Spring Cleaning Tag

I was ecstatic to see a crocus opened and with a bee inside it today.  I’ve been enjoying the symphony of birdsong, including the robin chirping at my window right now.  There are fresh-cut pussy willows in the kitchen.  Spring is (almost) here, and so it is the right season to do the Spring Cleaning Tag.  Thanks to Jenelle Schmidt, who tagged me last year.

The rules are simple:  Link back to the person who tagged you– share graphic– answer questions–  tag three other writers and let them know they’ve been tagged.


Dust Bunnies and Plot-Bunnies:  Reorganize Your Writing Goals (Or Make New Ones)

I hope to keep my writing goals simple this year.  I just want to work on my space opera, and possibly touch up an old children’s story.

But I foresee myself caving very soon to the siren call of the many plot bunnies.

Which Stage Are You At?  Expound!

For my space opera:  I’m still in the first quarter.  It’s the equivalent to spending a few minutes sorting a couple piles, and then spending half an hour blinking and all the other work that needs to be done.  Progress has been embarrassingly slow (although I do have decent excuses!).  I’ll soon be writing the part where my artist/agent Kinniren and my semi-aquatic smuggler Rieve finally meet face to face.  I’m looking forward to that.  It’ll be fun.  (cue chaos)

For my  children’s story:  I already have the thing all written out, 3rd draft or so.  I’m stuck, however, on whether I want it to be a picture book (as originally planned) or something bigger.  It’s the equivalent to putting everything away all nice and neat… and then pulling it all out again.

Treasure From the Back of the Closet (Share one to three snippets you love)

From the children’s story.  The evil princess Helena has just found a dragon ‘minion’

Gertie squealed with delight when she heard the doorbell.  She loved visitors, and what luck that one should come when she had just taken a pie out of the oven! (it was a burnt, but less burnt than usual, and Gertie was proud of it).  “Disappointing.” Helena sniffed when Gertie opened the door.  Gertie was not a terrifying dragon, especially not when wearing an apron.  “But since my cowardly horse ran off, I’m stuck with you.  I may make a worthy minion of you, with time, but first some rules:

  1. I am your mistress and you are my slave.  You are not to question me…”

“But why?” Gertie asked.  “I just said you are not to question me!” snarled Helena.  “Have I not made myself clear?

  1. I am your mistress and you are my slave and you are not to question me ON PAIN OF MY SEVERE DISPLEASURE!
  2. Don’t even look me in the eye.
  3. Unless otherwise directed, torch anyone who comes near.
  4. I will not tolerate any singing, aside from a few bloodthirsty battle songs.
  5. You are to call me ‘Your Royal Highness’, ‘Sweet Princess’, or ‘Supreme Lady of Evil’.

Understand?”  Gertie didn’t understand.  But she nodded, curtsied, and offered the Princess some pie.

And this from the space opera.  This is Kinn about to battle.  (her weapon, called a disc, is basically a mix of boomerang, shuriken, and taser.)

 I swipe a disc from my belt, activate it with a squeeze of my fists, and, just as Metal-arm turns towards me, let it fly.  It brushes past his head-scarf as he dodges last minute.  I hate his skilled reflexes.  He deserved a disc in the face. 

  The disc swerves around and shoots back to me, quick and bright like a miniature meteorite. The disc activator glows through the weave of my fingerless gloves as I raise my hand to receive the disc.  It swoops down and clicks in place.  I close my fingers around it and feel it vibrating, ready for the next flight.  My knees are braced and fist still raised in a fighting stance.  My message to Metal-arm is clear. 

  Metal-arm regards me for only a moment.  Then he tosses the bar aside.  But it’s not a gesture of surrender.  For a second I think I see a flash of coloured light through his head-scarf, above his left eyebrow.  Then he snaps his prosthetic fingers, and the tips of all five begin to glow. 

Also from my space opera.  Here is Rieve, reluctantly being tossed into this wild business.

“Listen, Taun,” I growl  “I’m a high-class smuggler, not some assassin-for-hire.”

“Relax, Conniseur, we’re not asking you to take Perendi out of this mortal life, we only need her out of Keremios.”

“I’m not a taxi, either.” I fling out my hands in a gesture of finality.  Taun stares at my splayed webs, but brushes off my aquatic foreignness as he curls his own fingers into fists.  He leans forward, pressing the massive knuckles into the table, and squints into my face.

“But you are under the direction of the Balcerran Smugglers Alliance, on loan in good faith to the Keremian Pirates.  They promised top performance.”

I also lean forward, gripping the arms of my chair as if prepared to launch.  I may not have Taun’s strength by any stretch, but I can meet him glare for glare.  I hold his smoldering gaze a minute before speaking. 

“There’s caveats to that arrangement.  I’m the best the Alliance has to offer because I keep the police off my tail through strict quality control.  You don’t use a special operative as a pawn in a suicide mission.” 


Bonus:  Do Some Actual Spring Cleaning of Your Writer Self! (and share a picture!)

I will be doing plenty of cleaning today (…maybe).   Here’s something that needs some tidying:


My bookshelf/desk is full of other people’s books that need to be returned, papers that need to be sorted, and the whole thing could use a good dusting while I’m at it.  Can you spot the little felted dragon in all this mess?

I now pass this spring cleaning tag to Sarah @ Sixty-Something Trees, and Deborah O’ Carroll @ The Road of a Writer (the tag’s creator).  I’ll also be re-tagging Jenelle.



9 thoughts on “Spring Cleaning Tag

  1. Wow I love those snippets! I really want to see how Gertie and the Evil Princess Helena’s relationship develops, because that beginning is quite magnificent.

    Happy spring cleaning! 🙂


  2. Okay. First of all — WHY DO I KEEP MISSING YOUR POSTS???? For some reason I haven’t read your blog in forever and this is terrible. FORGIVE ME, FRIEND. I am painfully behind on blog reading, it would seem…

    SECONDLY. ASDFGHJKL OH MY GOODNESS THOSE SNIPPETS ARE AMAZING!!!! You have some serious writing talent!!! I absolutely ADORE the smol little baking dragon! And the action in the second snippet, mixed in with all the MC’s inner thoughts towards Metal-Arm, was absolute perfection. I am HORRIBLE at writing action, so every time I read really good action, I’m like “YESSSSS… MUST SOAK IN ALL THE GOODNESS.” 😂

    Spring cleaning is something I seriously need to do with my writing/writing space. I might be stealing this tag like the thieving pirate that I am. 😂


    1. No worries! I understand you’ve been busy writing, so you have a valid excuse.
      Thank you very much! I’m especially pleased you like the fight scene. I’m not a very active person, so such scenes feel a little un-natural to write.
      Ye be welcome to take the tag, if ye like.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, hopefully I’ll be more up-to-date on blog posts, since I’m trying to keep up with everyone. (plus reading blogs are fun, SO. NO EXCUSES. XD)

        Oh my word, really?? It felt so natural to read, though! You did an amazing job! And I think I will take the tag, then!!! *whips out pirate eye-patch*


  3. Ack!!! What’s going to happen next with Metal Arm?!?!?!?? I MUST KNOW!!!

    Also, your children’s story sounds adorable! And I love the negotiation between Rieve and Taun. Smugglers and pirates! My favorite!

    Ooh, and thanks for tagging me back again, because I’ve got lots of Spring Cleaning to do around here! No idea what my new writing space is going to look like, as we are in the middle of this move (finally!) but am excited to get it all organized so we can settle back into our “new normal.”


  4. Oh my goodness, crocuses and honeybees…I’m so homesick for my garden back home now.
    What a delightful post for a delightful season. I loved reading the snippets, especially Gertie and Helena’s. Soooo funny. XD
    Also thanks for the tag! I can’t wait to do this.


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