Been sick the last 5 weeks, so not much happening on the writing front. House renovation from the dishwasher's fill valve failing full on proceeds slowly. I have no words lately. Lots of steroids and antibiotics, but no fiction. On the other hand, this doesn't stop me from being an influence on my friends, whether for good or for ill.
CV Walter and Cedar Sanderson are in a little text chat with me, useful for hashing out who's going to the farmer's market and would they pick up the CSA box, or discussing cover art, or stories we like that are not in genres the gents would enjoy, or hey, Aldi has this back in stock, or getting feedback on the latest chapter of a WIP, or there's a great sale on breakfast sausage at Red Barn Butchers...
And someone, who shall remain nameless, was bemoaning the fact that they wanted to get more writing done. (Three someones out of three on the chat, really.) But one of them allowed as how they really missed doing Flash Fiction Friday, where they'd come up with a prompt, and then everyone had to write a thousand word story by the end of the... I think it was the end of the weekend. It's been a couple years.
(I failed to follow the directions, and worked at least one prompt into a chapter of the novel in progress, while they wrote flash fiction. "Cole's cooking cornbread." If you find that line, now you know...)
So, why not restart it? Because her Fridays are now booked solid to overbooked... and she doesn't want to do something as small as flash fiction, this time, she wants to do short stories. which would take even more time out of her weekend that she doesn't have to give.
Me, being me, saw this as no impediment. If Fridays are booked, just move it! If the deadline of 3 days is too short, make it a week! Adapt, improvise, overcome!
So about the time I was making a joke about tentacles (The current WIP includes satire of certain subgenres. It has a Kraken who is disappointed that he has two humans, but they're not a mated pair. Ryleh keeps trying to give his humans well-meant but wildly species-inappropriate mating advice.), I also replied, "So, make it Taco Tuesday!"
Somehow, these two things ran together in my friends' minds (I don't pry), and the running gag of Taco Tuesday With Tentacles was born, grew legs (or tentacles?) and took off running.
Next thing I know, they've both written a story by the deadline for the first week. And they both blamed me! One in the foreword, one in the afterword. I mean, once I took the obvious cheap shot about getting getting it in front and behind at the same time by two romance authors... all I could do was laugh, and agree that I'm very blameable.
You know, like beer: a beverage exists to be regretted, and blamed the next day for all that you accomplished, and the manner and style in which it was done.
Cedar is building her romance pen-name, with a sweet romance of a chance encounter on a desert planet under deadly circumstances... (What? I didn't suggest it! She still blamed me...) with Djinn (Available on Amazon at: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CRVTL8Y1 )
CV Walter did a short story that's "the start of the happily ever after you knew would come" set after one of her romances, Pursued by the Alien Pilot, and has it available in her substack, here: https://cvwalter.substack.com/p/january-update-and-a-free-story
The story itself is sweet, and the book it's following isn't that steamy. The series has plenty of spice, though! If that sounds like fun to you, this is the specific book to read first before the taco tuesday story: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09SYBG9S7
I have no idea what those two will do by next Tuesday. One's off at a convention, and the other just helped me pack my entire pantry, and demolish the OSB-and-bent-screws shelving the prior owner left us. Maybe they'll be too tired and busy. Or maybe exhaustion and sleep deprivation will mean this time, round, Taco Tuesday (With Tentacles) might actually have tacos. Or tentacles.
I don't judge. I feed them and make amusing suggestions, or advice that seemed like a good idea at the time...