Greenwich Village Smoking vs. Low-Brow, Low-Life Smoking; Ah, the Ideals of Youth

I began smoking in college, in 1982, because I thought intellectuals smoked. Look at Jackson Pollock--that ubiquitous fag dangling from his bottom lip. His "No. 5, 1948" sold for $151 million and it was just a bunch of paint dribbles. If smoking was stupid, I wanted to be stupid like Jackson Pollock. Stupid like Georgia O'Keefe, Eugene O'Neill, Edith Wharton... the Greenwich Village crowd. The reds, the anarchists, the social reformers. I wanted to identify with them. 
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Christmas Memories: The Enemy Appendix, the Almost-Nativity and Snow for Christmas

This is a Christmas essay that I wrote. It might help you if you have to write a holiday essay. 


"The only reason I believe that Christmas 1997 actually happened is that we survived to tell the tale. No one could invent so unfortunate a series of events. I call it the Christmas of "The Enemy appendix, the Almost-Nativity and the Miracle Snow." Here's how it happened..."

How to Write a Musical Review

I write musical reviews for Associated Content and Yahoo! Here is an example of how to write a 400 word musical review for online or print publications.

"Croatian virtuoso pianist Maksim Mrvica plays classical cross-over and is himself a world class act. Since performing his first concerto at age 11, nothing, not even war, has prevented Maksim from creating beautiful music. Mrvica gives heart-stopping performances, made all the more memorable and poignant by the fact that this young man learned his art while his nation waged an epic war." Read more...

How to Write Truly Frightening Horror Fiction

Anatomy and Psychology of a Horror Movie
Halloween is the ripe for horror movies, but what exactly constitutes a horror movie? Does it need a plot twist? Suspense? Mystery? Zombies? Blood and gore? Satanic influence? A presence of evil? Here is a psychological analysis of horror movies.
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How to Write Mystery and Detective Fiction

How to Write Crime Stories and Detective Fiction that Mystery Readers Will Love
Tired of cracker-bland stories that readers only nibble?  What defines a story that readers gulp down whole, beg for more before the first even digests?  Characters, plot, climax and something else. Learn to write the gulp down whole stories!
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An All Souls Day Essay on Honesty



All Souls Day Stories: An Honest Little Boy
It's All Souls Day, and I'm feeling reminiscent. After homeschooling for years, it seems a little odd not to be wrapped up in holy day and holiday preparations. Here's a little story to warm you for the holy day. It's true.
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There's Something Out There Digging

There's Something Out There Digging
There's something out there digging at my bedroom door. Sometimes it stops for a minute or two, but it always comes back. I hope it doesn't make it inside...
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The Cemetery Caretaker

The Graveyard Caretaker
A couple of boys are pressured to help vandalize a cemetery. The caretaker of the graveyard intervenes and the boys later discover something startling about him...(NB- AC Kelly VanBuren's story will leave you cheering for the ghosts.)
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Scary Slumber

Scary Slumber
Wide awake with a pounding heart I strain to see who is in my room standing over me. (NB- AC Lois Lunsford reminds us to be afraid, be very afraid of the dark.)
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Eyes Only for You

Eyes Only for You
A Halloween horror story where farm animals' blood lust threatens the local farming community, but eventually love wins out in the end. (NB- Thanks you AC Tim Palmer for a Gothic tale of horror and romance!)
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The Grocery Ghost

The Grocery Ghost
Altoona, PA is usually a happy and quiet town, but what happens when a mural artist tries to paint a mural for a grocer? (NB- Thought grocery stores were ghost-free zones? Thanks to AC Bridget Ilene Delaney we know they're not.)
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The Hanover Witch

The Hanover Witch
The legend of the Hanover Witch haunts a tiny town and its young inhabitants. (NB- If you weren't convinced that kids can be cruel, AC Brandy Madison will make you certain of it.)
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She Never Left

She Never Left!
A story of a girl who returns to the scene of a horrific childhood accident, to find that the ghostly spirit of her childhood friend may have never left.
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Who Said Halloween is the Scariest Night of the Year?

Who Said Halloween is the Scariest Night of the Year?
Even the most familiar drive can turn into a terrifying ordeal just like Doug and Loretta's did on Halloween night.
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A House in the Jersey Woods

A House in the Jersey Woods
A modern scary tale of the New Jersey Devil. (NB- Eva Taylor shows us why it's best to stay out of the woods on Halloween!)
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Splintered Cell: A Halloween Tale


It's the end of the graveyard shift, but my hopes of leaving work at the office don't quite come to pass. (NB- AC Carla Slavey presents- Techno Terror!)
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Buddy and the Vampire Dog

Halloween Short Story: Buddy and the Vampire Dog
The alley beckoned me, although it seemed dark and foreboding. It was not dark outside yet, but the buildings cast an ominous shadow while shielding us from the crisp fall breeze. This is a short story I wrote for the AC Halloween flash fiction contest. (NB- From AC Tonya Hillukka- When good dogs go bad...)
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Just a Phase

Just a Phase
Marla Santiago rarely had any regrets... (NB- AC's Historati Jeff Musall gives us...terror in retrospect.)
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A Halloween Never Remembered

A Halloween Never Remembered
A girl getting ready for a school Halloween party is as excited as ever. What she doesn't know is the excitement waiting for her.
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The Maze

The Maze
A maze and a disturbed graveyard lead to terror on a Halloween night. (NB- Shared by Kay Kirkman, just in time for Devil's Night.)
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I Love All Insects

I Love All Insects
A Scary Story by Blake Hall. I love all insects... I love all insects... I love all insects... I love all insects. (NB- AC Blake4d will give your thoughts a bugs a complete metamorphosis)
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How to Play Frisbee with a Zombie

How to Play Frisbee with a Zombie
John really shouldn't have played Frisbee near a graveyard - now, with his trusty dog gone, and Zombies all around - how will he be able to escape? (NB- AC SimeyC gives us a quirky, comedy-noir halloween tale)
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Portrait of Evil

Portrait of Evil
AC Halloween Flash Fiction Scary Story Contest '" 16-year-old Lucie was surprised after school. She had no idea what the past or the future would hold. A family legacy awaited her that no living soul could have predicted. (AC Linda A. Nickerson blends ancient and modern for just the right fright!)
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The Haunting of Jane Smith

The Haunting of Jane Smith
The story of Jane Smith-the five year old girl who wandered too far. (NB-If 'The Ring' didn't get you, AC Adam Bourgoin's creepy tale will...)
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The VooDoo Doll
A scary short story for Halloween that reads like a modern day fairy tale. (AC Carrie Myer's poignant tale of terror)
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Dinner Parties

Dinner Parties
Serving up a dinner to die for. (NB- In memory of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, from Robert Brewster.
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Freelance writer, Top 100 Yahoo! Voices, Yahoo! News, Shine, Michigan, Detroit), blogger, teacher, mom of 4, happily married 25 years. Graduated GVSU 1986, psychology/general education and special education. continuing ed up to present. Certified MI teacher. Writing Michigan history mystery, children's Gothic fantasy. Areas of expertise: education, relationships, mental health, nutrition, history, world cultures. Passions: faith, Catholic church, sustainable living, interfaith initiatives, living simply that others might simply live. Working on MA in EI education. 

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