Day 4: Get Sociable (Part 2)

Twitter! Who’s on it? Me… and about 175 million others, depending on whether you count spammers.

Today’s challenge has been done already, so I will use the time to write a story. I’m excited about it. Meanwhile, if you haven’t cracked the Twitter code yet, here is the gentle nudge you have been seeking…

Day 4: Create a Twitter account

Once you do, don’t forget to look me up at cortneywrites!

Quite a Character

Warning: I don’t really feel like doing this.

Day 2:
Create a character with personality traits of someone you love, but the physical characteristics of someone you don’t care for.

I didn’t think this would be too tough – I like coming up with characters. But usually characters just pop into my head and tell me about themselves. Mixing DNA on my own is a little tricky and forced.

Maybe blogging this 12-day challenge wasn’t such a great idea.

Too late for wimps. Here goes…

She drew stares as she rounded the garden gate. Her rectangular Ray-Bans and angular haircut were visible a full foot above the gray and graying heads of her fellow tea party mates. A glance at her feet explained the incredible height, sporting red leather wedges with a full six inches of platform between the soles of her feet and the shimmering slate.

Mrs. Persson, the diminutive hostess of the afternoon, extended her hand. “So lovely to have you, Amanda dear. What a striking um-” gesturing to the striped and variegated swaddling of cobalt blue and persimmon that perhaps could best be described as a dress, “Delightful. Please, won’t you help yourself to a sandwich?

Following Mrs. Persson’s lead, Amanda approached the dainty table of snacks and reached a gloved hand for a plate. She glanced at the two ladies in blue and grey, who pretended to be studying the edibles intently. Mrs. Persson addressed them.

“Mrs. Porter, Miss Snow, allow me to introduce Mrs. Blake. She’s in London only for today, so it’s really wonderful that she could spare the time to join us. Oh! I see I have another guest arriving- I trust I may leave her to your care?”

Not pausing to discover whether her trust was well-placed or not, Mrs. Persson was off to welcome the newcomer. “How do you do,” said Amanda with a sweet smile.

“Charmed,” breathed Mrs. Porter through a pinched nose – or was it Miss Snow? “I never miss the Annual Garden Party In The Garden. Such a perfect day for it, too.”

The other one clucked and nodded with an emphatic mm-hmm. “Last year it rained all night and into the morning. Should’ve seen the grass after – it looked like a rugby field. Why, you would have sunk in to your knees!” Gesturing to Amanda’s stilt-like footwear.

She glanced down. “Oh, yes I daresay my shoes would never have done. They are a bit of a trick to wear, especially on these stones. But you know I do so love being high up.”

“Where do you come from, Mrs.- is it Blake? Mrs. Persson mentioned your leaving town soon.”

Amanda fidgeted and glanced round. “I’m from here actually – but I’m traveling just now on tour with a new show, Nature’s Nanny.”

One of the Porter/Snow gasped. “Of course, Amanda Blake! Well then you’re the one who is to perform this afternoon!”

Amanda smiled and edged out of the way of a black-clad teenager pushing a dour old woman to the refreshment table. Porter/Snow was going on:

“I loved – no, adored your performance at the Hall. I went there last Friday with my husband,” (this one must be Mrs. Porter after all… Porter=blue, Snow=grey, got it. “When you raised up at the end and sang so brilliantly about your life’s dedication to the children, just before- before-” here a hand went to her eyes. “Oh, it was thrilling,” she finished at last.

Amanda smiled and murmured her thanks, but the Porter speech attracted other ears. In minutes the crowd of tea ladies were assembled around their heroine in disguise. Even the joyless widow in her wheelchair pulled Amanda down to whisper in her ear.

“I don’t care what the press says. You sing like an angel. Even if you look like a heathen.”

After tea, Amanda was convinced to sing something. As she stood before the crowd of expectant faces, she felt a little shy. Then she picked a note and started to sing, and all other thoughts left her. She was at once lost in the simple joy of performance.

New Year, New Rules

It’s 2012. Has been for nearly a day now.

I seem to be in a somewhat deadpan mood, so bear with me. I’m not unhappy, just a little worn out. Too many late nights, spending time with great people and celebrating big deals and eating a lot more sugar than is normal for my body. So. Indulge my short sentences and limited punctuation, if you please.

Perhaps you caught this article in Writer’s Digest suggesting 12 writing exercises coinciding with the 12 days of Christmas. I don’t know about you, but Christmastime is lucky to get an email from me, let alone gratuitous writing. Plus I didn’t see the article until last week.

So let’s start off the new year with some flexing of the writerly apparatus, shall we? Here we go:

Day 1:
Write 10 potential book titles of books you’d like to write.

Wow. 10 potential book titles. It doesn’t help me that titles are often pretty obscure references to the subject matter. I’m going to have to let my imagination do a dance on this one.

1. A Collection of Short Stories Having to do with Spies

2. Jack and the Magic Coffee Beans (I love fairy tales, and often play with twisting around some of the key concepts for major plot changes… in this instance Jack’s giant is on the hunt for a triple venti latte, no foam)

3. Ghost Hunter (Pac Man brought to life, eating his way through a foresty maze)

4. Proverbs 3 Principles for Success 

5. An Encyclopedia of Chocolate Customs and Creations Around the World (heavily researched, of course)

6. Ms. Magnifique’s Summer Camp for Young Ladies of Consequence (A novelization of my last script)

7. I Ran Away From Home And No One Noticed Until Christmas

8. Nine Ladies Dancing: Diaries of the Ruminostian Ballet (fiction)

9. Disciplines of an Angry Gnat

10. Where Are You Going? A Universal Comparison of Places, and What I Thought They’d Be Like Before I Got There

Wow, that was so much harder than I thought it would be. Not totally sure I would actually want to write each of these books, but at least most of them. The others are books I’d like to read. Or at least pull off the shelf and flip through.

To whomever is reading: What about you? Any book titles rolling around your brain?