Most of these stories, poems, and non-fiction pieces were the result of prompts given by my freewriting group.
Every day a new prompt appeared in my email and we were to write something on that subject.
F2F - An Internet romance.. Comment from reader: "Beautiful... I take my hat off. I wish I had written it... You are a natural at this...What a wonderful and exciting story. I couldn't wait to get to the end...!"
Cat Crazy - A short story about a woman who is losing it -- or has the world gone mad..Comment from reader: "Wow ...well you had me transfixed to the very end .... Very well written...powerful stuff!"
The Survivor - A story of a cat in the real world...Comment from reader: "Oh wow!! I could see, hear and smell this story. It was amazing! Thank you! ...Amazing story.... written so well... it was like I was in the shoes (paws) of the 'Survivor'
Family Secret - Cameron Brogue didn't know if it was the secret that made his family so strange - or whether the secret was the result of some sinister streak that ran through the bloodline. No one of his generation even knew the secret, but it was there and it was undeniably evil...Comment from reader: "I was drooling with anticipation for the end of the story."
The Flute Player - The only way Shakti could express his love for the maiden Trishna was by playing his flute..Comment from reader: "I hope everyone appreciates the perfect placement of these perfect words."
Chocolate Kisses - A poignant short story about a woman's relationship with her grandmother...Comment from reader: *sniffles* I really enjoyed that, of course now I'm crying again."
Rings and Keys - A fictional short story about a woman who wakes up with no memory of who or where she is...Comment from reader: "Alice, that story is refreshing and lovely. Thank you. I actually had chills running through me by the end of it. You sure have a gift."
WTC Drop-out - " Paul McNally sat on a motel bed and watched the fire and smoke coming from the building where he had worked. ..Comment from reader: "You did a great job developing the motives in these characters."
The Duck Updates - A true story written by me as the events unfolded a few years ago...Comment from reader "Thank you so much for this amazing and intriguing story, I have thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it. Sadly, now the time has come to put the book down and that strange emptiness comes on that says, "I wish there was more". God bless you. - ... "BRAVO!!!!! This ducktale was the best story I had read in a long while."
Choices - A story about depression and the choices we make in life...Comment from reader: "Every word rings true. So many leave haunted lives, and you have captured it perfectly; Believable story all the way, in every way"
Throw Away Kittens - The making of a "Cat Lady" Comment from reader: "This is excellent."
The Wallet - A sweet story about a junk man...Comment from reader: "I love your short stories, particularly this one."
Crossroads Cabin - Janie and Bruce had always come there when they had a decision to make...Comment from reader: "I like this Alice, and think it's so true to human nature."
South Bridge - He would be mad, but he's have to understand, wouldn't he?...Comment from reader: "beautiful and satisfying. A heroine after my own heart."
Twelfth Street Terrors - Mischief wasn't the Terrors main pursuit; competition was...Comment from reader: "Wonderful story. It reads like a true story and has a "Stand By Me" kind of feel to it"
It Might Have Been - Andrew had been the only boy she had ever been with before she married Phillip.... Comment from reader: "Thanks for a terrific read."
Dear Elliot "It is admittedly bizarre, but you of all people know me to be an intelligent and reasonable man.... Comment from reader: "I had a huge amount of fun reading this. Very convincing and well written."
The Reunion - A story about a wayward seminary student and the virgin of his epiphany ...Comment from reader: "This was good, Alice. You took me right in to Shawn's life and even surprised me at the end."
The Tourist Trap - Don't tell Cooper that you can't find anything good at a tourist trap...Comment from reader: "I loved the story, even if it was too short."
Confession - It could happen!...Comment from reader: "This story spoke volumes in very few words. Really really powerful and dynamic!."
Jammed - "Women drivers," Trevor said. He was going to be late for sure, thanks to those stupid females....Comment from reader: "I loved this, Alice. This is a great flash fiction piece."
Perfection- The world may be going to ruin but Rachel would never let it happen to her. Comment from reader: "This should be published world wide in bold print and caps!"
Man on the Mountain- A story about an unlikely friendship. Comment from reader: "Wow, neat story, Alice. I liked the Bradley character, and the lesson you present -- and without preaching -- that takes skill."
A Shot in the Dark - "Don't move or I'll shoot," we heard the young robber say....Comment from reader: "(clap) (clap) (clap) Didn't see it coming...well done."
Contact- Yardley was a hard-nosed scientist, but when you work in the area of astronomy, the lunatic fringe is never far away. Comment from reader: "Oh, what a grand story."
Dead End Road- Is was more than simple curiosity when Serena heard the sound of a car on the loose gravel. It could be Darrell coming back. Comment from reader: "Wow."
Escape- Laine had nearly cried when Abe read the vows he wrote for the ceremony. Then she had to go and spoil everything by suggesting an addition to them. Comment from reader: "You had me on the edge of my seat wondering if he would or wouldn't."
The Grape Lady- We never thought much about what Sadie Mullins did; she was just a cranky old lady who stood between us and the sweetest grapes we ever tasted. Comment from reader: "I like the voice you use. This is a tight, well-written little story with a sweet ending."
The Ides of March - There was no forgetting the number the psychic had seen in Scott's future...Comment from reader: "I found myself reading as fast as I could to find out what happens."
Exit - Trapped in rush-hour grid lock was the only time Jeanie was free...Comment from reader: "Excellent character description in the portrayal of their married life."
Awake - "He's waking up," Harold heard someone say in an excited voice....Comment from reader: "Excellent tension."
A Different Perspective - The retelling of a familiar story seen through different eyes.....Comment from reader: "You provided a great ending with some terrific lines."
Like the ribbons of a rainbow- Beth had things to do that could only be attended to in solitude. Comment from reader: "I am amazed at what you can do with a simple prompt."
Bay Memories - With the summer people gone the beach became a different place, but Christina continued to come.....Comment from reader: "Poignant piece, Alice. the twist at the end gives the piece a nice tang."
Second Chances- Karina lay quietly in bed and listened to a woman she didn't know cry into her pillow.. Comment from reader: "This is a great story. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was tight -- you really packed a lot of characterization into such a short story."
Bad Penny - Nobody is trying to mess with your head, Janie. It's just a Penny."...Comment from reader: "Very cool and kinda spooky -- poignant, too."
Secretary's Day- All she had to do was hold out ten more days and she would be free of the worst boss she'd ever had. .....Comment from reader: "Another perfect ending."
The Accolade - Percy didn't care what became of his paintings once he was paid. He was well compensated for his disinterest.
Home - She poured herself a cup of coffee and set back down again across the table from him. "Why, Weston?" she said, still refusing to look him in the eyes.
Angel - "Maybe he is some kind of angel," Mike said when I told him about the guy dressed in white. "I mean, you weren't killed, were you? Maybe it wasn't just luck -- maybe he was protecting you."
The Scar - Crystal studied the ugly scar that snaked across her face as she looked at her reflection in the bathroom mirror. It was a big decision she had to make.
Taxi - "To the airport," I said to the dark-skinned driver as he finally opened the door to get behind the wheel. "And step on it -- I'm running behind."
Switchedl - I met Louise Rosefield on my seventeenth birthday, and in a way, I guess it was like being born all over again.
Prehistoric Passage - Marda sat on the dirt floor of her shelter and ground seeds between the milling rocks
STORIES FOR THE YOUNG
Mina of Medicine Park - An illustrated childrens' story of a gosling that strayed... Comment from reader: "This is our new favorite bedtime story."
Jack-O-Lantern - Pipet first heard about it in early July when she was still wearing her yellow blossom dress. Word came down the pumpkin vine that they were not all destined for the cannery...Comment from reader: "Wonderful story!."
A Home for Annie- A true story, as told to me by Annie. Comment from reader: "Good story... I like the ending!"
Jorlie - An illustrated childrens' story of a bunny looking for her future...Comment from reader: "I was so visually over-whelmed for the first few pages, I was "into" the artwork and missing the written story.....I finally got so I could do both when I realized it was your art, your story and I was overwhelmed again. Then I thought "Egads! this is on MY computer!". Wonderful talent, Alice. Thanks for sharing....I'm duly impressed. Bravo!"
Twiga- A legend of how Twiga, the giraffe, found his niche...Comment from reader: "Wonderful just wonderful !"
For Better Things
On Loss and Peace - How can one have peace in the face of loss? Because I have struggled with the question personally, the answers I offer are not merely theoretical. Comments from Reader: "What a powerful statement." "I have been greatly encouraged by this post."
The Hair Cut - About two weeks after my son's death, the doorbell rang and Frank was at our door, as he had been so many times during my son's life. This time he was asking me if I would cut his hair. Comment from Reader: "very meaningful ~ really. It sounds like a real story and not fiction" (It is not fiction)
The Usual Suspects -- When you hear that someone has manic depression or schizophrenia, do you immediately wonder what his childhood must have been like to cause such a serious disorder? Comment from reader: " this was an absolutely wonderful piece."
Why I am a Blogger -- Since I've been doing it almost daily since December of 2000, I must have some compelling reasons. Comment from a reader: "Once again I am simply pleased with your clarity"
What my mentally ill loved one taught me - An article about living with a mentally ill person in the family. Comment from reader "Bravo. Well put on all counts....."Thanks for putting into words what I had been living for the last five years."
Prejudice - This article explores the question of whether it is possible to ever completely eliminate prejudice -- and how we can work towards this goal.
The Taste of Childhood - a tribute to my mother, the maker of family traditions.Comment from reader: "Oh Alice, that was a wonderful post!....What fun to read!"
Encounter with a Predator - a true account of an attempted carjacking. Comment from reader: "The way you related the events made me not realize that the way you related the events was so masterfully done.!"
I am a Case Manager - about helping a mentally ill loved one deal with the mental health care system and more.Comment from reader: "Amen and Amen! You have hit the nail on the head."
A Portrait of Helen - about a death, well done. Comment from reader: "You have said it all. It brought tears to my eyes."
A Simple Strategy to Combat Stigma - something any person can do.Comments from reader: "This was a very powerful post...", "Brilliant!," "So beautifully written and sooo true!," "How eloquently you have stated this Alice," "An excellent piece of writing."
A Classic- Driving a stick-shift: a humorous memory. Comment from reader: "ROFL! men & their priorities. What a terrific story."
On Wishes and Reality- some thoughts. Comment from reader: "This is, without a doubt, one of the most honest bits of truth I've ever read."
A Tale of Two Katys- A fictional story that is all too true. Comment from reader: "An amazingly powerful story, Alice. One that makes you think about our priorities in this society."
Artistic Snobbery - Have you ever noticed that the more people are into a subject, the narrower their scope of appreciation usually becomes?. Comment from reader: "Indeed, an insightful post..SO TRUE and yet I haven't looked at it quite like that."
Changing Seasons - I love the changing of the seasons. Each season has its own special allure. Let me count the ways. Comment from reader: "I've said it before and I'll say it again--when I grow up Alice, I want to be just like you."
On Marriage - After over 40 years together. Comment from reader: "Thanks for sharing your story and your wisdom Alice."
What's Best for the Children- Every time I see a news story about a custody battle and a child being taken from the only caregiver he's known I wonder if society is creating another time bomb..Comment from reader: "you gave me so much insight into a disorder that I didn't know existed."
Plagiarism - As long as creative people create, there will be those who think that anything they find is theirs to use any way they .Comment from reader: "That's excellent. Can I say I wrote it."