Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge – What’s in your Hutch?

Charli Mills invites us to join in her weekly Flash Fiction Challenge at the CarrotRanch. The rules – 99 words only – no more – no less. We must choose our words carefully. As with each challenge, Charli gives us a word we incorporate into the story. This week is to write about something you find in a ‘hutch’.


January 2, 2019, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about something found in a hutch. It can be any kind of hutch — a box for critters or a chest for dishes. Go where the prompt leads!





They stood tall and proud. None wished to be snatched away, or worse, – broken!

For decades these worthy icons remained admired and sought after, not only for beauty, but, their ever-increasing monetary value. The older, the more valuable. A grand mix of ethnic backgrounds co-existing in silence.

Such greats as: Lalique, Capodimonte, Royal Doulton, and Russian nesting eggs sat perched on a shelf protected behind the beautifully scallop-edged fine glass doors housing the regal cabinet where they all lived in harmony in all their diversity.

Time’s treasures of hidden wealth and ancient lore communing in one dining room hutch.



Original Source:

Colleen’s 2019 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge #SynonymsOnly – Deception



Pretty & Ugly


HERE’S THE CATCH: You can’t use the prompt words! SYNONYMS ONLY! Except for the first challenge of the month ~ then, the poets get to choose their own words.


I’ve chosen to write a Double #Tanka







Disguised as promise

A chaotic clusterfuck

Beautifully concealed

Reality distorted

Hostility reigns rampant.


Suppressing the truth

Predator assumes applause

Undigested lies

Pandora’s present unleashed

Smorgasbord of hate revealed

If you’d like to join in the weekly poetry prompt challenge, please visit Colleen’s blog for the ‘rules’ and various forms of poetry.


Source: Colleen’s 2019 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 135 #SynonymsOnly – The Faery Writer





#Writephoto Writing Prompt from Sue Vincent – Daily Echo – Fly Away

Sue Vincent offers a #Writephoto prompt weekly at the Daily Echo. I enjoy reading some of the responses with the stories people come up with from a photo and a word. The word this week is ‘choice’, and Sue left 4 images to choose from. I thought I’d jump in with the image given below, and decided to go with the first thing popping into my head.



Welcome to this week’s writephoto prompt. As I travelling, I have posted four photographs to cover TWO weeks prompts. The two prompt words are ‘small’ and ‘choices’.


Take your pick.

Each week, choose one of the images below as inspiration to create a post on your own blog… poetry, prose, humour… light or dark, whatever you choose, by noon(GMT)  Wednesday 19th June and link back to this post with a pingback to be included in the round-up.  There is no word limit and no style requirements, except to keep it fairly family friendly.

an old, carved stone whose recesses are stuffed with red and black ladybirds.

The image shows an old, carved stone whose recesses are stuffed with red and black ladybirds.



Ladybug, Ladybug, Fly Away


Whew! I made it in! Busy day here I see. It’s sweltering out there today! Everyday it’s a drag flying around looking for shelter. I was nearly crushed  by human shoes at least 20 times just today. If I wasn’t so quick to escape that one annoying little boy chasing me around with a fly swatter, I surely wouldn’t have lived to tell. I much prefer the docile humans who treat me kindly, making silent wishes and blowing on me gently to seal their wishes.

They tell me I’m lucky. The only thing I’m feeling lucky about today is that I wasn’t squashed or swatted to death. Man, did I ever make the right choice when the gang flew south and I decided to head north.

I’m happy to be back here in safety with my friends, hanging out at Mr. Stone’s moss covered cave getaway where I’m safe for another day and have my friends to commiserate with about whose experience of narrowly escaping those deadly fly swatters was most harrowing today. Tomorrow, it’ll just about be time to hit the skies and look for a place a bit cooler and a lot more friendlier, a place where people appreciate me and don’t wish to kill me.



Original post





Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – New Sunday Interview Series – Human In Every Sense of the Word – Starting Sunday June 30th 2019. | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Heads up bloggers! Sally Cronin has opened up a new series at Smorgasbord Invitation

This challenge begins June 30th, so put your thinking caps on and hop on to the new series – Human in Every Sense of the Word. Sally invites us to write a short story of approximately 300-600 words on one of our senses. Read on for more details:



Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – New Sunday Interview Series – Human In Every Sense of the Word – Starting Sunday June 30th 2019



Welcome to the new series of the Sunday Interview..Human in every sense of the word.

As humans there are five main senses that we rely on to navigate through this world.  And there is one that we all possess but do not necessarily use all the time…


Sight, Hearing, Touch, Taste, Smell….Sixth Sense.

For some people however, one or more of those senses do not function and we can only imagine the challenges this results in.

I don’t know about you, but I take my senses for granted, expecting to see my surroundings when I wake up each morning, hear the birds sing, feel the bedclothes as I throw them back, and the carpet beneath my feet. I expect to taste the marmalade on my toast, and smell the coffee I am about to drink. I also rely on my sixth sense, the one that people cannot really define, that somehow keeps me from making an error of judgement.

Scientists believe that we have other senses that are also important but that we have lost touch with over our evolution. But for this interview series I would like to focus on the six senses I have mentioned.


I would like you to write from 300 to 600 words about one or more of these senses.

We often associate significant events with our senses… the first time we heard a certain piece of music, touched an object or someone that had a profound effect on us, the first sight of a newborn baby or an event unfolding before our eyes, smelling a flower or eating a new food for the first time that was amazing.


You can choose to write about one sense or all of them, including that elusive sixth sense we have clung on to from the early days of man. 

  • What I would like you to share is how the engagement of your chosen senses influenced events in your life, perhaps changed your perspective, made you fall in love, or out of love.
  • Does a certain smell or taste bring back a memory?
  • Did you touch something that resulted in a lifetime phobia?
  • Did your sixth sense kick in time to safe you from danger?
  • Did you see someone across a room and know that they were the person for you?
  • Do you hear a piece of music that brings back memories of someone or an experience in your life?

Please use the 300 to 600 words and if you need more that is fine, use what you need to engage us and our senses . . . Continue reading at Sally’s Smorgasbord


Source: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – New Sunday Interview Series – Human In Every Sense of the Word – Starting Sunday June 30th 2019. | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine







May 9: Flash Fiction Challenge « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

I’ve hopped on to Charli Mills’ Flash Fiction Challenge for this week: May 9, 2019, prompt:

“In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about growing older. It can be humorous, dark or poignant. It can be true or total fiction. It can be fine wine or an old fossil. Go where the prompt leads!”

Simple Things


I dropped a fork, bent down, took a minute to get back up, but I did.

I went to the fridge, forgot what I went for, so I closed the door and saved on calories.

The days of putting on socks while hopping on one foot are long gone or I’d fall flat on my face. A chair now works fine.

Naps used to be looked at as punishment when young, now a treasured opportunity.

Days pass too quick as years progress.

More wrinkle cream, vitamins and brisk walks. Whatever it takes, I’m in.

Getting older aint for sissies.


Source: May 9: Flash Fiction Challenge « Carrot Ranch Literary Community





I’ve Been Nominated – Sunshine Blogger Award | Stevie Turner

I was thrilled to be nominated again for the Sunshine Blogger Award by Stevie Turner.



Thank the person who nominated you and provides a link back to their blog so others can find them.Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.

Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.

Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.

List the rules and (optional) display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.


As usual, I share my awards with all my fellow bloggers so I nominate you all, but as part of the protocol (and fun) is answering the questions. These were the questions and my responses I answered to Stevie’s questions:


Do you think authors having many social media accounts is a good idea?

I believe an author should have as many social media accounts as they please. They just have to take into consideration that they must babysit all these sites. I’d suggest finding what sites get you most engagement and stick with those.


Do you submit your work to agents, or are you happy staying self-published?

I’ve never submitted my work to an agent and I’m quite content being in control of my own work and royalties.


Do you think authors should give away their work for free?

That’s an age old question. Giving books away free hurts, but unfortunately in a sea of books we have to use this method sometimes to generate readership and garner reviews.


If you have an email (mailing) list, how do you gain more followers for it?

I have a sign-up here on my blog for readers to get notified of my posts. Honestly, I don’t have much experience with Mailchimp other than sending out my weekly blogs. Through the years, I’ve acquired several hundred followers. I put all my book announcements in my blogs and always felt I didn’t want to bombard my readers with yet another newsletter.


If you had to be confined to one social media account to promote your books, which one would it be?

As much as I hate it, I have to say Facebook. I hate everything that site stands for and all the data stealing and re-selling.


Is book promotion worth it?  Do you gain sales by your promotion efforts, or is it all just a time suck?

I go through periods of being fed up with spending money on ads and not always a good pay off. But I can say that I at least garner some new reviews from those promos, and reviews are essential to help sell our books.


What’s the best part of a doughnut?  I would say it’s the hole in the middle, but I’d love to hear what you think.

Lol. I’ll definitely say the hole because I don’t eat them.


How would you go about ‘kissing the sky’ like Mr Hendrix did?

By astral planing in my dreams.


Can you dance the Tango?

I absolutely cannot dance the Tango, and pretty sure I’d put my back out on those huge dips, lol.


What strange phenomena have you experienced?

Oh my goodness, way too much to list here!


Do you want to live forever?

Some days I think so, others, when I think about how old and decrepit I’d look and see the direction in what a lot of this world is coming too, I think not.


Source: The Sunshine Blogger Award | Stevie Turner

The Annual Bloggers Bash Awards 2019 Vote is LIVE! – The Annual Bloggers Bash

The Annual Bloggers Bash Awards are now open for voting. I’m thrilled to be nominated again this year in the category of ‘Best Blogging/Writing Blog, along with some other fantastic talent! I hope you will all take a moment to visit the voting page and cast your votes for your favorite blogs and bloggers.


It’s that time of year again… The 2019 Annual Bloggers Bash Awards are now open. As always, we had a huge number of nominations. So let me thank everyone who took the time to nominate their fellow bloggers. Without you guys nominating, there would be no bash awards. To the awards:

Winners will be announced at the Bloggers Bash in London on June 15th. The winners post will go live here at 6pm on the same day. If you haven’t bought your ticket yet, please click the link below:


Please remember to keep our fun, supportive ethos in mind when voting. Please note, there are 8 categories and you can only vote once per category. 

A word from the committee:

Please note: we will not be entering into any discussions or arguments about the nominations or voting process, the fact that it is an online vote without judges, or the size of nominations in one category compared to another. The awards were designed to be a fun, inclusive extra for those who cannot attend the event in London and this is how it will remain. Unfortunately, we are not going to ever be able to please everybody, and anyone who seeks to cause a fuss will automatically be removed from the voting.


With that out of the way let’s get cracking.

Best Writing Blog LogoFirst up we have Best Blogging / Writing Blog.

Blogging / Writing / Short Stories / Poetry

Suitable candidates for the Best Blogging / Writing Blog offer consistent advice and guidance about blogging, hints and tips for using social media effectively, tutorials, advice on writing, writing prompts or offer beautiful poetry and short stories.

Nominees for this award are:

Anne R Allen’s Blog… with Ruth HarrisElena PetersChris The Story Reading ApeTallis SteelyardJill WeatherholtNight Owl PoetrySue Vincent’s Daily EchoThe Faery WhispererGin LemonadeKaren’s WorldSyl65’s BlogD. G. Kaye WriterHead Full of Dreamsneha98blogThe Rendezvous ClubThe Feathered SleepThe Poem ZoneAnnette Rochelle AbenDean Wesley SmithWillow CroftLosing the Plot, Uptown Oracle,

Please continue reading and casting your votes HERE


Source: The Annual Bloggers Bash Awards 2019 Vote is LIVE! – The Annual Bloggers Bash

MarySmith’sPlace #Awards: I’ve Been Nominated -The Sunshine Blogger Award

I was away when I came across Mary Smith’s lovely post that she was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award for recognition of her inspirational posts and spreading sunshine through blogland. I was elated to find that Mary had nominated me to pass the same award along to me too. Thank you Mary 😊



As is protocol with these awards, here are the rules:


Thank the blogger who nominated you in a blog post and make a link back to their blog.

Answer the 11 questions sent to you by the person who nominated you.

Nominate up to 11 new blogs to receive the award, and then write them 11 new questions – or cheat like I did and use the same questions 🙂

List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or your blog


Bitmoji Hmm


I’ve decided to cheat like Mary who used the same questions presented to her:


What was the driving force behind the creation of your blog?

I had no clue what I was going to blog about when I began. All I’d learned when I started writing books is that I should open a blog to start building a platform. It took me a good year or so to get a feel for things I wanted to share.


What was your vision for your future in blogging/writing when you first started this blog? How has that vision evolved?

Lol, I had no vision. I love to talk and I love to share informative things. My blog eventually wound up being an eclectic hodgepodge of personal stories, rants on injustice, writing tips for authors, book reviews and guest bloggers. (Which I will be starting up again in April.)


What age were you when you realized you loved writing?

Probably when I first learned how to hold a pencil, maybe 4?


How has your life changed as a result of the electronic age? Is it better/worse/the same?

Well thanks to the electronic age, indie authors have a chance to get our work out into the world. That said, there is just so much for us to look after, writing has become the smallest part of what’s involved to self-publish. And being a solitary job, working at home, it makes it a lot harder to get off the computer!


What was the very last website you visited today?

As of this writing, I just came back from visiting The Sisters of the Fey blog where my 7 Fey sisters and myself write collectively there.


What was the first website you visited when you woke up four days ago?

Are you kidding me?? I don’t even remember what I ate for lunch an hour ago! 🙂


If you could change one thing about your past, what would it be?

Not to have been a terrible critic of myself. I was my own worst enemy. I didn’t even know how to accept a compliment if ever I did get one.


How would your life be different today if that one thing from your past were to change?

I may have pursued my earlier ambitions if I’d had any encouragement. I wanted to be either a journalist – investigative reporter or a lawyer.


If you have children, tell me…how did your parenting change from the time you had your first child until the time you had your last?

I have no biological children. But I gained a lot of knowledge through life since childhood – how NOT to raise children.


Tell me about the funniest experience you’ve had in the past month.

Oh, those could be many because I’ve recently returned from a lengthy vacation and there were so many laughs. Hmm, let me see . . . how about the night a bunch of us went out for dinner for a friend’s birthday and the evening was pretty much over before I realized the culotte jumpsuit I had on with jumbo drop pockets in the front, was on backwards! Truth!


What do you have planned for the upcoming holiday season?

Honestly, I don’t make a big to-do about holidays. And I’m glad I don’t have to cook for them these past few years. We are the visitors and we go to family get-together dinners on holidays.


As always, when I receive an award, I like to share it with all my fellow bloggers. If you’re a blogger, you are helping to spread sunshine and information into the universe, so you are all deserving of this award. Please feel free to copy the award image on this page, pat yourself on the back, and paste it on to your own blog, courtesy of me. ❤


Source: MarySmith’sPlace #Awards: The Sunshine Blogger Award | Mary Smith’s Place