Life in progress


138. Scenes from the Second Seat on the Right

Tuesday, January 16th, 9:00pm
Dillon (and Zoey)


Dillon sits at the window. Zoey takes the seat beside him.

Zoey: Hey. Aren’t you a bit young to be on the bus alone at this time at night?

Dillon: (stares at her for a moment) My mom’s sick. She went to the hospital.

Zoey: Oh no.

Dillon: So I have to go home to my step-dad. He’s drunk.

Zoey: Are you going to be okay?

Dillon shrugs.

Zoey: Is there a friend you could stay with instead?

Dillon: Yeah. But he lives the other way.

Zoey: Do you know his number? (pulls cell phone from pocket) I could call him.

Dillon: I’ll be okay.

Zoey: Well, can I give you some money to take another bus?

Dillon: (hesitates) Sh … sure.

Zoey: (hands him $3 in coins) Are you sure you’ll be okay?

Dillon: (shrugs) Yeah. Thanks.

Zoey: My stop’s coming up. Do you want to come with me to talk to the bus driver? He can make sure you get where you want to go.

Dillon: Sure.

They get up together.


Next stop: Wednesday, January 17th, 5:55pm

Click here to learn all about this series, how it works, and where to find your favourite characters.

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The Escapist Coloring Club – mid-month

Just a little reminder that if you want to join the club before the February 1st prompt, you should get your entry in soon. I’ll turn off the comments in this post and redirect you to the January 1st prompt to link your entries there.

Thank you to our members so far! Here they are: (Click on the names to go to their posts.)

Willow at Willowdot21

Dar at Darswords

Barbara at Teleportingweena

Jenn at Jenn Lost in Chaos

Please visit them to see their wonderful colouring projects. And join us! It’s fun and relaxing.

You can find the original post here:

Thank you. 🙂



#JusJoJan 2018, the 16th – Contemplation

As a writer, I spend a lot of time contemplating the stories that form in my head. At my worst, during my most creative spells, my mind blocks out everything going on around me. I become consumed, beyond contemplation, in my own world. I get to the point where I’m not telling the stories anymore, rather the stories are telling me what is and isn’t true. I’m not imagining; I’m listening.

So it’s rather a shock when my beta readers tell me I should take out a scene because it makes them uncomfortable. I don’t blame the readers; I appreciate their input and I understand their discomfort. But I’ve lost two betas at the same spot in the second book in my series, “The Great Dagmaru,” in the last week, and that makes me wonder if they’re not right. My guilty conscience for making people uncomfortable is warring with the writer in me who says the scene in question IS part of the story. It’s what happened. So changing it or removing it comes to the same result: compromising the story’s truth.

I have a feeling that if I leave the scene in, it’s either going to make or break my entire series. The readers who realized it needed to be in there enjoyed it (or tolerated it) because it made them feel uncomfortable – it’s what it’s meant to do. Those who hated it may end up hating me. Should I be hoping at this point that it will push enough buttons, whether positive or negative, to make the book go viral? On the other hand, maybe it’s not all that bad, in the hands of the right audience. Speaking of which, note to all the readers who thought The Magician’s Curse should have been categorized as “Young Adult”: the second book will prove to be distinctly “Adult.”

Stay true to your story and publish without fear, says most of me: Write to please people with a story fit for Hollywood, the part of me that wants to bow to the more sensitive readers says.

Lots to contemplate. Opinions are welcome.

This contemplative and rather undecided post is brought to you by Just Jot it January, and in particular, prompted by the word “contemplation,” provided by Cheryl! Thank you so much, Cheryl! You can find Cheryl’s JusJoJan post by clicking right here. Please go and say hi! To participate in the prompt, please visit this post, where you’ll find the rules and you can leave your link in the comments.



#JusJoJan Daily Prompt – January 16th, 2018

Hi once again. Time for your Just Jot it January daily prompt. Today is Tuesday, right? So hard to keep track lately! Sometimes I only know what day of the week it is by the garbage truck’s brakes squeaking down the street, but by then it’s too late! Anyway, here’s your prompt:

Your prompt for January 16th, 2018, brought to you by the multi-talented Cheryl, is “Contemplation.” Use it any way you’d like in your post. And make sure you visit Cheryl at her blog, “The Bag Lady” to read her post and say hi! Here’s her link:

Here are the general rules to follow for Just Jot it January:

1. Just Jot It January starts January 1st, but it’s never too late to join in! Here, we run on the honour system; the “jot it” part of JusJoJan means that anything you jot down, anywhere (it doesn’t have to be a post, it can even be a grocery list) counts as a “Jot.” If it makes it to your blog that day, great! If it waits a week to get from a sticky note to your screen, no problem!

2. I’ll post the daily prompts at 2am my time (GMT -5), every day except for Saturday’s Stream of Consciousness (SoCS) prompt–you’ll find that one on Friday morning at 9:30am. That daily post (i.e. this one) will be where you leave your link for others to find in the comment section. There will be a prompt for every day except Wednesday, when the prompt is simply my One-Liner Wednesday.

3. As long as your blog is on WordPress, you’ll be able to link via pingback. To execute a pingback, just copy the URL from the daily prompt post, and paste it anywhere in your post. Check to make sure your link shows up where you want it to, and go back occasionally to see other bloggers’ entries – the more you visit others, the more they’ll visit you! If you’re participating from another blogging host, just drop a link into the comment section. Note: The newest pingbacks and comments will appear at the top.

4. Tag your post JusJoJan and/or #JusJoJan.

5. Write anything! Any length will do! It can even be a photo or a drawing – you’re going to title it, right? There’s your jot!

6. The prompts are here both to remind you and to inspire you to write. However, you don’t have to use the prompt word of the day. You can link any kind of jot back here. Note: If it’s 18+ content, please say so in a comment with your link or close to your pingback.

7. If you’d like to, use the JusJoJan badge so that others can find your post more easily.

8. Have fun!

To find the full list of daily prompts from now until the end of the month, click this link: and scroll down to the bottom of the post.