Moxie Monday: Do It Afraid

Kick start your week with a lil' moxie!
[Photo: Pantheon - Rome, Italy]

Moxie Monday: Finish

Kick start your week with a lil' moxie!

Fiction Friday: [Waking in NYC]

I fell asleep cradled in a New York lullaby.
The steady pulse of passing traffic.
The blaring tenor of honked horns.
The biting falsetto of a siren’s wail.

The city’s rhythms worm their way into my dreams.
Fireworks of inspiration ignite all around me.
Their vibrant colors rain down, dropping
hopes and dreams
at my feet.

I am jolted awake by a New York symphony.
The shuffling hum of commuters.
The shrieks of school-bound children.
The crescendo of a new day filled with possibility.

Moxie Monday: Do Something Great

Kick start your week with a little moxie!

Fiction Friday: [The Porcelain Predicament]

[I came across this article in the New York Times about how they're rolling out 'One-Sentence Stories' on Apple watches. Full disclosure: I didn't read the entire article. In fact, I barely got through the first few sentences. One, I'm not an Apple person. And two , I quickly lost interest when I couldn't tell the difference between these 'One-Sentence Stories' and their regular headlines. "So what's your point?" the readers asked. Well it's this: the actual headline made me think about containing an entire story in one sentence. This isn't a new concept. Plus, I've been a fan of Smith Magazine's Six-Word Memoirs for a while now. I suppose this was all a long winded way to explain why today's Fiction Friday is way shorter than this lead up! Enjoy!]


The weight of the divorce didn't truly hit me until I reached over and discovered the empty toilet paper roll.

Fiction Friday: [The Splintering of a Wooden Heart]

Some would say it was a dark and stormy night. Unoriginal jerk-offs like Todd Winters, that is. He was the type who slid other’s words off his tongue with a cockiness that made the well-read shake their heads and the unenlightened gape all moon-eyed at his wisdom.

Rain pelted the car relentlessly. The windshield wipers screeched in protest as they struggled to keep up. The occasional flash of lightning was a welcomed sight, helping to light an additional few inches in front of the headlights.

My tender knuckles threatened to burst through my skin as my fingers strangled the steering wheel. My purpled jaw pulsed over the grinding of teeth, the taste of salt and copper on my tongue. Vision blurred from the fog of seething anger and an undercurrent of pain and loss.

The deeper I drove into the darkness, the more in sync the weather grew with my mood. Neither of which I would describe as “dark and stormy”. The more I grumbled, the harder the rain seemed to fall. Lightning scratched across the sky every time I relived the moment when had I opened the door. Tessa scrambling to cover herself—with the sheets that I paid for—sent thunder booming right through my chest.

Tonight added way more than insult to the injury. More than salt to the wound. Tonight skinned me alive. So many layers torn away and impossible to piece back together. Things would never be the same. They couldn’t be.

The phone buzzed on the seat next to me again. No need to look. I knew it was my wife. And I knew that no combination of words could make this better. None existed that could heal my broken heart.


Two hours later I realized how foolish I’d been, running away from my own home. Pulling into the driveway, I took a moment to collect myself. The living room curtain pulled back and my wife peeked out. After twenty years of marriage, I could see, even through sheets of rain, that she was relieved I was back. She greeted me at the door, her eyes slick and red.

“Sorry I left,” I said, wrapping her up in my arms.

After a moment, she led me up the stairs and past the flaking plaster where I had punched the wall. We paused outside the bedroom door where a wooden heart, painted with the innocence of pink and purple flowers, hung like a lie. Staring at it only reignited my urge to run.

“I…I can’t do this, Julie.”

My wife studied me carefully. A million emotions passed behind her eyes.

“She’s our daughter, Paul. And at seventeen, she’d not our baby anymore. I’m sure she’s just as traumatized as we are.”

Julie took a deep breath and knocked on the door, swinging it open before getting a response. Tessa sat on the bed, her face pink with tears. In her arms, with one of his ears hanging limply from over a decade of bringing her comfort, was Mr. Bear Bear. And for a moment, all I could see was my sweet little girl.

Fiction Friday: Galloway House Pt. 5

[Welcome to Part 5 of Galloway House. If you have missed any of the previous installments you can find them here: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4. And as always...thanks for reading!]

A deep ebony silk crept its way through the thick, gray clouds. It slipped in like evening turning to night, but it was too early for stars to twinkle in the sky. The occasional lightning strike highlighted the waves and curves of stubborn clouds and with canceled plans and early dinners, it also highlighted the streets rendered empty below.

With each curious whisper slipped from assuming lips, the darkness dug its way deeper through the village. Then it wove its way into every resident of Townsley. The weight of it bore down on them thick and sluggish until, all at once, everyone in the village slipped into a cavernous sleep.

All but two.

For Kate Winstead and Joseph Strunk it was time to get to work.

Fiction Friday: Galloway House Pt. 4

[Welcome to Part 4 of Galloway House. If you have missed any of the previous installments you can find them here: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3. And as always...thanks for reading!]


As Joseph Strunk sat down for a meal with his family, he imagined it was considerably more subdued than other dinner tables around Townsley. The arrival of the stranger would no doubt dominate every conversation. Theories would be discussed. Assumptions would be made. And thanks to the lack of facts and evidence, it was safe to assume that fear would grow and spread before night’s end.

Joseph chewed thoughtfully on leftover chicken and remembered the looks of wonder and awe on the other villager’s faces as the storm had rolled in. The hissing sounds of their whispered concerns whipping by on the growing winds. And then, how they had all fallen silent—momentarily stunned he supposed—as their widened eyes drew like magnets to the unfamiliar car as it rolled into town. He had watched as the shock and confusion morphed its way into curiosity.

“Who is that?” Ben Waller had said.

And although he was the only one within earshot of the question, Joseph hadn’t dared to assume it was directed toward him. Ben was Townsley’s only lawyer. In a town where everything had its place, there was certainly no slot that would involve a conversation between a lawyer and a garbage man. Joseph wandered off before the conversation continued, but he was sure it was filled with misinformation and speculation.

What he really knew was that he had just witnessed the seeds of fear being planted. A fear that would not bloom in his household. Neither Joseph nor his wife, Clara, were afraid and their children were much too young to care about the village’s goings on.

No matter how historic.

Watching his children’s chubby cheeks bob and squish as they ate their dinner, he considered their future. The Strunk family had lived in Townsley for almost as long as the village existed, but have never at any point been affluent members of the community. At least not under the definition of what seemed to matter these days.  Theirs was a wealth whose currency was knowledge. Secrets passed down from generation to generation. Ones that involved the truth behind why Galloway house stood abandoned and shrouded in mystery for so long. And more importantly, what it meant now that an heir to the Galloway legacy had returned. 

[Read Part 5 here]