocean, she would be able to outswim Dallas and all his friends.
She took a deep breath before exiting her latest alcove to find fish, the same fish Meri had found. Unlike the others she passed, these were only swimming against the current.
“Will you lead me to my mother?” she wondered.

April 21, 2015

Mermaid 29

Cordelia woke to find herself surrounded by a school of tiny fish. Their silver sides sparkled as they darted one way and another. If they could speak, she could neither hear them nor understand, but she loved the way they swirled around her.
Sitting up, she stared at her tail in shock. It had always been a bluer green than the other merfolk, but now it was definitely blue. There might be a tinge of green, but there was no doubt the color had changed. Cordelia had to find her mother. Hopefully she would know what was happening and why.
Perhaps she was sick. Older merfolk became paler, silvery, but those who spent too much time close to the humans turned yellow and brown. They became twisted creatures that no other merfolk would approach.
She wasn’t turning yellow or brown, though. She was turning blue. Grabbing one quick stem to eat, she flicked her oddly colored tail and returned to the river.

April 19, 2015

R is for Realty

Not Reality, though of course, that does start with r as well. No, we are in a bit of a financial crunch at the moment as a result of the way we made the down payment for our house five years ago, increased with the extra expenses from a trip to England and Wales that we do not regret, and complicated by my drop in pay over the last two years. The bottom line is, we are only barely making enough to cover expenses and debt maintenance.

Enter realty. As I said, we made our down payment five years ago. We are able to remortgage any time now, but our mortgage broker recommends we wait until maturity in September. That means keeping our belt very tight for several more months. It's difficult, but we can do it. And we do have a small pocket of savings still if we need to dip into that.

The good news? As soon as we do remortgage, our biweekly payments will be cut almost in half, letting us put all that extra onto our debts each month. That's our light at the end of the tunnel, and we will make it there, but if you wonder why I'm not splurging on copies of my books or hotel rooms at conferences, that's it.

See you on the other side!

April 17, 2015

Q is for Quiet

Do you ever need background noise? I often do. My house is very quiet when I'm home alone and I find a radio or IPod playing in another room gives me just enough sense of company that I don't feel quite so alone or isolated. On the other hand, when something has really grabbed my attention, I often don't notice the quiet. I also need music not speaking. I'm an auditory learner, so if someone is talking to me, I can't keep doing whatever else I was doing (writing, reading, etc.) Even the commercials on the radio, which I am definitely NOT listening to, can interrupt my train of thought and derail it.
The exact opposite of quiet is when two people try to talk to me at the same time. That doesn't work at all for me.

What do you do to fill the empty silence? Are you comfortable in the quiet?

Mermaid 28

Cordelia tasted what she had brought, not finishing any of it. The plants growing in the break were different from those in the river. They tasted different too.
She was used to the tang of seaweed, but the river plants were even sharper, spicier. Those in the break were sweet, sweeter than anything she had tasted. Pink and yellow flowers topped some of the emerging stems. Cordelia pulled the under and discovered what sunshine tasted like, bursting on her tongue.
She wished Meri were here. Her friend would be just as excited to taste something new. There was no point in collecting plants now, but she must remember to take some back with her.
With her belly full and her tongue remembering the taste of flowers, she sank to the bottom and slept.

April 16, 2015

P is for Purpose

Purpose and intention make everything more meaningful. When I do something thinking, this is going to help my family, I pay more attention and do it better. When I do something that is intended to improve my career and work relations, I go the extra mile, knowing it will benefit me and my colleagues in the end.
My writing isn't always with purpose. Some days, like today's blog for example, I just slap something down on paper because if I wait for a great idea, I might never write anything. Usually that writing as some purpose. It is working out ideas that aren't fully formed, meeting commitments I have made to fellow writers, or just plain fun. However, when I lack a purpose, the writing always seems to lack as well.
What is your purpose for day to day activities? Are there any chores that are easier to do when you think about the purpose behind them?

April 15, 2015

O is for Optimism

Optimism is something I have in short supply. I had a great rush of it over the last month, but it is tapering and waning quickly. Today I lost a little more and I'm looking at the piece I'm writing for a submission call and thinking I'm going to trash it. I'm not optimistic. I'm not exactly realistic either. I expect the worst in the hope that the world will surprise me. It does from time to time, but my view isn't that far from the mark. This should mean I'm not pessimistic either, but I don't know if I can agree with that. By expecting the worst, am I not by definition a pessimist?
I'm so glad spring is really here. The sun is ideal for having a bright outlook, and I need that again.