Writing Assignment: Third Grade Classroom Day

In Judy Blume’s Masterclass, this assignment reads:

Judy advises that you reinhabit your childhood. One vivid way
to do this is to remember being in school. For example, put
yourself back in your third grade classroom. Try to remember
your teacher, the students around you, and what you did in a
specific moment. Focus on the details. If you’re not able
to conjure up your own memories, visit a school (with
permission) and observe the environment. Write up a page or
two of memories or observations from your school experiences
and share them in The Hub. Maybe you will spark an idea
from your school days or see something in someone else’s
recollection that speaks to you.

I decided to write a fictitious account of my elementary school based on one memory I have during that era of my life. The people are real and the song is very real. Here is my third-grade self telling a little story about Cinco De Mayo::::

Today is Cinco De Mayo, the fifth of May and we are going to have an assembly if it does not rain. We have been practicing our song all month. I am excited about performing it in front of everyone at our school.

I feel too excited to sit still at the long table that sits closest to the door. Next to me is my best friend, Julie, and across the table are Mohammad, Shehab, and Damon. We started elementary school together in the first grade with another twenty kids. In first grade, they picked five of the smartest kids in our class to go into a second-grade classroom. In second grade, the five of us had a third-grade teacher and we shared a room with the third graders.

Now, we are in third grade and are sitting in the fourth-grade classroom. The fourth graders do not understand the excitement I feel today, and the teacher has told me too many times to sit still and pay attention. It is hard to pay attention to things that are not important like spelling words when my mind is filled with the words to this fun song.

Cinco De Mayo is holiday time. Holiday time in Mexico.

I look at the clock. It is only nine o’clock. When both hands on the clock go straight up to the number twelve, that is when we will leave the classroom and line up for our song. We get to skip an hour of class to get into our outfits before the show. That is always fun to miss school and not get in trouble for it.

My teacher writes on the board today’s words. We copy them on our paper and must write them in cursive on the lined paper she gave us. I hate cursive because my loops are not as pretty as Julie’s. Ms. Hicks gives me bad grades on cursive. I do not even try to make my loops pretty because I cannot think about loops.

Cinco De Mayo is holiday time. To the fiesta we go-go-go.

My head turns to the door as I hear thunder outside. Normally, I would be afraid of the noise but not today. It just makes me a little sad because when you hear thunder it usually has rain with it. If it rains, we might not be able to sing our song and dress in the Mexican hats. I learned last week that in Spanish, a hat is called a sombrero. And the fiesta is a party.

“Kids, eyes up front.” Ms. Hicks says because everyone at my table looked at the door. After all, the thunder was so loud that it broke through the door.

Everyone except me turned their attention back to the chalkboard. I stare door still. I wonder if my mom will be mad if she misses work for the program and they cancel it because of the rain.

Sha-la-la-la-la. Go Go Go!

The bell rings and we are excused to go on the playground for a break. It is only a short one before lunch and before it gets hot outside. Our afternoon break is sometimes too hot, and we sit in the shade and do nothing.

When I run outside, I am happy to see that the ground was still dry. No rain yet. We still have a chance. Julie runs out in front of me and I catch up to her. We make it to the swings before anyone else. Everyone likes the swings. You would think the school would pay for everyone to have their own swing. If everyone had their own swing, I would not have to run to get one of the empty ones. Mine would be there waiting for me; even though my teacher says running is good for me.

Julie and I swing next to each other. We always try to see who can go the highest. I just want to get high so I can jump off. That is the difference between us. She just swings and I want to jump off them as Damon does. He always gets high up; one day he will go so high that he will go completely around and fly upside down. That would be cool.

The bell rings and I jump off the swing and land on my knees. I do not cry but it did hurt. As everyone is running back to class, the rain starts. I stop running and stand in the middle of the blacktop. It cannot be raining. Now they will not have the program.

Everyone is inside except me because I am so mad that it is raining. My arms are crossed in front of me, and my bottom lip is puffed out.

The teacher hollers at me. “Come inside, now.” When I do not move, the teacher runs out in the rain and grabs my arm. She drags me in while saying, “Stop this little attitude of yours.”

Nothing I can do but start crying. The fourth graders laugh as I am put in the corner of the room because I told the teacher outside that she needed to stop her attitude. She did not seem to like that. Well, I did not like it either. She does not understand that my mom is losing time from work for the program and the rain is going to cancel it. My mom never misses work unless it is something important because it is only me and her and we do not have a lot of money.

I wanted my mom to see my show so badly that she stayed home today so she could come to my lunchtime program, which looked like they would cancel it. Rain is so stupid. I do not even know why we need rain. It just makes everything all wet, and we must wear those stupid yellow jackets. My arms are still crossed in front of my chest as I sat Indian-style in the corner.

Cinco De Mayo is holiday time. Holiday time in Mexico.

When the little hand landed on the eleven, the door to the classroom opened. Mr. Golden called my name, as well as Julie, Mohammad, Damon, and Shehab. I jumped up from the corner of the room where I sat. It was time. It must have stopped raining. This excitement is making my stomach butterflies go crazy.

When I step outside, the rain is pouring down. Mr. Golden tells us to go next door. All five of us run with him to room number 3. We were in room 5. We all got wet even though we did run as fast as we could. The other third graders, who were not as smart as the elite five, were in the room. They were already dressed in their Mexican sombreros and panchos. We get dressed to match them.

After we get dressed, I ask Mr. Golden, “Are we going to put on the show if it’s raining?”

He says, “We moved the show into the cafeteria. We will perform while everyone eats.”

“And are parents?” I ask.

“They will be in the cafeteria with us.”

Julie and I jump up and down together because we know my mom and her mom will sit next to each other. After about an hour of butterflies, both hands of the clock are straight up. It is time. We make a single file line and walk slowly out of the room and into the cafeteria. As soon as we enter, the music starts. We sing our song in our classic Mexican hats and jackets. We dance and I try not to mess up the steps while I look for my mom in the audience. She is in the back of the room standing next to Julie’s mom. I smile and sing as loud as I can.

Cinco De Mayo is holiday time. Holiday in Mexico. Cinco De Mayo is holiday time. To the fiesta we go-go-go. Sha-la-la-la-la. Go Go Go.

I Signed Up For MasterClass

Yesterday, I signed up for my year long MasterClass program to help with writing. I started my first class with Judy Blume. Hell, why not. There are 19 different writing classes, so I have my work cut out for me.

Ultimately, I decided to take the plunge and spend the $180 for the year and beef up my writing skills. I debated this for a hard while because I didn’t want to fork out the money if this was just going to be one of those “hobbies” that I quit in 2 months just to insist that my passion lies somewhere else, and everyone agreeing with me. Which then again would change in 2 months stating that my REAL passion was something entirely different and everyone agreeing with me.

Even when I get bored and/or writer’s block, I come back to this: WRITING. So… here is another attempt at focusing on a hobby and I know everyone around me will either say YOU GOT THIS or ANOTHER HOBBY.

As I go forward with the classes, I know there will be assignments because I already go down to my first one with Judy Blume. I will use this blog as a place for my writing assignments and where I can discuss the program, the books they want us to read, and so on.

Part of the reason for the move to enhance my craft comes from where we are in life. Elisabeth has jumped into a creative career and is taking classes to better herself. I do believe that I write a good story, maybe the grammar and flow could be better. Why not take this time to better myself and my writing and after this time of study, I can go back to my works and bring this new author out in me. Go back to publishing real books and Kindles and tell myself that I am a writer.

Where Is girl/Mistress? And What I Learned While Writing This Epic Novel…

Someone asked me recently why I haven’t taken the time to publish girl/Mistress on Wattpad and bring it back to life. Honestly, the real reason is because it is such a enormous undertaking that I am don’t know if I am ready to give that much time to it.

The novel, girl/Mistress was a book that I wrote back in 2009. It took seven years to actually publish it on Amazon and was the only book to make some money. Maybe somewhere around $300.00, give or take. The paperback version came in over 600 pages. It felt like the size of a Stephen King book. Each time I am ready for a new project for Wattpad, I look at girl/Mistress and pass up the chance to relive it to work on something else. One day it will happen.

For any of my peeps who knows girl/Mistress knows that this book life changing. Last night when I thought about this blog post, I wanted to to start off like this: It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. To talk about girl/Mistress that line is completely true. So here is the story of girl/Mistress.

The original story was TeenDom, a real person fiction centered around Emily Osment, Miley Cyrus, and the cast of Hannah Montana with an original character to star opposite of Emily Osment. After I finished that version of the story, I had a little obsession with the TV show or to say, Emily Osment. I came up with the idea to flip the story in a way to make it a fanfiction in the HM fandom. The title then became, I’m Not A Girl, Not Yet A Mistress. If anyone knows HM, you know that all the episode titles are song titles with a little humor to it.

I began writing it and posting the chapters on FanFiction.net back in 2009. This introduced me to a bunch of people I now call friends. It also introduced me to someone who completely changed my life. I met, online, a girl who I had a lot in common with, and she became my beta-reader for this story.

In my personal life, I had a girlfriend but we were not really happy at the time. A good word for it was BORED. So when this person came into my life and we had all the odd and warped things in common, it was inevitable that I fell in love with her. I broke up with my girlfriend, started a long distance online relationship with someone, got back together with my girlfriend, thought that I could have two women at once, and found myself more messed up then I already thought I would. All in the span of a couple years.

Ultimately, my beta-reader lost interest in me and the story. My girlfriend (now wife) almost kicked my ass out of the house. And I had a lot of pieces to pick up and make right in my life. Which I did. My girlfriend did not kick me out and we are actually much stronger together because we finally appreciate each other. I still have great friends from the making of this book. And my beta-reader married her previous girlfriend, so everything worked out in the end.

So I thought about a bullet point list of all the things I learned from this process. Here we go.

  • Online long-distance relationships don’t work.
  • If your girlfriend gives you a second chance, fucking take it and don’t mess it up. She’s a keeper.
  • My favorite couple to write about is Emily/Miley or Miley/Lily. Still is.
  • I like sex and I like writing about it.
  • Friendships can form on line and they are real. Thank you Karleen!
  • Don’t be afraid to let your freak flag fly. The keepers will help hold your flag with you.
  • A brilliant novel doesn’t happen in 30 days, it takes years to be ready but never will be perfect.
  • Never rely on someone else for inspiration, muses are good but they shouldn’t stop you from writing.
  • Write whatever the hell you want. There will be someone out there who will love it, too.

Finishing my second draft of “DESTINY”

This weekend, I finished up the second draft of Destiny and published it on Wattpad along the way. It’s always a good feeling when you can click the button that says completed. It’s like you can finally say goodbye to an old friend but it is bittersweet because over the past few months, I have fallen in love with these people all over again.

The idea behind the book, DESTINY came to me while actually on a road trip from Houston to San Francisco and back. On the things, I saw were these trees out in the middle of the desert that looked like they had caught fire and had melted. Being a writer all my life, sometimes I try to figure out how to describe the things I see. Throughout the drive, especially in Central California, we constantly saw varies different farms and I thought about what it would take to live there and work the area.

Being from the city, I immediately put that city girl and country boy together. It was a match made in heaven for me. My characters were all completely made up, making this the first story that was not fanfiction or based on a person. My male character was a hybrid foreigner and surfer. While I did not have anyone in mind when I created him, I pictured a cross between Christopher Atkins (The Blue Lagoon) and Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy). The visual in my head for my female counterpart was Jennifer Stone.

The original was under 50,000 words, it was somewhere around 46,000. By the time I finished my second draft, the finished version ended up at 53,820. I know writers should cut and cut and cut, and I did. But I also added two full chapters, expanded on ideas, and changed a few things that didn’t work.

But now it is done. I am ready to move on to my next project. I can not decide if I should edit an old story, work on a pending story, or start something new.

Exposing a little secret something I call, “Irresistible Seduction”

I’ve talked about a lot of my stories and writings over the years and not once have I ever been embarrassed by anything I have written. I would have shown anyone any of my writings, including my dark days of Hannah Montana fanfiction where Miley and her dad got it on. Then I wrote this…

Not that I am embarrassed, at all; it’s just sometimes people don’t understand and automatically assume that because you write something it automatically becomes personal, especially with a self-published writer. No one questions Stephen King and him killing off people. Everyone questions when an indie author writes a romance because it has to be based on some sort of reality. I don’t know how many times I had to tell my dad that my books are not some deeply hidden feelings I harbor for someone.

Okay, maybe Jennifer Stone and Emily Osment; but definitely not the bookworm in Something Wilder. And clearly not the cruise director in Dark Waters Ahead. Remember, not everything I write is based on reality; just like Stephen King. If I kill someone off in a book, doesn’t mean I want them dead in real life. Same with sex, just because I write about a person I know having sex doesn’t mean I want to have sex with them.

With that said… Irresistible Seduction is a real person fanfiction based on the musical group, Fandango. And there… I said it. This story has been published for a while now on Wattpad and has been my dirty little secret because I am friends with the members of the group, especially the main character, Sandra.

Years before I started writing this story, my wife and I went to Monterrey, Mexico and spent the weekend with Sandra and got to know her family. When the group decided to make a reunion come back, Fandango was back on the radar and inspiration for another real person fiction was born. This time using Sandra, her family, and the members of the group. I wrote it and posted it on Wattpad as I wrote. There were no other edits other than the first very rough draft.

I never thought it would amount to anything other than a story I wrote. Meanwhile, it had taken a life of its own on Wattpad. The first chapter went up October 27, 2019 and since then it has over 3,300 reads. Honestly, I think it is one of my most popular stories. Could it the subject matter?

The story is about a young boy whose parents were murdered. He goes to live with a family. As he grows up to become a man, the woman who raised becomes attracted to him. After being caught and going their separate ways, the two of them are reunited thirty years later and the feelings are still there. So you have a potential, but not real mother/son forbidden relationship that exists. Maybe that is why this story became popular? I doubt anyone on Wattpad knows who Fandango is, so it couldn’t be that.

I don’t think I will change it. It is what it is. If I do, I will probably change up the names and some of the noticeable similarities to the characters.

My first published book… “Something Wilder”

Yup. There it is! The first book I ever published on Amazon. I can’t say it sold exceptionally well, but I know a couple of friends who went out and purchased it when I announced it, which was kind of cool.

Again, we start out with a simple love story. Boy meets girl. Boy falls for girl. Girl falls for boy, but the girl is married. Oh, the drama!

My inspiration to this story came after visiting Half Price Books in Dallas. My wife (girlfriend at the time) decided that we went start a Half Price Books road trip and visit all of the HPBs across the country. Our first stop was the main location in Dallas.

During this visit, we met with the social media directors, managers, and corporate gurus because they were all wild about the idea of us touring the country just for HPBs. We didn’t finish the mission but we sure did hit a lot of stores that year. And spent a lot of money.

The social media director became my inspiration for this store. She was the epitome of a geeky bookworm, which was the perfect counterpart to my dashing and charming writer character. Again, NOT ME.

The story came to me one night, after our trip when I could not sleep. I stayed up all night thinking about this story and by morning, I had plotted it out and began my novel. It didn’t make it to novel status, just a novella.

When I finished the book, I knew I wanted to publish it. I sent it off to a friend, who edited it for me. Over the years, I have done many different edits. Even paid someone to edit it and still, it is nowhere near and finished and professional quality book. But… it is what it is.

I really do like the story and even though it is not very long, it turned out nice. I was proud of myself for publishing a book for the first time and bought everyone close to me a copy. Now, no one even thinks twice about me finishing another book or even publishing it. You can never get back that feeling of the first time seeing your work in print.

Who was the muse for “A Muse Is Born”?

I am sure that is the question on everyone’s mind, right? Who was the muse that help created A Muse is Born? Let me tell you.

A Muse is Born is about a writer who moves into an apartment complex and meets a not-so-confident actress and the two of them fall in love. It’s a simple story that has been told many times over. First off, no the write is NOT ME. He is an original character that I created to stand next to the young and upcoming actress. My muse is Jennifer Stone.

Jennifer Stone is an actress that I am still 100%, okay maybe like 95% in love with. She played Harper on the Disney Channel television show, Wizards of Waverly Place. There are not many celebrities that I have had a crush on that I still do. Honestly, there is only one. Jennifer Stone.

While there may be other crushes that come and go, Jennifer Stone has been with me for over a decade and she is far from leaving my life. I don’t know what it is about this girl, but I am utterly and passionately hers. Just saying.

This was the first of many stories I have written using Jennifer Stone as my muse. It was written while she was still filming the television show, so you can tell it is that old.

Going through my works and giving them fresh edits for the Wattpad publishing, I remembered back to one of the reviews I received when this was on Amazon. They mentioned how if the story was told in first person, he could not know what she was doing when he wasn’t around. With that in mind, I decided to add an introduction and a different epilogue that would fix that situation. I don’t want to give too much of the story and plot away, especially if you want to read it.

Ultimately, I like how to final edit turned out even though there are still a few things I might fix later on.

2013’s NaNoWriMo – “Dark Waters Ahead”

In 2013, I decided I would take the challenge of NaNoWriMo and write an entire book during the month of November. I did. And I completed it. I present to you, Dark Waters Ahead.

Dark Waters Ahead is my pride and joy and when it was up for sale on Amazon, it never sold a copy. Not even a download. This makes me sad and I believe it is the reason I gave up on selling my work on Amazon.

This story is about a high school boy who meets the girl of his dreams. Just as their relationship begins, they find out that their parents were dating and they were about to become brother and sister, which meant they were off-limits to each other. I mean, we know were wanted Greg and Marcia to hook up, right?

When our main character can’t have the girl that he wants, he turns to taking it where he can get it even if it was by force. The family goes on a cruise and Scott, our protagonist, takes his terror to the high seas.

The inspiration for this story happened by chance during a cruise I was on. Everything about the boat, the excursions, were part of my trip; though I was not a predator on that ship.

My two main characters were completely original and I had no real inspiration for them. A secondary character who Scott ends up molesting was actually inspired by a crew member of the ship. So there was a bit of real person fiction here. I mean, what is one of my stories without having someone real on my mind?

When I finished the story and decided to publish it, I asked my mother to read and edit it. She did. With the amount of graphic sex in this story, I am surprised my mother doesn’t think I am some sort of pervert.

What inspired “Cause and Effect”?

One of my favorite stories I have written is Cause and Effect, though I am not too sure where the inspiration came from for this story. The title of the book came from a song by Paulina Rubio, “Causo y Efecto”.

I wrote this story during my Hannah Montana fanfiction days which was probably about the span of a year, year and a half. During that time, I was writing all the time and posting a chapter almost daily of one story or another. I mostly wrote the fandom using Miley and Lily, but during my darker period with the fandom it went on to be about Miley and her dad. I am not proud of those stories and I actually do not have any of them.

Most of the stories I wrote during this fandom were short stories or ones that I started but never finished. Cause and Effect just happened to be one that I finished and am quite proud of it. It was originally titled, Girl Interruptous. Kind of going into the idea that Lily had just gotten out of rehab because of an accident that almost killed Miley.

It’s a coming-of-age story, as well as a love story. Originally, it was meant to put Miley and Lily together but ultimately a secondary character, Joanie, became such an important role that it changed the entire original plot.

Oddly, that happens so many times. A writer always says that the character write themselves and in this story, she did. During the rewrite and edit, the inspiration for Joanie’s character was actually Ruby Rose, as seen in Orange is The New Black. This rebel comes into the character’s world and flips everything all around. That is what this character did.

The final edit of this story made me fall in love with this character more than Miley or Lily and I believe she truly was the star.

Tapping into the world of Erotica with “TeenDom”

If you read my summary of King of The Kingdom, you will know about the drama with JP and me over my writing world. Remember when I said that there was a second argument for another book. This is the book.

Just before I began writing this story, Sleeping Beauty was released on Blu-Ray. The Blu-Ray featured a music video of Emily Osment singing “Once Upon A Dream” and I became obsessed with the little blondie. Okay, yes she was jail bait but I couldn’t help it. Again, the difference between JP and I is cartoons versus real people.

My obsession with Emily Osment took shape and I began watching Hannah Montana, just because of her. I also began writing this little erotic love story about her. Another fanfiction. The problem arose when my story featured S&M with the male protagonist as a submissive looking for a mistress that he finds in Emily. Why does this become a fight with JP?

JP and I used to have this relationship that was strictly about music but once I got with my girlfriend, she began to open up to me about her personal life, which included kink with her girlfriend. I don’t/didn’t have an issue with it. It just surprised me about her. I am not a prude and even used to babysit for a dominatrix. I knew about kink. I don’t have a problem with it but oddly, she thought I did. I don’t know why.

When I wrote this story, I was told by JP’s girlfriend that I was making fun of JP. So not true. I could have cared less about what JP and her girlfriend did in bed. So this book drove a wedge between the friendship. All because I was writing kinky fanfiction?

Who knows. I finished this book and decided that I should officially escape into the world of real fanfiction and flipped this story upside down. I rewrote this book in the Hannah Montana fandom with Miley being my male but now female protagonist, and Lily as Emily Osment. It worked and it grew. I’ll talk about that book at a later date.

For now, I revived the original TeenDom story, changed out Emily’s real-life world, and set the stage for a sequel to this book. It will be completely different than how the remake went. I have already begun writing the next chapter of this saga. I think it will be a total of 3 books when the series is complete.