Attention Writers! An exciting opportunity for you has arisen!

Open Call.

Are you a writer, young, old, of an indeterminate age? Have you been published, want to be published, have a little story tickling your mind, or sitting in a drawer? Then send me your story. I will be sharing them on this blog in weekly increments.  They will be published featuring your name or pen name. Don’t be shy everyone can apply!

This is your chance.

Make it fun, exciting, pg 13 max, and all yours. Send me your story, your bio, your picture today! I want you to be featured.  You can become a Featured Fun Guest Post on the Page Turner.

Be read. 

I promise you will be seen by more people here, than if the manuscript is hiding in your trusty notebook or desk drawer.  This is your hour to be published. I will promote you,  on Twitter, Google plus, Pinterest, and Facebook. I will also give you the links to promote yourself. There is an opportunity to be reblogged. Reblogging happens on occasion and then you will be seen by even more amazing readers.

Contact me.

Want to take me up on this offer?  Then send me a message or a story and bio to vicgoodwin@gmail.com  Place “Guest Post” as your topic and then let’s discuss your day in the sun.  I will keep the story up for as long as I have this blog. I think I will always have this blog, as I am rather chatty.

Details: 

A short story in any genre that is PG 13.  Any word count over 350. Any topic that you want.  Make it humorous, touching, mysterious, romantic, personal, fiction, nonfiction, or anecdotal.  Basically, almost anything goes.  Don’t forget the pictures to compliment your story if applicable.

Become a repeat writer.

Contact me today and have your stories featured. Yes, you read correctly. I will post more than one of your stories in non-consecutive weeks. See some examples of the stories featured so far here in our newest opportunity.

Join in the Fun!

Make both of us happy! You and I are out to share some amazing stories. Get on board!!!

The Revisit of Arizona Highways by Sojourner McConnell

 

Revisiting the Arizona Highways

My grandmother, Mama Kate, always had copies of the magazine Arizona Highways on her coffee table and in her magazine racks. It was one of those magazines that she taught me you never tossed out. It was the magazine I could look through time and again. The sky was different than the ones we had back home in Alabama. The colors were more vivid and the clouds stood taller in the sky.

A November Desert Sky

The one thing that always stood out to me was the Reds. The reds of the dirt, the red of the Grand Canyon and the reds of the sunsets. The towering white clouds edged in red, contrasting with the turquoise sky between. Now I realize the photographer took the pictures of those tall massive clouds because they were rare.

In my mind that was Arizona. Arizona was a state with places like the Indian Children’s School on Indian School road. This was the school that my grandparents supported with financial donations all while I was growing up and we would receive little Indian dolls. These dolls were the gift my grandmother received for her devotion to the little school that helped the Indian children learn English, math, and science. As an adult, I have learned that they were not all happy to be here, but my grandparents helped both out of the goodness of their hearts and the faith in the beliefs of the times.
These memories provided the components in my mind that made Arizona special.

Today all those emotions and memories came flooding back when I saw a woman that had taken the time to get out of her car on the side of the busy four lane road during rush hour traffic in order to take pictures of the sky. The towering glimmering white clouds with the little touches of turquoise between were demanding attention.

Oh, did I mention the reds? Because each massive white cloud had just the faintest hint of red.

At that moment in my mind, I had just sat down on the floor with my back propped up against the cold marble coffee table with my grandmother’s Arizona Highways magazine propped against my knees. Turning the pages and dreaming of the day I could see this for myself. Forty years later, I am on that very road.

I remember this exact cover. Mama Kate kept her Arizona Magazines stacked in neat piles all her life. 

Today, I found myself wishing that I too could pull over on Indian School Road in Phoenix, to watch the sunset melt into the ribbons of red. It was then I realized I am living my own issue of Mama Kate’s Arizona Highways magazine.

 

As an aside:

I am sharing this story as a reprint,  as I wrote it several years back while living in Arizona.  I was thrilled that Arizona Highways shared it on their WordPress site several years ago. My love for the reds of Arizona has not diminished. Neither have the emotions that the reds conjure.

Life Lessons from the Little Intelligent Rooster by Sojourner McConnell

My grandparents lived in the suburbs of Birmingham Alabama when I was small. Once my grandfather retired from the steel mill they relocated to Mt. Olive, Alabama. This was the town they had lived when they were children and where they both lived during the time that they met and married. My grandparents chose to get a few banty hens and one little rooster to have for their retirement home. The rooster they named Bobby, and he freely roamed the yard daily checking on his hens.

Continue reading “Life Lessons from the Little Intelligent Rooster by Sojourner McConnell”

Anti -Scammer Advice for the lovelorn ;)

scammer-101

Let’s consider this anti-scammer 101.

I will be your teacher as I have found that scammers love me on Twitter.

They are military men that love to reach out because they love my profile picture. (Red flag # 1)

They love to read and find my blog posts fascinating (perhaps red flag #2)

These men are highly educated and are at least Majors or Generals.  (Red Flag #3)

These military minded men are also based in many areas of the world doing humanitarian work for me, Ms. Joni Q Public. ( I admit that one always gets me. )

Continue reading “Anti -Scammer Advice for the lovelorn ;)”

31 Days of October: A Haunting Collection of Hallowe’en Tales

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  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publication Date: September 29, 2016
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01LZO325X

The anthology has been published and is available on Amazon in paperback and on Kindle just in time for the Halloween season.

I was fortunate enough to be involved in an anthology with a wonderful writers group on Goodreads. At the first of the year, an announcement went out that Writers 750 group was planning to release a book of short stories based on Halloween, things that make you shiver, and things that go bump in the night. Basically a good old fashioned scary story book. It was fun to allow myself to write in a genre that I had never broached before. I was able to write two stories that will be in the upcoming book. There are 33 stories and 23 authors involved in the project. If you are interested in joining a group that puts together books like this, then join us on goodreads.com. The group Writers 750 is an active and very creative group.

There are several different types of stories, some for every age bracket. Even some in the back portion that will frighten you and keep you up at night! If you like ghosts, creatures, and good scary stories, this might be a collection you will want to sink your teeth into, but beware, it might bite back!

31 Days of October
A Haunting Collection Of Hallowe’en Tales
Edited by Glenda Reynolds, Shae Hamrick, and Stephanie Baskerville
Featuring:

  • Terry Turner
  • Lena M. Pate
  • Glenda Reynolds
  • Lisa M. Collins
  • Andy McKell
  • Lynette White
  • C. Baely
  • Mary Ross
  • Cora Bhatia
  • Mirta Oliva
  • db Martin
  • Rebecca Lacy
  • Elaine Faber
  • Elizabeth Ann Boyles
  • David Russell
  • Shae Hamrick
  • Gene Hilgreen
  • Linda L.Taylor
  • J. Rene Young
  • Sojourner McConnell
  • Joe Stanley
  • Stephanie Baskerville
  • Christene Brion-Jones

This is my first anthology and I am so excited to have 2 short stories included. I hope you will enjoy the stories as much as I have. 31 Days of October is listed on Goodreads and is available in paperback and Kindle format by clicking the link below.

| KindleUnlimited | Amazon | 

The Difference a Day Makes by Sojourner McConnell

Pushing the window up the teenage girl watched as her cat strolled in as calm and proper as you please. Carrie brushed her hand down the tawny cats back and gently pat the end of his tail.  The cat leaned forward and brushed his nose against Carrie’s face before jumping off the sill and crossing the room.

Carrie lowered the window and went back to her bed. Now she should be able to concentrate on the book she was reading without the cat mouthing “meow” at the window.  Buster the cat had always been such a drama queen of a cat. He would stand just out of reach and mouth “meow” as if he were too weak from hunger to ask for food.

Carrie had owned the cat for the last four years and they were so bonded that Carrie felt that he knew all her secret feelings and fears that she told no one else about.  In fact Carrie had sung secret songs to Buster soft enough that he alone could hear. Carrie was always sharing her deepest innermost secrets and feelings with the green eyed companion.

Busters climbed across the dresser and over to the night stand where he batted at the pen that was lying beside her journal. The lamp s circle of light gave Buster a place to warm himself under the bulb. He always laid on this night stand and watched as Carrie carefully noted her days events and creative ideas that she remembered from the day.

Carrie had started writing in her journal at the start of ninth grade when her literature teacher had suggested it.  That was two years ago and now it was just part of her daily schedule.  She could not sleep well if she didn’t at least try before sleeping.  Tonight was no different and she began to jot down her feelings about the family outing.

Today had started as most weekend mornings did, with pancakes and chocolate milk.  She hated milk so her mother accommodated her with the chocolaty treat in order to keep the peace.  Carrie had been so stubborn in her dislike over milk that she and her mother had come almost to blows. Not a good way to start the day, so they came to a compromise, chocolate for peace. It seemed to be working well for everyone.

Once the breakfast treat was past the family jumped into the SUV and headed to the local pool.  Mom had packed the SUV early this morning and so there were floats for the little ones and lots of soda and snacks in the cooler for them all.

Dad and Mom stayed close to the twins, since they were only five years old and allowed Carrie to hang out in the deeper end of the pool without too much interference.  She knew how to swim and besides, she mostly hung around on the edge of the pool with her legs dangling is so that she could see and be seen by her friends as they entered the enclosed pool area.  Carrie knew the moment Trenton entered the pool’s eight foot gate. It is like radar when he is close. She can feel him before she ever sees him.

She wasn’t sure if he felt the same, I mean he never spoke to her or acknowledged her in any over the top way. He sometimes slid a little smile that only she could see. It was enough for her to know that he was interested, even if only a little.  That was enough for her.

Carrie pushed the sunglasses down to her nose and felt comfortable that her eyes were now covered well enough by the dark tint that she could freely watch him as long as she did not turn her head too much. So her eyes cut to the left and watched him as he strode past her and planted himself somewhat near her and dangled his feet in the water right at the seven foot marker.

If he had wanted to he could have reached out and touched her with his fingertips.  He did not seem to want to at this moment Carrie realized.  He seemed content to sit close without speaking to her or acknowledging her overtly.

Carrie acted cool about the near contact and stared down at the water so that he couldn’t see her watch him out of the corner of her sunglasses. That would have been so embarrassing, if he had noticed her peeking over at him like that.  So she stared into the water and pretended that she could not see his handsome face reflected there in front of her.  As she watched the image would ripple in and out of focus and she squinted to make it clearer.  She smiled.  No one knew what she could see.

Suddenly she was looking at his profile, shimmering in the water. He was looking at her. Directly with his head turned at a right angle against his shoulders, he was looking at her.

She felt her face become warm and hoped that he would think she was just getting too much sun. She did not want him to know she was blushing.  She fought with herself not to look up at him, but she failed.

She could not resist turning her own face toward him. She wasn’t made of stone, who could resist that?  She fought to keep the silly grin that was threatening to appear at bay. He didn’t need to see that too.  She needed some secrets. She couldn’t be an open book to him.  But no matter what she told herself, she could feel that grin splitting apart her lips and growing into a full blown smile.

Gah, Carrie…really? Stop this!  Look cool, look casual.

Blinking once, twice and then a third time before widening her eyes and looking directly into those green eyes of his, she acknowledged his glaze.

She did not say a word; she only looked at him, breathing slow and steady waiting to see what he had to say to her.  She waited to see why he had turned so blatantly toward her, in public no less.

“Hi Carrie, Are you going in today? Or just sitting on the edge?”

Carrie blushed, she knew she did, she could feel the heat of her cheeks flaming. Swallowing hard she bit her bottom lip and said, “ I am going to go in later, right now I am just enjoying the sun on my back. Are you going in?”

Carrie felt that was a good response. She mentally congratulated herself for her cool calm demeanor.  She looked at his mouth as she saw that he was about to speak. She licked her lips as she waited for him to respond.

“I am going in, I just wanted to know if you would hold my watch if you were not swimming today.  I will stick it in a locker instead.” He laughed then said, “I am just kidding, I was wondering if you wanted to swim with me. I have wanted to ask you for a while, just didn’t have the nerve.”

Carrie started laughing, first out of shock then out of genuine humor at his behavior.  He was funny, she knew that already.  What she did not know was that he was shy about girls and now he wanted to hang out with her.

She stood up and walked down to the steps and waded into the pool.  Trenton stood and followed her stepping into the shallow water at the same time.   Slowly they waded into the deeper area before Carrie dipped under the water getting acclimated to the chilly water.  Trenton dipped down beside her and started swimming toward the deeper end.  She followed doing an underwater crawl until they both came to a halt at the ten foot mark.  There they held onto the side and began to talk.

For the next three hours they told each other about their families, pets and school histories. Both had been hesitant to start but after they started they had plenty to say to each other over those hours.  When Carrie’s Mom called her to come get a drink, snack and some more sun block, she asked Trenton to join her.  He surprised her by accepting. He again surprised her by being comfortable and friendly with her parents and little sisters.

At the picnic table they both pulled out their phones and exchanged numbers so that they could continue to talk in text.

As she was writing about this in her journal, she realized this was the first time a guy had shown such interest in her, and she really liked it.  It made her feel special. She never expected today to go like this in a million years and now that it had, she wanted more days just like this one.

As Carrie  closed her journal for the night,  she heard the little ping from her phone. She looked over and was thrilled to see that it was a text from Trenton.

Yes, she was going to have more days just like today, and she couldn’t wait.

 

 

 

 

 

Dragon Bones by Sojourner McConnell

Dragon bones? Are you sure you heard that right?”

I wasn’t falling for some silly Internet prank if I could help it. I wasn’t born yesterday so I wanted to have all the facts laid out in front of me before I believed this news and started passing it along as I was prone to do. Not that I blab everything I hear, I probably don’t do that. Ok, so sometimes I do pass along interesting tidbits.

Katie nodded solemnly, “I am positive, I saw the bones on YouTube and they were real. It is just a skull but it has all the ingredients of a dragon. Pointed nose, pointed horns on its head. It was a dragon.”

“Hmm… I am going to look for myself and make sure.” I reached for the laptop and pulled it into my lap. Clicking the icons and waiting for the screen to load I asked Katie a few more questions, just for my own peace of mind.

“Was it anywhere else other than YouTube? You know people play pranks on YouTube with homemade videos, don’t you? I continued to type in the words dragon bones into the search bar and waited.

“Yes, Amelia, I know that people play pranks on there, but this is true. I even saw the cover of National Geographic with a picture of the dragon. It doesn’t get any more real than that.” Katie formed quotation marks with her fingers as she spoke the last few words.

I did feel more confident once she produced the name  National Geographic. Although I was a bit annoyed at her use of the quotation marks. They always made me feel like I was being made fun of when she used them.

“Ahh here we go, hmm… I don’t see anything that would be like what you said. There is nothing about a dragon bones being found.”

“Did you put in Dracorex Hogwartia? I think that is how you say it.” Katie leaned over and watched the screen as I typed in a rough spelling of what she had said. The screen flickered for a moment then a revised response came up featuring the results for Dracorex Hogwartsia complete with images and links.

“There! See!” Katie was practically jumping up and down on the cushion next to me on the sofa.

“I see it; hold on let me click the link. Be still you are going to break the sofa. Then where will Sasha sleep?”

Sasha raised her head from her paws and gave an annoyed look, then she yawned and wagged her tail in a jerking motion. I wasn’t sure if she was more annoyed with the bouncing or my saying her name. She just looked completely annoyed as only a cat can.

I looked back down at the video that had finished loading and had started playing. The first thing I heard was that they had found a skull in North Dakota and it was an almost complete skull and several vertebrae intact. The skull had the thin narrow face of a dragon and had prominent horns and spikes. Plus there were bony deposits that formed scales. This thing had all the facial features of a freaking dragon!

My breath caught and I squealed into Katie’s face. “Oh my goodness, it is real!”

Katie pointed back to the screen. “Look, see, I told you, National Geographic!”

I looked over and there it was, a man sitting in front of the dragon skull holding a copy of National Geographic that happened to have that same skull on the cover. A smile crossed my face as I watched them discussing the eating habits and the fact that this dragon, dinosaur lived on what at their time was seashore. The scientist even explained that at this period in history the ocean went straight through the United States because the oceans were higher since there were no ice packs at that time.

Both of us were utterly quiet as we listened to the dinosaur expert explaining about this dinosaur that looked so much like a dragon.

“I owe you an apology” I acknowledged after the Director of the Dinosaur museum finished talking. I shook my head in disbelief. “If I had not seen it for myself, I never would have believed it. You were right.” I told her then I muttered, “for once.”

Katie rolled her eyes and blurted out, “I am always right. You just always have to try to prove me wrong. This time, you failed!” She pointed both thumbs back at her chest. “Winner!”

Sasha stood up arched her back and hopped off the couch, even she had had enough. Katie and I both rolled our eyes at her.

Dracorex Hogwartsia