Supporting Friends Friday: Mariella Hunt’s Serialized Novella

Readers my recall an edition of Supporting Friends Friday dedicated to Mariella Hunt, an Idaho-based author who also dabbles in cute water colors of birds.

Before she started painting birds, Mariella was a writer—a prolific one, at that.  I discovered her first through her paintings, through Andrea the Ilustrator’s blog, but have come to appreciate and enjoy her writing as well.

Mariella is a talented non-fiction writer, but her real passion is fiction.  She tells me that she is hoping to make a living as a freelance writer, and is currently publishing her novella The Sea Rose via Amazon’s Kindle Vella service.

Kindle Vella allows authors to release stories serially, in short little doses or chapters, much the way much of Charles Dickens’s work was published.

I’ve read the first chapter of The Sea Rose, and it’s good—really good.  I am eagerly awaiting the second chapter (which should be available by the time you read this post!).

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Supporting Friends Friday: H.L. Liptak’s “Just Another Slow Day at the Diner”

Regular readers know I love short stories, and dedicate an entire week in April to reviewing them.  I love them even more when my friends write them—and receive rewards for doing so!

My former colleague and current friend Helen Liptak has done just that, taking runner-up in a recent short story contest for Funny Pearls, a British humo(u)r website dedicated to publishing women writers.  She won the prize (and, as she told me, some pounds) for her story “Just Another Slow Day at the Diner.”

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Lazy Sunday CXXXVIII: Friends, Part V

Another month has passed, meaning I have three more editions of Supporting Friends Friday to bring back to your attention.  Coming on the heels of yet another Bandcamp Friday sales pitch, it only seems fitting to go in the other direction and highlight friends, rather than my self-indulgent work.

So, without further ado, here are some writers you should check out:

  • Supporting Friends Friday: Whipped Owl” – Whipped Owl is a blogger from New England who appears to have gotten started in September of this year, and has since been churning out posts frequently.  He describes himself as a writer, musician, historian, sportsman, and loner, and his recent posts attest to some of these qualities:  he has a band, Blabpipe; he writes book reviews of historical works; and every Monday he reviews heavy metal bands.  He also writes quite a bit of poetry.  Check him out!
  • Supporting Friends Friday: Helen Liptak” – Mrs. Liptak is a former colleague of mine, and she is a lively writer (and teacher!).  She recently published a piece of fiction  entitled “The Vicar or the View,” and the story is indicative of her charming, engaging writing style.
  • Supporting Friends Friday: Son of Sonnet” – Son of Sonnet is a poet friend of mine who writes, well, sonnets.  His work will now be featured on this blog the first and third Wednesdays of the month (you can read his first contribution here).  His sonnets are subtle, insightful, and biting.  Some readers detect a certain noted of cynicism in them.  Perhaps.  What I do know is that they’re quite good.

Well, that’s it for another Lazy Sunday.  Happy Sunday!

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

Improving Christian Fiction

I stumbled upon the psychotherapist and author Adam Lane Smith when Mogadishu Matt wrote a “Sunny Side Up” book review of Smith’s action-comedy novel Maxwell Cain: Burrito Avenger (readers will forgive me for noting that my own book, The One-Minute Mysteries of Inspector Gerard: The Ultimate Flatfoot was featured in the inaugural “Sunny Side Up” review).  I have yet to purchase any of Smith’s works yet, though I intend to pick up copies of Maxwell Cain and books from his Deus Vult Wastelanders series.

I have, however, signed up for Smith’s e-mail list—the least any potential supporter can do—and have enjoyed his e-mail blasts.  One recent message caught my eye:  a blog post entitled “Time to Fix a Problem.”

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Lazy Sunday CXIII: Short Stories

I can’t get enough of short stories lately, it seems.  Perhaps it’s because I recently published a collection of my absurdist detective stories, but I’ve been on even more of a short stories kick than usual recently.

Indeed, I’m hoping to write some original short stories this summer (and hopefully some new songs, too).  I’m not sure if it’s feasible, but I’d like to have a collection of new original stories out by the time school resumes.  We shall see.

In the meantime, here are some posts about short stories I have read recently enjoyed (for even more, check out “Lazy Sunday LVIII: Spring Break Short Story Recommendations Recap” and “Lazy Sunday CVIII: Spring Break Short Story Recommendations 2021 Recap“):

Happy Sunday—and Happy Reading!

—TPP

Other Lazy Sunday Installments:

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Midweek Short Story Recommendation: “The Visit That Wasn’t”

Good old Terror House Magazine continues to publish some of the best short fiction being written today (including my own absurdist writing), and it’s my pleasure to recommend another story by one of their contributors, Adrian David‘s “The Visit That Wasn’t.”

The story is a short parable riffing on the saying “the grass is always greener on the other side.”  Visitors to the protagonist’s land keep telling him how terrible and crummy the place is, and instead brag about the greatness of their home.

The glowing talk of the visitors’ homeland churns away in the mind of the protagonist, until he finally decides to pay a visit.  What he finds depresses and angers him:  nuclear war, corruption, violence, declining birth rates, normalization of pedophilia, famine, depravity, etc.

Feeling cheated, the protagonist returns to his own home, and realizes how much he took it and its charms for granted—but there’s a twist (I recommend reading the story, which takes about three minutes, for the full impact; twist revealed below).

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Phone it in Friday XVIII: Writing

With the blog closing in on 1000 days of posts (just 162 to go!) and the release of The One-Minute Mysteries of Inspector Gerard (read reviews here, here, and here), it seemed like a good time to reflect on writing, and to discuss some writing projects I have in the works.

When I revived the blog on WordPress in late 2018, I never intended to write daily.  I’d maintained a Monday-Wednesday-Friday posting schedule on the Blogspot blog, which I shifted over to WordPress on 1 June 2018.  I kept that pace up briefly, but when school resumed I left the blog dormant until late December 2018, and after three days of consecutive posting by happenstance, WordPress informed me I was on a three-day “streak.”

That caught my attention.  At that point, I decided to write daily for the month of January 2019.  It seemed like a fun a challenge, and I figured it would help build an audience and give me something constructive to do during the slowest month of the year.

After that, I thought, “Eh, why not go to fifty?”  From there, 100 didn’t look too difficult.

Once I hit 100, I decided to try for a year.

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