Life’s Ephemeral Nature

All posts in the Life’s Ephemeral Nature category

1 October 2021

Published September 29, 2021 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

Genre: Non-Fiction
Word Count: 100
NO WORDS

Seven years ago, after a long silence, Linda called me. “I need to hear your voice, Rocky. Are you okay?”

            I laughed, happy to hear her voice. “Those eating disorder days are way behind me.”

We called her Mother Tucker. She was a platinum blonde firebrand who never suffered fools gladly. No one saw through my lies faster, loved me as fiercely or hurt me as deeply.

            “I’m your bad habit.” She’d say, her eyes flashing ice-blue flames.

            Recently I learned the damned virus took her. I whisper through tears, “I need to hear your voice, Linda. Are you okay?”

***

I worked with Linda Tucker in the late 90’s. She saw me through the worst of my eating disorder. She’s also the one who nicknamed me “Rocky.” No matter how I fought it, the name stuck. My former coworkers still call me Rocky. For a time Linda and I parted ways (a story for another time…or not 😉 ) We hadn’t spoken for years when she turned up on Facebook and then called. R.I.P. Mother Tucker.

Linda was just a bit on the ornery side.

24 September 2021

Published September 22, 2021 by rochellewisoff
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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT© Liz Young

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

AT THE CRYSTAL PALACE IN 1854

“Don’t go, Elisha. Please.” Elizabeth grasped his arm. “Don’t make me a widow.”

            He caressed her cheek. “Have faith, Lizzie.”

Sweat beading on his forehead and sluicing between his shoulder blades, he stepped onto the platform.

            As it rose higher and higher, he gazed over the edge at the hushed crowd and questioned his own sanity.

He called out to the axe man. “Cut the rope.”

            A collective gasp erupted from the audience. Elisha Otis’ stomach somersaulted as the platform dropped, then halted. Thunderous applause exploded in his ears. His safety locking mechanism worked, and the modern elevator was born.

CLICK for more

17 September 2021

Published September 15, 2021 by rochellewisoff

The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Krista Strutz
Thanks to Keith Hillman for the frog Click to Join the Fun.

Genre: Questionable Fiction
Word Count: 100

PENTIMENTO

“There are no mistakes,” said the artist. “Only happy accidents.”

His soft voice caressed the TV viewer’s ears while he made love to a cloud with his wide brush. Often, he brought wild animals onto the set. He was nature lover first. Artist second. Passion on canvas.

Magnificent scenes appeared under his skillful hand in half an hour week after happy week.

“Believe strongly enough and you can make it happen,” he’d say.

We believed, didn’t we?

Mystery paints his final days. Smoking and inhaling paint thinner may have taken his life, but who owns the rights to his legacy?

Some extra curricular reading.

3 September 2021

Published September 1, 2021 by rochellewisoff
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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Penny Gadd

Genre: Fiction
Word Count: 100

TRUE GRIT

“‘Wanting to be a writer and not wanting to be rejected is like wanting to be a boxer and not wanting to get punched.’” Elise types, continuing with, “Ray Bradbury said, ‘You have to know how to accept rejection and reject acceptance.’

            “Harper Lee suggested the writer ‘develop a thick hide.’

Elise’s muse taunts her. “Hackneyed quotes from successful authors.”

            Elise backspaces and taps out, “The author gropes fragile branches keeping her head above muddy waters of despair. That’s depth. Golden verbiage. Pulitzer material.”  

            “You sure about that?” The muse snorts.

            Elise rereads her words. “Ugh.” Control-A-Delete. “I’m going swimming.”    

27 August 2021

Published August 25, 2021 by rochellewisoff
Another Hightway
Sunrise FF Banner

The following photo is the PHOTO PROMPT, a cool picture for hot days, depending on your side of the globe. Where does it take you? Tell us in a hundred words or less. 

PHOTO PROMPT -Brenda Cox

I’m doing it again. Taking a story out of mothballs and republishing it for Friday Fictioneers with a new photo prompt. It’s proving to be a crazy-busy summer and my muse is giving me the silent treatment. A few of you might remember this one from 2013.

Genre: Literary Fiction

Word Count: 100

ORDINARY GIRL

            The surgeon told her she’d never walk again.

            Not long after that, Grandpa Farthing came for a visit. “How’s my favorite cyclist?”

            “Crippled.”

            “Pity-party? Here, celebrate with this.” He tossed a book into her lap.  “I enjoyed it as a boy.”

            “‘Around the World on a Bicycle’?”

            “By Thomas Stevens. Rode it on a big-wheeled contraption called a Penny Farthing.”

            “You’re joking.”

            “Nope.”

            Two years later, inspired by Stevens’ determination, she labored to prove the doctors wrong and registered for her first Penny Farthing race.

            The official stared at her signature. “You’re joking.”  

            “Nope, Miss Penelope Farthing at your service.” 

You can find more about Thomas Stevens who rode what was then known as an Ordinary Bicycle  by clicking here . For more in depth reading the book is available on Amazon.com.

Around the World on a bicycle

The  ordinary bicycle was nicknamed “Penny Farthing” for its shape:

Penny_Farthing_Coins
Penny Farthing Bicycle Diagram
thomas Stevens
Thomas Stevens

Weekend Writing Prompt – Pre-loved

Published August 21, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s comment section.

HOLDING HER HAND

Wayne urged me to get in touch with my inner child.

“It hurts,” I whined.

“It’s the path to healing.”

One day, on the way to my appointment, I stopped at a thrift store. Spying a hand amid a pile of pre-loved stuffed toys, I pulled out a doll with a familiar face. I hugged her soft body and was comforted.

Wayne smiled at her. “She’s you.”

Coincidence? I think not.

“Hold the hand of the child
that lives in your soul.
For this child
nothing is impossible.”

Paulo Coehlo

20 August 2021

Published August 18, 2021 by rochellewisoff
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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT© Lisa Fox

I confess, this is a rerun from four years ago. Some might remember, some won’t. At any rate, I’ve been out town for a week and am taking the liberty of not racking my brain to come up with a new story. 😉 It is a new prompt though.

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

ROAD KINGS

            Arthur mopped his forehead with his sleeve while holding his bicycle’s handlebar with his opposite hand. He tried to keep up with his buddy who had been blessed with longer legs.

            “Wait up, Bill!”

            The other boy grinned over his shoulder.  “Pedal faster, slowpoke. The fish ain’t gonna wait all day, ya know.”

            Once they reached the river, the boys laid their poles beside their bicycles and raced to the bank.

            Relishing the cool water, Arthur sighed. “Pedaling’s hard work. Someone oughta build a bike with a motor.”  

            “Who knows, Mr. Davidson?” Bill Harley splashed and sputtered. “Maybe someone will.”

William S. Harley
Arthur Davidson
William S. Harley and Arthur Davidson circa 1914


(L-R) My Road King, Jan Fields with Arthur’s great nephew, “Willie G” Davidson and his biker babe.

13 August 2021

Published August 11, 2021 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT© Ted Strutz

Genre: Histrionic Fiction
Word Count: 100

PEACE BY PIECE

“Whatcha doin’ sis?”

“If you must know, I’m working a five-hundred-piece jigsaw puzzle. There.” Mindy snapped a corner in place. “That completes the border. Wanna help?”

Mike donned his baseball mitt. “Nah. Looks like work to me. Why would anyone waste their time like that?”

“Glad you asked. British cartographer James Spilsbury invented the dissected map in 1762 as an educational tool for the Royals’ children.”

“Uh, sis…?”

“Fast forward to 1933. Die-cast puzzles became all the rage. Cheap entertainment to—”

“Yoo-hoo?”

Mindy huffed. “What?”  

“I’m not a history expert like you, but I’m pretty sure that’s John Spilsbury.”

A bit more history of the jigsaw puzzle.

Weekend Writing Prompt – Oasis

Published August 1, 2021 by rochellewisoff

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in Sammi’s Comment Section.

I’ve been MIA re the Weekend Writing Prompt for the past couple of weeks. Between art shows, extreme heat, it’s been an insane roller coaster ride.

ON THE ALTAR

The promising manuscript

Hailed by beta readers

As my opus

Has been spurned by the major and minor leagues.

Dreams laid aside

For the moment

I sequester in my oasis

With watercolors and an antique photograph

Comforted by my grandmothers.

The photo was taken around the end of the 19th century in Eastern Europe. I used the photo as a model for my first novel’s book cover. Now I’m painting the “real thing.” The ladies are my grandmother Nettie and great grandmother Edith.

30 July 2021

Published July 28, 2021 by rochellewisoff
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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT© Roger Bultot

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

WITZ KRIEG

Allan sucked in his lower lip. Did Mom really say, “Your father and I are getting a divorce. Which of us do you want to live with?”

“Rose, the boy’s only eight,” said Dad.

Looking from one parent to the other, sensing no affection from either, Allen blurted out, “I want to live with Grandma and Grandpa Sherman. They love me.”

            In the midst of his warped and disjointed world, being shuffled from house to house and school to school, Allan Sherman found comfort in food, writing and humor.

            In 1962 his writing and humor made him an overweight success.

***

Allan Sherman’s bright star fizzled after President Kennedy’s assassination. In 1973 his poor life choices caught up with him and he passed away ten days shy of his forty-ninth birthday.

Allan Sherman has been called Weird Al Yankovic’s “Founding Faddah.” Reportedly, President John F. Kennedy was a fan of Mr. Sherman’s parody songs. To know a little more about the man under the beanie CLICK HERE.

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