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3 February 2023

Published February 1, 2023 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Alicia Jamtaas

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Genre: Romantic Fiction
Word Count: 100

HAPPILY EVER AFTER

Twirling in front of the mirror, Hattie admired her reflection. Her wedding dress, complete with a satin train, made her feel like a fairytale princess. The heart-shaped diamond on her left hand sparkled. The day James presented it to her everyone in the restaurant applauded. How could she refuse?

            Reluctantly, Hattie slipped off the gown. Had she made the right decision? Marriage was a huge commitment.

            She took off the ring and laid it beside a handwritten note that read,

            “Dear James,

                        “By the time you read this, David and I will be on our honeymoon.

                                    “Love and apologies,

                                                Hattie”                                   

28 January 2023

Published January 25, 2023 by rochellewisoff
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Undersea St. Thomas 4 Meme

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PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

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As my life has taken some spins and dives of late, my muse didn’t seem to want to come up with anything new. This week, January 27, 2023, marks the 78th anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz. I feel it’s more important than ever to post a reminder with antisemitism and racist hatred on the rise. How can intelligent people become animals and beasts? The following is a snippet of an interview I had the honor of doing with survivor Sonia Warshawski, fondly known as “Big Sonia” seven years ago.

Genre: Interview
Word Count:100

THE INTERVIEW

            “For I’m gon’ tell you,” says Sonia, a colorful and imposing presence at 4 feet 8 inches tall. “It happened so slowly. Not all at once.

            “The soldiers line up rabbis in the street and made us watch them rip out their beards by the roots. Then they shot them.

            “I’ll never forget. In front of me they slaughter babies. I’ll never forgive.  

            “Silence kills.” Her intense brown eyes dig trenches in my heart. “I tell you what is not in history books. As long as God gives me power, I will speak for them.”

This interviewer will never forget. 

20 January 2023

Published January 18, 2023 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Na’ama Yehuda

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Genre: Fiction/Novel Excerpt
Word Count: 100

I’m not sure you can call this a whole story, rather it is a snippet from my upcoming novel LAST DANCE WITH ANNIE. I’ve been so busy with edits that I just didn’t have the headspace for something new. Maybe next week.

SPIN CYCLE

After her parents died, within three years of each other, victims of their own bad habits—smoking and overeating—Elise ramped up her exercise routines. She took pride in achieving sixteen percent body fat.

Tony, obsessed with his personal workout program, never seemed to notice his wife had a problem. In fact, he praised her new slender form and stamina.

             Elise’s flashbacks of childhood abuse surfaced in her mid-thirties. Each memory took her appetite, exacerbating her hatred for her body. When she sought help from a professional, Tony fumed and said she had no right to air their dirty laundry.

13 January 2023

Published January 11, 2023 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Fleur Lind

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Genre: Narrative
Word Count: 100

TURN THE PAGE

            Another trip around the sun is complete. I’ve welcomed the new year. Resolutions? No. Like Christmas toys they’re, more-often-than-not, abandoned by February first. Goals? Yes. For one, I’m shooting for two-hundred swim miles by December.

            Other goals include releasing a new novel.

            Scrolling through a lengthy list of my publisher’s suggested edits, I fight the urge to turn off the computer and hide under my bed with the dust bunnies.

Steady girl. You’ve got this. There are paintings to be painted and an important story to tell.

A milestone birthday and new chapter of life loom large on my horizon.  

6 January 2023

Published January 4, 2023 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

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Due to circumstances beyound my control I”m posting a rerun from four years ago. A few of you might remember it .

Genre: HIstorical Fiction
Word Count: 100

THIS HOT MADNESS

Benjamin shoved a notebook under his son’s nose. “What is this mishegoss?”

Although the boy had expected his father’s wrath, he trembled. “They’re my stories, Papa. I’ve decided to become a writer.”  

“A sixteen-year-old child decides?” Benjamin shook his fist and thundered. “For this we send you to yeshiva?”

“I make straight A’s in Talmud class. Why can’t a rabbi write fiction, too?” 

Benjamin flung the binder to the floor. “Frivolous nonsense!” Pages scattered like dry leaves.

***

In 1967, thirty-eight-year-old Chaim Potok marveled when his debut novel, The Chosen, became a NY Times best seller. “What would Papa say now?”

*

*

*

If you have 4 extra minutes and want to know more, CLICK HERE

30 December 2022

Published December 28, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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This year has zipped by and now we are ready to take the final Friday Fictioneers challenge…of the year. 😉 To find my story I did a Google search of famous people born on the first of January. This is where it led me.

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

TRUE CHARITY

In our home in Jerusalem, we celebrated holidays according to the lunar calendar. Rosh HaShana, which fell in autumn, was the beginning of our new year. However, my grandfather raised a glass of champagne every January 1st.

            “To Chiune Sugihara, a true hero.”

            “What did he do, Saba?” I asked.

            “What did he do? Funny you should ask.” Saba’s eyes misted. “Mr. Sugihara was the Japanese consul in Lithuania. He issued visas to some 6000 Jews. Thanks to him we escaped the Nazis.”

“Why do always you toast him on January 1st?”

“To wish him a happy birthday, of course.”

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Should you have 11 minutes to spare CLICK to watch a worthwhile video about this man. You won’t regret it.

23 December 2022

Published December 21, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

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Genre: Trivial Pursuit
Word Count: 100

HAPPY HANUKKAH

“‘The sun is shining, the grass is green, the orange and palm trees sway—’” Kent looked up from his book. “The song wouldn’t have been the same with those opening lines.”

            Shelley yawned. “What song, O master of entertainment trivia?”

            “White Christmas of course.”

            “Tell me more. I’ll pretend to be interested.”

            “Irving Berlin wrote it for “Holiday Inn,” and snagged the Oscar for best song of 1942. Bing Crosby’s recording of “White Christmas” hit the top of the charts by Halloween. Can you imagine the holidays without it?”

            “He was Jewish, you know.”

            “Crosby?”

            “No, Einstein—Irving Berlin.”  

Just for fun here’s the song with the original first verse:

And here’s the song as sung in the movie “Holiday Inn.”

16 December 2022

Published December 14, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

BEAR 55PB

“What do you think, Tante Margarete?” Richard Steiff held up a stuffed bear. “His arms and legs move. He’s soft and cuddly mohair.”

Richard’s creative aunt who’d been paralyzed by polio as a toddler had against all odds, founded Steiff Manufacturing in 1880. Her felt elephants and other animals were favorites of thousands of German children.

She took the bear in her arms. “He is darling. But will he sell?”

“May I enter him in the Leipzig toy trade fair?”

“Viel Glück.”

Margarete’s question was answered in 1903 when an American trader ordered 3,000 bears and renamed them Teddy Bear.  

*viel glück – good luck in German

Conflicting stories abound when it comes to the Teddy Bear named for President Theodore Roosevelt. This one seems feesible to me. CLICK HERE to learn more about this remarkable woman.

CLICK HERE if you’d like to read the other side of the Teddy Bear’s history. I don’t propose to know which story is true. One thing is for sure and certain and that’s the popularity of the Teddy bear.

9 December 2022

Published December 7, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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81 years ago today, December 7, 1941, the Japanese launched a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed it a “date which will live in infamy.”

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

Click below to hear the author (me 😉 ) read:

HAVE YOURSELF A MERRY LITTLE CHRISTMAS

A few flakes floated by the window and colored lights reflected in the glass. Dennis Day sang a romantic tune on the radio. Laura sipped hot chocolate and read Fred’s letter at least a tenth time since it arrived Friday.

“November 26, 1941

My dearest,

Happy Thanksgiving from the USS Arizona! I sure do miss your cooking. I swear our gravy was mixed with fuel oil.

I hope my presents get there on time. You’d love Hawaii. The flowers. The beaches. But, golly, it won’t seem like Christmas without snow and my best girl.

“Ladies and gentleman, a special announcement…”

*No, it wasn’t happy news. There were a total of  2,335 military personnel killed, including 2,008 navy personnel, 109 marines, and 218 army. Added to this were 68 civilians, making the total 2403 people dead. 1,177 were from the USS Arizona.

2 December 2022

Published November 30, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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How did we get to December already? I want to take a moment to thank all of you who’ve contintued with Friday Fictioneers. You’re all a gift to me.

My story below is pure non-fiction. Rarely has a patron of an art fair followed through with “I’ll definitely get back with you about a commission.” Rarely? Now that I think about…never. I really thought this one was a sure thing.

Genre: Just the Facts
Word Count: 100

HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL

She held up her iPhone with a photo of a windmill at sunset. “Have you ever painted a scene like this?”

The brilliant oranges and golds spoke to me. “Could you text it to me?”

Her face lit up. “Done. Let me know if you paint it.”

Within days, the painting was done—one of my best according to my husband. I sent a jpeg to my potential client.

“I want it.” She replied. “How much?”

She agreed to the price. I packaged it with receipt and certificate of authenticity.

A sure sale? Ha! I never heard from her again.

Not to despair. Although the original still languishes in my studio, wrapped and ready to roll, I’ve sold many prints and note cards with this picture. Nothing’s wasted. 😉

For listings of my original paintings or signed prints CLICK HERE

Many of these renderings are available as a note card. CLICK HERE for my ETSY shop.

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