The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Saturday, March 4, 2017

B-Ball, Fried Fish and Back-of-the-Book Blurb # 50

This week was a busy one. Late nights all five days this work week. Two of those nights were spent on the sidelines of a basketball tournament. Our 7th and 8th graders took part in the Shamrock Tournament, a basketball tournament that's been going on for 52 years. 

Both games (on Tuesday and Thursday) were nail-biters. I told a couple of the boys on the team, "You owe me a new box of hair dye, 'cause this game made my hair even grayer." It was back and forth, full of hopeful hearts and some disappointments. The boys won on Tuesday, but lost on Thursday, which made me think of writing (or life, really).

You can't let your disappointment impact your future. There were times that the boys got frustrated over a ref's call, or when they missed a shot. Their coach would have to get them back on the right track. Our writer friends do that. When we get despondent over a lack of a publishing contract or when our work gets rejected, other writers are there to encourage us, so we keep submitting. (You never know when that next "yes" from an editor will come along.)

Last night was my school's first fish fry of the season. I worked for a couple of hours serving up green beans, french fries and shrimp. It started out slow, but then grew to a crazy-long line. It ended up being like the childhood game "Telephone." The first person serving would get the order, serve the fish, tell the pasta person what to serve (red or white pasta) and give the tray to the pasta person. They would serve up the pasta and tell me what to put on the tray. I'd serve up the sides I was responsible for, and give it to the final person, letting them know if they were getting cole slaw or clam chowder. Last night, like most experiences, I connected again with my writing life.

You have to listen carefully. There are times when our writer friends give us some feedback. Some advice. We have to listen carefully, even if the advice might involve lots of work, and even when it's not something we want to hear. However, taking the time to digest the critique or the suggestion might result in a change that results in a piece getting published.

And now, onto book blurb stuff that I'm a day late with:

Look at the photo below. That is the cover of your book. You choose the genre. An informational book on farm animals? A romance between a cow and a handsome bull who's full of bull? You decide.

Write an enticing blurb--150 words or less. (The title doesn't count in the word count.) Blurbs are those enticing bits that prod you into buying the book. Sometimes they're on the back cover of the book. Sometimes they're on the inside front cover. What they always try to do is lure you into purchasing the book.

Lisa Ricard Claro was the original creator of this writing challenge. However, she's been busy for the last few years. A three-book publishing deal. Another novel (or two) in

Include your blurb in a blog post. Include a link to this post. Also, link your post to Mr. Linky. Mr. Linky is easy. If you've never done it, you'll be impressed with how simple he is. And then, check out the other blurb(s). It's interesting to see the different directions writers take, given the same photo.

Here's the book cover, along with my blurb:

The Milk of Human Kindness:  A Mother’s Plea

Bess E. was the top cow in the field. The chief moooover and shaker.
She’d been in the pasture long enough to know something was up. Their calves would hang, not leaving since the milk was free, then they’d disappear. The babies would start getting a bit chubby, big trucks would rumble in, the crying cowlets would get shoved into the truck--never to be seen again.
Bess E. was determined to find out where all those calves were going. She put on her earring, twitched her tail around to get the dust off her flanks, and after trampling down part of the fence, headed on a journey.
What she finds out shocks her… and drives her to go back so she can warn the rest of her cow colleagues.
As she trots home, she keeps thinking, We need to go on strike. No more breeding until things change. (149 words)  

And for the writer (and I'm talkin' bout you, Val) who likes to work ahead, here is the photo for next week:


  1. I hope you DID listen carefully, and that you didn't mess up anybody's order so they got clam chowder instead of SLAW! That would be unforgivable, Madam.

    Good thing that Bess E. put her hoof down. She might have uncovered a butcher ring.

    Reports of me working ahead are greatly exaggerated. I didn't start this one until after 8:00 p.m. on Friday. Sometimes I get a kernel of an idea right away, and let it marinate in my head all week. This time, I did not. Maybe my brain is on the fritz.

    1. Val--I don't like clam chowder, so I never would mix up the two. And the slaw was oil and vinegar slaw. I don't know if that's the kind you like, since obviously, you're a slaw afficionado.

      And considering I was working on it from scratch on Saturday morning, you were ahead of me, as usual.

  2. Congrats to the boys for winning their first game. I think it's great how much you support your students.

    Isn't it amazing how just about everything writers experience can be related to writing? Walt worked the first fish fry--he was frying up the fish and told "we need more cod" all night long.

    Bessie sure has some kind of attitude.

    1. Donna--I imagine Walt WAS hoppin' all night. The people who cook the fish didn't have a single slow spell.

  3. What you said about disappointment is so true, but sometimes one of the hardest things to live by. I think it was Thomas Edison who said, "I haven't failed, I've just found 100 ways to do something that didn't work." Or something along those lines. It's easy to get ourselves caught up with the negative, but staying positive is so important!

    1. Lisa--I love Edison's quote, but I think I've found more than 100. ;)


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