Party Time: The Community Storyboard Is Back!

The Community Storyboard is back and ready for submissions!  Read the guidelines below or click here.

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We’re back!!!

After careful consideration and discussions with a panel of experts (we hear voices), we are implementing some not so drastic changes.  In the spirit of keeping this a fair and fun community for everyone, we have rearranged some privileges, made some editorial changes, and adjusted our guidelines.  Some of you who had free posting privileges prior to our closure may now find that you are restricted and need an editor’s approval before posting.  After a history of consistent quality posts, you may regain privileges to post without editor approval.  This is not anything personal or a judgment against your writing or talent, but we are striving to take the CSB in a more positive direction.  To do so, we need to establish more quality control.

Going forward, we ask that people remember that this website is about feedback.  The ‘C’ stands for Community and we mean it.  Even if you dislike a piece, please feel free to comment on it with respect and integrity.  Consistently coming to the editors with an issue about works that are represented on the blog does not help the author in question learn and grow.  If discussions do get heated and cross the line of civility, the editors will step in and there will be the risk of removal of offending party(ies).

Without further ado, here are the New Guidelines!

  • This blog is intended to feature Short fiction, non-fiction and poetry, as well as art pieces and musical works. We would prefer if your submission was no longer than 1000 words long, unless it has been arranged prior.
  • We ask that you limit your posting to 1 piece per day unless you are an editor or have previous permission.  The exception to this rule is during contests, prompts, and themes that require more than one post per day.
  • The work you submit must be original and all rights must belong to you. If you are submitting work for someone else, you must include a signed release with your submission. Any work that is deemed as not original will be promptly removed from the site and you will no longer be allowed to participate. This includes any art work or photos that are an accompaniment to your writing, unless it is public domain.
  • Your work will be published as determined by the editors of this site, and on the schedule that works for them.
  • We will not edit your work for you. It will be published as is.
  • We maintain the right to refuse to publish a work at our discretion and without any further explanation.
  • We do not claim any rights to your work. It is yours to do with as you wish. If you no longer wish to have your work featured on the site, please use the contact form on the Submission Guidelines Page. Please remember to include the title of your post so that we may easily find and remove it. It may take up to 72 hours for it to be removed from the site.
  • Please keep in mind this is a community.  Choose only your best stuff and post the rest to personal blogs.
  • The formatting of your piece will be handled by our editors, unless you have posting privileges. WordPress sometimes does odd things. We will do the best we can to ensure that it comes out looking great.
  • If you are submitting an excerpt of a published book, please also send us a link to the book and the publisher information.
  • Fan Fiction will NOT be accepted.
  • NO self-promoting via single links to your blog with no other content.
  • All content on this site is property of the individual author. If you are going to use it in part or in whole somewhere else, you must have permission from the author first, with the exception of reblogs.
  • Please include the links to your website/sales pages with your work if you wish to have them posted.
  • Please note: It may take up to a week for one of our editors to get back to you.
  • If you wish to have a photo included with your submission please note this at the top of your submission and we will send you the appropriate email to submit it to. We kindly ask that you limit your photos to one per submission, unless you are doing a photography post that has been previously approved.
  • Please ensure that your photos are appropriate for all audiences and are not offensive.  This includes graphic nudity, violence/gore, sexuality, and anything else that may be construed as inappropriate.

We hope everyone has a good time here and shares in the joy of reading and writing–Thank you, the editorial team.

Keep a look out for a post about coming events such as an artist contest and the bi-monthly theme, which will be replacing the weekly prompts.

RCC Update: 1WriteWay for … the last few months :)

From the Rome Construction Crew website, here’s a long-overdue update on goals I had set way back when:

Is it November yet? OMG, it’s almost November! Yes, I’ve been lolling in the luxury of not having to meet a WORD COUNT for the past few months but November (meaning NaNoWriMo) is so close I can taste it (whatever November might taste like).  So as long as I’ve been without that albatross around my neck, I’ve also been a little less active on my blog.  Of course, some of my friends (that is, the nonblogging friends) think I am very active, until I explain reblogging to them.  Then they’re like, “Oh.”  In anticipation of another month of insane writing (but what other kind is there, really), I decided to revisit my RCC goals.  Yes, I know the last time I did this was … ahem … August.  Well, tickle me with a feather.  Better late than never.  And so it goes …

My Goals

(1) Get off my own back. I am definitely much better at this now.  Ironically, it’s because of my day job that I’ve loosened up a bit.  You see, recently I received a promotion.  I’m very happy about this because I know I earned it (why do I say this?  long story for another time).  I work with a great group of people who simply bring out the best in me.  As I said to my supervisor once, my duties include “anything you tell me to do.”  I think that’s when she decided to promote me.  But my work also makes me very tired, and I’ve learned (since with a promotion comes more responsibilities) that I simply have to “get off my own back” if I want to get anything done.  Same with my writing.  Berating myself only slows me down, so enough of that already.

(2) Set up a schedule of posting that gives me time to write, but doesn’t make followers think I’ve fallen off the face of the earth. I might not be doing as well with this goal as I would like.  I haven’t contributed to CSB of late, and aside from my Mondays with John Howell, my blogging is spotty.  But I’m getting there.  I’ve started scheduling posts to publish while I’m otherwise engaged (like this one :) ).  So, I’m getting closer to this goal, too.

(3) Get organized.  Dream on.

(4) Just keep writing.  That’s what I’m doing!  Every word I type or write down is just that … writing.  Just because it doesn’t fit into a neat little poem or riveting short story doesn’t mean it isn’t still writing.  It.  All.  Counts.

So how is everyone else doing with their goals?  Remember, it’s the journey that’s important.  And if you like the idea of consorting with like-minded folk who support each other regardless of whether they even have goals, consider joining the Rome Construction Crew.  Details at http://www.romeconstructioncrew.com/about/

The Community Storyboard’s Featured Post

csb-featured-post

My (long) short story in response to the Community Storyboard’s September 8 Writing Prompt has been awarded a “Featured Post” badge!  And I am sharing this distinction with my pal and partner in blogging, John W. Howell at Fiction Favorites.  You can read John’s writing prompt response here.

Now all you other writers out there, make a visit to The Community Storyboard, submit a story, a poem, a photo, an essay to that week’s writing prompt, and you too may become a recipient of the CSB Featured Post badge!  There’s a new prompt every Sunday, lasting for the whole week.  Join in the fun!

Squirrels: This Time It’s Personal (Part 11)

Continued from Squirrels:  This Time It’s Personal (Part 10), a chain story event started at The Community Storyboard.

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Darlene’s head felt like someone had dropped a safe on it. She didn’t want to open her eyes, afraid of the pain and of what she might see. She could hear and smell the rodents that had thrown her into the back of the SUV. They were snickering and scraping and farting and belching off in some distant corner. She was in a chair and the pain in her wrists and ankles made clear that she was tied to it. And there was some disgusting cotton material stuffed in her mouth. She slowly turned her head toward the sounds and peeked through one eye.

The light was dim, gray almost, maybe it was the pain in her head that made it difficult to see well. She could barely make out the blurry, furry figures off in a corner, around a table. She lifted her head some more, trying hard not to make a sound as a searing hot pain shot up through her neck. She must have been out for a long time.

“Hey, the broad’s awake!” Darlene’s blood ran cold at the raspy voice of the one who had choked her. She could make out the pear-shaped figures as they got up from their chairs and started to move toward her, snickering and fondling their whiskers with their disgusting little hands. Darlene wanted to vomit, but with the rag in her mouth, no way could she give in.

She smelled them long before they were close to her: stale beer, pistachios, and … and … corn. She tried to stare them down, to make them think she wasn’t afraid. But she was terrified. There were three of them, two rodents and a giant covered in hair. Sasquatch!

The rodents circled her chair, walking around and poking her, giggling and laughing as they did. Sasquatch just stood in front of her, his beady red eyes peering out through the thick pelt of hair that covered his face.

“I say we use her in the poker game … a strip poker game. The boss doesn’t need to know that we’ve had a little fun.” One of the goons leaned forward from behind her and Darlene could feel the tickle of his whiskers against her neck. She shivered with revulsion. If only she didn’t have that rag in her mouth, she would have spit at him.

Suddenly she felt something cold and sharp against her throat. The goon leaned even closer, licked her ear and pulled her head back so she was looking at him upside down.

“Now, pretty thing, we’re going to untie you and have you sit with us while we play our game. And you’re going to behave … unless you want your pretty throat cut!” Darlene winced as the knife ever so lightly cut into her skin. She blinked her eyes and the rodent gave her a big toothy grin. Christ, what an overbite he has, Darlene thought as the vermin released her hair and stepped back.

“Don’t cut the ropes, Bob. Just untie them so we can tie her back up afterward. Remember, the boss can’t know!” The rodents laughed, the sound echoing off the metal walls of the warehouse, and Darlene saw them start fondling their nuts … she couldn’t tell if they were acorns or pistachios. Her heart started racing as she felt the ropes loosen on her wrists. The second rodent had knelt in front of her and was working on untying her ankles. She could see that he was also trying to look up her skirt. She was itching to kick him in the nuts, but knew she had to restraint herself. She was too weak. Her power was at its absolute minimum. But somehow she had to get away, or die trying. The Sasquatch just stood there, watching.

Once she was unbound, she was hoisted to her feet. The rodents were grinning widely, their buckteeth so unclean they were almost phosphorescent in the dim light. The Sasquatch stepped forward and extended a huge hairy hand toward her blouse. Then a bright light flashed in front of her, a roaring boom echoed through the cavernous warehouse, and the Sasquatch exploded into hair and gore. Darlene fell to the ground as the rodents dropped her and ran for their guns. Just as quickly, she was picked up again and carried to the other side of the warehouse.

She gazed up at the young man who was cradling her in his arms. He had silky dark hair, smoky blue eyes, and was totally buffed.

“Are you OK?” He asked with such urgency that she almost laughed. Of course, she was OK as long as she was wrapped in his muscular arms. But he was all seriousness and he scowled like he was channeling Mel Gibson’s Hamlet.

“Sam!”

“Dean!” The young man apparently named Sam hugged her closer as he turned toward another rather handsome and more scruffy dirty blond dude coming toward them. The man apparently named Dean looked at Darlene and started to say something when Darlene screamed.

While the two bros were all attentiveness to her, the remaining creepy rodents were slinking along the shadows, machine guns in their hands. The guns went off and Sam, Dean, and Darlene fell to the floor and slithered out of range of the gunfire. The air became more dense and dark as the goons shot up the boxes that were stacked all around them.

“Dean, what should we do?”

“I don’t know, Sam. I wish Cass was here.”

Darlene nestled between the two very fit men, thinking how happy she could be if only they weren’t being fired on by rodents. And there might be a third guy? Hell, she thought, if she had to die, then at least she was in the company of some hot dudes.

“Dean!”

“What, Sammy?”

“What do we do now?”

“Hell if I know, Sam.”

***

And hell if I know where this story is going to go ultimately. But, for now, it’s going to go to Belle at Ruminations & Observations!

CSB-Logo-MarieAnn

Prompt for the Week of September 8, 2013 – Friday the 13th Horror!

Come on, my fellow fans of Horror! Submit your response for this week’s writing prompt–Friday the 13th Horror–to the Community Storyboard!

The Community Storyboard

The prompt for this week is HORROR!

 

Write a horror short story or poem!

 

(Please link back to this post with your entry)

 

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Calling All Artists! Calling All Artists!

Here you go! Submit, all ye striving writers and artists!

Legends of Windemere

Do I have your attention?

I’m writing to let all authors, poets, musicians, painters, and any artist types that I forgot!

The Community Storyboard is a new and exciting blog where you can submit your work and have it showcased.  You can get important feedback and make friends with other artists.  Aside from submissions, we are going to be doing a few prompts and weekly themes that you can use for some spontaneous creations.

We’re all friendly people there and want this to become a blog where all artists can come for support and fun.  Being an artist is a tough road, so let’s try to unite and travel down it as a community

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Short Story: Rachel Comes of Age

A short story by moi on The Community Storyboard (and my 10th post there)!

The Community Storyboard

Rachel pleaded with David, pressing her cell phone closer.  “David, please, can’t we talk about it?”  She lay on her side, hugging her pillow to her stomach. He had just told her about his plans for the summer, a European tour that he would take, but not with her. Not now.

“Rachel, we have talked about it,” David’s voice was low and soft, but impatient.  “I told you from the beginning.  I’m going to med school in the fall.  I told you that when we started dating.  Nothing has changed for me.”

Rachel felt her face burn.  “Not even your feelings for me?”  She sat up on her bed and hugged the pillow closer.  Her long honey-blonde hair hung heavy with sweat.

David sighed.  “Look, I care about you.  And I will miss you.  But I don’t love you the way you want me to.”

“But you could someday.  Especially…

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Writing prompt of the week

The writing prompt of the week: This Old House. At The Community Storyboard.

The Community Storyboard

This old house

The writing prompt for the week is “This old House”

Don’t forget to post your submission in the comments, send it to us (if you don’t have access) or link back to us!

You can write a poem, a short story, anything experimental, but it must use the words “This old house” somewhere in the writing. You can find my submission below.

 

Of bricks and boards

creaking floors

Paint that peeled

weathered revealed

 

Dirty windows

memories

garden paths

scarred up trees

 

empty rooms

filled up with dust

leaky faucets

pipes of rust

 

and still I hold

this old house

and you my dear

only a home

as you were here

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Love

Thoughts on love from a young poet at The Community Storyboard.

The Community Storyboard

Love. A four Letter word.
Said so often, but often not meant.
Have you heard, this four letter word?

It makes your heart fly, it makes your heart sink.
Make you laugh and make you cry.
Can toss you a rope ladder, or push you over the brink.

Heart beating fast.
No! Not goodbye!
Too late now, the past is in the past.

Loved by many, hurt by some.
To the world you gave your heart and soul.
You had a good run, but now you’re back to square one.

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What is Your Love?

Spreading the Love at The Community Storyboard.

The Community Storyboard

Taking on the love theme of the week.

We forget that love
Can take so many forms
Parent to child and back around
Friends standing together
Until the very end
The happy pet at the door

We can love a food
Or a television show
It might not be too much
Because they bring us joy
The essence of love
That is so pure and fleeting

I can hear some
Saying love cannot be so broad
Saved only for the spouse
Cheapened if used for others
Like does not always work
When the heart is touched so deep

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