Productivity article: 7 Productivity Tips I Really Use (Because They Really Work) from productivity expert Laura Vanderkam.
Writing contest: IWSG is holding its annual anthology contest! Short stories in the mystery/crime/thriller genre are due November 1st. Complete info (theme, submission instructions) is available at the IWSG website.
Writing articles: 6 Tips for Writing Fiction Based on True Events by Lorie Ann Grover and Write What You Know: Bringing Personal Experience Into Your Writing by TJ Cooke. (Both of these articles tie to the IWSG Blog Hop's monthly theme, below.)
IWSG Blog Hop
This month’s question is:
I thought about my experiences with my kids and times when I lied to them. There weren’t very many. I didn’t think sneaking candy from their Halloween stash counted. But then I remembered one big lie that I told.
My daughter once won a goldfish at our local carnival, a black one with bulgy eyes that she named Bubbles. She had Bubbles for over a year during elementary school, but the day before we were supposed to leave on a family vacation, I found Bubbles floating upside down. Now she was really attached to this fish, and I didn’t want to put a damper on our trip by breaking the news that day. When she found the empty gold fish bowl, I explained that the pet store would be taking care of her fish while we were away. The lie went smoothly and then I had another devious-mom idea.
I could replace the fish with a new bubble-eyed goldfish and we’d never even have to tell her!
I called pet stores when we got back until I found a black one, and then I brought it home. There was one problem. My daughter observed in the first ten seconds that this Bubbles was noticeably smaller than the original. “Look at Bubbles,” she said, and I thought for sure I was caught. “He must have missed us. He sure wasn’t eating enough while we were gone.”
I got away with the deception and Bubbles #2 lived a long, happy fish life.
Back to Black Flowers, White Lies. I needed the mom to tell a significant lie. One thing that Ella loves is her cat, Oscar, because Oscar is an important link to her father, who passed away right before she was born. When Oscar dies, Mom adopts a replacement, Oscar the second, without telling Ella the truth.
Unlike me, Ella’s mom gets caught and that’s a major betrayal in trust. It’s a traumatic incident in the story and it sets up the possibility that her mother is deceiving her about other things, like the true cause of her father’s death. This triggers a series of important consequences.
That's one example of how I fictionalized a personal experience. And I did eventually tell my daughter the truth about Bubbles, in case you were wondering. :)
Three Musketeers are one of mine.