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Sue Spitulnik

Flash Fiction and personal thoughts

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NationalDayOf

Taking Stock

This past Saturday I went to an all day writing conference hosted by a local organization called Writers and Books, a non-profit that promotes literary art. I got to chat with some former teachers, spent time with a past fellow student and learned a few things. There were four different sessions going at the same time so you could pick the discussion that  would be of most use to your own situation. I sat in with the agents and learned they get between 25 and 30 query letters a day. That means yours has to be not only good but exceptional to be noticed. In the publishers forum I heard that the first paragraph of the manuscript has to be a truly awesome hook to get the person wanting more. I came away from the day with the conclusion that there are a lot of writers out there; some are pretty good, fewer are really good and even fewer get noticed. (Sort of like in the music business.) I didn’t hang around to pitch my manuscript to an agent because I have now accepted it needs more work than I am willing to put into it. I can still brag I wrote a good novel that my friends like, but it will probably never get published unless I do it myself.  Continue reading “Taking Stock”

Happy Birthday to Our Army

Formed from amateur troops of volunteer soldiers defending colonies against British tyranny, the oldest military force in the United States began before the U.S. formerly existed. Their forces consisted of mostly inexperienced militiamen commanded by independent colonial armies. According to battlefields.org, there were never more than 48,000 Continental soldiers at one time. Today, the United States Army consists of over one million active duty service members and an additional 800,000 National Guard and Reserves members. The enduring history of the U.S. Army means they have been integral to many of the United State’s military, peace-keeping and humanitarian efforts.  Continue reading “Happy Birthday to Our Army”

It’s National Chocolate Ice Cream Day. According to the National Day of Calendar, vanilla ice cream is sold more than chocolate. I’ll have to think about that. It seems when we go for ice cream, there are more chocolate cones in view than vanilla, especially when it is soft ice cream, or custard. But if you think about the fact that pie à la mode usually uses vanilla and sundaes are often made with vanilla, then I guess the calendar information must be right. Really, what difference does it make in the long run. Continue reading

20 x 20 Vision

You know you are getting older when your son sits at the dinner table and admits it’s time he got glasses because the package labels he has to read working for UPS have become blurry. He’s 45. That’s about the age I got my glasses also. Aging isn’t for sissies.  Continue reading “20 x 20 Vision”

Share Freely

What can you give any other human being at a moments notice that won’t cost you a thing? It’s not a trick question. The simple answer is a smile. It has been proven it takes fewer muscles to smile than to frown. Science also tells us that smiling has a direct link to the brain and can reduce stress. That’s pretty powerful. Continue reading “Share Freely”

Celebrate Creativity

Other than nature, everything within sight originated with a creative thought. Let that sink in a minute. I love creativity. If I’m not writing, I’m sewing, or cooking. Sometimes I even weed my flowerbeds to create the look I want instead of having the look the weeds treat me to. I enjoy how some of these days fall right where I need them to so I can share something I have been thinking about. Hence the following: Continue reading “Celebrate Creativity”

I’ll Claim Alan

It’s brother’s day. I’m not sure why they picked the picture above. I would have picked a bunch of young people sitting around a picnic table so everyone could identify with it. I envy all of you that have a brother because I didn’t. Sisters are fine, but you can’t go to them and ask how a male thinks. I claimed my friend Mimi’s brother, Alan, as my own. I used to stay overnight at their house and Alan and I would have talks. When I got stressed in school, it was him who I sought out because he knew what to say to unruffle my feathers. When I had questions about other guys, I went to Alan. He would always take time for me. Continue reading “I’ll Claim Alan”

Deck of 52

I learned to play cards at an early age. The little kid games of Fish and Olde Maid come to mind. They were fun and you needed a second child or an adult to play with you. Lessons in numbers, winning and losing and sharing were learned. People interacted. Then as I got a little older or was home alone I learned to play solitaire. I can remember three forms I played hour after hour, before the invent of electronic gadgets. I even played it while talking on the phone. Continue reading “Deck of 52”

Note to Self

The picture for National Memo Day shows us sticky notes, but memorandums come in all forms these days; texts, notes and e-mails. I don’t think phone calls count as the idea behind a memo is it is written down. I use memos constantly, but they are for myself. I have a grocery list, a to-do list and index cards with ideas for stories to write. When you get my age it’s necessary or too many things get forgotten. I also still keep a hand written calendar of appointments so I know where I am supposed to be on a given day. I’m told my phone can tell me that now, but I like to see the whole month at a glance. Continue reading “Note to Self”

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