Archive | August 2015

Seventh August Blog

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Seventh August Blog.

i may not get another blog out for August, after this one. But I think for a greater part of the UK ths week, it is mostly rain.

This means, going out, even to post letters by car, will not be feasible, unless we want to get soaked. Oh, the sun did shine for a while this morning, but dark clouds were already building up by 11.30 a.m. By midday, down came the rain! It is still raining. Dank, dark, gloomy and autumnal looking.

So my suggestion now is to start hunkering down. Winter is approaching. Start planning for hearty warming meals. Shake out the warm coats, scarves, hats and gloves. Don’t forget to check for moth holes. They are sneaky little blighters.

Before I end this short post. As some might have heard from me, today, and I firmly reiterate, we had rain of Biblical proportions, plus thunder and lightning. Have not seen rain come down that hard for many a moon. Late aftenoon, the sun came out very bright and the wind blew stronger than you would expext in iate summer. If I bothered to check the newspapers, they might have an answer for this atypical weather pattern, nay also predict thus to be the end of warm weather and quite autumnal temperatures. I hope not but…..without being a Job’s comforter, as my daughter said, it is only four months to Christmas. Yuk! Too bloomin’ soon.

Pocket Dreams.
Where is hope, that forgotten dream,
The Love that sought my heart?
She of the wildwood, quiet, serene,
Who tore my life apart.

Tossed aside, like a holey shoe
That has trod the barren earth.
Left to meander in wilderness, blue,
To dwell in miasma’s dearth.

My heart’s beating slows with time,
Draining the life I once led.
Yet you cared not in your sublime
Way, e’en though you cut, and I bled.

On whispering wind Inhear your voice still,
It calls like a trilling skylark.
Is it just in my dreamlike thrill,
Or the hit as the storm sky grows da

Are you laughing at this poor soul of mine?
Has the love you once gave, been forgot?
Bitter tears I weep, in decline
As you dismiss my sorry lot.

But yours is the sorrow of life in the end
When old, you remember, and sigh,
Then my revenge, on which I depend,
Is sated, though for you I still cry.

Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. August, 2015.

Hope late holidaymakers enjoy the last moments, and, as always, be careful out that everyone.

Evelyn

Sixth August Blog

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Sixth August Blog.

Another short piece for your perusal. A genre that I rarely visit, I must tell you. So,even if it is not your kind of readin, it is only short, so comments, as always, are welcome.

******* “Waves lashed the small craft, beating a tattoo on its ancient boards. Shrieking wind whipped the water ever higher as the men fought to keep control of the flapping sails that had broken loose from the main mast.

The prow rose high, then suddenly dipped as the ocean tossed the ship backwards and forwards, rocking like a bucking horse, trying to keep afloat in the hurricane.

“Avast there, men,” shouted the Bosun, hoping his voice would carry through the din.

“Will we make it through this storm?” cried the ship’s young officer. He was just fourteen years of age. His first commission. The quake in his voice was discernible to those close by

Another young officer, one year younger, shook as a huge wave dumped salt water over his head. The lad grabbed tighter to the rope as his feet were washed across the deck. It was his only hope. A life saver. Mid-shipman Warrel grabbed at the boy’s arm as he slid past the older man. The officer, stretched out a grasping hand to catch the proffered help.

“Hold tight there,” Warrel shouted into the nor-easter, but the hurricane whipped his voice away into the teeth of the gale. Both young Mid-shipmen were oblivious to his warning, striving to hold fast with icy fingers, wet with stinging rain.
A shoal of fish, plucked from the ocean by a force of Natural events, came tumbling down onto the heaving deck, making the planks even more slippery than before. Bosun Heggins leant into the wind, holding tight to the ship’s rail rope,catching the older lad’s jacket lapel.

“Grab the rail, Sir,” Heggins yelled as loud as he could. Mid-shipman Doughty found strength from somewhere, reached for the Bosun’s jacket and held tight to the rough material. It was sodden and his fingers slipped a mite. An extraordinary effort was called for. He had never, in his young life, had to exert such control. Now he knew that his very life depended on obeying this comnand, albeit from a lower man, someone, someday, who would look to his orders, should he survive that long in this man’s Navy. ” *********
Into The Gale.

Creaking masts heaved and swayed,
Mountainous waves burst o’er the boards,
Storm clouds scudded ‘cross the sky,
Sheets whip-whistled at Posidon’s hordes.

Decking glistened with salty spray.
Sailor men, lashed to railing ropes
Lest they be washed into the brine,
With them go our dreams and hopes.

Crack, the mainsail splits asunder,
Lightening flashes, rigging stripped.
Thunder follows every forking,
Many sails go flapping, ripped.

Bosun yelling fierce directions,
No sea shanties sung amidst.
Every seaman to his station,
Roaring captain, shaking fist.

Up on crests and down in valleys
Turbulent waters, toss the ship,
Heaving ocean, tugged by moonlight,
Bulwarks, watery, rise, then flip.

When at last the storm clouds parting
Shows a patch of shining blue,
Scrub the salt from off the decking,
Sailor-men re-rig, strong and true.

Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. August, 2015.

Very nautical today, my friends. Be good, be safe and take care.

Evelyn.

Fifth August Blog

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Fifth August Blog.

****** ” Cara stubbed her boot against a fallen tree trunk. The rotting corpse showered her foot with dusty debris adding to the brown leaf litter on the floor of the copse. The smell of decay rose into the air around her, infesting her nose. Cara half sneezed. Her mouth ingested the taste of death. Holding a tissue to her face, she coughed to rid her mouth of the taste. It wasn’t that the taste was that unpleasant, it was just that she was allergic to rotting wood. And yet, a gentle walk through the trees was what she always did when problems arose. A therapeutic exercise, a chance to give her brain a rest from stress.

Orange and browning leaves fluttered down around her, like so many dead petals in a forgotten rose garden. So sad that trees had to lose their finery, she thought. Their stark winter limbs so gross in their bareness. But that was the way of it in deciduous woodland and, she supposed it was all fir the best. Nature renewal, and all that. The sweet sound of rustling leaves in summer was joyous. The dark creaking of bare winter arms, noxious to her. A time of foreboding. Cara shivvered, and it was not all because a light chill breeze suddenly blew through the lower branches.

A grey squirrel ( didn’t they get everywhere these days?) scuttled out of the undergrowth, a full mouth of wild nuts, ran for the nearest trunk, scampering aloft before danger caught up with him. Least ways, Cara thought it was a him. The view of his rear end as he rose to a height convinced her it was male ( they really had huge ones), considering the size of the rest of the animal.

Her thoughts were as wild as the creatures living there. Too many problems to solve if at all possible. Yet, how could she create a new life from broken shards?

A soughing wind, stronger than the recent breeze, rustled the tree tops. The sound harsh, adding to her disturbing irrational thoughts. A roost of rooks cawed into the blasted air. Cara thought the falcon had flown close. Not much else disturbed these birds from their early afternoon slumber. A distant fox screamed in unison with the rooks. A woodland chorus.

Cara strolled on, enveloped in Nature’s harmony. Plucking a leaf, half turned in autumn’s finery, thinking how strange it would be if she were a wild animal, having nothing to worry about other than to prepare for winter’s edge.” *******
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A small evocative piece. Something I like to do to exercise the old grey muscle occasionally. Gives me some perspective on writing, trying to portray situations, natural environments, feelings, sounds, colour and if I can, smells, even tastes. One of my Creative Writing Tutors once read from a book, with all these elements in. It seems to give the reader a more rounded view. Puts them in the picture, so to speak. Involves them in the narrative,if you will, more so than a flat piece of writing.

Yet, there are many books with very little description so that one has to use inagination quite effectively. This would make the same book different for every reader.

For me, I see a picture in my head, a scene I want to write about, one I can describe in detail, perhaps and I go for it where I can. Of course, not every situation lends itself to graphic description. Some details, short, sharp and shocking, work very well, but I seldom write that kind of work.

Each to his/her own, I would say. This is just my personal feelings.

Have a good weekend everyone, and just be careful out there.

Evelyn.

This entry was posted on August 21, 2015. 5 Comments

Fourth August Blog

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Fourth August Blog.

“Like the circles that you find, in the windmills of your mind”!

A very telling song when you put it with nautural phenonena. ‘Wheel within a wheel’. Just these two lines alone can give a kick start to writers who have ‘lost their muses’.

Just take one of the lyric lines, maybe turn it around, mix it up and voila, an idea may form. Has anyone tried this idea?. Not from just this one song, (which may not be your type of song), but any you can think of that tickles your fancy. There are enough in this world to choose from, are there not?

The picture above was taken on the beach of a Canadian lake. Not one of the great big ones, but something a tad smaller (though it looked quite large to me at the time I was there). This was a small ( about 6 to 8 feet across or thereabouts) depresion between a few trees, soft sand blown hither and thither by the currents of the winds. Like rivulets going this way and that way. Such wonderful patterns that had nothing to do with human minds. This could appear in a piece of writing in some way or another. You decide. What I am saying here is that there are many natural occurrences, phenomena etc. that can be used either as description or as some form of topic.

Some of us forget that Nature can provide untold scenery, happenings that can be woven into the thread of a story, be a backdrop, become a focal point. Use your imagination like a camera. Take mental pictures of things you see around you ( a phone camera is almost as good), it is just a memory jogger for your mind.

So next time you travel somewhere, go to the marrket, visit friends or relatives, look at the sea, a lake, a hill or mountain, look closer. Ask yourself, “can I use this in my story?” You may be pleasantly surprised. Or if you are at a sports location, any kind, look at the surroundings, take note of the people around. All the characters or characterisations could be there, if only you looked a little closer and noted them down for possible use. It might be worth the effort. Even a favourite film can trigger ideas fir later use. Why not try it?

Wind.

The storm wind
Blows hard, it races
Across the sky, like
Some demented hare.
Wild, furious, untamed,
Its breath beats harsh
Across the land, taunting
Trees in its path.
Tearing limbs, ripping
Boughs, whipping them
Into scudding missiles.
Tarmac clouds, brooding,
Billowing, tumbling over
And over in an erratic ballet.
Leaden, they are laden
With heavy moisture,
Waiting the moment
Like an Exocet, to let loose.
Lightning crackles,
Strikes fast, pierces
The sky, its brilliant forks
Seeking home on Earth.
Power. Majesty.
Carried in the forceful
Erratic wind, this way, that.
It is master, for a time,
But not forever.

Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. August, 2015.

Take care out in the world, my friends.

Evelyn

This entry was posted on August 17, 2015. 4 Comments

Third August Blog

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Third August Blog.

The Gremlins have returned. Nothing has gone right. I wrote a whole blog, poem as well, then by accident, trying to get rid of delete button that showed up. – it deleted the whoe durned thing!!!!!!!!!

Not the first unplanned deletion this week. Unfortunately, on this Notepad, neither I, nor ‘er indoors, has any clue how to retrieve on it. It also sometimes doubles up on stuff, Grrrrrrrr!!!!!!

So. The blog I was writing I m too weary to go through again, and, if you loose a first draft poem, pointless trying to re-write it from your head ( I do not make notes on poems, sad to say, so it is lost). On other parts of this sadly, items deleted are not really deleted, just taken out of site. Emails, for instance. They are retrievable, but have no idea about the notepad. It also has a sometime habit of lifting one piece and tacking it on the bottom of another file, written much earlier. Very confusing. All sent to annoy me, I guess. That is how it seems.

Many will say I have touched something, some button or other to make this all happen, and you could be right. But which button????? I have not a clue. Suffice it to say that I am losing work by the handful, and I do not like it!

Have many of you taken up the new (I hate to say it this way), Adult Colouring book craze? I always loved colouring in when little, but like all childhood toys and interests, it went the way of ‘The Dodo’ as one grew older. But now it has been deemed as a relaxing past time, with more adult-type pictures, more complicated patterns to de-stress the older person.

I have not actually bought any books yet, as you can get print-outs off the Internet, for free, more as trial runs, pehaps? Anyway, they are available. The only thing you are required to have at first, is a set of colours, be they pencils or felt top brush pens. Using the latter with print-outs means that, when using them to colour in, you need a pain sheet of copier paper u nderneath, as many felt tops ‘bleed’ throigh the paper, often resulting in different patterns on the under side, possibly a bonus?

I completed a large one yesterday, a lady’s head, her hair was all kinds of patterns. But today I completed two much smaller printouts. Getting to the time to look for more, or buy a book! I will be drawing nd water-colour paintng my own pictures in the future. Just getting a few bits and pieces together. Need special brushes, which hopefully, will make trees etc easier to put onto the paper, and look like distant trees. Mother brushes will be helpful when painting water, of various kinds. We shall wee. I m alao thinking if trying ‘Rough’ paper, though normally I use ‘NOT’ paper.

Grey Skies.

Mid summer, and the cloudy sky
Grew darker as the morning bled
Into a later, morning day,
And rain came down, like a mourning dress.
Light, at first, the drops then grew.
Heavier still, and the wind, it blew.
Dankness filled my view, flooded
My mind, as I thought of you.
For this rain had no redress,
It gathered storm clouds, what a mess.
Not summer rain, that after heat,
Lays the dust, you can smell the mix,
Like a muddy bake, all you can eat.
No, it was the chill watery way
Of a waning Autumn day.
Summer gone, feels cold today,
I wish I could live, be far away.
The promise that summer had not left,
Was but a pipe dream, we are bereft.

Copyright. Evelyn J. Steward. August, 2015.

Not the blog I was writing, but still……Happy Friday, everyone. Take care as you move around in this world.

Evelyn.

This entry was posted on August 14, 2015. 5 Comments

Second August Blog

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Second August Blog.

There are a lot of writers whose topics are romance, historical fiction, young adults, children’s or is that childrens’? Some write murder mysteries, others write a combination like historical murder fiction. There are those who write paranormal, vampire, were wolves and the like, adult fairy tales. Also factual writers, they have a place, but here I am asking how many write science fiction/fantay?

Personally, I write in many genres. Now some people say that a writer should stick to one genre; one they are good at, one they feel comfortable in.

I have never subscribed to that belief. OK, I hear you say, pehaps she has never found that one genre that was suited to her. And perhaps you may be right. All I know is that I write whatever story appeals to me, what I feel comfortable writing at that particular moment, no matter what the genre. I seldom write horror, because I do not think I could do it justice. The same applies to comedy and murder, mostly. Oh, I have written one or two short comic stories, more by luck than judgement. Same applies to vampire stories. Yes, I have written one or two shorts, in this genre, but I could not sustain a full book. I know my limitations, mostly.

I have tried fantasy and science fiction. I have partial novels in the genre of fantasy.
Not fairies or any of that kind, but scifi fantasy. However, my main acifi novel has to be re-edited and half of the second book, in the series, has to be written.

My question is, how did you go about writing your scifi novel?
What sparked your interest in scifi, the writing of?
How did you decided what type of scifi would be the one for you? Space, weird scifi ( sorry, have no other way to put it. The Shining Ones is a bit weird, another 6 book series, I cannot remember the titles, that I was lent by a devotee and that I stoically ploughed through) or fantasy scifi like Anne McCaffrey ( my favourite in that genre)?

From way back, it has been said,write what you know! How can you know scifi??? The answer, plain and simple is no, you cannot know ( barring a bit of gleaned knowledge about stars, planets, the universe etc.) so you cam only use what you were born with. Your imagination! You can create whole universes of your own making, should you so desire, in this field of writing. Who is to say it isn’t so? No one.

So, my friends, thank you for perusing this piece. I would welcome any comnents, in this field. Do take care.
Space, the Limitless.

How many Universes litter the Great Space?
Such infinity, too vast to contemplate.
And yet, we search, we speak
Of the great beyond as if it were a friend,
So close, we would whisper, lest we be heard.
Too overwhelming to let our small minds
Wander through the Galaxies,
Infinitesimal though we be,
Smaller than a grain of sand,
Yet we seek to understand.
We, who cannot rule our one tiny
Speck, our planetoid, held in the
Bosom of an indefinable quantity,
This entity, this Earth.
Shall we ever strike out,
Leave its shores for the unknown?
We either become as dust in the melee,
Or develop warp drive.
But could we withstand breaking the ties,
Leaving this rock behind,
Engineering Space?
Or, are we too small-minded,
Too finite, too clinging to this one
Mud ball, we call home.

Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. August, 2015.

Such are the thoughts of men, who hate to be conquered, yet wish to conquer that which is unconquerable!

Evelyn

First August Blog

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First August Blog.

Namesakes.

August, named for the Ceasar,
Though why, I cannot tell.
Nor June, for one of the Godesses,
It rings in my ears, like a bell.

July is named for another
Of Rome’s mighty rulers, iyou see,
March is called after the God Mars,
How heavenly can those Romans be?

January after the God Janus,
It’s all blessed Roman, and why?
May, the Godess of Honour,
We observe her approach, then sigh.

Others are named after numerals
Which the Romans, again, instilled,
Apralis, ‘to open’, is April,
So many a month name, is filled.

Februus, Italian old God,
To make all the people feel pure,
Januarus, beginnings and endings,
It starts the year well, I’mokji sure.

I think that about covers the calendar,
All Roman, or Italian, it’s true,
No Gods now remind us of reverence,
Just a year of good cheer, for me and you.

Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. August, 2015.

August, the month of my birth. Never the same each year. Sometimes hot, others cool and rainy in parts. As it is mainly the school holidays, it would be nice if the weather was consistant. But then again, it has to be said that August, for those in the Northern Hemisphere, is the eighth month of the year and is, by now well past the mid-summer yardarm.

It should be a time of ripening bounty, crops in the fields, golden yellow, corn, wheat etcetera. Trees full of purple and yellow plums, rich and juicy, almost ready to be plucked. Apples, green and red, filling out on the branches, pears mellowing. The main flush of ripe red strawberries almost over, but there are gooseberries and raspberries, ready for eating still. Melons and fattening pumpkins, growing, but not yet ready for harvest. Definitely, fruit and vegetables burgeoning. Oh, how wonderful in olden times, for such abundance coming available to be eaten with relish, some stored away for the barren winter times. A glutteny for the hunter/gatherers who were yet to become farmers, moving across the land, plucking riches available in abundanc in the land through which they travelled.

A storecupboard of food, possibly buried in caches, to be found when winter laid its white mark across the earth. Nuts, stored maybe in stone ‘wells’ for fear squirrels and other marauding creatures would dig them up. We have no way of telling if this was so. We can only surmise because we are here now. Some must have survived the harsh times, or we would not be here today.

However, I was talking about August, named, or rather renamed, for the Roman Emperor Augustus. The word/name even (to me) sounds plentiful,, bountious, plumptious, which indeed does denote the burgeoning month.

A little sonething……

“”””Rosie strolled into the garden, its beating heat, curtesy of a brilliant Augustian summer, pouring its bounty over grass and shrubs alike.
Her namesakes, red and pink and white, and all shades inbetween, not to mention the yellow and salmon colours, gave off wafts of gorgeous scent as she passed by. Nothing else like the perfume of roses, she thought. And it was true! MAny flowers were highly scented, and she grew lots of different kinds, but apart from the honeysuckle, which was pervasive, the roses remained her favorite.

Removing seceteurs from the bag she carried around in the garden, she reached over the nearest bush and dead-headed a few wilting blooms. The sweetness invaded her nostrils. Each rose, though typical of the rose family, had a slighly different aroma. Some were delicate, barely there, while others were strong, demanding that she stop and wallow in their scent.

August was the true month for roses here she lived. In good years, the winds dropped in the valley, letting the heat settle low to the ground. One only had to keep the bushes watered for them to give up their freshness, their colour, so vivid or so pale, their pungency, with fervour.

This was a good time. This was August, well and truly August.”””””

With the sun shining, today is August the first. Have a very good month.

Evelyn.