Free College, Story-a-Day, and a Bottle of Tra-La-La!

527-beautiful-flower-full-bloomLife is very full my friends!  In this blog, I’ll tell you about the free college course from coursera I took called, “Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World”  taught by professor Eric Rabkin of the University of Michigan.

I’ll also fill you in about Story-a-Day in May, an annual writing extravaganza hosted by Julie Duffy.

And lastly, a bottle of tra-la-la: namely, what I’m doing with my life!

Free College!

coursera logoI would highly recommend that any aspiring writer, or anyone who loves literature, check out “Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World”


What an epic class!  We started off by reading the classics–Grimm’s Fairytales, Dracula, and Frankenstein.  I hadn’t read many of these works before, and was delighted (and terrified!) by them.  Frankenstein was especially interesting to me, and I was glad that it was on the syllabus.

the-martian-chronicles-book-coverAs the course progressed, we read The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury, The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula LeGuin, and finished with Little Brother by Cory Doctorow.  The Martian Chronicles was a veritable literary feast, while The Left Hand of Darkness completely blew me away!  And I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Little Brother; it was quite a romp.  I just can’t believe I hadn’t read a lot of these books before, and am so glad that I have them under my literary “belt” now; I look forward to reading more Bradbury and LeGuin, that is for sure!

I surprised myself by reading every book in the syllabus,  writing an essay for every book, and even catching the lectures–which were fabulous.  This course is going to be offered again, and I urge you to sign up for it.  I know I’m really glad I had coursera prompting me to read all these fabulous books!

Story-a-Day

2013StADaBadge500x230I first learned about Story-a-Day last year from short-story goddess Alexis Hunter (who, may I add, is rockin’ it out this year–her rough drafts are blowing me away!).  Every day, participants get a new prompt which they can choose to use to meet their quota of one story per day.  It’s a great way to get the Muses working!

Last Story-a-Day, I turned out a ton of really good material.  This year, I’m super busy (see bottle of tra-la-la below, haha), so my goal this year is to write a piece of flash fiction (500-1000 words) or drabble (around 100 words) every day.  So far, I’ve made my quota of one story per day, every day.  Of course, it’s only the fourth of May (T-T) but I have faith that I’ll make it to the end!  I may even post a few creations here as password protected blogs…

Instead of typing stories on the computer, I’ve made a little notebook to fill with all my Story-a-Day goodies.  That way, after a long, hard, tiring day, I can write my daily quota in bed with the help of a flashlight and a good old fashioned pen.  It makes for interested stories (never mind that I usually botch the POV or the tense when I write in the dark lying down–I’ll leave the clean up to the editing process!).

I find that handwriting stories is more relaxing, and relaxing is what I need right now!  Why, you ask?  That question brings us to the third segment:

…And a Bottle of Tra-la-de-da

ozAfter searching for a year and a half, my husband and I have finally found a new home!  I have special housing needs; hence the prolonged search.  I’ve been busy as all get out cleaning, packing…and packing, and cleaning, while trying to manage all of my responsibilities on top of everything!  The relocation is a much welcome change, and I am deeply grateful:)

Despite the busy-bee energy right now, I am still committed to writing every single day, even if it’s just a juicy little tidbit–even if it’s a teeny tiny piece of Nano Fiction (a story about as big as a tweet!).

So stay tuned for more writing goodness, and remember–it’s not too late to join in the Story-a-Day fun!

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6 thoughts on “Free College, Story-a-Day, and a Bottle of Tra-La-La!

  1. Haha, thanks for the kind words, dearest! 🙂 Glad you’re knocking out every day with this challenge, you pro. 😀 I like your write-in-bed approach. I’ve tried that once, but my handwriting was so sloppy I could barely read it! 😛

    • Lol, there are many dangers to the writing in bed approach: handwriting fails, falling asleep mid-sentence, and of course, drooling on the page:) I try to persevere through the obstacles! 😀

  2. Tra la la! I love Le Guin. She is the bomb. Feminist sci fi without it feeling preachy as some feminists can be. That lady is sharp as a tack! =) love ya! xoxox

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