Tuesday 29 July 2014

Guitar Practice

1) Write a short story (500 words or less) using the photo and five mandatory words.

2) Stay with the 500-word limit. 

3) Craft and link your post by next Tuesday evening (10:00 p.m. PST).

4)  Link up your story using our hostesses’ websites Leanne's, Debb's, or Tena's who will help you 

This week we have a photo and five mandatory words:

Here is your photo and five words:

Mandatory words:
steering wheel

Here is my story:

Guitar Practice
Amelia’s mum was very cross with Rufus, a small bundle of fur that was now matted with tar from the pile of gravel workmen had left on the road he managed to roll in before she caught him.  She persuaded him to come back to the car using a decoy of rattling his puppy dog biscuits.   

Amelia sat in the back of the car waiting for her mum to drive them home.   Her mum spoke harshly to Rufus telling him what a naughty boy he was.  He looked up at her with his soulful eyes and a cautious wag of his tail, her mum relented and patted and stroked his fur cringing as she felt the black stick substance on his golden fur.   The radio in the car began to pip the four o’clock time signal as Amelia’s mum turned the engine on, placed her hands on the steering wheel and started to edge out of the car park and on to the main road.

Twenty minutes later they were home.  As Amelia clambered out of the car, satchel, lunch bag and her big guitar case dragging behind her, she noticed Mr. Jenkins watching from his ground floor window of their apartment block.  She waved and he waved back, he was always very nice to them, mum said he had another name as well which she didn't really know how to say properly.  He was also called a concierge which is why he was nice to them because he looked after the building. 

Amelia listened to the sounds coming from the bathroom.  Her mum was getting soaked trying to wash Rufus using the shower head. The yelps and splashes coming from upstairs reminded her of a piece of music she was supposed to practice for the school band. She carefully lifted the lid of the guitar case and managed to sit on the floor with the guitar in her lap without banging the instrument on the floor. 

Carefully balancing the guitar on her knee as she knelt on the carpeted floor, leaning slightly against the foot stool, Amelia strummed the first notes of what they had been learning earlier today in their music lesson. 

She became so engrossed in trying to get the notes just right she didn't realise the noises from upstairs and stopped.  As she glanced up she saw her mum standing in the living room doorway, Rufus wrapped in a towel in her arms, smiling at her.
‘That is a beautiful song, sweetheart.  I can’t wait until next week and hear you play it at the school concert.’

‘Will Dad come as well?’  Amelia always asked the same question every time there was a school event on.  She knew her mum would promise her that he would do his very best to attend but she also knew that her Dad wouldn’t be able to make it and he would telephone the next day to say how sorry he was that he missed it. 

Word count: 496

Friday 25 July 2014



The Cephalopod Coffeehouse: July 2014

Welcome one and all to the Cephalopod Coffeehouse, a cosy gathering of book lovers, meeting to discuss their thoughts regarding the tomes they enjoyed most over the previous month.  Pull up a chair, order your cappuccino and join in the fun.  If you wish to add your own review to the conversation, please sign clink on the link

Approx. 640 pages

A Novel of American Pre-History

Genre: according to Google Books is Speculative Fiction

Product Description from Amazon

In an ancient time of fear and superstition, she stood apart because of her unusual blue eyes. In a land of great stone cities and trackless wilderness, she sought her own unique path. But it was with the clan that accepted her—and in the heart of the magic man who saved her—that she found her ultimate destiny. Her name was Kwani. But legend would call her She Who Remembers... 

About the Author
Linda Lay Shuler (1910–2011) was a brilliant, creative, ambitious woman born before her time. She wrote and produced for radio in the days women were expected to stay at home, receiving awards against conglomerate giants. Television was a new medium at the time, and she jumped right into it, writing, producing, and directing travel documentaries for the Texas Highway Department, writing and producing a traffic courtroom series, and establishing radio/TV workshops. The biggest accomplishment in her film life was when she wrote, directed, and produced a five screen film, the first of its type. Sponsored by Humble Oil (Exxon), it was presented at the 1968 Hemisfair in San Antonio, in a circular building created especially for it. But perhaps her most lasting professional accomplishments were her three novels.


Kwani is the central character in this book set in 1270 AD in North America.  She is cast out from her clan because of her blue eyes, probably inherited from a Viking ancestor.
We follow her journey, physically and spiritually as she becomes ‘She Who Remembers’.

The beginning seemed a little slow, probably the first couple of chapters, but I soon became engrossed in the book.  The names were difficult at first but I soon became accustomed to them.  The descriptions of the landscapes, the domesticity of clans and differences in various tribes because of geography, the superstitions, the mysticism, general folklore has all been brilliant researched. 

Kwani is unusual not only because she has inherited those blue eyes but also because she is very spiritual and quite outspoken for a woman of her times.  She tries to find her way in life, guided by her ancestors’ spirits and what she thinks she wants from life with various people placing obstacles in her way due to jealousies and superstitions.  

As a reader you become immersed in the way of life of medieval American Indians and their way of life.  This book was an interesting and enjoyable read.