Ten O’Clock Scholar – picture prompt


For the next few weeks, I’m stepping away from romance and working on something new, Ten O’Clock Scholar. In this story, Peggy, a mother of two young boys, decides to go back to college and get her Interior Design degree. The only problem with her plan is a reluctant husband. Peggy soon learns what it’s like trying to complete homework assignments, draw plans, and take required home tours while maintaining a home and caring for two little ones – with no support and a lot of opposition from hubby. Will she survive and achieve her dreams? Or will the struggles and arguments undermine her and make her give up? Stay tuned and read along as we find out.

This week we’re writing to a picture prompt. Picture prompt weeks are quick reading, as we’re only allowed a 300 word snippet.

Enjoy this week’s story snippet, then return to Tuesday Tales for more delightful reading.


Textiles, History of Western Architecture, Space Planning, Lighting, Design Studio; the class requirements for an Interior Design major beckoned from the inky pages. Peggy ran her finger down the list, stopping at the classes that appealed to her. She couldn’t wait to get to some of the fun classes. But, she knew that she’d have to start with the preliminary classes first. “Introduction to Interior Design,” she read aloud and groaned. “I want to get to the good stuff.” She spoke aloud as if she weren’t sitting in the living room by herself.

A few of the classes were intimidating. Introduction to Lighting and CAD for Interior Design were two programs she’d love to skip. Unfortunately, they were both subjects she’d need to have knowledge of it she wanted to pursue this career field.

Could she do it? Could she complete the entire program while taking care of the house and her family? She wasn’t entirely sure. It was one thing to have a dream and the desire to follow it. Knowing whether or not she could achieve her dream was something else entirely.

She flipped to the pages tucked in the back of the catalog. One sheet outlined the courses she’d need – forty eight units if she took the required and the recommended classes. Another page had the general education requirements, another eighteen units. Did she want to go for the whole Associates Degree, or just tackle the classes for her certificate and get out of school quicker?

Unable to decide at that moment, she dropped the school catalog down beside her and reached for the Architectural Digest laying on the table next to the sofa. Leafing through the glossy pages, she browsed through the elegant rooms full of polished parquet floors, stunning stained glass windows and ornate stairways.

My Wildest Dream – TT picture prompt

TT_bannerIt’s November, which means National Novel Writing Month, so for Tuesday Tales this month I’m jumping to another WIP, My Wildest Dreams. This tale follows the prequel, A Second Chance, where Jenny survived Sudden Cardiac Arrest and desired to honor her second chance by living an authentic life. She decided she wanted to own her own herb and garden store. Join us as we catch glimpse of her here as she follows her wildest dream.

This week we’re writing to a picture prompt, so the snippets are limited to 300 words. Return to Tuesday Tales here, to read the other snippets from talented writers.


TT_November 2015 prompt“What are we looking for again?” Carla called over her shoulder as she scurried through the golden carpet of fallen leaves.


“Mule…whatever… Just tell me what it looks like.”

“It’s got large silvery, gray fuzzy leaves.” I held out my hands showing the approximate size of a small watermelon. “They’ll be about a mound about a foot or so high, with a tall fuzzy stalk coming out of the center.”

“A stalk?”

“Yeah. A really tall one, almost as tall as you are, or taller.” Which wasn’t saying much as Carla was a bit of thing that barely came to my shoulder. “With clusters of yellow flowers, or flower pods at the top.”

Carla stopped and scanned the woodsy undergrowth around us. “It still has flowers this time of year?”

“Probably not. It’s probably dried seed pods now. They’ll be about pea sized pods in large clusters.”

“Why are we looking for it if there’s no flowers?” My friend looked totally confused now. She wasn’t a plant person and would be the first to admit it. But, being my best friend she was up for any outing I suggested, even if she didn’t understand the whys of our Sunday afternoon wandering.

“The seeds. That’s what I’m after.”

“What are you going to do with seeds?”

“Plant them. Next spring I’ll have my own stock of mullein plants growing.” I pulled a few Ziploc baggies out of my pocket and dangled them in the air.

Carla grabbed for a bag. “The thing I do for you,” she muttered.

“Hey, you should like these plants though.” I paused to catch her attention before I continued. “The Indians lit the dried stalks to use as torches…they used the leaves in cradleboards as diaper material…the smoldering roots eased chest congestion…and teas…”


A Second Chance – TT picture prompt

TT_bannerHere’s another snippet from A Second Chance, the prequel to My Wildest Dreams, the first book in A Growing Wings series.
In A Second Chance, Jenny suffered a sudden cardiac arrest and is grappling with a flurry of thoughts and emotions about it. This scene happens after Jenny eludes a coworker’s invitation to lunch and she escapes to one of her favorite lunchtime locations…the local cemetery.

This week we’re writing to a picture prompt. The scenes will be short, 300 words or less, so it will be quick reading. For more fascinating story snippets from the wonderful authors in the group, return to TUESDAY TALES here.


tt_sept 2015Something about this old, historic cemetery called to me. With hardly more than a handful of headstones, and just as many large rocks signifying a burial, it sat next to a new housing development of towering McMansions, fenced in but otherwise ignored.

I’ve loved visiting cemeteries for years, long before my cardiac arrest, so that’s not the reason. Cemeteries give me peace. Sitting there, trying to commune with lives past, is soothing to me. At one point in time, these people also walked this earth. They too lived and loved. They provided for a family, protected them, clothed them, they were a member of a community.

Maybe. They could also have been a traveler, a man out to see the world, without a place to call home, following the wind and a dream. Now, what’s left to commemorate their life is a headstone with a time-worn name etched in granite or stone. Sometimes only a half-buried rock or pile of rocks marks a place where a body was once buried. Many gravesites sprout trees or shrubs, sprouting from the place a body was once buried; a plant flourishing, taking nourishment from organic matter that the soul no longer requires.

Many people are cremated and have been scattered to the winds, the sea or the earth. No tangible monument marks the site of their final burial. Fifty or a hundred years from now, no one will stumble across a headstone, rock or tree, marking the site of their last earthly presence.

What memory of my life do I want to remain after I leave this cellular body?

What do I want to leave to the future besides a name etched on a granite stone?

A worthy answer eludes me.

Starting Over #4


Today’s snippet is part of a new WIP, tentatively titled ‘Starting Over’.

The story of Victoria and her little shop in Oak Grove Square continues. This week we’re writing to a photo prompt. Only 300 words!

Enjoy – and feel free to leave a comment. Click the link here to go back to the main Tuesday Tales site for more entertaining story snippets.


TT_moon july 2014The wagging tails at the front door almost dispelled her wrath. Almost.

It was when she walked out back with Cody and Cowboy that the brilliant calming light of the full moon fully soothed her. In its place a gentle wave of loneliness washed over her. It didn’t happen often. And when this feeling did drift into her life, it was usually only for a brief time. Generally Victoria was extremely happy with her life. It was full. It was satisfying. She did what she wanted to do, when she wanted to do it. And a life with an occasional moment of feeling alone was certainly better than having someone in your life that cheated on you whenever they got the chance. Or, in the words of the pilot she’d banished long ago, “… only when ‘the magic’ was gone.”

From now on, she was in charge of the magic in her life. She intended on flying solo for the rest of her days. Especially when the world was full of arrogant jerks like that Toby who’d entered Serendipity earlier that day.

Building cookie cutter houses where my cows used to roam. Really! The thought raised her ire once again.

“Come on boys,” she called to the two dogs roaming the back yard. “Let’s eat and go to bed.”

She was tired. That must explain her irritability. A good night’s sleep is what I need.

A good night’s sleep is not what she got. And it wasn’t visions of sugar plums dancing in her head as she tossed and turned. Although, I suppose some girls may consider the blond hunk that infiltrated her dozing thoughts a sugar plum.

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March 2017
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