Friday Fictioneers – You Need To Stay

Greetings fans and friends, I should be back up to full steam for stories next week. Other things have been taking me away from the attention, but I should be back with more ideas. Here’s the Fictioneers for the week:

copyright Roger Bultot

You Need To Stay

“Honey, I told you that you need to stay home.”

“But, sweetie, if we’re going to have a comfortable life, I need to go and follow those white lines.”

“I’m sorry, but you cannot go. You cannot be out there all the time. You’re not married to the road.”

“If I’m going to make money for us, I have to be.”

“Doesn’t matter now. Look out the window.”

A few seconds later…

“AGH! My TRUCK! What did you do to it?”

“Didn’t you think it was strange you found me naked in the woods, and wanted to marry me right away?”

“What?!”

“You married a plant nymph, ya ninny. Now get in here and do the dishes!”

Friday Fictioneers – The Letter

I’m back, though still at limited action for a short bit of time. I will be up fully this week when I can pull my head away from other things.

copyright- Jan Wayne Fields

The Letter

The young lady looked at the paper in front of her. She sighed, as she pushed the chair away from the old desk. Putting the quill back in the ink well, she stood and grabbed her bag that was sitting off to the side.

She expected that her husband would read the letter and get the message. She wanted to get away from the boring nature of life, and this would give some excitement.

She waited for his phone call. And waited. And waited.

She waited a year, and finally said no more. She entered the house, and walked to the study. Her husband lay on the floor, a pool of blood under his head, dried blood on the corner of the small table.

The letter was untouched.

One Hundred Is A Magic Number

A Message From the Author

So, for those of you who keep up with this blog pretty regularly, I surpassed 100 blog posts on here a few weeks ago. Some of you may be wondering why I saved things up until now to announce it and talk about it. A lot of it was just time and work that I’m having to deal with outside of this blog.

However, I have hit 100 and I plan to keep going as best as I can. I may have some days or weeks when I don’t write, and that’s fine. As long as people come back to visit and enjoy what they see, that’s all that I care about. It’s not about the page hits, it’s about spreading the idea of music and fiction as partners in creating a full reading experience. That’s what it’s all about.

Now, someone asked me about how I was going to celebrate 100 entries. Well, what I want to do is go over the 5 stories that I think were the most enjoyable to write. Starting from the top and going down, I will go through and show you what was going on when those were being written.

#1 – The Lady In White, part 2 (Close Enough)

This story is one that I really loved to write. It was taken from a dream I had, and it was put down on paper as something that I really loved. The lady in white is someone who invades my mind from time to time. I don’t know much about her, but what I do know is that somehow in my dreams, she cares for me. It’s kinda sweet. :)

#2 – Demolition Man (The Adventure of the Losers)

This was my attempt at writing an action packed, full-on, balls to the wall action piece that could be the script for a music video. I got the image as I was sitting in my apartment and thinking about my travels through Iowa. That, and I think watching a Chuck Norris movie, got me thinking about it and *boom*, Demolition Man. I really did like writing that song.

#3 – The Beginning Of Something New (Supernova)

This was my first foree into doing a story that was a different way of talking about issues I faced. One of the ways that I heal my own self is by writing about a similar situation with other characters. It has been very helpful in time, and this is one of my masterpieces. I also firmly believe that the song is what makes the entire story come alive.

#4 – Man of Colours 

I love the work that I use to honor people that I love. My brother is one of those people. The idea of a painter using his canvas to communicate, that’s my brother. And when I created that piece of writing, I never would have thought that it would be a piece that would be family-oriented. I love my brother very much, and that story was his. The music just made it that much better.

#5 – Radioactive

This was my “political” piece. I was in the middle of hating everything political (still do), and it was my outlet. I first came across the song by Imagine Dragons while on vacation in Denver. A friend of mine introduced me to it, and it just screamed to my primal self. The idea came about to use this song as a way to further my anti-political anguish, and it helped me heal. A lot.

—-

Those are my five that I loved. Those who have read my works before and who continue to read my works are encouraged to tell me which of my 100 stories that they think made the most impact on them. When you do, you’ll have to tell me how the music added flavor to the story. Cause that’s what I really want to hear.

I will be back to regular blogging starting next week. And I will be back on Fictioneers very soon. Until then…100!

Diamond Girls

(With thanks to Jamie Cross for inspiration)

Chelsea Paragovian, known to the rest of the world as Chelly Price, looked out the window at the brilliant lights of New York City. The twinkle of the skyline would be incredibly mesmerizing for a first-time girl in the big city. For someone who was there, it was a fading light that reflected the fading spark in her spirit.

Chelly Price was the main attraction for the new millennial musical movement, up there with the Demi Lovatos, Victoria Justices, and others of their ilk. Her first album, made when she was just 17 and a newbie in New York City, had gone platinum within 6 months. She was a hot commodity, and the various backing bands loved having her up front to bring the numbers in. After the concerts, she would swing through the party circuit. Sleep through the day, party all the night, press the flesh at music signings and celebrity appearances on TV shows.  Her second album didn’t do as well, but did hit gold within 9 months.

As she looked at herself in the mirror, as the sun came up on that September morning, she finally caught the realization of everything she had been doing. The lines on her face, the premature worry-lines, the stress and the wear of the road was finally getting to her. She had success, she had the money, but she had nothing else.

She had one person left who could bring her back to earth.

She held onto the cell-phone, the flat phone that kept only the most important numbers. She clicked through the hundreds of contacts until she found the one that she was looking for, listed under the letter Z. It had the name “Zero Hour” on it, and she knew that when she called the number, things would never be the same. She clicked the entry, and waited.

One ring. Two rings. Three rings.  *Click*

“Hello?”

“It’s me.”

“Chelsea? Sweetie? Is that you?”

“Yeah, Daddy. It’s me. I’m sorry for calling you so early. I know that it’s probably the middle of the night over there…”

She heard a big yawn from the other side of the phone, and started to yawn as well.

“No, no, sweetie. It’s alright. I haven’t heard from you, it’s been so long. So, how is New York treating you?”

“It’s…it’s…it’s alright, I guess.”

“Is there something wrong, sweetie?”

Chelsea hesitated. She knew that if she said the wrong thing, it could doom her future. She believed that if she said something, that it could come to fruition in ways that were never meant to be.

“I looked in the mirror.”

“What did you see?”

“I saw lines. I saw myself as tired.”

“How long have you been doing this stuff that you’ve been doing?”

“2 years. I am due to go into the studios here in the next month to record the third record.”

“What do you think? Do you think you have enough for another one?”

“They keep supplying me with songs, but they’re not really that good. I really want to expand my horizons.”

“Do you remember what I told you when you first left on that midnight plane to New York?”

“You told me that diamond girls aren’t made to grow old.”

“Do you feel old?”

“I look old. I feel tired. But, I know that there’s a spark still in my heart. I just don’t think it’s here.”

She chuckled, thinking that it was silly she was having this discussion with her dad, who was a simple wood-mill worker, not a big entertainment man.

“Maybe what they’re asking of you is not what you want. Have you thought much about what you want to do?”

Chelsea paused. Have I really thought about it? she asked herself, in her mind.

“I am not sure. I am thinking about leaving the parties and the other stuff behind. Maybe refocusing my music, in a way?”

“Honey, whatever you plan to do, I’m behind you 100 percent. Did you hear about Bernie Griffin?”

“Big Bernie? The guy who slung the slats?”

“Yeah. He got drafted by the Dodgers. He’s heading to Florida, I think. He’s gonna be in the minors now.”

“How did he get into baseball?”

“When you saw him last, he was on the high school team. He was at a company baseball gathering, and some guy saw him. Put his name in with a scout, who saw him work, and signed him almost on the spot.”

“Wow. Who would have thought?”

“People thought the same thing about you, Chelsea. They didn’t realize that you were being picked up for a recording contract. A 3 record deal was a big thing for the people around here.”

Chelsea thought about that for a moment, seeing herself like Bernie, and chuckling to herself.

“What I’m trying to say to you, Chelsea, is that you need to do what you think is right. Diamond girls aren’t made to grow old, and you’re my diamond girl. If you think that going a different direction will be a good thing, then trust in what your heart is saying.”

“Daddy, I just need time away from this city. I want to come home for a while.”

“Your bed is ready when you need it. We love you and support you, and if you want to come back at any time, just give us a heads up so we can pick you up at the airport.”

Chelsea started crying right there, on the phone. She knew what she was going to do, and it may have to mean paying the price of her soul with her career.

Message In A Bottle – Friday Fictioneers

It’s been a busy week at the Musical Fiction Factory, or at least in the office…so here’s this week’s Fictioneers story. I have some time off next week, so there’s a good likelihood that a few stories will be in the offing on my vacation days.

 

copyright Marie Gail Stafford

Message In A Bottle

We sat at the table of the faux Chinese restaurant, like we do every Sunday.  I picked up the bottle of hot sauce to douse my fried rice, when I saw it.

“Marie, there’s a note in this hot sauce.”

“What? Well, open it up and get it out!”

Sighing heavily, I did  what she told me. I pulled out the long note, and read it out loud.

“My name is Stewart Copeland. This is my SOS. I’m stuck in the Sriracha factory. I hope that someone gets my message in a bottle.”

I only wonder how long that message has been in that bottle…

Black Betty (Ram A Lam) – Friday Fictioneers

Don’t forget to visit my latest non-fictioneers fiction piece, called “Trying To Stop Failure “. It could use some love. Anyhow, on with the show…

copyright Adam Ickes

Black Betty (Ram A Lam)

“I remember when I picked that one up. I was out one night with a beauty named Betty. We were about to head back to my place, when this ram came out of nowhere. It wasn’t even a moment after I saw it that I blacked out.”

“What happened next?”

“Well, after I woke up, the ram was dead. My truck was also totaled, and Betty was walking around with a major league concussion. I called up my friend Earl and got him to pick me and the ram up. Betty walked home.”

“What did you do after that?”

“Well, I mounted the ram at the taxidermist and got the head home. I then went to see Betty, and her face was bruised. And that’s everyone now calls her Black Betty.”

Trying to Stop Failure (aka “Mourning Dove”)

Trying to Stop Failure
(aka “Mourning Dove”)
By Miles Rost

Part 4 of Mayumi’s story

Months had passed by since the last time Mayumi Shiomi had left her job at Shine FM and went to a competitor. She waited a month, and in that time had great development in her personal life. With one exception…

The men that she had in her life sucked.

She had gone for a good two to three months without even dealing with such an issue, and she was getting better at staying away from situations, but the last guy she met just took her by surprise and she fell, very hard, in love. And got hurt in the interim.

She just broke up with another guy who wanted to use her and abuse her. After the night of their last date, she cried herself to sleep asking for things to finally just stop. That she didn’t want a relationship anymore, and that she needed some “me-time”.

She woke up the next morning, and looked at herself in the mirror. The short sandy brown hair that she used to have had grown a little longer in the months preceding. It was now down to her shoulders, but constantly tied up in a ponytail. She looked a slight bit older than her age, but she didn’t think much of it.

“Ah feel like crap right now,” she muttered to her reflection, “I have no clue what to do, how to deal with all these problems with men. Why…why do I attract that type of man?”

She changed out of her pajamas and put herself under the hot water of a long shower. She thought about where things went wrong, and where in her past was the catalyst for the change she had to deal with constantly. She turned on the waterproof radio that hung in the shower, and tuned it to her new station, Power FM 87. She knew that her show would be on in about 3 hours, and that before that was a great smooth jazz show by her newest friend, Mitzi.

“…and later this week, Larry Carlton will be in Melbourne, playing a 5 date set at Bennets Lane. Here’s a great one from him, going back a few years. This is Mourning Dove, on the Smooth Move show, here on Power FM!”

The start of the music shot into Mayumi’s heart like a needle into a vein. The soft keyboard and the beginning strains of the artist’s guitar nailed the feelings she felt at that time. She was mourning. Mourning her own problems with men, with falling a step behind again, and feeling lower than normal. She just stood under the steady and hard stream of water, as she started drifting into memories.

As the saxophone and guitars harmonized and carried her away, she looked back to the age of 10. She remembered seeing her own father, a man who she barely ever saw in later years. She saw the memory she had of him, smacking her mom around. She remembered him grabbing her mom’s arm and muscling her towards the bedroom. She remembered hearing the sounds, and running to her hiding place in the far part of the basement.

“Is this what ah’m running from?” she asked her 10 year old self, in her mind, “Is this why ah get the men I do?”

Her 10 year old memory looked back at her, saying nothing but showing her a glimpse of what may have happened to give her the perpetual bad luck with men.

She let the music carry her to another part of her mind, the water relaxing her to the point where she could do much more with her soul, mind, and body.

“Lord, ah think we know why things are the way they are,” she said, in a prayerful tone, “Ah’m dealing with the ghosts of the past, and it’s time that we work together on this. Ah wanna be free, and ah know you love me enough to want me to be free. Ah can’t do this alone, and ah have to give it up to you everyday.”

The song’s warm yet sad tones bled across her mind, the prayers she was sending infused with the music’s energy. She had never prayed as hard as she did at that moment, with hot water hitting her tired and stressed out shoulders.

“Father, help me address this problem. The image of my father, ah need to move on from it. Father, help me as ah do what I need to do.”

She kept praying, the water pouring over her hair like a waterfall. She didn’t know what effect her prayer would be, but she realized that she would eventually need to let everything go in a way.

As the song ended and a new smooth jazz song came on, she started her ritual of cleaning, getting ready for work. She felt lighter, but she didn’t know what would happen next.