Source: Carrot Ranch Feb Saddle-Up Saloon
COWSINO STORY SPINE: On the first Friday of very month, D. Avery hosts a writing challenge and month-long opportunity to talk story writing, and just general horsing around with regulars Kid & Pal at Carrot Ranch’s Saddle Up Saloon. February brings us a trio of picture prompts and the rare opportunity to play with a story spine. The following grew out of my own horseplay, so sashay on over and try for yourself!
How the Wurst Was Won
It was the baste of times, it was the wurst of times, and Thickpuddle McDrawer was up to his mustache in special orders for his Cain’t Be Beat Barbecue Special. Because of this, he once again questioned his decision to not add an extra triangle of cornbread, an oversized pat of honey-butter shaped like a rose, and some miniwurst sausages in Helene’s secret sauce to the regular order-for-two special, and then charge a buck or three more for creativity. People would pay extra for sure. History’d shown him there was something about barbecue, beans and cornbread that brought out the romantic side of those buckaroos. Continue reading →
Subzero, Fahrenheit -451outside my window, but that’s really just me whining; we’ve been promised a high of 0 degrees F today, but the sun is shining hard through my south-facing windows to make my black cat’s fur hot. Continue reading →
1. A Christmas Surprise
“Mom! I can’t find him anywhere!” Janie stumped down the attic stairs, empty-handed.
“That’s ok, I got us something new.”
“Elf on a Shelf is a Christmas tradition!”
“We have to change with the times. It’s been a rough couple of years.” Mom pulled the new tradition out of its paper bag. “Isn’t he cute?”
Janie looked doubtfully at the curving horns, tiny fangs and sharp cloven hooves. She read the tag. “He sees you when you’re sleeping.” Continue reading →
Hugo, in the early days, as seen by Kittelson
I have the great pleasure of being allowed to sit in the Author’s Chair in the Saddle Up Saloon over at the Carrot Ranch. It’s headquartered somewhere in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and around the world, where Rough Writers play with weekly prompts, poetry challenges, and the occasional Online Karaoke. Cowpoke or not, all are welcome to play and/or read.
My time in this week’s Author’s Chair is a bit of dark humor about a hungry giant, some carelessly spunky spelunkers, and the townsfolk nestled in the valley below (based on a Six Sentence Story that like Hugo, got a bit larger). Here’s an excerpt to start, or go on ahead and belly right up to the bar at the Saloon for the full text, and an audio of me reading the tale. Once upon a time:
Giant Problem Solved by Liz Husebye Hartmann
(Trigger alert: Not a tale for the wee ones)
Hugo’s belly pangs rumbled down the darkening mountainside above Heffinger Hollow. He was sorely tempted to nibble on a half-cooked morsel or two of the spunky spelunkers that frequented Carbuncle Caverns. This particular group of spelunkers had surprised the village by sneaking in to the Carbuncle and setting out to explore without a guide. They’d zigged when they should have zagged on that seventh leg of the descent, and had fallen deep into the bowels of the lowest cavern of Carbuncle.
This had proved deadly for them, but put their corpses within easy reach of Hugo…
But a bit of history, first…”
[Please click here to continue]
© Liz Husebye Hartmann (2021)
Bok choy and thin-sliced carrots, a bit past their freshness date, sizzled in the pan. She sniffed the aromas of sesame oil, lime, and Moroccan baked tofu. The sharp scent of sliced onion softened, long layers relaxing, rolling and shining over her cooking spoon. Continue reading →