TikTok (Mad Monday)

Well I have to admit [again] I haven’t been very productive as a writer lately; well not in a creative capacity.

I could blame it on the move after selling our fishing shack in Port Lavaca.

I can blame it on the new pups our daughter gave us.

I do blame it on a lot of things, heck the heat here in Texas by itself is an acceptable excuse [and I have lots of excuses] but the truth is…

in my spare time …

I’ve been TikTok’ing.

I know!!! Oh the shock!! The shame!!

I stay up late nearly every blasted night gobbling up this stuff like a big man eating biscuits and gravy.

Some of you know my TikTok account has been deleted more than once but I keep going back.

Hardheaded?? Opinionated? Determined?

All of the above.

But this time I am curbing my enthusiasm.

This time The Real Janna Hill has learned a lesson or two.

So hopefully TikTok won’t put me in time out or evict me again; after all my demeanor is milder now – not so anti ______ – not so confrontational – not so spicy.

Yeah I’m more like a lovely bowl of covert cold oatmeal – with an agenda nothing but optimism.

HaPpY Tuesday y’all.

😉

TikTok.

What’s New? (Tuesday’s Tell All)

What’s new?

Is nothing and a lot an appropriate answer?

Well it will have to suffice.

Let me first assure you I am not in a funk nor am I suffering from writer’s block.

On the contrary, potential stories abound!! I say potential because none have made it past my imagination.

In the garden, the grocery store, in front of the television or at a restaurant….

The list goes on forever.

So this morning as I was rocking and sipping my coffee (without spilling a drop), I asked myself,

Self, why haven’t you written a damn thing ??? No new books, not even a short story… Not so much as a blog post since April, and by the way you failed miserably at supporting NPM.

I pondered the question while I kept rocking and sipping, listening to the birds, watching the butterflies in the Mimosa tree and waiting for a response.

Finally self answered. Well, (in no chronological order) let’s see...

You got older and slower so multi-tasking got a little harder.

Not nearly enough candles.

You had a birthday and Mother’s Day that went on for weeks-because you have some awesome ass kids.

You had Covid twice…

Your oldest brother died and it is still a painful and fresh wound

You focused on family

Remember a large portion of last year was consumed when the home had to be gutted and restored due to the flood after the freeze. And the fishing shack had to have all of the pipes replaced due to the same freeze.

The economy has put a strain on your finances so you’ve had to seriously reconstruct your retirement- and even put the fishing shack up for sale.

You chose to spend a significant amount of time mentoring and advocating for others because you know how it can be…

You spend a lot of time “working” at the pond and in the yard and gardens. But honestly you “meander” as much as you work.

Your dog died and you got a new kitten….

After listening to self for a minute, I said Oookay, and I didn’t feel too bad.

But then the selfish self had to wonder… am I still relevant? Not that I base my self worth on my writing but… you know.

So I typed my name and search-engined myself.

Great. At least I still appear in the www sphere.

But I found a piece of me in a place I had not heard of.

Fnac. F what?

Est-ce que tu parles français

Lord no. But I have been known to fake it.

So, in a nutshell that is what’s up. Or down.

If you don’t hear much from me it is safe to assume I am probably wandering in the woods or on the beach or working on a story even if it is in my head.

Stay well. Be happy.

XoXo

In the Storm (April is National Poetry Month)

The Storm

(#NPM )

In the Storm

I reach for you…

With every crack of thunder 

I hear you laugh…

Your smile is every bolt of lightning.

The drops of rain, you touching me,

with unsalted tears…

No more pain; no more regret.

I raise my arms, 

as a child beckoning to be held

and it pours.

My grief is washed away by

stinging pellets of a spring rain

Leaving behind a clean slate

with only memories of the most mundane,

most cherished moments of my life.

Available at your favorite retailer.

Credits:

I created the cover from a photograph I had taken.

The heading image (The Storm) was created from a compilation of images I found at Pixabay. (Thank you Pixabay contributors).

The poem, In the Storm was taken from this twisted book of poems. And… guess what?

For a limited time my partnering experiment with Smashwords lets the reader decide what they will pay. Yep! You decide. Check it out.

And don’t forget to follow my podcast

Just keeping it real. 😘

Read an eBook Week #Tbt

Ah I vaguely recall my start as an independent writer; it almost seems like a lifetime ago.

I can’t even remember how I found [the oddly named] Smashwords, but I am glad we connected. Mark Coker’s publishing platform really simplified my life.

And then Draft2Digital with Books2Read came along with their pretty little layouts and boom I had a new crush. And a new distributor.

But I never left Smashwords.

By the way, it is true Smashwords and Draft2Digital are merging and I think that’s a good thing.

I’m not sure if Smashword’s support of the annual Read an eBook will continue in the years to come, but it is going on right now through March 12th. I, of course, am participating. Several of my books are available free or at a drastically reduced price. Just scroll through and check it out.

I believe The Perpetual Series was the first, or one of the first books I published with Smashwords; that was in 2013. Can you believe that?

I recall making the cover from a photograph I had taken of a flower blooming in the yard. Sadly, that flower never returned.

… that flower and so many other things.

Sigh

Happy Thursday Y’all. XoXo

All Day Twos-day (Tuesday’s Tell All)

Hey, you know what would be great on this Tuesday – the second day of the second month in the year 2022?

Two dozen free tacos delivered to my door.

Or

Two million dollars deposited into my account.

I would eat the tacos and share the dollars.

But I have neither so…

I guess I’ll eat a double-decker dried out bologna sandwich that tastes like dusty cardboard and give you …. drum roll 🥁

Two (+2+2+2+2+) stories (that’s More) for the price of one.

And a few of my favorite twos.

Happy Tuesday/Twos-day Y’all.

A Little More Time

Hi y’all 🙋🏼‍♀️

My apologies for not blogging more but I have seriously been busy. I’m talking BiZZy!

We are just getting the house back to normal after February’s winter storm, Uri. I’m not sure why it’s (unofficially) referred to as Uri? 🧐

I did a web search and unless I overlooked a reasonable definition-I found nothing that applied to the ice storm. Feel free to educate me.

Anywho we are getting back to normal. Haller-lu-ya!!

[doing the happy dance]

So before I get busy this morning getting the yard and pond back in shape I will leave you with a #TBT.

A Little More Time was written in 1980 something, originally published in Pose Prose & Poems in 1998 and republished in the 2017 poetic memoir called Getting Me Back

A Little More Time

There’s an eagle out there soaring And my best friend is out whoring

Turning tricks of any kind

Doing anything to make a dime God forgive her for the crime

All she needs is a little more time.

On the roof three stories high

A junky cries and begs to die

Ain’t had a fix in several days Swears he can’t go on this way

Across the street a church bell chimes

Grant us please a little more time.

An old man sick and dying

Alone with no one crying

He grieves for all the pain he’s caused

For all the people that he’s lost

Outside the window painted mimes All rushing for a little more time

A woman labors down the hall

Her anguish echoes through the wall

But soon a laughter takes its place When she looks upon the baby’s face

For a moment all is sublime

As we are given a little more time

Never out of Season (Throw Back Thursday)

Dissing or Discussing Poetry

First published Feb 1, 2018 JANNA HILL

We are still months away from NPM and poetry discussions are abuzz. I love it!

I’m not even upset that one “genre” is dissing the other – I am just happy poetry is being discussed.

I clicked on a link/interview that was shared with a member of the Horror Writer’s Association and then BOOM I was knee deep in reading, searching and lurking a dozen other sites.

I [honestly] never considered a genre when writing poetry and probably couldn’t categorize if my life depended on it. But [speaking of dissing] I’ll share Thoughts on Writing from Getting Me Back.

Except from Getting Me Back (The Voices Within)

Thoughts on Writing  (The Requirements of an Author)

Desire: A congenital need to tell the story.

Determination: It is not enough to walk a couple of blocks or run five miles on a treadmill, come prepared to hike the Himalayas and explore the abyss.

An exoskeleton: A thick skin will not suffice — no indeed. Colleagues and critics are apt in the sadistic art of shaving and burning the thickest of flesh; their tireless wheel of pumice leaving the toughest callouses raw and bleeding. They will thin your skin; get beneath it and prove your vulnerabilities. Like a flesh eating bacteria they will consume you — kill you if you let them.

A poker face: Never let them see you sweat.

Gratitude: Because no one owes you anything!

Grace: For the rise and the inevitable fall.

Pills and booze and smoke: Because it is a hard and hateful world and you are not a god-damned ant.