Misc Stories

Most of the stories and writings nested under this parent page will be first drafts (all protected by copyright). The first story to be treated, critiqued, censored, edited, or ridiculed is Twenty-One Stars Fell into the Ocean, and Mermaids Swam Ashore.




Regarding the Twenty-one Stars story:

Feb. 26, 2017 Update:

My favorite editor sent me some comments and suggestions, prime of which was a dislike of the Poseidon character. So I removed him entirely. Some other lessor changes were made. What is now online is the second version of the story.

Early Feb.  My not-a-blood-relative favorite reader sent me this critique:

That was a sweet fun romp, I never heard of a moon morning.. Assume it’s when the moon comes up?, a little sad, I feel badly for the stone seal, why is he there?,does he memorialize some thing, I like that Marley won’t go into the water without supervision,but why does she trust Poseidon, just because he is in the seat, could be questionable to moms. Or can be used to discuss Real child predators in some way…maybe add some thought quandary Marley has about a different person in the lifeguard chair than who had been there when she was at the shore with her parents, good photos to enrich the story, Tina

Yes, the issue of the child wandering off in the middle of the night did occur to me. My defense is in two parts. First, I tried to emphasize the action occurring in a dream. Second, is the much weaker argument of what-about… 1) Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland with Alice crawling down a hole (but it was all a dream is also Dodgson’s defense); 2) Peter Pan for which Barrie offers no defense of a strange boy trespassing into a children’s bedroom, convincing them they can fly and then having them dive out of a second story window – never mind the dangerous happenings in Neverland.

My sister who is also a writer sent me this critique:

Jim,   I love, love, love the title and opening lines of the fairy tale (“twenty-one stars fell into the ocean and mermaids swam ashore”) and almost wished the tale had been written as a free-form poem for young people.  Or maybe a combination of story and poem. I wish the islands had been shrouded in mists and magical, even if the latter was just a father’s wish for his young daughter.  No smelly caves.  And that the mermaids-born-of-stars, as well as Marley, had been befriended by Neptune and that the mermaids were taken back to his kingdom to live with his people on a moon-lit night with a moon-lit path back to the seas around the magical islands.  And that Neptune hinted that the next time the universes bumped into each other Marley might again witness the magic that ensued.  Practical advice: Take care with using art/ photos that belong to others.  I do it for books I write just for Marley, but not for blogs. And may I put your story into Marley’s book of stories?  I think she would love it.  See you next week. Love, Helen

Of course, I gave her permission to put the story into my grand-niece’s book of stories. And I invited her to write a version of the story.