Flash Fiction Friday Story: Pet Peeves

Face, Pet Peeves, Randy Cockrell

Pet Peeves by Randy Cockrell

Alandra Nickels slammed on her brakes, her nose nearly hitting the steering wheel. She jammed the heel of her hand into the horn. “Holy crap! Use the damn turn signal, that’s what it’s there for!”

The other driver, an elderly man, waved and continued on his way.

“Oh for….” She glanced in the rear view, the driver in the car behind her was mouthing profanities, she could tell. Alandra waved in the same way the elderly driver did and stepped on the gas. As she drove she counted her lucky stars that her car hadn’t been smashed from both ends but she was shaking. “I hate that,” she mumbled. “Why the hell people can’t let other drivers know what they’re doing is beyond me.”

She was still stewing about the turn signal when she stopped at the light of a major intersection. A car pulled up in the lane beside her, sound system turned up so loud her ears hurt. She turned to see who was in the rusting car. Four young men, stoners from the look of them, playing something that only resembled music because instruments were involved. She shivered with the pain of the blast and wondered how their teeth stayed in their heads. Alandra was glad when the light changed and the boys roared off, a good fifteen miles an hour faster than the speed limit.

At work, she cruised the parking garage for a spot. A spot finally was found on the top level, in the sun, of course. That’s what I get for coming in late. I should just take the day off after a doctor’s appointment.

“Alandra, you’re here!” Her boss, Nathan Wills, called out through his office door as she passed. “Glad you made it. Your presentation has been moved to three o’clock.”

“It’s scheduled for tomorrow at two, Nathan. They pushed it back an hour?”

“No, no. Grab your stuff, it’s today,” he looked at his watch. “In half an hour.”

Her stomach rolled. “But, I’m not prepared! I was going to clean up the slides this afternoon.”

“No time, you do good work, Alandra. They’ll be fine. The VP is going out of town tonight and wants to see the presentation before he goes.”

“OK. Meet you in the board room.” She hurried to her desk, a cubicle just down the hall. Oh, crap. My brain isn’t into this right now.

As she stuck a thumb drive into her computer to download her presentation, a co-worker stuck her head around the partition. “Alandra, Thank God you’re back. The Mason account computer vendor just emailed me that the order is going to be delayed a month.”

Alandra stared. “Jean, I’ve just been called to the board room.” She swallowed, those computers had to be on site in a week. “Call them and tell them that if the computers aren’t here in five business days we’ll sue them for breach of contract?”

Jean blinked. “We can do that?”

“Of course not. But tell them that anyway.” Jean was her least reliable team member. “Be convincing. Be firm. You don’t want to be the one to tell Mason that we can’t move forward on their project do you?”

Jean’s head shook. “No, Alandra. No, not me.”

“Good. Get on it.”

She grabbed her print copy of the presentation and the thumb drive and headed to the board room. No hard copy to hand out, I haven’t reviewed the presentation, Jean is about to sink the whole Mason project and I’m still ticked about the drive here. That’s what I get. At the board room she stopped out of sight and took a few deep breaths. It never did well to arrive looking flustered and panicked.

Alandra stepped into the room, her boss, the VP, the secretary, and the CFO were already at the table. She went to the other end, plugged the thumb drive into the projector and adjusted the focus. Her boss poured her a glass of water which she sipped immediately.

“Good Afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for taking the time to hear about the status of the projects we have on our plates.”

When it was over, the VP shook her hand. “Well done, Alandra. I like that you didn’t waste paper on handouts. The information is in the database. If I want a hard copy I can download it. Good cost cutting move and fine presentation.”

She nodded and smiled and wondered at her good luck that she hadn’t had time to print out the documents. Nathan grinned when the two of them were walking back to their desks. “That went well. You were as prepared as always.”

Alandra accepted the praise. She’d remember that when the next review rolled around.

At home that evening she poured a glass of Riesling as she told her husband about her day. “One problem after another, every one of them a pet peeve.” She sipped the wine. “I thought my head would explode.”

Her husband stopped stirring the marinara he was making and leaned over to kiss her on the cheek. “Sorry you had a bad day, Sweetie. You shouldn’t let things like the turn signals and loud music bother you so much.”

“Yeah, but those things just ratchet up my stress levels.”

“Well, now you’re home and safe and the car is whole.” He sprinkled fresh oregano into the sauce.

Alandra grit her teeth. She hated oregano. She sighed and sipped more wine. “Yeah. I guess so.”

The End

916 Words

Find more of the Forward Motion Flash Friday Group here: http://www.fmwriters.com/flash.html

Flash Fiction Friday: Mystery on Titan

Ice Dragon by Aerin Kayne via www.deviantart.com

Ice Dragon by Aerin Kayne via www.deviantart.com

This story came about because of a challenge on Chuck Wendig’s site. So I rolled the random generator and got Military Science Fiction and Comic Fantasy. Ack! It took me a couple of days to come up with a mash up of those two genres. After you read this, go back to Chuck’s site and check out what other writers came up with. I’m sure you’ll be entertained.

Mystery On Titan

“What a pit,” Airman First Class Carl Andrews said as he rubbed his hands together on his first day on the job. “People used to complain about being stationed in Thule, Greenland. Hell, that’s a garden spot.”

Staff Sergeant LeAnn Rice sniffed. The heat in the new base on Titan, the sixth moon of Saturn, wasn’t up to the task of keeping the base warm. Her nose ran constantly. “Well, the scientists love studying the atmosphere and the hydrocarbon lakes. We’re just here to provide a forward lookout to the edge of the solar system.”

Carl snorted. “You think aliens are gonna come streaming in from the far edge of beyond to say hi?”

She shrugged. “Doesn’t matter what I think, we’re here to monitor the satellites they sent out to Pluto and send a call to Earth if we see anything. It would have been nice if we could have been on the sunny side of Titan though. It’s kind of depressing being always in the dark.”

By necessity they were on a four year tour of duty. It took too long to get to Titan to make the time on base any shorter. Two years went by and in a schedule that put them together every two weeks, Carl and LeAnn were again on duty together.

“Look,” Carl pointed at his monitor. “A ship is coming in.”

LeAnn looked up from her monitor where she was making notes in the log. “Can’t be. The supply ship isn’t due for another two weeks.” She got up.

“I know that,” Carl said, “but it looks like an incoming ship to me.”

LeAnn leaned over his shoulder to peer at the screen. “It’s coming from sun-ward, that’s for sure.” She went back to her desk, changed her monitor to pick up the signal from Carl and keyed her mike. “Unidentified ship, this is Titan Base Herschel, please identify yourself.”

Carl turned to stare at her. “It’ll take a few minutes. Shouldn’t we call the Captain?”

“And tell him what?”

He shrugged. “I don’t know. Just seems like he should be informed.”

“Give it a minute, Carl.” LeAnn tapped her fingernail on the desk. She turned to a second monitor and pulled up the records from the last supply ship. Tapping the screen she scrolled to the record of the last ship’s approach to the base. The flight path traced from Earth, on its nearest rotation around the sun to Titan. The path in a blue dotted line made an arc, directly between Earth and Titan. Carl got up and stood behind her.

She tapped a command into the first screen and a dotted red line traced out behind the mystery ship, a record of its path since the computer first noticed it. LeAnn blinked. “It’s not from Earth.”

“Crap.” Carl dashed back to his seat and began a staccato tapping on his keyboard. “I’m extrapolating the path backward,” he told her. “It, uh, looks like it slipped in around Uranus and is sling-shotting toward us.” He whipped his chair around. “It’s alien.”

LeAnn hit the button to call the Captain. “We’ve got aliens on approach,” she said when he answered.

“I’ll be right there.”

Three minutes later he and Dr. Gifford, lead scientist, burst through the door. “Where is it?” Captain Brooks skidded to a stop beside her.

LeAnn pointed at her screen, the red-dotted path now longer. “I sent a call out eight minutes ago.”

“Why?” Dr. Gifford asked as he pulled his glasses off and wiped them as he stared at the screen.

“We thought it was the supply run, early.”

The speakers came to life. A thin, reedy voice nearly drowned in static came through, “Herschel Base, this is the Atamattal ship Thahhsskkt, on approach to the moon you call Titan.”

The Doctor stopped polishing his glasses mid-stroke.

The Captain grabbed the headset from LeAnn and jammed them on his head. “Thassktt,” he mangled the word. “What is your purpose?”

“Annual holiday,” the crew heard over the static. “We come here every fifty of your years.”

Captain Brooks stared at the Doctor.

The Doctor shrugged. “Must be a pretty cold species to vacation on Titan. Ask if they’ve been to Earth?”

The Captain did that.

“No, the third planet is too hot for us. Our people have been picking up your transmissions for a hundred years, so we can communicate with you. We’ll be setting down at the northern pole. The lakes are beautiful this time of year.”

“Uh, we’re happy to meet you, Thassktt.”

Two days later, a team went to speak with the aliens. The alien ship was settled on a rock outcropping and the human shuttle landed beside it. The shuttle commander and Dr. Gifford stared. There, on the so called beach, were six dragons of varying sizes. “Must be children,” Gifford pointed at two of the smallest who were throwing pawsful of the petrochemical mist at each other.

The largest dragon turned at the sound of the shuttle and spread wings, taking off in a down blast that sent smog whirling in all directions. It landed in front of the shuttle and peered in through the windows. “Sorry you can’t join us,” it said through the glass, “too cold for you.” It sighed. “It’s too bad, we love this moon but I suppose now that your species is here, we’ll have to find another vacation spot.”

“Not for a long time yet,” Gifford said. “We’d like to share cultures with you.”

The dragon nodded. “We get that all the time. An official delegation is needed, you know. It’s not for the likes of me to talk but thanks for the offer. I’ll make a report when I get home.”

He turned and rejoined his family. No amount of coaxing would get him to talk again.

Back at base, Captain Brooks made his report to Earth. The long wait began.


The End

985 Words

Find more of the Forward Motion Flash Friday Group here: http://www.fmwriters.com/flash.html

Before Christmas Chaos

It’s been crazy at my house, as I’m suspecting it’s been crazy at yours.  December is a month full of expectations. Some of my own expectations have been met, but not exactly as I envisioned. First, let me say, I make my own greeting cards. Christmas cards especially. This year, I just could not get it together. My idea for this year’s cards started well and went downhill in a hurry. I still have the snowflake cutouts, but it will take a long time and an exacto knife to make them come out right. Back-up plan, use the Christmas cards I’ve been stashing for years. I had just enough. Whew.

Next, making candy. When I was first diagnosed with Celiac my life went upside down. What? No Queen Anne Chocolate Covered Cordials? Pretty much any candy on the market at that time was totally forbidden. Too filled with gluten for me to eat. I started making my own, candy that is. Truffles, peanut butter cups, peppermint patties and toffee. For awhile I made chocolate covered cherries but you need a mold for that and the off the shelf molds at the candy stores broke on me so often that I just gave up. It doesn’t matter. I get my candy fix at Christmas and it’s delicious. So, I managed to get my candy making done and boxed up with other gifts and sent to recipients not only on time but early. The project manager part of me loves that.

Outside of the house is decorated, inside is decorated, gifts mailed, gifts under the tree. So what’s to stress about? My hubby’s birthday is the 21st. The house needs to be cleaned and the back yard does too. Part of the celebration is a fire in the fire pit. Yay! Worse, that was my idea. Sigh. Luckily we have a stretch of nice weather starting today and I’ll be able to get those square foot garden beds cleaned up and the back yard looking good for Saturday’s festivities.

So, I’ve got a lot to do this week. That includes writing, of course. On the 18th my turn at December’s Merry Go Round Blog tour comes up. I have a Chuck Wendig challenge, number four of five to complete, and on Friday, there will be a Friday Flash Fiction. I’m behind on my 2 Year Novel Course. I’m hoping after the 21st, I’ll have time to catch up on that. I’m also slaving away on my novel, A New Start. This is the first of my four novel series about Gulliver Station, a SciFi series about a space station. I’m working toward an end of January release for the first book. Stay tuned. Will I make it?

If you’re still looking for a Christmas gift, check out my Christmas Tales. Links are below. In each of those markets you can find my other books as well. Hope you enjoy.


Don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter where you’ll get first dibs on any promotions, book announcements, and other information. Go to the button on the right side of the blog or go to my Newsletter tab to sign up. http://conniesrandomthoughts.us7.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=8c24bb15bdf9245512f722298&id=0a097feea0

I have an in depth interview on my Smashwords Author page. You can read it here: https://www.smashwords.com/interview/conniecockrell  Don’t see information about me you’d like to know? Leave me your question in my comments and I’ll try to answer it.

Christmas Tales released November 17th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy at: Apple (iTunes), Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Amazon or Smashwords today!


Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/christmas-tales/id761282885?mt=11Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/christmas-tales-3

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Tales-Connie-Cockrell/dp/1494200570/ref=la_B009O6199C_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1385963121&sr=1-4

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/christmas-tales-connie-cockrell/1117497310?ean=9781494200572

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/christmas-tales-3

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/379010

Chuck Wendig’s 5 week Challenge Part 2: A Million Cats

I’m participating in a 5 week challenge by Chuck Wendig. The first week I wrote a 200 word story start. You can see it in last weeks blog post.

I sorted through the many fantastic story starts and chose one by Rebecca Douglas. Here’s the link to her blog: http://www.ninjalibrarian.com/2013/11/wendig-challenge-first-200-words.html

My task is to write a 2nd 200 words, moving the story forward. See Chuck’s site, http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/11/29/flash-fiction-challenge-200-words-at-a-time-part-two/ to get this week’s rules.

I’m keeping the title Rebecca gave the story so we all have some way to refer to it. So, here’s Rebecca’s start and my addition.

Millions of Cats Part 1 by Rebecca Douglass
November 26, 2013 at 11:52 PM //

Things never worked out according to plan when there were cats involved. I knew that, and I should have known better than to take the job. Either don’t try to plan or stay far from cats, and I knew which would have been better for me. But Keelan made it all sound so easy: we just had to pick up the consignment from Alpha-Centauri 4 and take them to Exilion 17. Four days, max, and two of them in hyperspace.

“What could go wrong?” I should really have run when Keelan said that, because you know as well as I do that anytime those words are uttered you should run, very fast, in the opposite direction.

Unfortunately, we needed cash, and the cat people had it. So we went and picked up the load of cats.

That was where the trouble first began. They were supposed to be crated, sedated, and ready to be picked up by fork lift and stowed in the cargo hold. But when we arrived, a team of cat-wranglers was still chasing them around a pen. We had to wait an extra three days for all of them to be properly prepared for flight.

Part 2: 2nd 200 words Connie Cockrell
Now we were late. We hadn’t started and penalties were being assessed. “Don’t worry,” Keelan said. “There’ll still be plenty of credits. We’ll be able to pay off the bank as soon as we get to Exilion 17.”

I knew better, Murphy’s Law was in full effect. We loaded the crated cats and took off. The first day we built up to hyperspace speed and cleared the solar system. I hit the button. Nothing happened. I stared at Keelan. “I’ll fix it.” He unstrapped. I grunted in reply. He pulled the cover off of the panel after I got up to get some tea. He was tracing the wiring when I came back, cup steaming.

“Got it.” He held up a burnt wire. “I’ll just reconnect the two ends and we’ll be on our way.”

I knew what he meant. He was going to twist the ends together and tape it. I’m supposed to trust my life to that? “What if it fries again? We’ll never get out of hyperspace.”

“No, no,” he mumbled as he twisted the wires. “This will be fine. We’ll get it fixed the right way when we get to Exilion 17.”

Halloween Tales Release Day!

Halloween Tales, is released today, September 30th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy at: Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Amazon or Smashwords today!


Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/halloween-tales-a-collection-of-stories

Barnes and Noble: Not showing when I looked but search on Connie Cockrell

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Halloween-Tales-Collection-Connie-Cockrell/dp/1492783072/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1380515780&sr=1-2&keywords=Halloween+Tales

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/359689

Apple: Not found when I looked.

Here’s a snippet from the book. This time from the story Rats.

“Have you ever seen anything like it?” Alex Monroe asked. “I shot it last night, getting into my chicken house.”

Albert Wayne nudged the dead body on the ground with his toe. “It looks like a rat.” He took off his Animal Control hat and scratched his head. “But I’ve never seen a rat the size of a beagle before.”

“Look at the teeth. No wonder I’m losing chickens. Where did it come from?”

Albert took a plastic bag out of the back of his pick-up. “I don’t know.” He scooped the body up with the bag and tied it shut. “I’ll take it to the lab in the capital. They’ll do some tests.” He dropped the bag in the back of the truck.

Alex walked to the door of the truck and the two men shook hands. “Call me, will ya, when ya find out? If there are more of these things, I want to be prepared.”

You can get the rest of Rats and 4 other stories starting today. Enjoy!

After the Fair

I’m exhausted.

The fair ended on Sunday with a whimper. Well, a thunderstorm and then a whimper.

After spending at least 12 hours a day since September 3rd working on it and on my feet for pretty much the entire time, a thunderstorm at Sunday noontime washed it out.

All of the vendors fled at the storm. No food or other vendors were left at all. My daughter volunteered her time to sell fair T-Shirts. When the storm hit she was under a canopy in the vendor area while I was in the exhibits tent. While I was scrambling with the rest of the volunteers to rescue exhibits from the flood of water cascading into the tent on all sides, I worried about my daughter in an open sided canopy with the rain drumming down.

I texted her. “Are you OK?”

She replied. “Yeah. The funnel cake people are leaving.”

What could I say? “OK.”

As soon as the rain let up a little, I grabbed a cart and ran to her spot. She was huddled in the middle of the canopy’s area, box of T-Shirts on the table beside her. As far out of the rain and rain splash as she could get, she was playing a game on her phone, feet propped up on the second chair out of the stream of water flowing through her area. I grabbed the box and put it on the cart, draping a borrowed rain jacket over the T-shirts. She headed for her car and I pushed the T-shirt box back to the exhibits tent. What a great daughter.

Also, major kudos to the volunteers. No one gave up. We stayed the rest of the afternoon. Wonders! We still had fair goers! They came, a couple at a time all afternoon between showers. How marvelous. Undeterred by a little precipitation, they came out to see the Zane Grey Award winning miniature garden, the prize winning photographs and my favorite, a junior entry collection of miniature cat figurines. The young girl who brought it in had put the collection in a bird cage with miniature birds perched on the outside of the cage. I couldn’t resist the humor of the entry.

This is what a county fair is all about. It showcase’s the tremendous amount of talent in the area. The fair is also, well, a repository, or an homage to the skills needed to support ourselves through life. Skills in feeding ourselves by crop raising, gardening, cooking, canning, and baking. Skills in clothing ourselves or in making necessities with such skills as sewing, quilting, wood working, or using cast offs to make new items are demonstrated. Then there’s the art. Really! So many artistic people submit entries!

You might have intuited by now that I love the fair. I cannot tell you how many people came through the exhibits and exclaimed, “I never thought of doing that!” This is exactly what the fair is meant to do. It spreads ideas on new ways of doing things. Attendees search out new varieties of plants. (New this year in the gardening section was Bitter Melon. It created quite a stir.) There are of course the bragging rights. My jam is the best. My cake was the lightest. My photograph was the best. I’m growing the newest variety of tomato.

Monetarily the exhibitor doesn’t make any money. Even if the jam maker gets a blue ribbon, she’s spent more money on the jam than she gets back in prize money.  But that’s not the point. The point is to share. That’s why many times an entry requires an explanation or a recipe. Prize winners will stand by their entry and tell others how they grew the plant, techniques they used to take the photo, equipment and skills they used to make the rocking horse. And we haven’t even touched on the livestock area of the fair!

The fair is about expanding the knowledge base of the local community. It’s about widening the expertise of the population. The Northern Gila County Fair is scheduled for the first weekend of September every year. When is your county fair? What skill can you share with your community? Visit your fair. You’ll be amazed at what you will find and every year is different.

Just a reminder, my latest book, Recall, is on Amazon.com at http://www.amazon.com/Recall-Connie-Cockrell/dp/1484886224/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1375657368&sr=1-2

Flash Fiction Friday: Not a Normal Evening

My son-in-law posted this in raw form on his facebook page. He was kind enough to let me borrow it. I’ve cleaned it up a bit, tightened the wording, and made it exactly 100 words long, yep, a drabble.  Enjoy.

Not A Normal Evening

I was talking with my neighbor, Dan, about the price of bottled cat urine in Croatia, when a Wookie burst through the wall of my apartment and demanded all of my post-it notes. Not the small ones either, the regular size ones. Dan began to hyperventilate. He’s never been one to deal well with unexpected alien arrivals. I gave the Wookie the two pads in my possession. He wasn’t very happy, of course, but he left without doing much more damage. I poured Dan a shot of whisky and started calling emergency handymen. That wall wasn’t going to fix itself.

The End

100 Words

Find more of the Forward Motion Flash Friday Group here:http://www.fmwriters.com/flash.html

Flash Fiction Friday: Can’t Come In Today

This story was generated during an exercise as part of the Holly Lisle How to Write Flash Fiction That Doesn’t Suck class. This idea caught my fancy. Here’s the finished product.

Can’t Come In Today

“Mike, I can’t come in today. There’s a monster coming up the valley toward my house!” I nearly shouted into the phone. Melinda pulled the phone away from her ear. Sirens and sounds of automatic gunfire came in through the open window. “Mike, I’ve got to go. Now!” She punched the off button and tossed the phone on the table. She ran over to her husband, peering out of the front door. “What’s happening?”

Dave shook his head. “I don’t know.” He held up a hand, “Listen!”

The forested valley kept them from seeing what was going on but they could hear a horrible shrieking coming from the creek bed.  The phone rang. Melinda grabbed it from the table.

“Mom! What’s the police scanner say?” She put her hand over the mouthpiece. “Dave, she says the National Guard is trying to stop the monster but it’s pushing right through them. It’s headed this way.” She uncovered the mouthpiece, “Thanks, Mom.” Ending the call she carried the phone with her back to the front door. “Should we evacuate?”

“Where can we go? The roads are blocked.” He left the door and ran to the bedroom.

More shrieking and gunfire rang out. The tops of the trees began waving, “Dave, I think it’s coming!”

Running back, his .22 rifle was in his hands.

“That’s not going to be any good if the Army’s weapons aren’t stopping it.”

He loaded the rifle. “It’s all I’ve got.”

They saw it break through the trees. Melinda gasped. The monster was more snake-like than she expected. Green scales covered its’ body and short legs carried it up the creek bank. It raised its’ long neck and opening it’s huge mouth, gave another roar. It walked up the road, National Guard soldiers circling around to get in front of it. Two helicopters flew overhead, adding to the noise and confusion.

“It’s headed right for us!” Melinda shouted over the noise. She ran to the back door, Dave right behind her. Too late. The monster was coming around the end of the house. They slammed the door shut, peeking out of the morning room window at the beast. It began digging in the hillside behind the house, sod and bushes flying through the air. Soldiers surrounded the house, several coming in the front door.

“Get down!” they yelled.

Dave and Melinda ignored them. The monster was continuing to dig. Now sand was flying in every direction. The commander came up behind them. “You have to get away from the window!”

“Look!” Melinda pointed. “I think it’s digging a nest.”

Moments later the monster backed into the hole it had dug. Giant eggs fell into the sand. The commander ordered cease fire on his radio. Watching the monster cover its’ eggs with sand, he ordered his troops to fall back. They escorted it all the way back to the lake.

Melinda called her boss. “I quit. I’ve got eggs to hatch.”

The End

492 Words

Find more of the Forward Motion Flash Friday Group here:http://www.fmwriters.com/flash.html

Flash Fiction Friday – Plot Bunnies

I got this idea the other night while talking on a chat site with other writers.

Plot Bunnies

Generations ago, aliens came to our Earth.  We didn’t notice because they didn’t use space ships.  They drifted through space, in a migration away from a world where creativity had died.  They were the last of their kind, gossamer beings held together with thin bonds of static charge.  Driven purely by instinct, they migrated toward energy, the creative energy that young races generate.  It was their food and without it, they would surely go extinct.

They fell gently, slowly through the atmosphere, their negligible weight allowing them to enter without burning up.  Drifting along with the wind, they found food, all around the planet there was creative energy everywhere.  Each alien found a being generating energy but they were too big, too solid to connect with however near those beings were constructs more like them.

Small, gentle sparks of life, the beings called them dust bunnies.  They grew near the beings that generated the energy.  Little conglomerations of dust, hair, dander and mold, they were beautiful and the aliens loved them.

Soon the matings between the aliens and the dust bunnies created new life, plot bunnies.  They too fed on creative energy and the young left their parental homes and attracted by new energy, found homes of their own.

Sally Lowe was a new writer.  She’d dabbled for years but now, she felt she couldn’t stand it anymore and began to write seriously.  She took a creative writing class in the local community college and discovered a whole underground community of like-minded souls, all focused on putting word to paper.  Sally had an idea for a story, and every evening after work, she went to the tiny second bedroom in her apartment, and tried to put her thoughts down on paper.

The nearest unattached plot bunnies noticed the uptick in creative energy and a few found their way to her house.  Settling in the dead space between her desk and the wall, they fed on her energy as she built her first book, word by painful word.

Full and happy, they started sending her ideas, some she used immediately in her book, some she wrote down in her notebook, to use later.  The more ideas they sent the more creative energy she produced until she began to become fearful with so many ideas, asking herself questions like; what if no one likes my work?  She began to doubt herself and blocked the ideas.  Her energy generation fell off and the plot bunnies grew concerned.

They slowed the idea flow down and sent only little ideas, happy ideas.  She recovered her confidence and finished her novel, sending it off to publishers and began a new book right away.  The plot bunnies relaxed, they’d found the right rhythm with their being and settled in for the long haul.

They felt safe.  Happy, creative writer beings almost never clean behind things, they’re too busy writing.  The plot bunnies began reproducing and sending little bunnies out into the world.  Sally wrote novel after novel and soon, publishers began selling her work.  She made good money and never let anyone into her little office.

The plot bunnies and Sally Lowe lived happily ever after.

The end

529 words

Find more of the Forward Motion Flash Friday Group here: http://www.fmwriters.com/flash.html