Contest Entries

The 8th Annual Halloweensie Contest (Entry)

If you’d like to enter, please check out the webpage here. My contest entry is below, all 100 words. Thanks for reading!

Continue reading “The 8th Annual Halloweensie Contest (Entry)”

Ponderings

Thoughts on Hate: Antisemitism

Humans are very good at killing each other. They’re also very good at justifying why they kill. I believe in order to kill a person, the human mind must firmly believe the other is exactly that–an other. The other is a stranger, different from you, and therefore inherently wrong because of their differences. The other’s existence is perceived as competition for resources that enable your “right” way of living.  The other, therefore, becomes unworthy of resources, any semblance of mercy or even existence.  This “reasoning” quickly snowballs into hatred, takes root in the soil of self-righteousness and grows tall and strong. Pretty soon the other is blamed for peripheral things, such as lack of work, a lack of prosperity or a lack of notice and regard that you clearly deserve.  The act of killing is just a short step behind this hatred, patiently waiting to leap down from the rafters.

I think this is why the rabbi in the dusty sandals said murder begins in the heart. He knew; he told us. And yet we’re not listening. We’re killing, instead. Why? Because people who hate believe they are right to hate. And people don’t like to be told they’re wrong.

Continue reading “Thoughts on Hate: Antisemitism”

Brief Humor & Check-Ins, Writing: I've Got Gadgets and Gizmos a Plenty...

Book Publication Announcement: “Memory Bound” (Horror)

Exciting news! Memory Bound is now officially available in e-book and in print! It’s also available in Kindle Unlimited if you have a subscription to that service.

This is my first, real book publication. I hope you enjoy a good horror read filled with layers of provoking thoughts, what if’s and dark corners. Oh, and of course, a dog. If you follow along with my writing, you’ll see dogs are a reoccurring theme.

If you like the cover art, please check out the below links to look into getting your own cover art done. The artist I worked with was Donna Dean. Her and her fellow artists created the following websites to display their work. Please be sure to check them out.

My primary editor was Ms. Starr Waddell of Quiethouse Editing. She was fantastic to work with, I highly recommend her. Please check her out as well.

More updates and blogs soon to come! Thank you everyone.

Brief Humor & Check-Ins

Writing Gizmos: Need a Cover Artist? (Got One)

Just a quick check-in to say hello (hello!) and to share some writing resources with you.

The cover artist I used for Memory Bound is Donna Dean from Donna Dean Photography. She was great to work with and her art fit my novel like a glove. Please check out her web page and share with any writers you know.

Her and her artist friends have also started a couple of social media pages to showcase their work. Please check them out here and help me to share their great work and talent:

Thank you and happy writing!

Introversion/INTJ, Mr. Reginald Swinebottom Presents...

Reginald Swinebottom Presents: “The Tale of the Cowardly Author” (In One Act)

Hello, and welcome to the first edition of “Reginald Swinebottom Presents.” I’m your narrator, Mr. Swinebottom himself. Please no drinks, candies, popcorn, gum or anything else that fills you with empty calories and cavities. Flash photography and cell phones are not permitted during the stage performance. If used, your device will be confiscated and destroyed, along with your arms and legs. Now, please enjoy the show.”


(The red curtain parts. The scene opens to a house, filled with many rooms. The stage lights focus on a simply furnished bedroom on the second floor. A lump underneath the blankets is snoring deeply in rhythm. A black dog wakes and stretches in the corner beside a quaint doggy bed.)

“Once upon a time an author woke up early on a Saturday morning. A certain Labrador Retriever needed to use the great grassy beyond and began vocalizing her needs. The Labrador also desired num nums. Good num nums. Delicious num nums. It was time to put on the slippers and start the day.

“The author found the leash and collar and tiptoed out the front door in her purple slippers, the canine companion trotting closely behind. Anyone passing by would see the author’s darling new owl pajama bottoms and her worn-but-cozy hoodie. A pee and a poo later, the Labrador sprung sprightly back inside the house, ready for her meal. Breakfast was served for both.

“The author, now fed and warm, curled up in her chair. Quiet ebbed and flowed; blood cells danced and swirled inside her veins in bliss. It was peaceful and silent, save for a squeak or two from a dog toy. Maybe she would write. The day was open and hers to explore. All was well.

“And then the doorbell rang.”

Continue reading “Reginald Swinebottom Presents: “The Tale of the Cowardly Author” (In One Act)”

Brief Humor & Check-Ins, Novel Snippets

Author Interviews Herself on New Book: Memory Bound (Humor)

Interviewer: “Good afternoon, Arcians! We are excited to have with us today, up and coming indie author A.R. Clayton. Peregrine Arc is her platform and Memory Bound is her first pending publication. Welcome!”

Author: “Thank you. I don’t know what an Arcian is but thank you for having me.”

Interviewer: “It’s something I came up with backstage. Your followers need a name, right?”

Author: “Do they?”

Interviewer: “…Yes. Yes they do. Moving on. First question from our fans. What inspired you to be a writer?”

Author: “I’m still stuck on the Arcian thing. Followers should already have names, unless the hospital forgot to write them in on their birth certificate. Or their parents couldn’t make up their minds. Or maybe they were switched at birth, and their actual name is something horrible, like Swinebottom. Imagine finding that out when you’re twenty. That would be dreadful…”

Continue reading “Author Interviews Herself on New Book: Memory Bound (Humor)”

Novel Snippets

Book Update: Cover Reveal & Title

Above, you can see the cover of my upcoming book–Memory Bound. I finally feel comfortable releasing the cover for view as I (really, truly) believe publishing is very close at hand. A second editor is going through my narrative currently as a “last proof” edit and is also formatting my book for ebook and hard copy print. It’s definitely been a long journey but I’ve learned a lot.

The editor is hoping to get the book back to me before Halloween, but I’m not establishing a firm publication date at this point in time. Every time I’ve set a deadline, another step has popped up I need to complete. It’s become comical really, and is to be expected (I think) with one’s first book.

Or so I tell myself. With hands shaking and eyes twitching. Pass the wine, would you?

Continue reading “Book Update: Cover Reveal & Title”

Deaf culture

Deaf Culture: Volunteering at a Deaf Festival (Humor/Inclusivity)

A couple of weeks ago, I volunteered at a Deaf festival. I was put in charge of the kid’s area. Think coloring, simple games and some arts and crafts. I chased balls, I colored in teddy bears, I said goodbye to balls I’d never find again underneath dusty bleachers and I handed out prizes. Mostly, I listened to what the kids had to say–either through signing or verbally. You learn a lot about kids, just by being present.

Towards the end of the day, I started cutting kids off on candy to ensure they still had their teeth at age 20 (and that I still had my sanity at lunch.).  Shortly after, the concept of sharing came up…repeatedly. (I really believe kids have a tendency to hoard resources sometimes). At another point in the day, the Saint cut off a Lord of the Flies scenario from emerging with an older group of boys competing at our cornhole station. To top it off, one of the festival booths handed out Frisbees as their giveaway. Hooray. We were indoors, mind you, with hundreds of people milling about. And most of them were focused on signing. What could possibly go wrong?*

At one point an interpreter came up to me and inquired about the Deaf Kid’s Club banner we had proudly hanging up behind our area. The interpreter and I made small talk inbetween me plucking out blue and green crayons for the kid’s masterpieces. The interpreter said something that made my volunteer experience all the more vivid:

“There’s not a lot of opportunities for Deaf kids to get out and play and socialize. This is really wonderful, what you’re doing.”

Something inside of me twinged. It’s 2018, lady. Are you kidding me?

Continue reading “Deaf Culture: Volunteering at a Deaf Festival (Humor/Inclusivity)”

Contest Entries

Flash Fiction: Parade of Clowns

My flash fiction for Carrot Ranch. Mosey on over and see what all the hubbub’s about. Charli’s got some contests coming up, too, so check it out.

Continue reading “Flash Fiction: Parade of Clowns”

Ponderings

Life Lessons from Mr. Magorium: Death & Change

There’s quite a few lines from the movie Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium that have stuck with me over the years. If you haven’t seen the film, I highly recommend it. The script doesn’t blanch at the realities of change and death. The characters frequently toss out clever lines and understand what it means to laugh and to struggle. It’s a simple plot, one that revolves around a magical toy store, but it’s powerful. I think I like the simple, magical stories the best.

One of the more poignant lines, one that is towards the end of the film, goes like this:

Molly: Are you dying?

Mr. Magorium: Light bulbs die, my sweet. I will depart.

Continue reading “Life Lessons from Mr. Magorium: Death & Change”