Friday, March 17, 2017

Catching UP!

I, Arline Chase, have actually entered the 10,000 word March Writer's Challenge at  I'm LATE ... But at least it's a start. 

Many Thanks to Aleta Kay Dye, an old writing friend, who is also taking the challenge and encouraged me to try. 

Wow. Ten thousand words! Can I really write 10,000 words between now and the end of the month? 
Probably not... 
But since I've been procrastinating about starting this book since 2006, writing even ONE scene was a milestone. 
And I did it. There are actual words on paper and you can all read them and leave feedback here:
The challenge is accepted. The work has actually begun...I feel so good.

Only 9,156 words left to go!

Work continued on the following books this week:
EASTERN SHORE NOIR, a Collection of Work by Members of the Writers Bloc
   Okay, so here you are, reader, opening the page ... obviously you have discriminating tastes and a longing, nay, a desire, for a cracking good story pulsing with noir elements.
RED YEAR, by Jan Shapin
    Can a red-haired woman from Chicago single-handedly force Joseph Stalin to back down?         China, 1927. 
    Thirty-three year old Rayna Prohme, accompanying her left-wing journalist husband, becomes the political confidant and lover of Mikhail Borodin, the Russian commander sent to prop up a failing Chinese revolution. In a bid to continue their love affair, Rayna hatches a plan to accompany Mme. Sun, the widow of the Chinese revolution’s founder, to Moscow.

Chasing Nightmares by James R. Kincaid
             Chasing Nightmares, deliberately embracing terrors, isn’t what you and I are likely to do.  But you and I are not the four central characters in this novel, pretty typical college kids who sense that their lives are so predictable they hardly seem present in them.  They are determined not to succumb to the commonplace scripts set out for them, pathways that are so comfortable they might as well be padded, MUSAK softly playing.
            So, they set out from Los Angeles, trying hard to find the perilous.  They try hard to make themselves unprepared, open, desperate to vivify their minds and senses.  They make it only as far as Lake Tahoe and the nearby Donner Pass, where they do succeed in attracting horrors, certainly not the ones they had, despite themselves, anticipated. 
            But the nightmares they wrap round themselves also contain a good deal more than shivers, and the calls on their resolve demand more than simple courage (or foolhardy consistency).  Without knowing how it happened, they are drawn into a different strangeness, asking for and yet reluctant to receive something very much like love.

Jack's News!
  by your Official Bookstore Cat, 
and Gossip Columnist.
Hi Folks,
And the luck of the Irish to us all!  This week we heard from a couple of you:
   The Writers Bloc will have its March 18 meeting Tomorrow at one in Meeting Room 3 at the Wicomico County Public Library. Also, Arline worked on some changes to your cover for the Noir collection (see above...) 
Barbara Garro sent the  flyer for her summer promo campaign for her first poetry book, Love Bites.    
     Barbara has color copiesall printed and ready to distribute wherever she goes this spring and summer. She lives in Saratoga Springs, a big tourist town, and plans to display copies on bulletin boards everywhere: from huge hotels to the Bathhouses, colleges, senior centers, libraries Performing Arts Center, downtown shops, ANYwhere there's a bulletin board. 
     Barbara is an artist (she painted that pretty cover herself) and goes to a Lot of Meetings. So she's just going to keep a few flyers in her bag and post them wherever she goes. Sounds like a good idea to me, even if you don't live in a big tourist town...

As for around here, Arline must be writing Her Own Stuff again, because she hardly looked up all day Thursday! She never gets like that when she's formatting other folks' books. You should see her shaking her head and making faces. Computer keys click. Then she stops and goes backspace, backspace, backspace. Then she writes some more, then she growls, picks up the mouse, wipes it all out, and starts over -- makes her right grumpy, too.

Personally, I has a big shock after breakfast on Thursday morning (First things First! Nothing but food matters until after breakfast). Arline turned on the TV and the screen was nothing but polka dots and White STREAKS! I thought the TV was broken until a newslady stepped in and started talking about a BLIZZARD! And not the kind you get at Dairy Queen either! She said it was in Washington DC! Hey, that's right across Chesapeake Bay from US! Arline said, "About 30 miles away, as a crow flies." 

Then I remembered what Roger had said last week about the ocean getting warm, so I looked out the window. SUNNY DAY! Not a sign of snow on OUR side of the Bay.  And better still, it STAYED that way!
It has been mostly sunny, but REALLY FREEZING outside, ever since. What's left of the daffodils are coated with ice, the blue phlox is shriveled and brown from frost, and the Judas tree lost all it's buds! Nevermind, though. It'll come back and bloom next month, like it did last year. Until then, me and my baby sister will just Stay Right Inside. No more sneaking out for us, until it gets warm again.

Well, time for a nap. Spunky likes the rocker in the living room, but I take mine in the back porch with the sunshine coming through the windows. There's nothing like a nice snuggle in my favorite chair with warm sunshine all toasty on my fur. It makes me feel Cozy All Over, even when the thermometer outside says 20 degrees!
As for the rest of you, PLEASE don't forget to send me news of any personal appearances, signings and so on that you have planned... so I'll have some gossip to along next week. 

Just send an e-mail to with 
 "News for Jack" 
 in the subject line, and
I'll make sure it shows up here for all the world to see!

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