Saturday, November 30, 2013

Celebrate The Small Things - Winter Holiday Edition

It's celebrate the small things time again!

For those of you who do not know about this blog hop, it was created by VikLit to which we usually add every Friday (I know I am a day late, sorry) a small list of what we are exited and grateful about from the previous week.

This week, I am enjoying a warm day within the midst of coldness. I am glad that it is today, considering that today is Hecate Trivia, a celebration of the Goddess Hecate, whom I honor as a part of my spiritual path. I will be leaving an offering outside once it is dark, and the weather is perfect for that.

Also I am celebrating that I have been working a lot on polishing the two blogs I run as well as the associated social network presence. I got some really good tips from a few other bloggers and articles that I will work through and implement, so that shall be fun.

I am celebrating that I found a few books that I will be reading over the next few days - time permitting. They are all e-books, some non-fiction, others fiction. I will most likely post about them, once I have read some of them. Always fun to read.

So why don't you join us for the "Celebrate The Small Things" blog hop and have a wonderful week!


Friday, November 29, 2013

Zombies Among Us

There are zombies amongst us. I have compiled a list of the types that have been recently discovered:

Ice Zombies
Zombies whom forgot how to care about the plight of other zombies - see Koch Brothers

Stiff Zombies (also known as Stiffs)
Those who can not see other zombie's point of view as being valid. Very inflexible beings.

Overindulgent Zombies
Will eat anything and anyone in their way. They tend to be the most prevelant around the winter holiday season.

Coward Zombies
Those whom hide in the corner, while the herd of zombies in front of them devours everything in their paths. Usually pertains to zombies who think that pretending that the mayhem around is not there, makes it go away.

War Zombies
Used to invade other countries to turn them into their own brand of zombies, so they can be assimilated.

Vampire Zombies
Zombies who will suck the last bit of blood out of anyone, after slowly destroying the brain - also known as Fox News

Revenge - A Friday Flash Horror Story

"You really thought you were going to get away with this? You really thought I wasn't going to be upset?"
She pointed the shotgun at him, and his panicked eyes moved between the nozzle and her face.
"I didn't think...."
"Of course you didn't. You never thought. You never thought about how I would feel when you killed him. Just like you never thought that I would check up on you, be smart enough to uncover all of your secrets and lies. You know what your problem is always has been? You never thought!"
She spit the words into his direction with an deep hatred, that had been bottled up for a long time.
12 years.
12 wasted years.
God, it felt good to finally be able to openly say, what she had wanted to say for so very long.
"Did you think of the children? Did you think of what it would do to them? They loved him! They adored him."
"I thought he was going to hurt me"
"He would have never hurt you, never. He would have never hurt any of us. He was loyal, sweet, and caring. He was better then you. And I should have seen that. Unconditional love, Jerry. He showed unconditional love, something you have never been capable off."

She shot him in the knee before he could finish his sentence. His wail of pain surged through the emptiness of their property, disappearing in the darkness of the forest, that surrounded them.
"No one can hear you, dear, remember? No one cares. Isn't that what you always told us? No one ever loved you as much as the One you just killed."
"Do not speak my name!"

She shot him again, his other knee busting, the torn flesh twisted on the concrete floor of their garage.
His garage.
"Bea, please" he moaned.
"No Jerry, I had enough. I had it with you, the kids had it with you, we all do. You did this to yourself, Jerry. And now it is time for you to leave."

Without waiting for anymore begging wails, she stepped closer toward her tormented husband, and shot him in the face.

Dropping the weapon, she turned quickly and ran toward the motionless figure laying on their front lawn.
He was dead, and all he had wanted was to protect her.
From him, from the monster her husband had become.
Or always had been.

Gently she picked up the sweet, heavy body of her furry creature into her arms, laying snout against her chest, her sobbing shaking both of them, while her tears wet the short trimmed fur of her dead, beloved chocolate lab.

© Claudia H. Blanton 2013

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Express Yourself - People That Inspire

I love this weeks "Express Yourself" Blog question - Who is someone you look up to? There are two particular people that come to mind, so here is my list:

1. J.K. Rowling
Not only because she is a great writer, but also an inspirational person. Coming from humble beginnings as a single mother, to a multi-millionaire (okay she was a billionaire at one point), she shares the fruits of her success by giving back. She has never forgotten where she came from, never forgotten those whom are struggling every day, so to me she is an inspiration.

2. Joss Whedon
A man who openly stands for women's rights and equality. Brought strong female characters to the forefront in many of his creations. A great man in my book.

Who is someone you look up to?
For more blogs that participate in the "Express Yourself" blog hop, look at the list below

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Family Tradition

Family Tradition

ignored perpetrators
dancing with victims
of crimes hidden
by family tradition
rules of silence
yet powerfully enforced
while pretending
the bleeding hearts

© Claudia H. Blanton 2013

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Celebrate The Small Things - Dr. Who Edition

It's celebrate Dr. Who time!

Today, we are celebrating the 50th anniversary special of Dr. Who. We, that means the kids and me. We got the snacks ready, coffee made, television on, and are ready!

These are the fun little moments that are wonderful to celebrate together as a family.

Wishing you all a fun week - blessings!

Friday, November 22, 2013

The Last Thanksgiving - A Friday Flash Horror Story

The Last Thanksgiving

“Seriously, you want me to sit next to Uncle Herbert? He smacks his lips.”
I bit my tongue trying not to snap at my nephew, whom I am sure would rather be somewhere else then here at my house.
Anywhere else on the planet.
“Just sit down“, his mother scolded him, shooting me a small smile as she plopped upon her own chair, as usual barely registering her sons bad behavior.
Like when he kicked the neighbors Chihuahua.
Or locked his 3 year old cousin in the trunk of her mother’s car.
Or beat up of the kid with autism in school.

Everyone made excuses for him.

Everyone else made excuses for each other.
Or worse, simply ignored the fact that there was something happening in the first place.

There were two types of people in our family, the “Ignorers” and the “Perpetrators”.
Both would be sitting at my table tonight.
As if everything was normal, nothing ever happened.
All they wanted from me was free food.

It took all of them a moment to get seated, unusually mannered, in anticipation of a full meal. For a full meal even those with the worst inner demons and hidden habits could behave long enough to be waited upon.
After all the facade was what mattered.
It was practiced well.

Today it was at display at my house.

I brought the meal out, followed by a polite applause, but without help, just as I was expected.
The turkey, heavy and just the way they liked it, the gravy thick, the stuffing, plenty.

All with a special ingredient.

No one had noticed the cards, my fine calligraphy of black on warm light brown, the words meticulously written with great attention to detail.

I had made sure everything was right.

No one noticed my smile, my empty plate, until it was too late for them to stop, realizing what I had done.

I enjoyed the moment of realization before death came for them, one, then the other, the poison taken its quick effect as it had been promised to me.
Watching, I moved one of the cards out of my way, observing the finality of it all, the words silently shouting in the midst of the chaos.

“Happy Last Thanksgiving”

© Claudia H. Blanton 2013

The Picture - A Friday Flash Short Story

the following story is from a challenge to write with the following picture as a prompt. The short story was meant to be 145 to 155 words. You can find out more about this writing challenge here. 

The Picture

I miss her with every fiber of my being.
I keep holding on to the only thing that is left of the live we have spend together, the only thing I own - a picture of her.
What would live have been like if she would not have walked down that alley? The choices she made, the death she endured, let me to here.
If I can not spent the prime of my life with the love and reason for my life, it has become devout of meaning.

Maybe it’s meaning can be found again here, in the stillness of this place, in the connection with faith and nature.
But to experience that I must let go off you, and I will never be able to let go off you, not with the depth required of me.
I wonder if they know?
How can they not know?

© Copyright Claudia H. Blanton 2013

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Writing - A Poem

Johannes Vermeer - "A Lady Writing"


In the flow of things
words dance upon the page
with a rhythm of their own
greeting friendly faces
and deadly foes
battling hero conquering
fears of a lifetime
taking us along
for a thrilling ride

Copyright Claudia Blanton 2013

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Celebrate The Small Things Time - It's Getting Cold Outside!

"Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Time for Celebrating The Small Things Blog Post Again. I hope you all had a wonderful week and much to celebrate about. Here is my little list for this week:

I have been utterly grateful that the cold time of the year has not found us here in Florida until two days ago. This was so far a very warm November, and I am very grateful for that.

I am also grateful that the heater is in working order. Not that I am expecting to need it too often here, but I made it a point to try it out, just to be on the safe side. It is working well.

I think I am going to have to break down and buy one of my dogs a sweater. I am grateful that we have a large pet store in walking distance from our condo, and it allows the pets to come in, so I can try some on her. She has - unlike my other dog - a very short coat, which does not protect her much from the harsher wind and cold.

I have been writing like a mad woman, getting more articles out to various sites, writing short stories and working on the books. After a few days of dealing with family obligations, it felt really good to sit back down in front of the computer and let the words flow. There is nothing I'd rather do then write.

Friday, November 15, 2013

The Paper - A Friday Flash Horror Story

Everybody dreaded getting the newspaper. But like a good little herd of sheep, every morning, everyone who was old enough to read, stood in line in the three places the paper was given out - the central grocery store, the post office on the other side of town, and the largest church, adjacent to the state park.
Everyone hesitated to look at the obituaries at the end of the publication, but they all ended up doing so, no matter which ritual they compiled to get there, or how many distractions where in their day.
They all looked, just like my parents did, everyday, waiting until we were home, where we sat around the table. My father overlooked the procedure, being the one who quietly read each name as it showed itself upon that dreadful page.
No one wanted to see their name there.
No one wanted to see the name of a loved one there.
Because the paper knew.
It knew when it was your time to die.

This morning, like any other, he was reading quietly, sipping the cup of coffee Mom provided for, each and every time, freshly brewed, moved into the fine china our Grandmother had brought from Germany. The delicate handles never hid the slight shaking of his hand, and the smile of relief he gave all of us, when none of our names where listed.
Another day living without the burden of death.
His expression on this morning was different.
He starred at me, a deep stare, one what questioned but one that also knew that I had been watching him. Closely.
He quickly rose up, leaving the paper behind, moving out of the room, as I grabbed it, frozen by the words in front of me, in the silence of dinning table.
“Dr. Wayne Duncan, 52, will be put to rest at the Cornerstone Baptist Church, together with his wife Sherry Duncan 43. The couple will be missed by their three children, Mary, Jennifer, and Jackson.”
In a move to keep the sight from my younger siblings, I pulled it closer and turned it, only to be shocked by its headline.
“Two dead in murder-suicide. Prominent West-End Doctor beats his wife to death, then shoot and kills himself.”

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Express Yourself - 5 Favorite TV Shows

And its "Express Yourself" time again.
This time with a subject I love - drum roll please:

Favorite TV Shows!

I love movies and well made television shows, specifically this year, as it is filled with wonderful shows, new ones and old favorites that have entertained us this season. So without further ado and in no particular order of like and importance, here they are.

The Blacklist
OMG - yes I really typed that - this show is the absolute best piece of television I have seen in a long time. I was hooked from the beginning. This show is filled with memorable, well acted out characters, a brilliant multi-episode story arch, and individual story lines that have everything a crime drama should have - so if you have not watched it, you are missing out, big time!

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D
Okay, I am a Marvel fan, so I am biased. Not only that, Joss Whedon is the writer/director/brainchild behind it, what can go wrong? Not much. Love it.

Casket (Castle and Beckett, the two main characters morphed into one) are just adorable. Nathan Fillion is brilliant as the smart @# writer who falls in love with is muse, the Detective Kate Beckett. I am not going to tell you more, you just have to go and watch it - go on, get caught up already!

Stephen Amell does an very impressive job in portraying the DC comics hero Green Arrow - with a nice, creative and not always cooperating team by his side. Oh did I mention that Steve is absolute eye candy and does have his shirt off on occasion? While the show in itself is well done, it does add a nice visual to the mix. (I know I am bad)

The Witches of East End
Well I am a Witch, so call me bias here, but this thing is actually good. That was a surprise for me, I really thought it was going to be just a wanna be Charmed, but it has its perks, and not overly done special effects. Nice Sunday show.

So that was my list, what do you guys watch? I am very interested in your list.

Have a great week,



Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Hell's End - A Flash Fiction

"How the hell did that happen?"
"No clue, never mind that, how are we going to get out of here now?"
Steve sighed and took a closer look around the neighborhood they were in. He was not familiar with this street, but had passed through via the larger avenues in the area before today.
"Got no idea. Never mind how this happened, we got to get out of  here before he shows up."
"Not with the car. We are so not getting around that broke down van." Luke grimaced at the white smoking vehicle that blocked  his Ford in the narrow alley.
"No shit."
"Don't be a smart ass, Steve. It was your idea to get over here without any real planning. Damn you know what he is capable off."
"I want him out of her live."
"So do I, but we could have done this better."
"No one forced you to come with me, Cuz"
"And let you run into trouble all by yourself,? How stupid do you think I am?"
Steve grinned without answering.
"Thanks. Still no reception?"
Steve starred again at his Smartphone, and shook his head.
"None, dead as a door nail, and not much charge left."
"Time to get moving then."

Quickly moving past the broke down, smoking pick up, the abandoned their car in the tight alley, their breath quickly accelerating  as they tried to make some distance from that dump of a place, Steve's sister used to call home.
Hardly a home, considering the man living with her had a preference for breaking her bones and almost all of her will, until she finally had enough and left him, coming to the first place, the safest place she could think off.
His house.

They arrived at the end of the tight alley, with Luke checking the reception before Steve had a chance to ask.
"Finally, Luke nodded into his direction.
"We got reception"


They made it home just in time.

Three police cars, one of them crushing  his mothers rose garden, the others blocking the entrance to his little blue house took over the small front yard.
The flashing lights threw blinding pulses through the always quiet neighborhood, with a sterile coldness and irritating rhythm that took their ability to move out of the cab with the usual swiftness from them.
One breath.
Another. Then Luke spoke gravely.
“I got it, go.”
Steve moved automatically, grazing over the scene, trying to get a glimpse of it all, looking for him, looking for her, cursing himself under his breath, for leaving her alone at his home, without protection, without anyone by her side, when he had known that she was not safe,.

Not even here, not even in his own house, the home they grew up in.

He should have known nothing would have stopped that bastard from getting what he thought was his.
“No, no, no“, he murmured with increasing loudness, not wanting to see that which happened, but moving forward with the same automatic motion that propelled him this far.

Four more steps until the front step.

The sound of his sister yelling his name was the sweetest sound he had ever heard, mirroring her rushing embrace as she pushed his arms around him, shaking, shivering more then he had ever felt another human being shiver.
“He broke in, just broke in, he wanted to kill me.”
Squeezing him even harder he added. “Steve, he was trying to kill me.”
Her sobbing, made her words temporarily impossible, as he stood their holding her until her crying allowed words to come forth again.
“I shot him, Steve. I was so scared and I shot.”
The release of the breath he had been holding without realization, created an animalistic sound  of release he had no idea he was capable off, and he dropped to his knees, still holding onto his sister, his precious, safe and breathing sister.

It was over.
Her nightmare was finally over.

© Claudia Blanton 2013

Monday, November 11, 2013

Express Yourself - Favorite Subject in Highschool/College

This weeks "Express Yourself" post ask us (I know I am late) to share what our favorite subject in Highschool/College was.

For me it was English, not so surprising, but my Highschool English teacher was also my favorite teacher as well as the Head of the Choir Department. Because of his double duty, and the fact that many of my class mates where also in the Choir, he incorporated our English lessons and artistic expression, meaning he would teach us how to speak and pronounce the language correctly through song and by participating in international festivals around the city.

For those whom are wondering, I was raised in Germany, in Southern Bavaria to be exact, so my love for expressing myself in English might have been a surprise to some as much it was a surprise to me. I was lucky enough to have a bookstore near by, which had a large section of English books, which I devoured.

What was your favorite subject?

Blessings and have a great week!


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Inspiration For Writers

Quotes inspire me, motivate me to keep on writing, sometimes even strike a nerve that ends up developing into a story, poem or finds its way in my books. Inspirational quotes for writers are specifically beautiful, more so when rejection slips arrive or the dreaded writer's block makes the continuation on a project hard if not impossible.

Today, I wanted to share some of these quotes. Maybe they will also inspire you.

"You must keep sending work out; you must never let a manuscript do nothing but eat its head off in a drawer. You send that work out again and again, while you're working on another one. If you have talent, you will receive some measure of success - but only if you persist."

- Isaac Asimov

"If you've FINISHED writing a novel you are amongst the elite!!! You ARE NOT A FAILURE IF YOU CANNOT LIVE OFF YOUR BOOKS. You only fail by NOT TRYING."

- Nadia Cornier

"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'press on' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."

- Calvin Coolidge

“Creativity is an act of defiance.”

- Twyla Tharp

“The secret of it all is to write in the gush, the throb, the flood of the moment–to put things down without deliberation–without worrying about their style–without waiting for a fit time or place. I always worked that way. I took the first scrap of paper, the first doorstep, the first desk, and wrote–wrote, wrote…By writing at the instant, the very heartbeat of life is caught.”

- Walt Whitman

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Celebrate The Small Things - All's Well That Ends Well

"All's Well That Ends Well"

Indeed the theme of the week.

After a rather turbulent last few days, and no sure end in sight, finally, what I had planned for has come forth. While I can not go into details, I am tremendously grateful that the opportunity I was hoping for, occurred and exactly in the time frame I hoped, even though it did not look like it would. I really do not like last minute things, it makes me nervous and questions my resolve. I rather plan, know when things should occur, how to do something, maybe even over-prepare, but then life happens, and life is certainly not always that neat, at least not for me, lol.

I am  also grateful that, while this new "adventure" will cause more work for me, my daughter offered to help me where ever she can. She is such a wonderful young woman, and I am incredibly proud of how grown up and centered she is, even though she is not 16 yet - at least until December.

Thor 2 is out - which is another wonderful thing to be grateful for. We won't have time to watch it until next week, but as Marvel fans the entire family is exited about this movie. So guess I am grateful for Marvel and the whole Avengers franchise - yes I am a Geek, lol.

I hope you all had many things to celebrate, many occasions to spend in happiness and blessed to be surrounded by people you love and love you.

Hugs and Blessings


Friday, November 1, 2013

Celebrate The Small Things - Welcome To November!

Wow this year has gone by fast so far. It is almost time to start listening to Holiday music, the decorations are already up in most stores, and I am not so sure what to think about that.

But today I am celebrating one part of that season - the music. I love music with a passion. As a rule though I do not listen to any holiday music until the day after Samhain/Halloween. So this was the day.

And I ran accross a favorite, "Thankful" by Josh Groban (from the CD Noel)

Here are some of the lyrics (which I thought where fitting for this celebrating blog)


Somedays we forget
To look around us
Somedays we can't see
The joy that surrounds us
So caught up inside ourselves
We take when we should give.

So for tonight we pray for
What we know can be.
And on this day we hope for
What we still can't see.
It's up to us to be the change
And even though we all can still do more
There's so much to be thankful for.

Look beyond ourselves
There's so much sorrow
It's way too late to say
I'll cry tomorrow
Each of us must find our truth
It's so long overdue

So for tonight we pray for 
What we know can be
And every day we hope for
What we still can't see
It's up to us to be the change
And even though we all can still do more
There's so much to be thankful for.

Even with our differences 
There is a place we're all connected
Each of us can find each other's light

So for tonight we pray for
What we know can be
And on this day we hope for 
What we still can't see
It's up to us to be the change
And even though this world needs so much more

There's so much to be thankful for

To me, for tonight, this just says it all.

Have a wonderful weekend!


The Final Heist - Friday Flash Fiction Horror Story

This was supposed to be our last job. It was large enough to set us for life, both of us, and our families, reaching our goal of financial independence a few years earlier then expected.
A quick job, in and out, methodical and clean, a robbery of its finest and planned to the T.
Nothing was going to stop us, after all, we knew how to act quick, and in all of our years of criminal activity we never had to physically harm anyone.
We were proud of that fact.
We had principles.
And we knew how to stay out of the radar of the police.

Everything was planned, today was supposed to be the day and all we had to do was wait until it was past midnight. We had found the perfect place to watch and wait, to embrace and be embraced by the darkness that was going to be absolute on this day before the New Moon. We were used to waiting patiently, our patience had been practiced like an artist practiced his specialty.

What added to the satisfaction was that we were robbing those who robbed others.

Then everything that could go wrong went wrong.

We did not even make it out of our car when he found us. Dan was dead before he could react, his throat slashed with a quick efficiency that only a master could bring forth. He knocked me out, before I was able to reach for the Magnum in the glove compartment. He wanted to take his time with me.

In all of our luck and precision, our planning and concise pre-arrangements we had to park ourselves in the hunting grounds of a serial killer.

A serial killer with preferences for blond women.

Just after midnight, the darkness covering the area as deep as it could, with such an completeness I had never seen before, the time when we were supposed to rake in the heist of our lifetime, I began begging him to let me die.

© Claudia H. Blanton 2013