Actor/ Actress, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer, History, Memories/Childhood, Movie Reviews, Music and Performers, My Thoughts, Nonfiction, Travel, Writing, Writing Challenges

Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer: Clang with the Trolley #amwriting #JudyGarland #flashfiction


Thanks to Priceless Joy for hosting FFftAW.


Credit: Yinglan Z

Each Christmas it is traditional for my family to watch Judy Garland’s Meet Me in St. Louis. The more times I watch it, the more it and Garland’s dazzling voice pull me in. By now I know the songs by heart and if not all of them, then at least the well-known “Trolley Song.”

The scene of Judy Garland’s character singing on the trolley is what comes into my mind whenever I see one and why today, I feel that I need to ride the trolley, wherever it may be going. Sure, it may take me places I have no idea where I am or why I ended up where I did. But it will also lead me to unexpected and interesting city jewels, waiting for discovery. 

As Garland’s character in the movie  did not want to leave St. Louis but at the same time possessed a yearning to explore, I have a connection to the trolley and wanting to explore the city because of  Garland’s famous song and her character’s adventurous spirit. 

——

“The Trolley Song” — Judy Garland 


©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.

Interviews, My Thoughts, Nonfiction, Poetry, Travel, Writing

Interview of Writer, Blogger, and Photographer Yinglan Z #amwriting #interview #nonfiction


Welcome to my regularly scheduled bi-weekly interview series. I am pleased to share with you the blog of a talented writer, photographer, and world traveler. I have blogged with Yinglan for a while and am pleased to call her a good friend in the blogging world. Please visit her blog here: This is Another Story – About Life, Fantasy, and Everything In Between.


Interview - yinglan
Credit: Yinglan Z

1. Hi Yinglan, Please tell us About Yourself? 

Hi, my name is Yinglan Z. and the name of my blog is This is Another Story because isn’t every day in life another story?

I recently completed my second academic degree in Accounting and am currently spending a brief four months in my hometown of Zhongshan, China to get reacquainted with my relatives as well as the place I lived during the first decade of my life. When I am not in China having an adventure, I lead a pretty boring life in the suburb of Salt Lake City, Utah.

At the moment, I am a self-employed translator, working with my mom to update the Chinese version for a software guide widely used by schools around the world. However, my personal goal is to either become a full-time writer or find a job where I’m applying what I’ve learned from my two degrees because isn’t that why I got two degrees?


2. Please Tell Us About Your Writing and Blogging? What do You Hope to Accomplish in Writing?

I began writing in 2013 and the purpose of my blog (at first) was to post the speeches I’d written for Toastmasters, an international club for public speaking. Then, I fell in love with storytelling; thus, my blog for fictional stories began. I wrote fiction and participated in flash fiction challenges during summer of 2014 and discovered fiction writing was a way for me to relax.

Once I began participating in challenges the readership for my blog grew and in 2015, I made the decision to make my blog both a fiction and lifestyle blog to add more variety and so I could write what about whatever I wanted to write about. In late 2015, I made another decision — to change the name to something more fitting: This is Another Story.  


“Then, I fell in love with storytelling and, thus, my blog for fictional stories began. I wrote fiction and participated in flash fiction challenges during summer of 2014 and discovered fiction writing was a way for me to relax.” – Yinglan Z


3. When did you really begin writing and blogging? Why is Writing Meaningful for you? Do You Find You Are Able to Help Others Through Your Blogging? 

I began writing after I joined Toastmasters in 2011. That’s when I discovered my love for storytelling. Before that, the task of sitting in front of a computer typing and writing an essay or a story seemed daunting to me, although, I don’t know why.

Although I wasn’t diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder (GAD) until early 2016, I’ve always known I have anxiety issues. I’ve tried various methods to relax – yoga, meditation, music – but none is more relaxing than writing stories.

When I was attending school full-time, working multiple jobs, I would come home to write because it would mean I was able to let my mind drift to another reality even if it was only for a few minutes.


4. Where Do You Find Your Inspiration and Motivation to Write? Why is Writing and Blogging Significant to You? 

A lot of the inspiration for my stories comes from around me – television shows, movies, current events, (etc). There’s always a story going on in my head and if I let it stay in my head, it’ll drive me insane. Maybe it goes with my stubborn personality? Also, it’s important to record my thoughts and feelings because bottling them up won’t help me or anyone.


“Although I wasn’t diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder (GAD) until early 2016, I’ve always known I have anxiety issues. I’ve tried various methods to relax – yoga, meditation, music – but none is more relaxing than writing stories.” – Yinglan Z


Interview - Yinglan City
Credit: Yinglan Z

5. What Are Your Most Current Writing Projects? Have You Ever Had Any Writing Published?

I am currently finishing a few short stories for my collection called: A Light in the Dark. I am also in the process of expanding a short story into a novel. Both of those things are progressing slowly due to the number of events I am attending in China but they are coming along.

I published a story in an online newsletter for NLSC – National Language Service Corp – a few years ago about the Mid-Autumn Festival and that was the only piece I have ever published other than blog posts. My future are noted above, to publish a collection of short stories and a novel. Who knows, maybe I’ll submit a piece to a magazine or something when I have time.


6. Can You Briefly Describe Your Writing Process? Do You Prefer Certain Areas if Writing and Reading Genres? 

I’m still trying to figure out my writing process. I write whenever a story pops into my head which is usually night time. I’m not sure why, but my imagination feels blank during the day. Maybe it’s the fact I’m tired and my mind is getting ready to dream?

I am also a huge fan of the suspense and thriller genres because those are the stories that keep me at the edge of my seat. I also enjoy investigative and crime-solving stories. I used to like to read Young Adult fiction and the supernatural genre but lately, not so much. Maybe I’m growing up?


“I am currently finishing a few short stories for my collection called: A Light in the Dark. I am also in the process of expanding a short story into a novel.” – Yinglan Z.


Interview - Yinglan Quote
Credit: Contributed by Yinglan Z

7. Do You Have Any Helpful Advice for Other Bloggers and Writers?

My advice for new writers and bloggers would be to don’t give up. Keep writing! Most people do not become famous with their first story. Keep trying. Also I encourage you to visit other blogs and comment on other bloggers’ posts. Participate in challenges and sooner or later, other bloggers will pay you a visit and almost always this starts a chain reaction. You discover new blogs and bloggers and their followers may also follow you in return. As well, leave your link and some information at blogging parties and learn to network through and with other bloggers. Be willing to look at other blogs and learn from them as well.


8. For fun, do you have any particular blogs you follow? What Do You Like About Them? 

Oh wow, that is difficult to choose since I follow thousands of blogs. I will say my favorite kinds of blogs are photography, travel, and flash fiction. I like these kinds of blogs because I can often learn a thing or two from them.


“My advice for new writers would be to don’t give up. Keep writing! Most people do not become famous with their first story. Keep trying.” – Yinglan Z


9. Can You Please Share With us a Few Favorite Links from Your Blog? 

I wrote this poem a long time ago (about 14 or 15 years old) and decided to share it about two years ago. It was written during the phase when I wanted to be a singer-songwriter.

Change

By Yinglan Z.

*****

Your yesterday is gone
But your today is here sooner than you think
You wish you haven’t gotten everything wrong
And you wish you can make all the bad go away
And you say

*****

Tomorrow
Things are going to be okay
Tomorrow
It will all change

*****

Your today is gone
And you have made no commitment
To bring changes
Oh and you just kept on saying that

*****

Tomorrow
Things are going be all right
Tomorrow
It will all be bright

*****

Day and day went by
You just sat behind your table
Waiting for changes to come to you
You say, “It’ll be okay”
And I say “it’ll be okay when you start making changes for yourself”
And you say starting tomorrow

*****

Things are going to be all right
Tomorrow
It will all be right
It will all be bright
It will be the day when I set thing right

*****


Here are some of Yinglan’s short stories:


Thank you to Yinglan for agreeing to be interviewed and for sharing about her writing and her life. 

Just to note: Yinglan has returned from her relatives in China and has been visiting my home country of Canada in Alberta checking out The Rocky Mountains in Banff and around Lake Louise. She was recently in Yellow Stone National Park in the U.S. and if you follow her blog, Yinglan’s photographs of her travels are also a huge highlight when you read her posts. She is talented at taking beautiful shots of scenery while traveling and finding interesting places abroad and from around her home. 

If you would like to be a part of my bi-weekly interview series please let me know via my Contact Page. See you in two weeks with another exciting interview 🙂


©Mandibelle16. 2017) All Rights Reserved.

Clerihew- aabb, Fiction, Flash Fiction, MindLoveMisery's Menagerie, Music and Performers, My Thoughts, NaPoWriMo, Nonfiction, Photography/Visual Art, Quotes, Writing, Writing Challenges

Day 13 – NaPoWriMo/A to Z Challenge/ Photo Challenge: Clairhews – “Stairway to Earth” #poetry #NaPoWriMo #AtoZchallenge 


Thanks to NEEKEREJ from MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting this week’s photo challenge. Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt is to write ” a clerihew. This is a four line poem biographical poem satirizes famous people.” As well, for A to Z Challenge, the GoodRead’s quote is from an author with a name beginning with the letter M (first or last name). 

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Credit: Julian Majin

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” I don’t wonder anymore what I’ll tell God when I go to heaven when we sit in the chairs under the tree, outside the city……..I’ll tell these things to God, and he’ll laugh, I think and he’ll remind me of the parts I forgot, the parts that were his favorite. We’ll sit and remember my story together, and then he’ll stand and put his arms around me and say, “well done,” and that he liked my story. And my soul won’t be thirsty anymore. Finally he’ll turn and we’ll walk toward the city, a city he will have spoken into existence a city built in a place where once there’d been nothing. ”  ― Donald Miller, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life

———–

She’s brilliantly famous you know, 

The lady of who Led Zeppelin sings of so;

Buying the stairway to Heaven, sighing, 
When the stores are all closed, surprised. 

——-

And though she makes me wonder much, 

What she so badly needed to buy such —

 Treasure; I was shocked when she was hurled, 

Descending the stairway to Heaven, to the world. 

——–

Heart’s Tribute to Led Zeplin – “Stairway to Heaven” 

———



———

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Memories/Childhood, Music and Performers, My Thoughts, Three Line Tales, Writing, Writing Challenges

Three Line Tales: Low Places #amwriting #music #3LineTales


Thanks to Sonya of Only 100 Words for hosting #3LineTales.

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Credit: Edwin Undrade via UnSplash

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The resonance of his voice carries in the arena, an audience enthralled by the first twang of his voice. 

He’s a brilliant musician, the epitome of which other Country artists aspire to be –a world wide known musician, a gifted storyteller, with a beautiful famous wife. 

The cadence of his final song’s chorus resounds as he considers the eight more shows he’s playing here; the last lyrics hover in the ambience of the audience as he leaves the stage:”Oh, I’ve got friends in low places.” 

——–

Note: Where I live, Garth Brooks is performing. His concerts kept selling out so they continued to add new shows, even weekend afternoon performances, until he was performing for nine shows. We’re pretty impressed that he’d play nine shows in our city. If he added a show or two more I’m sure they’d sell out as well; I still couldn’t get tickets 🙂 

——-

“Low Places” by Garth Brook

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©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Fiction, Free Verse, Music and Performers, Music Review, My Thoughts, Nonfiction, November Notes, Poetry

November Notes: Poem – Day 16 – Free Verse “Think Thoroughly” #poetry #anwriting #writing #music 


Before I start, I wanted to share this blog post, a list of the 27 best books on writing!  Hope it helps some of you. Have you read any of the books or do you own any of them? 

27 Of The Best Books On Writing! 

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Today’s prompt is “Sweet Serendipty” by Lee DeWyze. 
—–

“Sweet Serendipty” – Lee DeWyze

——-

http://www.favimages.com

—–

I’m not of those women who will assure you, 

You can get by, by the skin of your teeth. 

That life is simply chance, fortuitous

I think you’re inexperienced,  

You don’t see the entire picture, 

Each of us is a piece in the mosaic, the grand design. 

—–

Perhaps since your famous, you’ll buy two pairs of jeans? 

But not caring about the seams of your pants, 

Them being too loose — it’s a guy thing. 

Sorry to ruin your charade, life is more than —

Your own version of serendipity

Events that occur to us can be wickedly sad. 

—–

Whether we learn and/or hurt — there’s  a reason, 

An intelligent designer has time arranged, 

 I don’t worry, for different reasons — His plans give security,

If you land on your feet, you’re one lucky guy.

I guess the fates are angry, their scissors keep snapping. 

To me its obtuse to believe blindly in chance. 

——

There are times I believe in spontaneity, 

But there’s a time and a place with —

A kind of reasoning called: calculated risks. 

I’m unsure why you don’t think ahead (don’t play chess).

I’m not old but I think I’ve experiences you won’t, 

Be carefree at heart, but realize —adult responsibility. 

——

You’re blessed with your health, go where you want, 

I think, there’s been few troubles to scar you. 

You sing empty songs, I find little depth, 

Serendipity isn’t chance, it’s a miracle unfurled. 

Behind the scenes action, you haven’t foreseen. 

Glad you’re fine, but you’re missing a few screws. 

——

It’s not that I’m bitter; it’s not that I don’t see, 

What your trying to say in your round about way. 

I’m saying that life, I’ve learned, is never a fluke, 

We have minds to think and consider — to use. 

Despite ineptness, your kind heart shows true, 
Next hit song —think your lyrics thoroughly through. 

——

——–

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.