Post up @ Almost an Author~Diversity and Sensitivity Readers

I have a new post up at Almost an Author.

Hop on over and take a peek. Tell me what you think.

Click here to go the the Almost an Author post.

LSUS Exhibit Art and Writing Collaboration

 

My flash fiction piece, One of the Team, was paired with art in a collaboration with The Shreveport Art Club for an exhibition. The display will be open to the public for viewing in the LSUS University Center Gallery in Shreveport until February 28th.

The painting is by Joan Cole.

 

One of the Team

by Donna Jo Stone

 

His sweaty hands grasp the bat. The band of his cap itches. He ignores it and concentrates on the ball.

He swings.

Whack.

It’s a hit!

His eyes widen as he tracks the ball’s arc. The bat slides from his grip, the gentle landing thump lost in the rush filling his ears with each beat of his red-blooded heart.

Run to first base.

He hears nothing, sees nothing but the white triangle. No one tags him. Should he stop? His feet keep running and the rest of him follows.

Pound, pound, pound.

A cloud of fine red dirt rises up to baptize his virgin white cross-trainers. Dust flies. So does he.

Safe!

At home plate he leans over, hands on knees, panting.

All at once, the volume comes back on. The yelling is not happy.

“Wrong way!” a boy shouts. “You went the wrong way!”

It’s hard to tell which teammate he is. They all wear red shirts. The boy’s mouth and eyebrows are mad.

Coach comes near, saying something.

“Look at me.”

He tries to make eye contact, but the angry face pushes him away. He looks hard at Coach’s middle.

“Look,” Coach says.

Look?

“First base is that way.” Coach points. “You should know that by now.”

The team clusters on the sideline, distancing themselves from the loser.

Game over.

In his room, he sits on the floor. There is a file box in his mind where he keeps all the facts. These are today’s facts.

Fact #1 He went the wrong way.

Fact #2 First base is to the right.

Fact #3 He should know this.

When the mother finds him, he is rhythmically banging his head against the wall, repeating a mantra.

Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

Beside him, on the floor, lays a dirty red baseball cap.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Post @ Almost an Author: Goals

How did you do with your goals this year?

I think I will call 2019 my  “experience” year. I made many mistakes, but I learned form them! In fact, I am considering blogging a series titled “What I learned”.

I plan to begin querying again in January with a much revised manuscript, and also with a couple of new manuscripts. Wish me luck.

I posted about goal setting over at Almost an Author today. Click here to read.

I’m leaving my free Christmas story up for a bit longer. If you’d like to read or listen to an audio of me reading it, hop on over to my main site @ donnajostone.com.

#PITMAD is coming up!

The next PITMAD is on Dec 5th. It’s almost time to tweet your pitch. Are you ready?

I wrote a blog post about what I’ve learned  about twitter parties over at Almost an Author. I talk about getting hearts from an agent on my short list and from an established publisher, how to craft a tweet, and links to other twitter parties.

Click to read How to Succeed with PITMAD.

For the PITMAD and Pitchwars schedule, visit the Pitchwars site here. 

Have any PITMAD tips to share? Comment below or at Almost an Author.

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For early access to a reading of Beauty Shop Christmas by yours truly, sign up for my newsletter here. It’s a humorous story I hope leaves you with a smile.

Christmas Short Story

A Christmas Short Story

For something a little different, I wrote a humorous short story told from the point of view of my YA character’s aunt. Then I decided to read it aloud and make an audio recording!

This was fun, because I got to do the voices of the characters. I kept unintentionally adding to the story and changing it as I read. I didn’t mean to. I don’t think I have a future as a voice actor, unless there is a market for a southern flavored storyteller who takes liberties with prose.

I was shocked when we were successful enough to call it a wrap in only three takes.

I plan to put Beauty Shop Christmas up Thanksgiving weekend, but if you’d like an early sneak peek, sign up for my newsletter here for a preview.

 

 

Fifty Word Fiction Challenge

This month is, as you probably know, Inktober. When I saw an inktober writing challenge, I was in!

I am using the prompts by @hannahrobinson  and sticking with a fifty word limit, although there are many ways to respond to the prompts.

Here are a few of my attempts. At first, I simply responded to the prompt and didn’t try to make it fiction. IT took me a couple of tries, but I liked what I ended up with.

The prompt “swing” made me think of my main character who has a twin on the autism spectrum, because when they were young they would spin in their backyard swing.

“Snow” made me think of a Christmas scene in my Asperger romance/coming of age story.

And “dragon” made Aunt Linda, a character who always has your back.

 

Have you tried your hand at fifty word fiction (or nonfiction)?