#Fiction Friday: #Novelines from the Book

mormoni

I stood in awesome wonder as I beheld who I recognized as the Prophet Joseph as a boy, on the Hill Cumorah. He was conversing with an angel. I started to walk towards them. The angel looked my way, but the boy did not seem to hear me.

As I drew nearer, I saw that the apparition was not an angel but a goat. It was beyond this scene that I saw a path through a grove of trees, leading down into a dark abyss, & I knew that was from whence this creature had come.

I rushed to the boy, trying to tell him that this being was not of God but a demon, wanting to touch him, but unable to, screaming for him to see what I saw.

Ronald Reagan watched us enter the foyer, his eyes with that twinkle of merriment, almost as if he were laughing at us. David had always said Reagan had been such a charismatic President because of his acting ability, though many of his University colleagues had debated whether the Old Gipper had ever had any acting ability.

When Sister Schafer bragged that her husband was a direct descendant of Brigham Young,” David muttered, “Who isn’t?”

Brother Schafer had re-emerged, holding 2 large stones. They were the clearest rocks I had ever seen & looked almost like breast implants, so it was funny to see him balancing one in each hand.

Brother Schafer placed his palms on the stones, & his whole body was filled with light. He was like Brigham Young, his son, like Joseph Smith–everything was going in reverse chronological order.

It was strange, for I could still hear all around me, all that was going on in that room, the 2 worlds colliding—one of sight, in the past & one of sound, in the present.

The spell was broken as Brother Schafer ended what had turned out to be a séance of sorts, conjuring up visions of visions. Had I gone back in time, only to be unable to change the history that had been made before my eyes?

The lights came on, and with a shiver, I realized no one had seen what I had seen, for I had been alone there in the forest. The very people who believed in Joseph Smith’s teachings had brought him back from the dead, only for God (or had it been the devil tricking me?), to tell me that he had been mistaken, to show me that after all, he had been just a boy with an imagination out of this world.

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Writer’s Digest Wednesday Poetry Prompt #498: Autumn

Untitled

Autumn Sonata

When Pumpkin Spice everything
took over the shelves
like Christmas fruitcake

& Easter peeps,
autumn was in the air,
& it smelled,
if not tasted,
delicious,
because, for the traditionalists,
nothing pumpkin pie flavored
was as good as pumpkin pie itself.

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 498

#Micropoetry Monday: The Lighter Side

samuel-67197_1920

When the displaced homemaker
met the desperate ex-housewife,
they cooked up a plan
in the cafeteria’s kitchen
to get a new man;
Ms. baked him,
after which the Mrs. iced him,
& then they tore him in half.

When the 2 couch potatoes wed,
they turned into a bowl of lumpy mash.
When they had their small fry,
they realized they needed to set a better example,
so they drank beta-carotene smoothies every morning,
turning them into the far less palatable sweet potato.

For 10 years,
Messy Wheeler had been
“as cute as a button,”
but when her little sister, Fussy,
who was “cuter than a buttonhole,”
was born,
Messy,
to make her case,
said that you could have a button
without a buttonhole,
but not the other way around,
for buttonholes had no
functional or decorative value.

Summer Writing Mini-Workshop: Writing Truths

20190415_070440

Many inventions and businesses have changed the world, but the awesome thing about being a writer is that you don’t have to be an engineer for your character to invent a life-changing device or service—just like you don’t have to be an entrepreneur for your character to open his/her own business. You make the magic happen with the tapping of keys—no mathematics or business acumen required.

A setting can be as much of a character as a person. Just as people often bounce off each other or react to one another, the way a character engages with their surroundings can reveal a great deal about them (as two people can be in the same setting, and have a completely distinct perspective of it; I’ve written about my current town through the prisms of positivity and negativity, to help set the mood, or tone). Think about it: What would Gone with the Wind be without the Deep South, The Wizard of Oz without Oz?
https://sarahleastories.com/2014/02/19/daily-prompt-west-end-girls-2/

Writing for children isn’t any easier than writing for adults. It just requires a smaller word count.

Fairy tales are great because they have a beginning, middle, and end. Nothing is worse than reading a book that starts in the wrong place (e.g. too many flashbacks) or simply ends. Satisfy your readers; tell the whole tale, for stories, like life, aren’t just in the big picture but in the details. https://sarahleastories.com/2014/05/20/not-the-story-but-how-you-tell-it/

Postmodernism is a style of writing that can challenge us to challenge an “absolute truth,” be it moral, spiritual, cultural, historical, medical, et cetera.

There is nothing like good that draws people together. You don’t have to be a food critic to write about food, but writing about it does help hone one’s descriptive writing skills in the areas of taste, touch, and smell. https://sarahleastories.com/2016/04/16/poem-a-day-2016-writers-digest-challenge-16-theme-about-or-at-a-food-establishment/

Memories are made in cars, as well as homes.  They are made in parks, in museums, and on the beach.

Readers care about plots, but they care about characters more.  https://sarahleastories.com/2018/01/25/writers-digest-wednesday-poetry-prompt-424-sick/

A “book within a book” should never be more interesting than the story in which the “book within a book” appears.

Writing is like a mathematical equation, except the answer doesn’t have to be exact (not everyone will get the same answer). You add and subtract scenes and characters, multiply the stakes, and can even divide the points-of-view, if you wish.

#Fiction Friday: #Micropoetry from the Book

mormoni

For Sister Schafer,
her son was the second coming
of Joseph Smith,
the prophet who was,
according to them,
second in line to Christ.
For it was Tony who rediscovered
the Urim & Thummim–
the seer stones the Prophet Joseph used
to translate the golden plates–
those plates that were taken back by the angel Moroni,
lest any archaeologist might discover them.
They were the Interpreters,
glowing in the dark like cat eyes,
even as Tony was a cat-eye–
a tool with hands
& a tool with a voice,
whose genes were being replicated
inside the womb of a woman
whose conception was far from immaculate.

They prayed with bowed heads,
folded arms,
& closed eyes–
as if they were getting ready to be assassinated.
Such was how they presented themselves to the Mormon God–
a God who became more mysterious
the more I was told of Him.

There were “Amens” all around,
“Pay Lay Ale” was uttered thrice,
& a minty mist imbued the air.
It made my breath cold,
for a vapor pass my lips–
as if a spirit was escaping
My dying body.
The dampness–
like the verdant earth after the rain,
& the chanting in tongues–
not a foreign language,
but something guttural,
made my pulse quicken,
yet I felt paralyzed.
The floor beneath me shifted,
like plate tectonics.
My world wasn’t turned upside down
but shaken,
&, like a baby,
I was never the same again.

David held my hand,
& I was transported.
My heart was not troubled,
& neither was it afraid.
From 4 walls to a woodland,
the ceiling opened up & disappeared,
& sunlight streamed through the treetops;
birds were singing sweetly in the breeze.
I was not beside myself
but outside myself,
& it was a good place to be.

Family Home Evening–
the Monday installment of the Mormon life–
consisted of prayer,
to open the lines of communication with God,
for it was not His job to initiate contact;
of singing,
to praise this God who gave us his First, Last, & Only;
of a talk or lesson,
to further His global agenda
of building temples & spreading the Book of Mormon;
& to go over family business & family schedules.
It was all about “the family”–
like some kind of Anglo Mafia.

Book Review: Bowwow Powwow

BowWow

As part of my Post-K Summer Reading Boot Camp:
https://sarahleastories.com/2019/06/08/post-k-summer-reading-boot-camp-2019

The only redeeming value of Bowwow Powwow was the title, with its nod to ablaut reduplication (https://www.rd.com/culture/ablaut-reduplication/).

I can understand why the author would make this book bilingual—if it was only published in the Ojibwe language, few would buy it, so including the English translation was smart.  

It has been said that in 100 years, the only languages that will be around will be English, Spanish, and Mandarin, which I think is a shame, for I do believe it is important to preserve languages (like animal species, trees, art, etc.), especially in this world that is becoming increasingly homogenized.  

The illustrations were awful—flat, without nuance, and downright creepy—all had a darkness to them and the people looked like something out of a cheap comic book.

The humanoid dogs and cats—wearing human clothing, marching, and playing the drum—was extremely creepy; closer representations to nature would’ve been appreciated.  And what was up with all the sunglasses when it was dark out? Was it to mask the windows of their souls? 

Though those who have an interest in Native American customs would probably give this book a look, especially those who are a part of the Ojibwe heritage, but there isn’t a story here; rather, the nonfiction portions would’ve been better rewritten as a passage in a World Book Encyclopedia or Encyclopedia Britannica, sans the illustrations.

I generally come up with a suggested activity related to the book, but when I hate a book this much, I just don’t have it in me to do that.  

Highly not recommended.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39665297-bowwow-powwow