Amanda Thrasher, Article, author, books, Cereal Authors, Life, Literary, Sharing, Social media, writer's life, YA

BACK TO SCHOOL – BULLIES DON’T CARE

Back to school is right around the corner; some kids have already started the new school year, while others make final preparations. Usually, it’s an exciting time, but some kids dread the thought of going back to the place they feel the most insecure or where they’re an easy target for others entertainment. Bullying comes in all forms such as verbal, physical, isolation, and bullies themselves are often hard to identify. Sometimes they’re the stranger in the shadows, others, they’re the most popular kids on campus, and sometimes they hide behind being kind and respectful. But these days any kid given the right circumstances such as being in a group egged on by their peers, hiding behind a device, can feel empowered, and  become hateful or bolder in their word choices than they normally would to others.

Social media has played a huge role over the years desensitizing kids to bullying acts that occur both physical and verbal. Behavior once considered unacceptable has slipped into the realm of socially acceptable, not only in teenage circles but often in households all across the world. Watering down meanness and turning it into humor is unsettling to me as a parent.

Outrageous name-calling or verbal onslaughts for the sake of the latest trend or lingo, can often turn conversations into subtle attacks that can cause harm and inflict damage in less than ten words. Especially if one has no idea how fragile the other person on the receiving end might be. Words and rumors causing reputations to be ruined, individuals isolated, and unfortunately, too many times we’re witnessing the unthinkable when tweens, teens, and sometimes even adults take their lives without a solid punch ever being swung. Weapon of choice these days? Phones mostly, but bullies aren’t limited to those, tablets, and the ol’ desk top still works as well. 

Teen language and lingo is so foreign to me, it changes daily, and I have two teens still at home. It often sounds like slang bombardments with laughter attached. “I hate you.” “Everyone hates you.” “No one likes you.” “Drink bleach.” “Kill my self.” And I hate this one, “Kill yourself.” “Do it!”

If questioned the standard answer is the same, “I was just kidding,” or “It’s a joke.” Alternatively, “I didn’t mean it!” But unfortunately, fragile teens will take those type of words literally to heart. It wears on them and breaks them down. One has no idea of the fragile state of mind of young teens, many who are legally medicated without others knowledge.

According to the CDC, suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people, resulting in about 4,400 deaths per year. However, for every successful suicide, there are at least 100 suicide attempts. Unfortunately, many of those are related to bullying. Cyberbullying is experienced on some level by many kids today. Kids are killing themselves because the bullying is torturing them and affecting them to such a degree they’d rather be dead. How disturbing is that! Again, no one can tell how the fragile state of mind is of the child on the receiving end. Disturbing.

I was inspired to write a book that addresses bullying and teens, The Greenlee Project, it’s a MCA® winner for YA and General Fiction and has been named among the best in family-friendly media, products, and services by the Mom’s Choice Awards®. It also won for YA and General Fiction at NTBF. The Greenlee Project demonstrates the effect of using social media negatively. How it affects the victim, family, friends, communities, and even the bully or bullies that are sending the damaging texts. So-called good kids, unexpectedly, become the so-called bad kids. How? Easy, one touch of a button; send!

During my research for The Greenlee Project, I observed teens on different campuses, sat at football games and in cafeterias with the teens. Visited libraries, and interviewed teens, teachers, parents, and counselors. I have teens of my own, and my house is often full of kids. But I can honestly say I was shocked about some of the things I learned during my research.

We all know that bullying has existed for years, but no one will argue today it’s a different world. Social media can put the victim on a public platform delivering the maximum amount of damage within seconds. It spreads like wildfire. 

We can’t take away nor do I suggest taking away devices. But be vigilant. Watch your teens. Bullies pick on kids of all sizes and economic status. They do not discriminate and most victims, once tweens or teens, do not openly share their feeling of being abused by other kids. If you’re looking for a book that will open up a conversation about this topic, girls, and boys, read The Greenlee Project with your teen. I gurarentee emotions will brought to the surface and a discussion will start. There are even discussion questions in the back of the book to assist with the topic. Don’t wait. Bullies come in all shapes and sizes.

Greenlee Lynn Granger is about to find out the meaning of technology used as a malicious tool: a normal teen one day, and ruined the next. Who knew a boy’s affections could turn her life into such turmoil? Becoming a designated project, a joke in front of the whole school, turns Greenlee’s life upside down. What she does next is shocking. An emotional glimpse into the reality of cyber bullying : cruel betrayal of such magnitude devastates Greenlee. Greenlee knows her choices will determine the future of her abusers. Her relationship with her family and friends strained, she’s forced to make mature decisions. Cyber bullying affects the victims and everyone who surrounds them. What a waste: what path will Greenlee, her persecutor, and family take?
We have all seen the devastating and lasting effects upon children, teens, their families, and the community as a whole, due to bullying and cyber bullying. This book sheds light on the impact that the bullying act has not only on the victim but also on the families of the victim and the bully, teachers, communities, friends and the person acting as the bully. Greenlee’s strength, courage and determination to stand up and right this grievous wrong is encouraging and inspiring. Greenlee could be any girl, anywhere, in America. And Clay Monning, a star athlete, could be any parent’s great kid. Peer pressure, bad decisions with horrific consequences, changes everything for both of them. Good kids, turned bad. How? Social media.

Reviewed by Stephen Fisher for Readers’ Favorite

The Greenlee Project by Amanda thrasher is a brilliantly written story about a selected few students who are considered to be the B.P. (Beautiful People) who truly believe that it is they who run the high school that they attend in today’s electronic society. The story begins with Greenlee Granger, a fourteen-year-old girl who is going through a huge social dilemma at school. After her father drops her off at school, instead of going inside, she decides to take a long ride on a public bus. Time doesn’t seem to exist until she finally gets let off, God knows where, in a town 20 miles away. She finally gets back to reality and calls her father to pick her up.

From here the story unfolds as you get to know her circle of friends and social status, as well as the cute new boy that just transferred to her school. Clay joins the football team because he was the star quarterback where he came from. Now he has to prove himself and make the team. When it comes time for him to be initiated, he is allowed to decide the ritual, and sets out to make it a memorable one, so he proposes “The Greenlee Project.” The only people that can know about the initiation are his new team mates. That is until queen bee, Laurel, sets her sights on Clay as well.

Amanda Thrasher does a superb job of describing the intense situations that arise when the elite crowd’s attention is threatened by those that they feel are beneath them. Ms. Thrasher also delivers the pressures that the B.P. experience to maintain their status quo. All of her characters are well developed and, by the end of this powerful story, Amanda adds some unexpected surprises that really put a twist in the outcome. The Greenlee Project is an eye opening, powerfully written book that I highly recommend for teenagers, faculty, and parents. Well done!

Author Website Amanda M Thrasher

The Greenlee Project

Book Trailer

Life, Rachel Rueben, writer's life, Writing Process

When You’re The Killer!: A Revelation About Writer’s Block

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Image via Pixabay

 

In the last year I’ve been suffering from writers block and I couldn’t understand why?  I mean I could see the story clearly but I had trouble coming up with the right words.  Every scene was a struggle, which led to me abandoning the story (Miss Mary Mack) several times.  Then one day I was having a discussion with a friend who was having trouble dealing with her teenage daughter when she came to the realization that their problems were rooted in the fact that they were both so similar.  Now if that isn’t the ultimate form of irony then I don’t know what is?  However as my writer’s block continued, I read several articles on why authors write themselves into their work and reached a shocking conclusion: I was Miss Mary!!!

No, I don’t go around murdering people, (although those thoughts do pop up in my head from time to time) I took pieces of my life and sprinkled them throughout the story.  Miss Mary was in fact physically modeled after my first grade principal Miss Murray, who wore dark clothing that covered her body from head to toe.  She also was a disciplinarian which made her a terrifying figure in the first grade.  However she wasn’t evil, just tough.

I also had a fourth grade bus driver by the name of Miss Johnson who was sometimes called, Miss MaryShe didn’t really like driving a bus and insisted we all ride in silence.  Weird, huh?

Then there’s me, I’m not too fond of children, I mean don’t hate them, I just prefer not to be around them.  P.S. I come from a long line of women who were reluctant mothers.  So I was able to draw on that when it came time to summon the callousness required for a villain.  It was also then I realized that I was trying to make sense of my past.  And guess what?  Miss Mary is the perfect vehicle for that, I can run loose and do as much damage without really affecting anyone in the real world.  The big plus is that I can kill and not wind up in prison.  I guess this is what George R.R. Martin feels like every time he sits down at his computer.  LOL!

Okay, I’m Getting To The Point!

When your work hits too close to home, it can be difficult to navigate through the story.  If you have a real unresolved conflict in your own life, it may be near impossible to resolve the one in your story because you can’t imagine your characters finding peace.  You know, the apology that never came, the relationship that failed, or the never ending dysfunction of a family, can really damage your perception and almost make you blind to the obvious.  I know, I had this problem and the only way to get through it was to think my way logically through it.  I had to know what readers or in this case society expected from this book.  I had to dole out punishment and correct injustices.  That doesn’t always happen in real life.  I also had to step back and let my characters go their own way.  Once I did that, their world unfolded and things began making sense again.

A Final Thought

As with most things in life, writing isn’t about you.  Sure you can create worlds and characters but once you do so, they start to develop their own reality.  Try as you may, you are not of their world and vice versa.  Only a piece of you will live on in your work, but the rest of you gets to move on and make peace with the reality that is meant to be.

Bio: Rachel Rueben is author of YA, supernatural as well as romance books.  Her work can be found her on the Cereal Authors blog as well as Wattpad.  She is also a blogger at Writing By The Seat Of My Pants where she discusses self-publishing and rarely refers to herself in the third person.  😉

Amanda Thrasher, Article, author, books, Cereal Authors, Fiction, Life, Literary, Musings, publishing, Ramblings, review, Sharing, Social media, Uncategorized, writer's life

A Time To Write

I wear dual hats, writer, author, and publisher. It’s not always easy, but I’ve learned and continue to acquire new knowledge in this ever-changing industry of publishing. When I write, I can’t wear my ‘work’ hat, it ruins creativity. And when I work, I can’t write. It’s not unusual for hundreds of manuscripts to end up in my inbox. If I choose to send them out for review, that will be the deciding factor if we take them on. I see a lot of pieces, and we have talented award-winning authors on our label, but I can honestly say few pieces are written as beautifully as 50 HOURS by Loree Lough, and that is the truth.

50 HOURS

FRANCO ALLESSI is a broken, lonely man who wants nothing more than to outrun the ghosts of his past. For years, he tries to numb the pain of his wife’s death with cheap beer and whiskey. When he’s convicted of drunk driving, the judge revokes his license for six months and orders him to serve fifty hours of community service. Franco chooses Savannah Falls Hospice for his community service, for no reason other than it’s walking distance from his dilapidated house trailer.

On his first day on the job, he meets AUBREY BREWER, a woman whose time on earth is quickly ticking to a stop. Their unusual connection teaches powerful, life-changing lessons about friendship, acceptance, and the importance of appreciating that precious treasure called life.

Now, the endorsements (we have too many to list) for this book speak for themselves; I get it, it deserves every one of them. Catherine Lanigan, Author of Romancing the Stone, The Jewel of the Nile, and over forty-five novels and non-fiction, said, “I defy anyone to start the beautifully written 50 Hours and to put it down or to go on with their own lives as they had before reading about the remarkable, emotional and insightful relationship between dying Aubrey and the lost Franco. As a recent widow myself, the strength, humor and respect between the main characters shot close to home, but delivered so much hope and love that even as I march forward to tomorrow, my perspective has altered—all to the positive. In her last days in this life, Aubrey finally lives out the dreams she’s been too browbeaten by her mother and ex-husband to accomplish. She can only do this with help from Franco, who risks imprisonment to see her wish come true. Emerson said, “To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded.” Aubrey and Franco succeeded. Believe me when I say, THIS IS THE KIND OF BOOK THAT WINS PULITZER PRIZES. “

The main character, Aubrey, is ill, that silent killer, cancer. Cancer destroys or touches too many families in the world, let alone our country. My mom died of cancer, too young, but once diagnosed she didn’t last long. When I read the book 50 HOURS it was inevitable, I was reminded of what she went through and what we went through as a family. But I’ve always wondered what she was thinking, secretly, when she wasn’t trying to put our minds at ease.

Aubrey, a character of strength, hope, determination and sharp wit, dares you to take her journey with her and see and feel what she’s feeling through her eyes. But not in an emotional roller-coaster draining sort of way. She is the perfect definition of courage. Fearless at times, vulnerable at others, but always positive and selfless. She helps Franco, the recovering alcoholic serving time in the form of community service, who inadvertently helps her. Together, they’re the perfect team. Knowing what I know, about cancer, having experienced it with my family, it was touching to read it through Aubrey’s point of view. To take her walk with her, the walk. Knowing the diagnosis and how Aubrey really felt at times, was insightful. I think my mom, like many sufferers, think of those around them most. I was able to ‘see and feel’ things through Aubrey’s eyes.

It is undeniable that authors often bond with their characters while creating them; after all, it takes time and energy to develop fictional beings that a mass audience can relate to in the novels. When they tackle subjects that affect millions of people daily, be it illness, death, addiction, poverty, etc., it’s not unusual for authors to conduct extensive research to ensure the accuracy of the details that they write. Back stories, depth, facts, characteristics, and ultimately the feelings that bounce of the paper and touch people, emotions, must be believable. However, it is shocking when life unexpectantly imitates art. I was stunned, but can’t even begin to imagine what Loree must have felt, when I found out that the she, the author, was diagnosed with the illness that her character had while writing the novel.

The research that she was conducting to develop her character, Loree was suddenly applying to herself. Aubrey, the character terminally ill, and now the author, Loree Lough, found themselves in the same position. Healthy when commissioned to write; diagnosed while half-way through the novel. She was living out Aubrey’s nightmare. Surely it was impossible to divide the two emotionally at times. How did that happen and why? I can’t even begin to fathom it.

Multiple Myeloma, incurable bone/marrow cancer. I can barely say the words, and I couldn’t even begin to imagine completing the novel as beautifully as she did, knowing what all she had endured. Talk about a time to write. How did she do it?! A time to write. Writing from within; seamlessly, and beautifully as one with Aubrey at times.

It is no wonder that Aubrey leaps off the pages and into your heart. Loree’s heart and soul can be found in between the lines. This novel will touch people not just because of the terminal illness, but because of the life-lessons that Aubrey teaches Franco and Franco inadvertently teaches Aubrey. Inspiring hope in the midst of despair, reminding us of what is truly important in life. I honestly believe that this novel was meant to be written and meant to be written by Loree and shared. The screenplay had been stashed for years. Pulled out. Re-filed. Why now?

Loree Lough’s 50 HOURS is a poignant story that reminds us how precious life is, especially if our world has been turned upside down by cancer. But don’t be fooled: This novel will leave readers feeling hopeful, no matter how hard the dreaded disease has hit them. ~Jack Watts, award-winning author of 16 books, including “The Moon” series and Creating Trump Nation.

Loree has graciously discussed her treatments, some experimental, some traditional, and is willing to visit openly about her diagnosis, treatment, and the development of Aubrey (character), and this novel. She can be contacted via social media, her website or right here: contact@progressiverisingphoenix.com

A portion of Loree’s royalties from her 100’s of best-selling novels, go toward cancer research and other charitable organizations.

 

Amanda M. Thrasher

50 HOURS 

Loree Lough

 

Cereal Authors, Fantasy, Life, Musings, Nonfiction, Ramblings, review, Sharing, Uncategorized, writer's life

Just Breathe a Moment

Having just wrapped up a very long serial “short story”, I have a moment to step back and decide what to blog on next here at Cereal Authors. Usually the topics involve writing, reading, or the like; however, I have been wanting to touch on something for a long time:  The support and respect of artists.

I’m not here to condemn or remonstrate anyone. But, many artists (writers are included in this as writing is an art) feel undervalued in society as a whole. I speak with many on a near daily basis and the general consensus is that the hours and effort we put into our work is not always valued the same as, say, a factory made item at a store. There is the common meme  of the coffee cup price compared to an ebook price. Which one took longer and was harder to make? Let’s guess.

But, like I said, this blog is not to place blame on the consumer. No. I want to take this opportunity to celebrate the artists! Specifically, the ones I know, and who have few outlets for advertising or voice.

Aside from the wonderful writers here (all talented and hard working), I would like to draw some attention to other craftsmen in my midst. Please visit their pages, sites, or stores and give them a like or two or a share, even if you can’t afford to give them an income. 🙂

First, we have Myriad Fae Creations.

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If you appreciate hand sculpted trinkets, costume pieces, whimsical soaps, faeries and the like, please visit her website, Facebook page, and Ebay offerings.  The creator is Kate Elizabeth Davis, a multi-media artist. She has been constructing fantastic works of her imagination since she was a child. I know because I grew up with her! Yes, she is my sister and she credits me as part of Myriad Fae because of my sketched cards, but I’m not playing favorites. Her work speaks for itself (and when the work happens to be a puppet made for a stage production, then it actually CAN speak for itself).

Second, I share with you Einini Glassworks.

https://scontent-mia1-2.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/553203_327447853980448_1117475337_n.jpg?oh=ead011529a67d4e5aed420c1eaf52d32&oe=59153E59Just breathe elinni blue

A wife and husband team who create beauty and elegance in glass and stone. Brian Ellis is the stained glass artist and Heidi Ellis is the mosaic artist. Together, they have a variety to offer. Stained glass items including suncatchers, votive candle holders, and Tiffany reproduction lamps, as well as mosaic glass tile artwork including panels, candleholders, mirrors, tables and picture frames. Check out their items on Facebook, Etsy, or their website.

If you are more into 2D wall hanging art, our third artist is Harriet Duncan.

https://i2.wp.com/www.harrietduncan.com/assets/fine_art/Dicksee_Chick_120dpi.jpghttps://i2.wp.com/www.harrietduncan.com/assets/photography/Colony-Winter-Park.jpgNo automatic alt text available.

She is an award-winning photographer, graphic and fine artist who produces unique photography and fine art, documenting old Florida and other places, near & far. She has a flair for the eccentric and nostalgic. Her art draws on her bohemian roots and blends art deco with a Gauguin aspect for an intoxicating visual brew that one can best enjoy on a beach at sunset. Please explore her world on Facebook or her website.

This is just a sampling of the talent and hard work that can be found out there, waiting and eager to please some interested art appreciator. There are thousands. They create, display, and imagine in the hopes that something they found beautiful can gain a home with someone else that finds it beautiful, too.

Thank you for your time.

 

Amanda Thrasher, Article, books, Cereal Authors, childrens stories, Excerpts, Fiction, Sharing, Uncategorized, writer's life, Writing Process, YA

WRITER’S ALL HAVE A THING, WHAT’S YOURS?

 

What's your 'thing?'
What’s your ‘thing?’

Writer’s All Have A Thing, What’s Yours?

Like most writers, authors, I’ve been writing for years. But when I sit down to write a new piece, though I’ve evolved slightly over the years, my primary process has never changed. It’s kinda like my personal thing, my way of doing it, that kicks off the project and keeps me motivated and excited throughout the entire thing. It’s possible other writers use the same method, I don’t know, but it works for me.

So what is it? It starts with an idea, of course, but ends up with an entire book mapped out in my mind. Naturally, my head is often spinning, don’t get me wrong, I like it that way. This can lead to one sided conversations for those around me. Distractions during activities that I’m involved in, being there in person but not really being there, and never being as involved as I should in group projects since my mind wanders to engage in the story that I’m writing. (Certain this isn’t always easy for those around me, but don’t worry, upon release of the work all returns to normal).

Preferring to have a complete understanding of my entire storyline, the reason things will happen the way that they will, my characters, a lovely twist, and theories on ways that I could pull it all together, my mind is racing all of the time before an actual word is written. Personally, I like to visualize each scene as I write, hoping to recreate in words the things that I see in my mind. If I do this correctly, the words paint a visual picture for my audience.

For me, not all writers, this can be a slow draining process, especially when the topic is a controversial or brutal one such as bullying, cyberbullying or date rape. Each chapter can be a depleting energy experience. And if I’m not mistaken, it’s because authors want their characters to be so life life-like, that it can actually feel as if they’re experiencing some of the things that they’re writing about for their readers.

Trying to compensate for this slow process of mine, I try to write relatively clean. The results, for me, tend to be less time consuming regarding actual clean up of the final manuscript. Since each chapter can be exhausting, mentally, I’ll ensure it’s a decent chapter before moving on. By the time the manuscript is complete and reworks begin, the rewrite process isn’t as bad as dealing with raw work.

I’ve been working on my new YA, BITTER BETRAYAL, since the middle of 2016. It’s almost done; clean up, and then off to the editors (I use two editors, content and copy line). The topic is controversial but incredibly important. Each time I sit down to write the material has flowed, this is a good thing, but the nature of the topic is controversial, important and difficult to discuss. That is the reason I believe it takes me a tad longer to write these pieces. After a few chapters, a mental break is required. It’s the emotional side that’s exhausting. Characters that are so life-like they could go be anyone’s son or daughter, and that’s truly heartbreaking.

I’m excited about the release of my new piece. It’s important to me to get the word out in a delicate manner for young impressionable teens. But it’s imperative that the message is strong, and I hope that the images expressed through words that I’ve written deliver not only the entertainment factor but more importantly the message I’d hoped to share. Below is an excerpt from my new novel. What’s your ‘thing?’

 

UNEDITED EXCERPT: 

BITTER BETRAYAL Copyright © 2017 Amanda M. Thrasher  ISBN – 978-1-946329-18-9 & ISBN 978-1-946329-19-6 Tentative release April 2017.

Chapter 1

Cover For Me

“They say there are two sides to every story and somewhere in the middle lies the truth; there’s no exception to this one. But whose truth will you believe?”

 DTB CU there!

(Don’t text back see you there).

The message flashed across her phone, and that’s all it took. Not even a whole sentence and suddenly all she could think about was getting out of there. Payton hadn’t heard a single word the kid standing in front of the class nervously speaking had said, as her fingers frantically tapped away on her phone. Looking back, what was she thinking?!?!

Payton – Cover for me

            Aubrey- Seriously?

            Payton- Problem?

            Aubrey- Yah

            Payton- Really? J

            Aubrey – Nah

            Payton- K

            Payton – G4I

Aubrey – 182

            Payton – U don’t hate me J Luv u

                  Five, four, three, two, and the bell finally rang. Payton shot out the door. Aubrey, her best friend since 6th grade, took her time and shoved the books she’d left behind in her backpack. Payton’s behavior though frustrating at times wasn’t surprising. She was head crazy about that boy, Reece Townsend, and it helped that Aubrey liked him as well.

With less than ten minutes to freshen up, get across campus to her car and make it to the dam in time to meet Reece, Payton didn’t have time for small talk with anyone. Dodging in and out of kids, she avoided eye contact with as many people as she possibly could. The boy’s football coach, Coach Duncan, was headed her way. His voice, undeniably recognizable, bounced off the walls and echoed through the corridor before he was physically present. When finally in view, she purposely looked at her feet and rushed passed him. No way was she making eye contact with him; questions about her brother and his playing time on the field at college would stall her.

“Whoa girl, where’s the fire?”

Coach grabbed her arm as she tried to rush past him, her whole body swung around forcing her to face him. Arm still in his grasp he shook his head. “Slow it down girl! If only my boys had moved half as fast this morning.”

Managing a slight smile, she pointed toward the bathroom. Coach raised his hands in the air shook them back and forth, stopping her from saying another single word. He wanted no part of what could pop out of that girl’s mouth. She was liable to say something for the shock value alone. He didn’t need to know, want to know, or care to know for that matter. He let her on her way, no questions asked. A healthy spritz of perfume, lip-gloss, duck-lip practice, and Payton climbed into her car.

“What took you so long?” he said.

Payton’s love of her life, well at least to a sixteen, nearly seventeen, year-old love struck teen. One look at his face with that smile and she melted. It was bad enough they attended different schools, but him a senior, narrowing down his college options meant she’d be stuck there without him. The thought of it made her cringe. She obsessed about him leaving on a daily basis, even when he asked her not to, but she couldn’t help it. Not today she told herself pushing the thoughts out of her head. The best part of his day was right then as he watched her walk toward him. He was sitting on the back of his tailgate, swinging his legs back and forth, waiting for her to join him. He tapped the cool metal, her cue to join him. She grinned. So freaking hot! He always looked that way to her, and all she wanted to do was wrap her arms around him and kiss that face of his! Her grin turned into a girlish giggle.

“What’s so funny?” he asked.

“Nothing.”

“Whatever!” A cute smirk crossed his face. “Something.”

She grabbed his face in her hands, laughed out loud, and kissed him before stepping aside to hop up next to him on the tailgate, but Reece playfully pulled her back toward him instead. Standing face-to-face, she brushed his sandy-brown hair to one side revealing his green eyes. She could get lost in them; they were that pretty, at least to her.

“What?” he asked.

“Nothing,” Payton giggled. “You grabbed me, remember?”

“I did. But why are you staring at me like that?”

His breath hit her face. Truth be told all she wanted at that moment was for him to kiss her; really kiss her. Move Payton. Move now; she stepped back and took a deep breath.

“I’m just looking at you, that’s all. You’re kinda cute like that.”

He rolled his eyes. But Payton could tell by the boyish smirk that crossed his face that her comment had pleased him. She loved that look on his face. He looked a few years younger, like a real kid. It was sweet.

“You know I’m supposed to say that kinda stuff,” he said as seriously as he could, but it wasn’t working.

The long cotton skirt she’d chosen to wear that day wrapped around her legs as she swung them back and forth on the tailgate. Sandals, painted toes, and a T-Shirt completed her outfit. Her long dark hair with a delicate headband, complimenting her outfit, finished off her look.

“You look hot. But I know you know that, so I’m not going to tell you!”

He laughed. “Just kidding. You look amazing. Beautiful as usual!”

Payton’s face lit up. She leaned in and kissed him gently on the lips. Funny thing, though, she thought Reece was the most beautiful thing she’d ever seen. They’d actually argued about that statement once. Guys aren’t beautiful, he’d stated. They could be handsome. Good looking, sexy, dope, hot or even cute, but not beautiful! Men were not beautiful. But it didn’t matter what he thought. To Payton he was, and she could look at him all day long.

“Hey, you never did answer my question,” he said.

“What question was that?”

“Why were you late?”

“You idiot!” She nudged him playfully. “I’m not late; you’re early, and for the record, I’m the one who’s usually waiting for you!”

He held her by the elbows, leaned in, and kissed her quickly on the lips. She would have kissed him back, but he’d already pulled away. Just as well, she wouldn’t have wanted to stop, and that wouldn’t have been good since time wasn’t on their side.

UNEDITED EXCERPT:

BITTER BETRAYAL Copyright © 2017 Amanda M. Thrasher

ISBN – 978-1-946329-18-9 & ISBN 978-1-946329-19-6 Tentative release April, 2017.

Amanda M Thrasher

 

History, JD Holiday, writer's life, Writing Process

A Short Look at Typewriter History. NO, Really! In A NutShell.

Enter a caption

In A Nut Shell!

In A Nut Shell!

 

 
 

 A Short Look at

       Typewriter History

       by J.D. Holiday

Another Stoles’ Prototype

              I have always loved history of all types. It’s usually inventions that I take the time to look at.

Sholes’ One Key Prototype

I know, most people find this of no interest. But what can I say, I think if someone takes the time to come up with anything that would make others lives easier, they deserve to be admired. Even if it’s just by me!

             You might not believe this, but there are quite a lot of articles written about the typewriter.

I found some articles that say that it all started in the 1900’s when Christopher Latham Sholes, whose work on the typewriter is undisputed, asked for carbon paper at the Milwaulee Wisconsin Telegraph Company to use with his early gizmo he, Carlos Glidden and Samuel W. Soule would called the ‘typewriting machine’ in 1867.

                                                                                        A Christopher Latham Sholes’s machine

           As with many inventions that we so take for granted; the telegraph, the automobile, and telephones to name three, many people contributed to the invention of the typewriter. And many of these machines were listed as the ‘first typewriter,’ and almost all were slower than handwriting!

          I found that the whole invention really goes back as far as the fourteenth century. But in 1575, Francesco Rampazzetto, an Italian printmaker, invented a machine to impress letters in papers. And in 1714 the first patent was issued by Henry Mill, an English engineer. Many printing or typing machines were patented by inventors throughout the centuries. All those who worked on its invention that leads up to the present day took no less than one hundred prototype and more that 50 inventors worldwide. Amazing! Will we ever know all of these inventors names?

These Italians are among them:

              In 1802, Agostino Fantoni developed a particular typewriter to enable his blind sister to write.

Pellegrino Turri machine

              In 1808, Pellegrino Turri invented a typewriter along with carbon paper to provide the ink for it.

              In 1823, Pietro Conti di Cilavegna invented a different model called the tachigrafo or tachitipo.

              And then in 1829, William Austin Burt patented a machine. This machine used a dial rather than keys called an ‘index typewriter’ so unlike the other keyboard typewriters. He was never to find a buyer and the invention was never produced.

             Charles Thurber developed multiple patents starting in 1843 to aid the blind.

VinegarValentinePoem

The TypewriterMYER c1910-Postcard

            Another Italian inventor, Giuseppe Ravizza created a prototype his called Scribe, a harpsichord machine for writing with keys that the person could see what they were typing in 1855.

In 1861, a Brazilian priest, Francisco João de Azevedo, made his own typewriter using wood and knives.

              In 1865, a Rector from Denmark, Rasmus Malling-Hansen invented his Hansen Writing Ball which was manufactured in 1870 and was the first typewriter sold commercially and still in use up to 1909. Malling-Hansen was consided to be the inventor of the first “electric” typewriter, though the world would not see the REAL “first” electric typewriter which was produced by the Blickensderfer Manufacturing Company, of Stamford, Connecticut, until 1902.

(I had to add this since

 I write books!)

              Two of the men and staunch supporters of the typewriter as well as their own work on it leading to the eventual success of it in the 1880s were James Densmore and George W. N. Yost. They recognized the great result Sholes’s had made back in 1867 and purchased Sholes’s patents for about $12,000. Not a small amount in their day. They were successful in convincing Remington and Sons in New York who made guns, sewing machines and farm aquipment in their factory to manufacture the first typewriters known as the Sholes and Gliden Type-Writer. It was a QWERTYT keyboard and the one we still use today. At the time the Sholes and Gliden Type-Writer cost $125 each.

              I know there are many names I do not name here because to do so, I would be writing, or typewriting a book. A great thanks to all those who continue to image what could be for up until this inventions all writing by writers, authors, novelists, historians, speechwriters etc was written by hand.

© 2016  by J.D. Holiday

If you took the time to read this you might want to read more about the typewriter.

Here are some link for you to visit.

I added for fun. 😀
Amanda Thrasher, Article, books, Cereal Authors, childrens stories, Excerpts, Fantasy, Fiction, Uncategorized, writer's life

The Mischief Series – It’s Special

Most writers have written a piece at some point in their lives that is special to them; I am no different. My piece has become a series, one that I will probably continue to write until my ideas no longer flow anymore. I always think of this piece as my mother’s book since I originally wrote it for her. Growing up in England, she loved the fairies, collected them and told me fairy stories for years. When diagnosed with a terminal illness, I wrote her a fairy story, Mischief in the Mushroom Patch. She never read the book in print but did read the first seven chapters. I told her the ending before she died. She made me promise to finish it and send it in. I had no idea that story would change my course from writer to author or how many people it would touch.

That book, my mother’s book, led to the creation of a character called Pearle. Based on the likeness of real live person I had never met, Jeni, requested by Beverly Hutton, whom I had never met. She had purchased my book Mischief in the Mushroom Patch and took the time to write me an email to tell me that she had enjoyed it. She also made a request, a suggestion, asking if I would consider creating a character with a disability since she thought her daughter would have loved Mischief in the Mushroom Patch. She said her daughter always asked, “Where were the books for me?”

After reading that email, I contacted her back and asked her to give me a minute to think. After a while, I created a beautiful little character by the name of Pearle. Placing her in a chariot, created by the elders, Pearle whizzes around the mushroom patch. However, though she can not walk, she can fly with ease. Pearle will forever remain in the Mischief Series. We have done much work with this series, Beverly Hutton and I. We visited the Shriner Hospital and donated books and made fairy wings with the children. Her daughter had fifty-three surgeries at that hospital; we also spent time with the children at the Texas Lions Camp, Jeni’s favorite. We spent all day with all of the children teaching them about writing and creating stories.

When you create a story, that is special to you, it is inevitable, it will touch others. I love this series. I do! The characters are sweet, loyal and it teaches kids and adults alike how to be kind. Kind is rare these days it seems.

Each book is written to stand alone, so it is not necessary to read them in order. My favorite so far is the third book in the series, Spider Web Scramble,  because it focuses on the characters working together to help Pearle achieve her goals. It won a Gold Mom’s Choice Awards® Recipient in its category and received multiple five-star Readers’ Favorite Reviews. I hope you enjoy this excerpt.

Chapter 3 – Preparation

The mist was thick early the next morning. They were leaving the mushroom patch and meeting at the meadow. From there they’d fly across the tall grass to the forest edge; the final destination was the forest itself. Lilly’s hair, though perfectly combed when she left, was now a matted mess. Pearle, eager to fly, sat patiently in her chariot, waiting for the others to arrive. Free fly days were her favorite; a time when despite her usual confinement to her chariot she was felt uninhibited and free. The hall monitors checked their pocket watches as the fairies breezed past them; it was early, even for fairies with so much energy to burn.

“Pearle, I couldn’t find you this morning,” Lilly giggled. “It was then that I knew you’d already be here.”

Pearle beamed and hovered out of her chair. She flew with ease as her tiny legs dangled below her. Her body felt as light as a feather. Darting in between her friends, giggling as she flew, she hummed her favorite fairy tune. Boris reached above his head and tugged playfully on the hem of her lilac dress. Laughing, she darted away from him and slipped through his fingers. He chuckled. Pearle, having so much fun, was always a joy for everyone to see. Her cheeks were flushed with the crisp cool air and her eyes sparkled as she flew in circles around them.

“Pearle, do slow down. If you continue to fly so fast, you shall tire yourself too early, will you not?” Lilly asked.

Boris gently tugged Lilly’s beautiful curls. “You’re not Mademoiselle,” he said. “Pearle can fly as fast or as high as she wants—after all, it’s our free fly day!”

Lilly’s lips puckered up. She knew Boris was right, but that didn’t stop her from worrying about Pearle. Everyone was protective of little Pearle, including Boris.

Boris lowered himself downward, hovered a perfect two inches off the ground, and nailed his landing perfectly. He was pleased that Lilly had not only noticed­, but also complimented him.

“Well done, Boris. Mademoiselle would be pleased with such a fine hover and landing.”

Jack was waiting for them at the edge of the meadow.

He patted Boris on his back. “What took you so long?” he joked.

“As soon as we get to the forest we’ll find our web, then we should ask permission to scramble.” Jack sounded serious. “Something tells me scrambling as a group and helping Pearle—no offense Pearle—will be harder than just jumping from web to web.”

“None taken, Jack,” Pearle said softly. “You can have my fairy-twists for a fairy month if you like.” She then pulled out a handful of fairy dust and asked, “Did everyone bring dust with them?”

Boris and Jack shook their heads.

“Why?” Boris asked.

“Because I think we’re supposed to gift the spiders if we borrow their webs. Remember, the elders will not have gifted on our behalf this time,” Pearle said.

“That’s right,” Lilly agreed.

Rosie, Ivy, Pearle, and Lilly had all been to the dusting parlor to receive their allotted amount of dust from the dust monitor.

“It is possible we won’t need fairy dust today,” Lilly stated. “But if we do, we’ll share.”

“On the count of three then?” Jack hollered.

“Count of three,” the fairies replied.

“One a-fairy, two a-fairy, three a-fairy, go!”

They flew as fast as they could above the tips of the tall grass, over the meadow, to the other side of the forest. They knew the largest spider clan lived deep there among the large oak trees; their webs shouldn’t be too hard to find. Lilly had envisioned small groupings of webs to practice upon as a group for their first few times. If they could complete a small course, they could practice a larger course later. They still had the power of the dust once the actual race took place. Fairy dust would increase the springiness of the webs. Boris and Jack were already excited about that part. The extra power was rumored to throw fairies so high into the air that they hadn’t come down for hours, though it was just a rumor. It didn’t take long to find a group of webs. Boris and Jack inspected them for holes. They didn’t look too shabby; not brand new, but the webs certainly hadn’t been neglected.

“These are in pretty decent shape,” Jack said, checking them out. He landed on one of them, jumped up and down, and flipped over. Landing on his rear he yelled, “Is anybody there?”

No answer. Jack hollered again.

“Hello. Is anybody there?”

Jack’s voice echoed through the forest, bounced off the trees, and returned to him. He shrugged his shoulders, winked at Lilly, and flew high into the treetops. He didn’t see any signs of a single spider.

“I think it’s safe to say we can use the webs,” he said. “No one’s home.”

Boris clasped his hands and yelled, “If these are your webs, could we please talk to you?” Nothing.

“Lilly, do you think we can jump?” Jack asked.

Lilly thought for a moment. “Since we can’t ask for permission, if we gift the spiders, it should be fine to use the webs.” She stuck her hand in her pocket and pulled out a handful of beautiful sparkling dust. “Dust. We must leave fairy dust. It’s the polite and right thing to do.”

Boris had a worried look on his face. Time spent in the dust factory for wasting fairy dust still on his mind, he had to ask. “What if they’re not in the forest, Lilly? Wouldn’t we be wasting the dust? You know the penalty for wasting fairy dust.”

Lilly shook her head. “Boris, if the spiders aren’t coming out because they’re afraid, we must make it right by offering a gift.” She put her hand on Boris’ shoulder. “If they truly aren’t here, maybe someone else can benefit from the dust. I think Mademoiselle would tell us to leave the gift.” She placed the dust at the bottom of the webs. “We’d like to be able to come back and practice. If we gift the spiders, we’ll be able to do that, so the dust stays!”

The fairies would gift the spiders, then scramble the webs or at least try. Boris and Jack excluded, the fairies placed dust at the foot of the web. They knew how to jump the webs and scramble the course individually. But the challenging part was figuring out how to scramble from web to web with Pearle. That would take lots of practice and they didn’t have much time. Jumping was one thing, but scrambling meant jumping from web to web with no wings, and the actual race would be timed. If they could get Pearle through the course and to the last web, she could fly on her own from there, and at least have a shot to reach her star. But how were they going to make that happen? They were about to figure that out.

Boris jumped onto the web first. No flying allowed, Jack reminded him. He sprung into the air, arms waving and legs flailing. Jack followed. Ivy jumped onto the web next, followed by Rosie. Lilly lowered herself onto the sticky web. Pearle, sitting on the web, was being bounced up and down as the others jumped on the web. There has to be a way to assist Pearle or Mademoiselle wouldn’t have shared such beautiful words with her, thought Lilly. Your physical size, my little one, is not an issue; it’s your strength from within that will determine a win, a strong heart that will set you apart. Lilly asked everyone to stop bouncing for a moment.

“I think I have a plan that just might work,” Lilly announced.

Everyone stopped and waited for Lilly to explain. The gleam in her eyes indicated she’d figured something out. But before she could announce what it was, Boris made an announcement of his own.

“I have an idea,” blurted out Boris.

“What is it, Boris?” Lilly asked, genuinely wondering about his plan.

“We could fairy bomb Pearle. You know, like we do off the lily pads into the brook when we swim. But now we’d bomb Pearle from one web to the next web.” Boris waited to see what everyone, specifically Lilly, would say.

To his surprise, Lilly was smiling.

“Boris, as odd as that sounds, you may be onto something. I like your plan better than mine!” Lilly announced, surprising everyone. “In fact, I think we could fairy bomb Pearle quite nicely from one web to the next web and scramble the whole course if we all work together.” She smiled and added, “Well done, Boris. Nice one!”

Jack chimed in as well. “Don’t forget that on the day of the actual scramble, the webs will be covered in dust. Extra bouncy. Pearle could spring from web to web on her fairy rear.” He pointed to the branches above and at a web located to the left of where they stood. “It just might work. We should try it and see.”

Pearle giggled at the very thought of it. “I’m willing to try.”

“Oh my!” Lilly squealed. “It’s going to work. I just know it. Boris, we have a plan!”

They had a plan all right. A fairy-bombing, web-scrambling, plan!

Copyright © 2016 Amanda M. Thrasher

Amanda M. Thrasher

Spider Web Scramble Mom’s Choice Awards® Gold Recipient

The Mom’s Choice Awards® (MCA) evaluates products and services created for children, families and educators. The program is globally recognized for establishing the benchmark of excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. The organization is based in the United States and has reviewed thousands of entries from more than 55 countries. Around the world, parents, educators, retailers and members of the media look for the MCA mother-and-child Honoring Excellence seal of approval when selecting quality products and services for children and families.

 

Amanda Thrasher, books, Cereal Authors, Excerpts, Fiction, Life, Literary, Uncategorized, writer's life, YA

BITTER BETRAYAL

Unedited Text – Excerpt BITTER BETRAYAL Copyright © 2016 Amanda M. Thrasher release Copyright © 2017 Amanda M. Thrasher 

Chapter 1

Cover For Me

DTB CU there!

(Don’t text back see you there).

The message flashed across her phone and that’s all it took. Not even a whole sentence and suddenly all she could think about was getting out of there. Payton hadn’t heard a single word the kid standing in front of the class nervously speaking had said, as her fingers frantically tapped away on her phone. Looking back, what was she thinking?!?!

Payton: Cover for me

            Aubrey: Seriously?

            Payton: Problem?

            Aubrey: Yah

            Payton: Really?

            Aubrey: Nah

            Payton: K

            Payton: G4I (Go for it)

Aubrey: 182 (single space underneath put: I hate you)

            Payton: U don’t hate me J Luv u 

                  Five, four, three, two, and the bell finally rang. Payton shot out the door. Aubrey, her best friend since 6th grade, took her time and shoved the books she’d left behind into her backpack. Payton’s behavior though frustrating at times wasn’t surprising. She was head crazy about that boy, Reece Townsend, and it helped that Aubrey liked him too.

With less than ten minutes to freshen up, get across campus to her car and make it to the dam in time to meet Reece, Payton didn’t have time for small talk with anyone. Dodging in and out of kids she avoided eye contact with as many people as she possibly could. The boy’s football coach, Coach Duncan, was headed her way. His voice, undeniably recognizable, bounced off the walls and echoed through the corridor before he was physically present. When finally in view, she purposely looked at her feet and rushed passed him. No way was she making eye contact with him; questions about her brother and his playing time on the field at college would stall her.

“Whoa girl, where’s the fire?”

Coach grabbed her arm as she tried to rush past him, her whole body swung around forcing her to face him. Arm still in his grasp he shook his head. “Slow it down girl! If only my boys had moved half as fast this morning.”

Managing a slight smile she pointed toward the bathroom. He raised his hands in the air shook them back and forth, stopping her from saying another single word. He wanted no part of what could pop out of that girl’s mouth. She was liable to say something for the shock value alone. He didn’t need to know, want to know, or care to know for that matter. He let her on her way, no questions asked. A healthy spritz of perfume, lip-gloss, duck-lip practice, and Payton climbed into her car.

“What took you so long?” he said.

Payton’s love of her life…well at least to a sixteen year-old love struck teen. One look at his face with that smile, and she melted. It was bad enough they attended different schools, but him a senior, narrowing down his college options meant she’d be stuck there without him. The thought of it made her cringe. She obsessed about him leaving on a daily basis, even when he asked her not to, but she couldn’t help it. Not today she told herself pushing the thoughts out of her head. The best part of his day was right then as he watched her walk toward him. He was sitting on the back of his tailgate, swinging his legs back and forth, waiting patiently for her to join him. He tapped the cool metal, her cue to join him. She grinned. So freaking hot! He always looked that way to her, and all she wanted to do was wrap her arms around him and kiss that face of his! Her grin turned into a girlish giggle.

“What’s so funny?” he asked.

“Nothing.”

“Whatever!” A cute smirk crossed his face. “Something.”

She grabbed his face in her hands, laughed out loud, and kissed him before stepping aside to hop up next to him on the tailgate, but Reece playfully pulled her back toward him instead. Standing face-to-face she brushed his sandy-brown hair to one side revealing his green eyes. She could get lost in them; they were that pretty, at least to her.

“What?” he asked.

“Nothing,” Payton giggled. “You grabbed me, remember?”

“I did. But why are you staring at me like that?”

His breath hit her face. Truth be told all she wanted in that moment was for him to kiss her; really kiss her. Move Payton. Move now, she told herself stepping back and taking a deep breath herself.

“I’m just looking at you, that’s all. You’re kinda cute like that.”

He rolled his eyes. But Payton could tell by the boyish smirk that crossed his face that her comment had pleased him. She loved that look on his face. He looked a few years younger, like a real kid. It was sweet.

“You know I’m supposed to say that kinda stuff,” he said as seriously as he could but it wasn’t working.

The long cotton skirt she’d chosen to wear that day wrapped around her legs as she swung them bag and forth on the tailgate. Sandals, painted toes, and a T-Shirt completed her outfit. Her long dark hair with a delicate headband, complimenting her outfit, finished off her look.

“You look hot. But I know you know that, so I’m not going to tell you!”

He laughed. “Just kidding. You look amazing. Beautiful as usual!”

Payton’s face lit up. She leaned in and kissed him gently on the lips. Funny thing though, she thought Reece was the most beautiful thing she’d ever seen. They’d actually argued about that statement once. Guys aren’t beautiful, he’d stated. They could be handsome. Good looking, sexy, dope, hot or even cute, but not beautiful! Men were not beautiful. But it didn’t matter what he thought. To Payton he was and she could look at him all day long.

“Hey, you never did answer my question,” he said.

“What question was that?”

“Why were you late?”

“You idiot!” She nudged him playfully. “I’m not late; you’re early and for the record I’m the one who’s usually waiting for you!”

He held her by the elbows, leaned in, and kissed her quickly on the lips. She would have kissed him back but he’d already pulled away. Just as well, she wouldn’t have wanted to stop and that wouldn’t have been good since time wasn’t on their side.

“Aubrey covering for you?” he asked as he rummaged through a sack that he had sitting next to him.

“Yep. Advisory. Shouldn’t be too hard.”

She was always late when they met for lunch, but there was no way she was going to tell him that, he’d cut their time short for sure. He held out his hand and she hopped up next to him on the tailgate. So thoughtful! Payton had never struggled with confidence before Reece, but he unknowingly made her question herself, but she didn’t need to, worry. She was popular, a good student, considered hot, and well liked.

“Whole or half?” he asked holding a sandwich in his hand.

“Half,” she answered knowing she couldn’t eat in front of him anyway.

The breeze was cool but not cold, a perfect day for a picnic on the back of her boyfriend’s truck. Why did they have to go back to school?

Reece’s phone buzzed. She didn’t glance at it, but she wanted to. It buzzed again. He didn’t read the text, but did check the time. Pointing at the sandwich she hadn’t touched he nudged her to take a bite. She didn’t think he’d noticed she hadn’t eaten, but he had.

“We’re going to be late if you don’t hurry up. Eat.”

She leaned into his arm. It felt good just being close to him. The feeling of closeness made her want to kiss him, and she had no idea if he knew that. So stupid, irritating, that she felt this way every time they were together. Not to mention when it was time to head back to school it made leaving incredibly difficult. Payton missed him before they’d left. Surely this was normal for a teen her, wasn’t it? She looked at her sandwich just as Reece took a bite out of his.

“I’m not really hungry.” She hesitated for a second, opened up her mouth to speak but closed it again.

“What is it?” he asked, knowing she wanted to say something.

The words unexpectedly flew out of her mouth, surprising even her.

“We could cut class.”

Reece’s eyes darted toward her.

“Stay here and hang out a bit longer,” she added.

Payton Phillips suggesting we cut class. Sweet! He wasn’t sure if he was shocked, but was definitely impressed that it was her idea. They’d been together over a year, but she’d never once insinuated they should cut class before. Grinning, he shook his head.

“I can’t. I’ve got a test this afternoon. No pass, no play, remember?”

Even though she knew he was right, her heart sank.

“But I can’t believe you just suggested that, something I might think of, might, but I didn’t think you would.” Reese took a drink of his coke. “Um. OK then. I think you kinda got yourself in a bind. I might just hold you to that sometime!”

She didn’t care. Hell, advisory or Reece? Seriously…was that a real question? Worth the trouble she if she got caught? Hell yeah! Reece jumped off the tailgate of his white dodge and stood in front of her. One arm wrapped around her neck, one around her waist, he kissed her, real kiss, and she kissed him back. An incoming text interrupted them. Flushed cheeks, heart racing, though Payton wouldn’t have agreed in that moment, it was for the best the text came in. They may not have left that spot for a while longer. Not to mention Aubrey couldn’t cover for that long if she was late. After all, Aubrey wasn’t a miracle worker. Covering for lunch and half of sixth period, advisory, no problem but more than that red flags. Reece’s phone buzzed again, this time he answered the text.

Reece: K CUS – DTB (OK See you soon. Don’t text back)

“Hey, can I ask you a question?”

Reece shrugged his shoulders. “Sure.”

“How come when you text sometimes, me, and it apparently others.” Her raised eyebrows indicated she’d read his response.

“Yeah,” he said hesitantly.

“You don’t let me text you back?”

He looked puzzled.

“What are you talking about?”

“What’s with the DTB. Don’t text back?” She asked.

Reece shoved his phone into his back pocket and packed up the trash. Payton waited for his response.

“What? Seriously?” He laughed. “That’s your question.”

She nodded. “Yeah. That’s it,” she said moving her foot in tiny circles around and around in the dirt. “Like, if you text me first, why can’t I text you a response back?”

He grabbed his phone and pointed to her texts. Now she wished she hadn’t asked such a stupid question. If felt as if she was invading his privacy or something, but a simple explanation didn’t seem too much to ask a second a go.

“Really you want to know why?” He didn’t wait for a response. “It’s simple. Sometimes I’m in class. Sometimes I can’t talk for various reasons. Like right now, I’m here with you and dip-wad Walker is looking for me. Or sometimes I’m driving, at practice, whatever.”

He pulled his phone back out of his pocket and checked the time. “But right now I’ve gotta go, and so do you.”

DTB. A way to communicate without communicating; cute wasn’t it? Was it? Why was she suddenly questioning it?

#YA #TLA17booth2926 #teens #peerpressure #highschool #socialsituations

Amanda M. Thrasher

Mom’s Choice Awards® Gold Recipient The Greenlee Project Trailer

Award-winning ‘The Greenlee Project’

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Amanda Thrasher, Article, books, childrens stories, Life, Literary, Nonfiction, Ramblings, Sharing, Uncategorized, writer's life, Writing Process, YA

Shades of pink and aqua- don’t be afraid, go there!

bigstock-Colorful-Abstract-Background-3422108.jpgI have worked with many people over the years that think like this; black and white or this and that. They are often analytical, work strategically and are good at what they do. I often work the same way; strategically and analytically. However, I do find that thinking in shades of pinks, aqua’s or how about’s and what if’s, could this work, if we do’s and why not’s? Modify here, leave that alone and figure it out, are not only productive but fun and exhilarating too. Especially the why not’s? Also, let’s figure it out!

Being told at times that I push the envelope, think outside of the box, and create scenarios that most wouldn’t have thought of, especially with limited tools and in odd situations, by some as if I should find it offensive, while others are wondering how to do the same. For the record, I do not find it offensive mainly because I do not know how to operate any other way.

I manage to work with this type of voluntary mental organization, both in my personal writing style and my business, by thinking of techniques and compartmentalizing the process along the way. Some people cannot compartmentalize a couple of things, let alone many at one time. Particularly in two different fields, business, and creative writing. People tend to become vested too much one way or the other, emotionally, limiting the exploration of various angles or business approach that could ultimately produce different results. Black and white or mediocre gray, pink and yellow, or aqua and teal type thinking, are fundamental explanations of the sort of thought process that I am describing. Different.

I have found over the years, business and writing, never to think as my neighbor would or to ask myself what someone else would do regarding a story line or project. Will my results be as good as others or better? I honestly never know. However, I understand any decision that I make, me, will be my own. So far, results have been promising, productive and often successful. If I make a mistake, I claim it. Own it. Fix it. Learn from it, and most importantly move on.

I have found many people can be busy being busy, but they do not seem to get a lot done. Never confuse activity with achievement. Results will always speak for themselves. Think in different shades, and don’t be afraid to think outside of the box. Push that envelope or have people refer to you as crazy from time to time. Crazy often gets a lot done. Why? Because no one else seems to want to go there; mentally nor physically. However, mark my words, once the results start to roll in, and your peers note achievements and people are paying attention to what you are doing, you will know it is because you dared to think for yourself and take risks that everyone else was afraid to take. You made something happen. Now, what you make happen, you have to decide.

Shades of pink and aqua – don’t be afraid, go there!

Copyright © 2016 Amanda M. Thrasher

Amanda M. Thrasher