Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 235

15 Minute Tweet TalesI've been teaching writing at a camp/babysitting service this summer. There have been some really cool moments and fun days. Today was not one of those days. Which inspired my 15 Minute Tweet Tales story this week. While I'm not quite rocking in a corner (yet), I am counting down the sessions left. Three more. I think I can, I think I can ... Oh, who am I kidding? I'm totally going to be crying on the last day when I have to leave their sweet faces.
 
viridity - naive innocence; the quality or state of being green; the color of grass or foliage
 
7/26 - First day of school - her heart is full of hope for changing students' lives. They sense her viridity. A week later she rocks in a corner.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 234

15 Minute Tweet TalesI’m revising a middle grade novel I wrote for Camp NaNo last year, and I’m on a tight deadline (which is a good thing for me!) because I’m going to enter it in this year’s Pitch Wars, which starts August 3rd. I was an alternate in both 2013 and 2014 with my YA novel, and it’s such an amazing contest. If you haven’t checked it out, here’s the link to everything you need to know
 
And now for today’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word:
 
ultramarine - a vivid blue to purplish blue; beyond the sea; blue pigment made from powdered lapis lazuli.
 
Her mom freaked out when she walked downstairs with ultramarine hair for the family photo, but grandma told her she looked beautiful. #15tt
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 233

Despite my 15 Minute Tweet Tales story below, I did actually have to go outside today. It felt like this:
I'm melting...
 
So I’m just going to post the word and tale and get myself some ice water. Stay cool, y’all!
 
15 Minute Tweet Talesestivate - to spend the summer at a specific place or in a certain activity; to spend a hot, dry season in an inactive, dormant state, as certain reptiles, snails, insects, and small mammals.
 
7/12 - With temps hanging out around 103, I'm just gonna estivate inside. I'm only cracking the door to shoo the pups out to potty. #truestory
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 232

I hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July weekend! My family did our usual thing at the lake. There were hamburgers, hotdogs, corn on the cob, watermelon, plus tons of other food. The lake’s official fireworks show was on Saturday night, and we puttered out in the boat to watch the display from the water while patriotic music played. It was pretty fantastic. 
Fireworks
 
During the day, there was more playing with the dogs in the water. Since I know you can’t get enough pictures of them in their spiffy life jackets, here are some more adorable doggie pics:
 
Whoo hoo - let's go!
Three dogs jumping
 
I'm not sure what this expression is on Remy's face is, but it's cracking me up. 
Remy swimming
 
Go, Kali, go!!
Go Kali Go!
 
Bear says, "I can do that, too!"
Go Bear Go!
 
Now Bear is saying, "Oh no, what did I just do?!?"
Uh oh!
 
Remy waiting for the fireworks to start.
Remy waiting for fireworks
 
Freya has had more than enough pop pops and is now hiding in the bathtub - a place she HATES!
Scared Freya
 
15 Minute Tweet TalesAnd now for this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word:
 
balter - to dance artlessly, usually without practiced form or skill, but always with great, contented enjoyment.
 
7/5 - The men sent over shots, ready for their evening entertainment. It always took a few before she baltered on the bar in her short skirt.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 231

15 Minute Tweet TalesI wasn’t able to sleep last night. I had every remaining drop of energy sucked out of me by a roomful of unruly 6 -12 year olds. It’s dark, rainy, and thundering outside. I think I’ll just post my 15 Minute Tweet Tales word of the week and crawl into bed for a nap. *grumble, whine, moan, complain*
 
marcid - withered, wasted, decayed, rotten.
 
6/28 - Nurse Sue feels gratified as her patient grows stronger, never noticing herself grow marcid. Magic is foreign to this woman of science.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 230

Not only was Sunday Father’s Day, it was also my mom’s birthday, so the whole family got together at the lake house to celebrate.
 
Rish family at the lake
 
It was also the first time both Remy (my brother’s dog) and Bear (my sister’s newest dog) visited the lake. My dogs Freya and Chloe stayed at my brother’s house because Bear doesn’t like them. He’s a meanie! But since he’s new-ish, we’re giving him space to get comfortable. 
 
Anyway, Joanna’s other dog Kali LOVES the lake and swimming, so she was more than happy to show the other kids how it’s done. There was a lot of dock diving, chasing tennis balls, and jockeying for position to be the first up the ramp. Because it gets a little rough and tumble between them out there, they wear life jackets, which also lets them swim longer because they don’t have to work as hard. Plus it makes them extra adorable!
 
Since I know you love adorable swimming (and boating!) dogs as much as I do, here’s a series of photos of the cutie patooties:

Flying Kali showing 'em how it's done.
Flying Kalie
 
Bear can fly, too!
Bear jumping
 
Remy using a bit more caution. 
Careful Remy
 
It's the dock dogs!
Dock dogs
 
Racing to the ramp!
Ramp racing
 
Trapped on a boat.
Dogs on a boat
 
The wind in our hair.
More dogs on a boat
 
Remy napping on me.
Remy napping on Jocelyn
 
 
15 Minute Tweet TalesAnd now that you’re on cuteness overload, here’s the 15 Minute Tweet Tales word for the week: 
 
gumusservi – moonlight shining on water (Turkish). 
 
6/21 - The path of the gumusservi led from his house to mine, but it was a trail we couldn't walk. Without a boat, we were separated forever.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 
And here's a picture of gumusservi from this weekend:
gumusservi

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 229

If you read last week’s post, you know I ate a cricket. Several crickets, in fact. And if you haven’t read it yet, you should check it out because there is actually video of me eating a cricket. Yep, pretty sure that’s going to come back to haunt me at some point.
 
Anyway, the eating of questionable protein continued during our writing retreat: I ate worms. Two different kinds of worms! Even though I'm making a disgusted frowny face as I type those words, just like with the crickets, it wasn’t all that bad. Okay, I’m lying. One of them was horrible, but I’ll get to that in a bit.
 
First up was the wax worms. One of the big scenes in Rebecca Petruck’s upcoming middle-grade novel WILL NOLAN EATS WORMS involves wax worm cookies, so Rebecca wanted to make some for accurate research. 
 
Rebecca got the worms a few days before we arrived and froze them, so I never had to see them wriggling – except on video. So the first thing we had to do was pick frozen worms out of their sawdust beds. It was fine at first because they were frozen, so they just felt like skinny crackers or something. But then they started to thaw out. Very quickly. Which meant they were squishy when you picked them up. I started to worry I was going to wimp out and not be able to eat them.
Separating Wax Worms
Waxworms
 
Next Rebecca made the cookie dough and added the worms to it. Oh dear, ruining perfectly delicious cookie dough with WORMS!
Worms in Dough
 
After some time in the oven, they were ready. And I was ready … to run!
 
But I finally screwed up my courage. You know how when you’re picking out a chocolate chip cookie you look for the one with the most visible chips? Yeah, this was the complete opposite. I was looking for one with the least amount of visible worms. But Rebecca had been quite generous with her worm to dough ratio. *shudder*
 
So I bit into it, and it was okay. The cookie itself was super tasty. I didn’t actually notice a taste with the worms, but the texture was … unsettling. Like I don’t eat mushrooms or oysters because I hate the texture, so the worms pretty much fall into the same category. But I do feel pretty badass for having eaten a worm cookie!
Jocelyn eats worm cookies
 
Next up was the earthworm jerky. Yep, you read that right. Rebecca ordered it already prepared, so we just had to open the package and “enjoy.” The ingredients listed all kinds of spices, which sounded like it would be tasty enough to cover any potential earthworm flavor. It was not. That stuff was FOUL! It was really tough, so it was hard to chew, and it had this super strong, terrible fishy taste. NEVER AGAIN!
 
Here's Rebecca trying to tear off a piece of her jerky:
Rebecca eats earthworm jerky
 
Here's me before eating my earthworm jerky:
Jocelyn eating earthworm jerky
 
Here's me after eating my earthworm jerky:
After eating earthworm jerky
 
Besides all the fun with bug eating, we also got a lot accomplished on the writing front. We did tarot card readings for our characters and plots (which were eerily accurate), brainstormed story ideas, and I got feedback on my latest rough draft. I’m dipping my toes in the middle-grade waters, and their feedback on my WIP was very inspiring and has me ready to dive into revisions. So it was a very productive week!
Tarot for my novel
 
15 Minute Tweet TalesNow it’s finally time for this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word:
 
feuillemort - having the color of a faded leaf. 
 
6/14 - Her hair was feuillemort, the texture just as brittle, but even when the sickness stole the rest away, he remained dazzled by her beauty.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 228

Today’s post is super late because I’m at a writing retreat in the NC mountains with my critique group, the Sisukas. This evening we had an exciting adventure. Rebecca Petruck is working on a middle grade book to be published by Abrams next year. It’s called WILL NOLAN EATS BUGS. It’s not even a spoiler to tell you that, yes, the main character does in fact eat bugs. 
 
Rebecca decided that this week was the appropriate time to finally eat her first bug as research. She also decided that the rest of us should eat some, too. Yay??? So tonight we had cricket tacos for dinner. And you know what? They actually weren’t that bad. 
 
The anticipation was definitely the worst part. Since the crickets were frozen, they had to be thawed out first, so they sat on the counter in a bowl all day. I kept staring at them and thinking about those legs and antennae getting caught in my teeth. 
 
Bowl of crickets
 
As the dinner hour approached, Rebecca started cookin' us up some crickets. I think seeing them sizzle in the pan made the freak-out factor even worse. 
 
Sizzling crickets
 
And then it was time.  
 
Time to eat crickets. 
 
Rebecca went first, gamely popping the first one in her mouth. She liked it enough that she quickly followed it up with a second one.
 
Rebecca eats cricket
 
So Kathleen was excited to try hers next. She said it tasted like bacon. She lied. 
 
And then it was my turn. See it for yourself.
 
 
Despite the expression on my regrettably makeup-free face, it really wasn’t that bad. It didn’t taste like bacon, but it was a mostly neutral taste. Rebecca had put salt and pepper on them and cooked them in butter, and that was pretty much all I tasted. I wasn’t a huge fan of the dry-ish crunch texture, but it was nowhere near as awful as I had imagined, since I had conjured sensations of prickly legs scratching my mouth.
 
Kami went next, and I didn’t get a video of her, but she added salt and lime like she was doing a tequila shot. Ha!
 
Kami eats cricket
 
After eating a cricket all by itself, it was no big deal to add them to our tacos, so we proceeded with dinner. Mixed up with all the other stuff, you couldn’t even tell they were there.
 
cricket taco
 
While I won’t be adding crickets to my regular meal rotation, it was definitely fun to step WAAAAAAAY outside my comfort zone to try them.
 
If you want to learn more about the benefits of eating bugs, click here for an interesting article.
 
15 Minute Tweet TalesAnd in honor of today’s adventures, this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word is:
 
entomophagy - the practice of eating insects.
 
6/7 - She's thrilled when he cooks dinner for their first date. Then he reveals his fascination with entomophagy. She stares at plate in horror.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 227

15 Minute Tweet TalesI hope everyone had an enjoyable three-day weekend. Tropical Storm Bonnie paid us a visit, so we had lots of rain. But it wasn’t too bad, and if this is our only visit from a named stormed this hurricane season, I’ll take it! Now on to this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word: 
 
meliorism - the belief that the world tends to improve and that humans can aid its betterment. 
 
5/31 - As the bombs rained down on the city, she clung to her meliorism. After all, a forest always grew stronger after a cleansing fire.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 226

Today was a big day because I had to wear ‘leaving the house’ clothes all freakin’ day. I ran errands in the morning, and if you know how I feel about mornings or running errands, you know my day was not off to a great start. Fortunately it got so much better. 
 
In the early afternoon, I attended the end-of-year party with my Reading Partner. I got her a bunch of books I knew she’d like, we ate snacks and chatted about our plans for the summer, and then she gave me this note. 
RP note
Sniff. The party was bittersweet because while I’m happy she’s moving on to middle school (hopefully better prepared!), I’m going to miss her sweet face and sunny personality.
 
Then later this afternoon, I attended a book signing for my friend Leah Rhyne. Her book is called Heartless, and it’s a retelling of Frankenstein from the perspective of a female monster. I’m so thrilled for her and can’t wait to read it. And look at the cool cake she had to match her equally cool cover!
 
Leah's Heartless cakeHeartless by Leah Ryhne
 
I ran into another writing friend, Becka Enzor, at the signing, and we decided to go to dinner to catch up. I haven’t seen her since she got her agent, so it was great to hear all about her exciting news. Plus we had super yummy food. 
 
15 Minute Tweet TalesA busy day (in big people clothes!) has made for a very sleepy Jocelyn, so it’s time to get down to business with this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word:
 
antiphialtic - something to prevent nightmares or distressing dreams
 
5/24 - The circles under her eyes grow darker as nightmares gnaw at her brain. She searches for an antiphialtic until she dies of fright. 
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?