Category Archives: Writing

Top Ten : Reader Edition

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In no particular order…

– Overly detailed explanations of scenery/clothing.  I simply don’t care and want to use my own imagination. (Hmm… Outlander Series)

– Pages and pages of historical crap. Again, don’t care. If it’s crucial to the story, just put in the least amount needed. (Gee… Outlander Series)

– Not enough historical crap. LOL don’t assume I know as much about history as you, but also don’t go overboard. (Again… Outlander Series)

– Multiple main characters whose names all start with the same letter. I can’t read a conversation between a John, Joe, Jeremy and Jacob unless you’ve done one hell of a job making the characters all unique. (I’m sure this happens in the Outlander Series LOL)

– Referring to one character by too many nicknames. (Ahem… Outlander Series! Jack, Jonathan, Captain Jack, Jack Randall are all the same person.)

– Drawing an event out over half of the book and then rushing the ending. (One guess… Outlannnnnderrr Seriessss)

– Spelling out accents/speaking in a foreign language but not telling us what it means in English. I can take a few words spelled out in an accent, but not every bit of dialogue. (Yep… Outlander Series)

– Be an asshole online to readers. (Diana G of… the Outlander Series. Bonus: Anne Rice who was a jerk to my Jenny and I don’t like it!)

– Overly stereotypical characters. We all do it at times, but I’m talking about those horribly stereotypes that are just uncomfortable to read. (Kind of like Mr. Cho in the Outlander Series)

– Overuse of catch phrases. (“Jesus H Roosevelt Christ!” said Clare six-hundred-eleventy-thousand times in… The Outlander Series)

Okay, to be honest, I don’t hate the Outlander books. I actually enjoy them for the most part and the reason I even bother continuing to read them is because she hooked me in the first two books with some really creative stuff.  I’ve been stuck on Drums of Autumn (#4) for a while now and it’s mostly because of all of the things mentioned above.  Once I get back into it I’m sure I’ll be fine, but I think it’s important to remember especially when writing a series that if you continue to do all of the same annoying things in each book, you’re going to eventually lose readers. (Laurel K Hamilton, anyone?!)

And that, my dears, is my top ten list. Now, go check out what the rest of the gang has on their lists! 

Bronwyn | Jessica | Kris | Deelylah | Gwendolyn


My Memoir, if I wrote it.

Finally, a blog topic that I don’t have to think about! ๐Ÿ™‚ 

This week we were asked if we wrote a memoir what we would name it and why.   I’ve actually had one picked out for years. In fact, it’s the same name as this blog. ๐Ÿ™‚

Coffee and Prozac; my life in black and white.
As for the why? Here’s what it says in my blog bio:

I have a chronic clinical form of depression called Dysthymic Disorder (or Dysthymia) which makes me a little, shall we sayโ€ฆ interesting to be with sometimes. Prozac has literally saved my life, thus the reason itโ€™s in the title of this blog. 

I’ve said for years that the breakfast of champions isn’t Wheaties, it’s actually coffee and Prozac. ๐Ÿ™‚ I love coffee, and like I said before, Prozac is life. ๐Ÿ™‚ As for the black and white… I’m biracial.  Easy peasy!

Now let’s see what the rest of the girls titled their memoirs!
Bronwyn | Gwendolyn | Jessica J| Jessica D | Deelylah 


Musical Musings

Hello, readers! 
Today is one of our Musical Musings posts where we talk about music. This should be easy because I always have a song in my head. Like, allllllways! But of course now that I’m sitting here I’m drawing a blank unless you want a bunch of Backstreet songs.  LOL So let me ponder a bit… 

Song that makes me hopeful – “Power of Two” by the Indigo Girls

Song that makes me happy – “Mama’s Got A Girlfriend Now” by Ben Harper

Song that makes me cry – “The a Circle of Life” from The Lion King on stage. Every. Single. Time. ๐Ÿ™‚

So what songs are on your list? ๐Ÿ™‚

Don’t forget to check out what the other ladies have to say! 

Bronwyn | Gwendolyn | Deelylah | Jessica | Torrance


Top 10 Things I Avoid

  1. Manipulative/Abusive People
  2. Conflict
  3. Bats
  4. Phone Calls
  5. Raw tomatoes
  6. Cleaning my bedroom
  7. Bullshit
  8. Negative People
  9. People who don’t have a sense of humor
  10. Creepy Birds

Bronwyn | Jessica JKris | Paige | Deelylah | Gwendolyn | Torrance


Top 10: Hooked

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I’d like to think I’m pretty easy to please, but to tell you the truth, I’m kind of a book snob. Not in the way you’d think though. So without further ado, I give you the Top 10 Ways to Hook Me as a Reader.

  1. Screw the rules. I don’t care about the “rules” of writing so much as I care about things being enjoyable. Jump into the story or give me a prologue that gives me some back story. Just make it good and interesting.
  2. A good cover. Yes, Iย judge books by their cover. ย I don’t like cheesy old-fashioned Harlequin Romance-looking covers. ย I’m not a huge fan of the half-naked headless body cover either. ย I just want it to be appealing to the eye, have nice colors, and not go overboard with the design. ย Even a cover with no picture makes me happy if I like the font. ๐Ÿ™‚
  3. Great dialogue. I’m a sucker for good dialogue. ย I don’t care for teens who have ridiculously huge vocabularies and sound like adults. ย I just want people to talk like normal folks.
  4. Awesome kid characters. I’m a sucker for a super adorable kid in a book. The quirkier the better.
  5. Realistic setting. I enjoy books set in places that I know, as long as they don’t screw it up. LOL If I’m reading YA, I want to see adults popping in every so often instead of there being no adults around.
  6. Animals. Okay, this one isn’t a given, but a funny pet can be a great hook. Not a talking animal, but one who causes some silly moments. One of my favorite characters I’ve ever written is a dog named Vinnie. ๐Ÿ™‚
  7. Characters to fall in love with. No needlessly cocky guys, or girls, and thinly veiled abusive personalities. Just genuine characters with real problems, real feelings, and real real-ness.
  8. Comic relief. I love a good drama but I can’t stand when it’s serious from start to finish. No one is happy 24/7, even in the worst situations.
  9. A favorite author. Once I fall in love with an author I’ll pretty much read anything they write.
  10. A series. If it’s good, and doesn’t lose its steam (ahem, Anita Blake), I will read a series like a crazy person. I love to revisit known characters over and over again. I won’t, however continue a series just because it’s a series. I have to actually enjoy it.

There you have it! Now let’s see what the other ladies have on their lists.

Bronwynย | Jessica | Deelylahย | Gwenย | Kris


Stuck

This week we’ve been tasked with writing about the worst place we’ve been stuck and what happened. 

To be totally honest, I haven’t a clue what to write about.  LOL. I could tell you about that horrible job I had for 7.5 years, but lets face it, you’ve heard enough about that one. ๐Ÿ™‚ I could tell you about living in a house that had a flying rodent problem… but you’ve heard about that too. My struggles with mental illness… wrote it. Dealing with chronic pain and shitty doctors… wrote it.   I’ve been stuck in airports, but not long enough to really blog about.  Stuck in traffic, sure.  Stuck in an emotionally abusive relationship, yep.  Stuck in commitments I didn’t really want to keep… uh huh.  But still, nothing worth blogging about. 

The only thing I can think of is our current political crisis.  We’re stuck in the freaking Twilight Zone right now and I’m afraid that it’s only going to get worse.  But, I don’t want to talk about that either.  LOL not yet at least.  Maybe some day soon I’ll be able to wrap my head around what I’m thinking and feeling and put it into words, but today is not that day.  So I suppose really what I’m stuck in is trying to make a blog post out of this while I’m more concerned with watching the first night of the New Edition mini series on BET and thinking about going to sleep!  Little Ralph Tresvant just sang the lyrics to Candy Girl for the first time and I’m suddenly back in elementary school and totally in love with him again.  :). I guess you could say that I’m stuck in my love of boy bands!  But it’s not a bad thing so even that doesn’t fit for this darn blog post.  I guess I should have really thought about the subject before I committed to this week’s topic, huh?  Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Mike and Ralph are about to sign a really awful contract with Maurice Starr and well… I’m all out of rambling.  Perhaps I’ll be better prepared next week!

For now, let’s see what the other girls have to share because I’m sure theirs are way more interesting than mine!

Bronwyn | Gwendolyn | Jessica |  Deelylah | Paige

Oh and just because… 


Promptly Penned

Prompt: S/he showed up at his/her door, soaking wet, bruised, and covered in glitter.

“I hate you…” he said as soon as I opened the door.

I looked at the somewhat frightening, and totally hilarious sight in front of me and immediately began laughing. “Oh. My. God.  What did they do to you?”

He was soaking wet from head to toe, had a bruise on his cheek like someone had punched him in the face, and most interestingly, was covered in glitter.  He shuffled into the apartment, leaving drops of water and glitter on my floor.  

I giggled again when I noticed glitter and puff balls on the butt of his jeans.  He shot a glare at me and I tried, but mostly failed, to stifle my giggles.  “Let me get you a towel…” I mumbled between giggles and dashed off to the bathroom.  When I returned and began scrubbing the towel over his wet, glittery, hair he stood there gloomily.  “Oh honey,” I said with a chuckle.  “Seriously.  What happened?”

“First graders, that’s what happened.”

I had to bite my lip so not to giggle again. “Okay…”

“First graders who you said would be so much fun and easy to handle.”

“Well actually I said they’re usually easy to handle… I technically didn’t make any promises.”  He aimed another look aimed at me that would’ve killed me if he had super powers.  “Sorry…” I mumbled and continued trying to dry him off.  I pulled him by the hand toward my fireplace and pushed the button that turned on the instant gas heat.  I also grabbed a throw blanket from my couch.  Before wrapping it around him I hesitated.  “You might as well take the shirt off.  Pants too.”  He obliged quietly and once stripped of the sopping wet clothes down to his boxer-briefs, wrapped up in the blanket with the towel on his head.  I picked up the horribly wet, cold, lump of clothing and threw it in the bathtub.  

When I returned to the living room he was sitting on the floor in front of the fire.  I joined him on the floor and ran my hand up and down his back hoping to help warm him up.  There was so much glitter in his hair that I shuttered to think what had happened to him.  All he was supposed to do was take my place on a school field trip with my niece.  

I’d signed up to chaperone the trip to the art museum  across the street from my apartment building, but then had been called for jury duty.  So while I sat on day two of a horribly boring case about a chick who was bitten by her neighbor’s dog, my wonderful boyfriend went on what I assumed would be a pretty easy field trip with my little Peanut.

As he started to warm up, he pulled the towel off of his head and looked at me.  “They put me in charge of five girls.  Everyone else had three or four but I had five.  And apparently all of these girls, except for Peanut, were members of the Hyperactive Club.”

I covered my smile with my hand, “Oh no…”

“Oh yes!” he said and nodded.   “At lunch, they all had to have their afternoon does of meds.  I thought, ‘Sweet! They’ll calm down…’ Oh no… no no… the meds don’t actually kick in until about 15 minutes before the school day is over.”

“Oh, honey… I’m so sorry.”  I reached out to gently touch his bruised cheek, “How did…”

“How did I get the shiner?  Oh that’s easy… Little Fancy Pants decided that she wanted to climb one of the art sculptures, you know… like you do.”

I giggled, “Who is Fancy Pants?”

“I lost track of their names.  They were all named similar names so I gave them nicknames.  Fancy Pants, Sassy Pants, Cranky Pants, Mildred, and Peanut.”

“How in the world did you come up with Mildred?”

“She looked like a little librarian in her little glasses and her hair up in a bun.  I dunno, but she did not act like one… she was the worst of the bunch.”

“Okay, so Fancy Pants decided to climb?”

“Yeah, and I’m like, ‘Please get down… we’re not supposed to climb the sculptures!’ And she’s all, ‘You’re not my dad!’ And I was like, ‘You’re going to get us kicked out, please come down.’  And she’s like, ‘You suck! You can’t tell me what to do!'”

“Where was the teacher?!”

“Heck if I know.  Every time there was a disaster she was conveniently not around.  She was probably like, ‘Yeah, this sucker can take all of these crazy kids and I’ll get a day off!’ So I’m looking around in panic and the other chaperones are literally no help because they’re all with their own kids and sweet little angels who wouldn’t dare do anything crazy.  And I’m like, ‘Fuck it…’ and I reached up to try and pull Fancy Pants down.”

“Oh…” I said and winced waiting for the rest of the story.

“She KICKED me in the face!  Thankfully her shoe had fallen off in the climb but she KICKED me!  The museum security had to step in and pull her down off of the sculpture.  By then I was seeing stars and the teacher finally showed up.  She took Fancy Pants off of my hands and someone got me an ice pack for my face.  We moved on to the next exhibit and things were okay for like ten minutes.”

“Was Peanut being bad too?”

“Oh gosh, no… She was her wonderful usual self.  She looked at me a few times like, ‘Please don’t hate me because of these people!'”

“Aww… my poor girl.  I bet she was mortified.”

“Yeah well, this exhibit was all about water and waves, and how if you add coloring to the water you can see different patterns blah blah blah…”

“Yikes…” I said and reached for his hand.  Thankfully his skin was warming up and he didn’t feel like he was going to wind up with hypothermia anymore.  

“Little Mildred and Sassy Pants decided that it would be hilarious to trip me every chance they’d get all day.  Every so often they’d stick out a foot and trip me up and then laugh like it was the best thing ever.  Hell, even Crabby Pants smiled a few times.  I was this close to losing my shit, but I kept telling myself that we were almost done.  That is, until they tripped me and I fell into the part of the exhibit where the kids were encouraged to experiement by adding things to the water.  I went in ass first and fully submirged.  It was basically like a big dunk tank.”

“I’m so sorry…” I said with a chuckle.

“But no, it doesn’t end there!  So a class of thirty kids are around this tub of water and pushing sixteen billion buttons to add things to a vat that would then be stirred into the water.  The instructions are actually like, ‘Push the buttons until the container is full!  Then watch as it cascades down into the water and mixes around!'”  He shook his head and chuckled, “I’m literally up to my armpits in water but I can’t get out because the sides of the tank are slippery.  The teacher’s running around like a chicken with her head cut off, the other chaperones are looking on in horror, the kids are all laughing, and the staff are freaking out.  But the exhibit is automated, so once the vat is full, it will automatically dump into the water and then get stirred around with air jets.”

“The glitter?”

He nodded, “Yeah.  Glitter and more glitter. Plus some sequins, some puff balls… anything bright and annoying.  It comes pouring down into the thing and pretty much pours directly on my head and then the water starts swirling around and their air jets are plastering the glitter to my skin.”

“Baby…” I said and giggled again. “I owe you so big.”

“Uh, yeah…  So they pretty much kicked the class out of the museum while staff helped me out.  By the time I was back on my feet, the kids had all been loaded on the bus.  Except for Peanut who refused to leave me because she’s amazing.  I walked her to the bus, hugged her as best as I could without drenching her, and put her on the bus.  I told the teacher that I would not be riding the bus back to the school with them since you live right across the street.  She started to complain and tell me that as a chaperone I had to return to the school but I think I must have scared her with the look on my face and she quietly told me that she would let the principal know that I would be picking up my car later.”

I leaned in and kissed his cheek that wasn’t bruised. “I’m so, so, sorry.  But just think of the Hero Points that you earned from Peanut today.”

He chuckled and shook his head, “She’s lucky I love her so much.”

“I love you too…” I said with a smile and another kiss. 

“You better…” he grumbled but then laughed.

I ran my fingers through his damp hair and came away with glitter stuck to my hand, “I actually kind of like the glitter, it sparkles like your eyes.”

“Oh you do, huh?” He said and pushed me onto my back on the floor and hovered over me.  I squealed as he tickled at my sides.  “You like the glitter? I’ll totally share with you…” He shook his head like a wet dog and both water and glitter sprayed down on me as we laughed.

“Okay, okay, I give up!  I’ll never ask you to chaperone for me again!”

He stopped tickling me, “Promise?”

“Promise.” I said and reached up to cup his face in my hands.  “At least until we have our own kids.”

He grinned and lowered his body down toward me and placed a kiss on my lips.  “Deal.”

~~~~~

Now let’s see what the other girls came up with! ๐Ÿ™‚

Bronwyn | Kris | Jessica | Gwendolyn | Paige | Deelylah


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