Archive for July, 2012

one man’s writing retreat

In a perfect writing world, I would head to the mountains for a few weeks. All alone, writing, reading, researching. Ah, but wait, I live in the real world. I live in a world with two precious children, and a devoted and loving husband. I would miss them dearly (just as I did during my recent trip to the Jackson Hole Writer’s Conference). I love my life. Sure, I wish I lived in the mountains, that I had more time to focus on my writing, but do I really need weeks or months alone to accomplish my goals? And more importantly, could I do it?
One of the debut authors highlighted in the most recent Writer’s Digest wrote his novel in two months. He spent the time at his parent’s lavender farm in Washington state while they were out of the country, and wrote.
Although I have mentioned how lovely a private weekend or week long writing retreat would be, staying any longer than that would send me clawing at the walls. I don’t like sitting for hours at a time. I fidget. I get distracted by shiny things, dull things, flat things, and round things.
When I shared this man’s story with my husband, I said, “I would need a stash of M&M’s, lots of water, gallons of coffee, I would take multiple trips to the bathroom, and I would stare out the window, wishing I was outside.” He was quick to remind me of a 7th grade boy I used to tutor. I would complain that he constantly sharpened his already nubby pencil, go to the bathroom, ask for more water than was necessary. It drove me nuts because I knew he was stalling. I thought he had issues, and it turns out we are a lot alike!

The idea of being alone for two months, with only my writing to focus on sounds a little appealing, but then I am reminded of who I am, and I know it would send me home crazier than I am to begin with.


July 24, 2012 at 3:21 pm 4 comments

Smells Like Mom

Smells Like Mom

My knees smell like mom. I hug them tight, pretending my arms are wrapped around her neck. I breathe in her sweet fruity scent.
She left yesterday, saying goodbye to my sisters and me. Repeating that it was best for us all. I didn’t believe her, and I still don’t.
The woman with the flowery shirt came to get us last night. Supposedly my mom had the “decency” to call someone that could take care of us. That’s not how I see it. I’m not as naive as I look. I might be young, but I know she didn’t have to leave us.
Last night my sisters and I all stayed in different homes. I worry about Nikki and Sami. Unlike me, they aren’t able to care for themselves.
I didn’t talk to the people who let me stay at their house. I know I won’t be there long, it’s only temporary. Until my mom comes back to get me.
This morning the woman with the bright flower shirt was wearing ugly earrings that dangled down to her shoulders. She brought me to school. Like I want to be here? I used the bathroom pass, and have been sitting here for the past, I don’t know, forever it seems like. Crouching in the corner shadows, hoping they don’t come get me. I want to sit here and smell my mom.


This flash fiction was created for Writer Unboxed “7 Days of Summer Flash Fiction Contest” Week 3. Write 250 words or less that are inspired by the visual prompt.

July 17, 2012 at 11:37 am Leave a comment

The Year I Didn’t Care


That was the year I didn’t care. The year when I ran free on the glen, the wind blowing my hair, creating tufts of rustled brown messes. I paid no heed to what it looked like. The breeze caught my skirt, making it swish around my waist. I cared not who saw. I felt the hot sun on my skin, soaking into my body, warming it like an oven warms delicious bread. The perspiration gathering at my brow did not embarrass me. I was free that year.
It all came before the shift. A divorce of magnitude. One caught up in the tabloids, one spoken about by every blog reading citizen. I was no longer free. The weight of the world’s eyes now hovered over my every move. What will she do? How will she handle this?
They need not have worried. In fact, they worried more than I. What I most despised, and remember most keenly to this day, is the freedom that I lost. I lost it with that last warm breeze. It slipped away with the kite as the wind snatched it out of my hands on that clear summer day. It escaped my reality as I watched my mother and father, standing on the edge of the veranda, gazing at me through darkened eyes. Something had changed.
I sit now, wondering if my skirt is covering my thighs, making sure my hair is in all the right places. Everyone is watching. I have lost my freedom.


This flash fiction was created for Writer Unboxed “7 Days of Summer Flash Fiction Contest.” Write 250 words inspired by the visual prompt. (Todays story was not submitted for the contest, only created for my writing pleasure.)

July 12, 2012 at 3:29 pm 6 comments

Tracy Dee Whitt - Author

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