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6 thoughts on “Stories my mother told me”

I was impressed. It takes me nine months to write a novel, and she had written a book in a week. I called her back. There has to be more. So began a year of weekend sleepovers as we poured over twenty beautifully documented photo albums. Her pictures went from faded with age to bright and colorful. There was mom in waist-length braids and Mary Jane shoes standing in the German village she called home. She was a teenager in the U. Mom in her twenty-five dollar bridal gown perched in the back of a hay wagon beside my father, a skinny, wide-eyed farm boy who would become a doctor.

Mom with one child. Six of us all together. Dark haired and big eyed, we were her clones dressed in beautiful, homemade clothes. I remember going to sleep to the sound of her sewing machine. Words were another matter. My mother has never been comfortable talking about herself so I bribed her with Taco Bell feasts and she started talking.

1. All clumsy flesh must come off.

I heard unbelievable tales of hardship, joy and heroic practicality. To keep body and soul together when my father was in med school, he was a professional mourner and bussed tables for a wealthy fraternity. My mom worked in a medical lab where the unchecked radiation caused her to lose her first baby.

They ate lab rabbits that had given their all for pregnancy tests. They lived in St.

Louis, Missouri but St. She typed, I edited; I typed, she talked. My youngest brother almost died when he was What counts in making a fun story is the twist. Or both? Why did you pick it? As a full-time reviewer, I read so much that this question would have a different answer almost every hour! My Commodore, alas, has been put out to pasture. Five hundred years from now, Bill Gates will have entered the ranks of the minor deities. Whether as Zeus or Lucifer remains to be seen!

Either the CDs or the videos go. Which will it be and why? Videos are to music as film adaptations are to novels. No contest here on which to dump! Pronoia is the irrational belief that someone somewhere is trying to do you good. The latter stands for Block Island, a beautiful resort we love to visit, although its shady alternate meanings tend to raise motorist eyebrows.

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You gain any special understanding of human nature from this work? Any of it of value in writing stories? A useful marketplace reminder of how anyone can slide into becoming a merchant of the dubiously valuable, and a lesson every writer should keep uppermost in mind. You stocking up the wine cellar, you ready to plant potatoes in the backyard? But I will take the absurdist stance that dealing with the Y2K glitch will boost the global economy into new stratospheric levels, as businesses are forced to invest in up-to-date hardware and software and modernize their procedures.

Already, Y2K has earned millions of dollars for consultants and old hackers. The reviewer said you deserved to be better known, but your primary work in the short story form kept you from reaching a wider audience. My first novel, Ciphers , has received some encouraging reviews that allow me to believe readers might be ready for more. In Spring , Cambrian Publications will release a picaresque comedy — no fantasy or speculative elements! And a manuscript titled Fuzzy Dice is currently seeking a home.

Tales My Mama Told Me | Elsiewrite Limited

If we started searching for a empty room in late afternoon, the chances were slim to none of finding one with a swimming pool. Vacationing at motels without swimming pools, was actually worse than staying home. If we stayed at home, at least we could cool off from the Mississippi heat with the water hose and a foot tub of water.

Anyway, along about 10 A.

The perfect setting was a roadside park with concrete tables and ants crawling all over our feet. She pulled the baked layers out of the oven and turned them out onto plates to cool. Momma got distracted with her petunias or something in the yard, but returned a while later to make the icing.

Stories My Mama Told Me After She Was Gone

She took her rubber spatula to the icing and began to spread it across the first layer. The cake totally collapsed in the middle leaving nothing but a crispy dam of crust and a tiny pond of chocolate icing in the middle. The same thing happened with layers two and three. She was thinking that she had forgotten to put in the baking powder when she noticed my oldest sister Charlotte trying to sneak past her and out the back porch door.

She grabbed her by the arm, suspecting that Charlotte had something to do with the collapsed cakes.

Stories My Mama Told Me. - Literature - Nairaland

Charlotte was a smart girl who did a very dumb thing that day. Momma immediately regretted her anger when she realized the broken plate was one of her favorites. This was long before native Americans starting building gambling casinos on every reservation. Needless to say, the residents of the reservation struggled sometimes and often traded hand-made baskets or their commodities for more healthy and varied fare. The Choctaw Indian reservation outside of Sandersville was just an easy walk from where I grew up.


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Both of my grandmothers had a cordial relationship with many of the women on the reservation. She was doubled over and was obviously in some type of gastric distress. In one crook of her arm she carried a five pound block of cheese.