Hey Kids! Contribute to MANA's “Hurricane Relief Continuing Short Story”

Friday, March 3, 2017

Contribute to MANA's 2017 Blog Continuing Short Story And Help Domestic Violence Victims

MarketingNewAuthors.com (MANA) is proud to announce the launching of its annual fundraiser – “MANA's Blog Continuing Short Story." MANA and its parent company, Robbie Dean Press, have supported different scholarship funds and charities for years. "MANA's Blog Continuing Short Story" is yet another way of supporting charitable causes and organizations. 

The designated charity for 2017 is #MoveToEndDV (Move To End Domestic Violence), a California-based organization which encourages businesses and community members to help shelters provide services to victims of domestic violence in their local communities.  #MoveToEndDV is in partnership with National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.https://movetoenddv.org

The goal of #MoveToEndDV is to inspire and encourage 10,000 businesses and other moving companies around the globe to make a pledge to #MoveToEndDV and commit to working with a local shelter to donate or provide a free product or service that will aid domestic violence victims. Domestic violence includes physical, emotional, and sexual abuse in a relationship. Statistics show that 2 million injuries and 1,300 deaths are caused by domestic violence every year. Click HERE for more information on #MoveToEndDV

MANA would also like to thank each and every one who participated in 2016 by contributing your comments to short story that benefited the Flint Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. The Flint, Michigan-based public service sorority is providing bottled water to Flint-area citizens where the drinking water has been contaminated over the past couple of years by lead from aging water pipes.

Now, here is how "MANA's Blog Continuing Short Story" works: 

1. The photo in this blog post serves as a prompt. The first person to post can write five sentences or more based on the photo prompt. 

2. The next writer should add to the story of the first post. After that, every writer should add to the story of the previous writer.

3. For every 20 posts of five sentences or more, MANA will donate $10 to #MoveToEndDV.

This activity is twofold: It will provide money to help domestic violence victims and will allow an opportunity for you to be a part of a creative experience. 

To post your comments, look for the word, "COMMENTS"  below this post and click on it. You will be able to add your comments to the page. Also, encourage others to post so that you can release your creativity and help domestic violence victims in 2017!


35 comments:

  1. I hear the chatter of the people in this little fishing village. And seeing the people in the water swimming, too, makes me feel a part although I am not. Who am I? Do I really know? I am a rambling traveler who wants a place to settle and call home. Will this be the place?

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  2. I so fear settling in somewhere new. All the questions about my past disturb me. Yes, I'm a young retiree. Is that enough? Is it my imagination, or is it real, people peer at me, not satisfied with my answer. I don't want to tell them my whole life story because I'm on the borderline, hell, I am borderline, with my invisible problems, and government checks. But, the sun, the water, they are calling my name. My loneliness is a red flag. I wonder what my chances are of finding a lover here?

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    1. I search each person's eyes in hopes of seeing a familiar soul. Someone I can relate to. I am in a personal hell of solidarity. Most of my life I have felt alone. No real family to depend on and searching for something I can consider real.

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    2. Everyone needs someone, someone who is there for them. I need someone to lean on and people need me to lean on. I am always there for someone in need, for someone to care and love. I always show my love so people can depend on me. So they know they are not alone in this not so lonely world.

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  3. From the top of the shore I can see the entire beach. Children playing in the sand, men in their boats fishing for tonight's supper, and women in sun hats and dresses tanning in the sun. Do I even fit in with these people? The sun and warm weather were a nothing but a dream in my old hometown. Will I be able to enjoy the warmth, or will I live in the cold forever?

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    1. I am determined to live a life in the sun. I was made for this life. Maybe I wasn't but that isn't going to stop me. I yearn for tan lines and a sun-kissed body. I will keep telling myself I deserve this.

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    2. I love the beach, sweet and calm. The wind blowing and the waves crashing like there is nothing in the world to bring me down. The beach is my happy place and I won't stop until I reach my home.

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    3. Sadly, here comes the rain clouds. Time to find cover until this storm ends. I guess I spoke too soon. I'll have to leave my happy place, when I just got here. I'm starting to feel hungry anyway. Maybe there's a nice restaurant with some good food and good people.

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    4. Everyone is making their way to the little place called "Harbor's Best". It looks cute with its outdoor patio furniture and hanging lights. Something expected in this harbor town. I hope the food's good. A crab boil sure sounds great.

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  4. She already knew she was staying. All it took was seeing the mix of mostly naked young people casually occupying their towels right next to old people like herself. No one looked askance at the difference between them. Everyone different shades of brown, some skinny, some round, lots of wrinkles on one blanket right next to the smooth skinned buttocks of a young person in a tiny bikini on another blanket. Seemed as normal and natural as a large family unlike back home where the ages segregated themselves. These people were happy and chatting in Spanish amongst themselves. She didn't feel different from them. "Como Estas, Senora" she said as she fit her blanket in next to another older lady.

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    1. She always knew this was the life she was born to live. She sat in the sun and soaked up every ray. She thought of all the opportunities to reinvent herself. So many times she had only dreamed of being exactly where she found herself today. She felt this sense of being at home for the first time in her young age.

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    2. She loved her family, a greater love than anything thought possible. Seeing their smiles and their face glow as they play in the sand. As the water kissed their feet, they ran towards the waves. Jumping and playing around, it's everything she's every dreamed of. The sight of the place she belongs, the home of her and her family. Home sweet home, full of happiness and laughter.

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  5. I want to be apart of this. It's too beautiful here to deny; the people, the sea, the markets, everything seemed to exist harmoniously. Seeing this magnificent woman engage in conversation with a complete stranger, it gives me hope. Hope to successfully renovate myself and recover from my inner demons, maybe even to find the love I yearn for. Yes, this is the place. This is where I start anew.

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    1. I had to keep myself open-minded and positive. I knew this was my opportunity for a new life. Through my fears I had made the journey. Without much hesitation I left everything I knew. I desperately needed to make this work.

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    2. Life is beautiful. I engage everyday and do what I love. I tell the people I love, I love them everyday because everyone needs to be reminded. If you tell someone you love them when they are having a bad day, it can turn their day around. I live to put a smile on people's faces. Everyone deserves to feel beautiful, just as I do. Spread the love and smile for someone.

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  6. There is no time like the present to act upon a new journey, I tell myself. As I walk up to this fair woman conversing with a complete stranger, I begin to have doubts. What if she laughs in my face? What if the people here judge me for approaching an older woman? For approaching a woman to begin with?

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  7. My hands begin to tremble. My forehead begins to sweat. Do I look impressionable? I adjust my sundress as I come closer. "Hello" I squeak out. Did I even make a sound? I shouldn't be this nervous!

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  8. She was even more beautiful up close, the fair wrinkles in her skin were a light golden brown, complimenting her turquoise bikini. I don't think she realized I was staring at her. My stomach was tied in knots. How long have I been standing here? Did I say hello yet? "I,.. I just moved here. And you seemed like a nice person to ask to show me around. Would you please?"

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  9. With the grace of a goddess, she flipped her hair behind her shoulder, stood up, and grabbed my hand. "Come dear child, this place is as mesmerizing as the sea it lives next to. I will show you it's beauty." Her words entranced me, I was attracted to her in new ways I didn't know were possible. I felt like a puppy meeting its owner for the first time, my excited eyes could only see her. I'm glad I decided to stay.

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  11. So away we went. The places we visited were more beautiful then I had ever expected. We began the journey in the heart of the town. She took me to a quiet park, the corner store, and a bakery with such sweet smells. The more time we spent together, the more I enjoyed her company. As we made our way to the window booth to savor our desserts, I noticed her ease and grace made me feel comfortable. Could this feeling be too comfortable?

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    1. Comfortable is good, I told myself. Why am I so scared to trust again? I have to reach out, I told myself. This is the perfect opportunity to let my heart feel again. I had been in love once.

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    2. Love is good, love is great. Never be afraid of what could be. I live to no regret and love with all of my heart. I am comfortable with everyone and am open with everyone, this is because I want them to feel the love they deserve. Being in love is comfortable, I just remember the happy times and the trusting becomes natural.

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  12. As we continued to devour our deserts, we didn't talk just stared into each other's eyes. As we both came to finish, no words were exchanged. Only our eyes exchanged and stared. Her hair fell perfectly over her soft, beautiful face. The next words I would speak could possibly be too perfect.

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    1. Before I could say anything she picked up my hand and held it. "Are you having a good time?" she said lovingly. Her touch filled my body with warmth and delight. I could almost feel my heart melting away. "It couldn't be better," I stuttered. I knew I was falling fast for her.

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    2. "There is so much more this town has to offer," she said adventurously, "Let's go!" Willing to follow her anywhere I jumped from my sit and away we went. Into the night full if twilight and sparkle. Just like the light in her eyes. "Where to?" I asked. Eager to feel the warmth and delights again.

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  13. "You are as beautiful as ever" I whispered angrily. "Don't think that makes up for the year I spent locked up in the County jail because of the mess you left me in. What were you thinking leaving stolen credit cards on the dresser? I was sleeping when they burst through the door. I had no idea what was going on. Last I knew you were going to get me coffee...after that night of lovemaking...I am getting too old for this. I think it is time we quit."

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  14. Even as I said it, I knew we couldn't quit. It was the only way we knew how to live. Why work a nine to five like everyone else in the world when it's all there for the taking? And believe me we took, between the two of us we must have scammed thousands of credit card numbers, social security numbers, and bank accounts. I've had so many aliases I sometimes have trouble remembering my real name.

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  15. But something has to give. Ursala can talk the pants off a man or woman, young or old, regardless of ethnicity or education which is great for her but she is becoming more careless, reckless even. Too dependent on her gifts of beauty and charm. Where she is gorgeous and sweet tongued, I am reliant on my respectability quotient: white hair and good manners. At our peak, we were raking in hundred of thousands of dollars. Unbeknownst to her, I have banked half of it. The whole purpose of coming down here to South America was to introduce her to retirement. Spending a year in lock up opened my eyes. Not how I want to spend my middle years.

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    1. After that year in jail, it got me thinking of what I want to do when I get out. Do I want to continue with Ursala or do I want to start fresh again? I can't even count on my hands and feet how many times I have had to do that. Things would have just been so much easier had she not become so reckless. After spending those last few months of my time served thinking about what I want to do, I have made my decision and I am going to continue on with Ursala. We have already built so much together. So my plan becomes more and more developed in those last few days. We are going to recover the money in our off shore accounts and travel the world, starting with Paris. I have always wanted to go there since I was a child.

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    2. Now the only problem standing in my way is, how am I going to find Ursala? When we were arrested and brought to jail, they wouldn't tell me no matter how many times I would ask where they were keeping her at. So the first day after my release, I spend the entire day searching for her. I call the police station who we were arrested by, acting like a concerned family member, I request to know where she had been held. They tell me the same jail that I was held in, but she was still serving time. I requested to know her intended release date. This was so I could surprise her by being there when she was released.

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    3. Today was the day. Just a few days after mine, she would be released too and we would be able to live our lives again. In just a few short hours I was going to see my love again. I sit there in the parking lot by the release gate, just staring at the guards waiting for them to walk her out. Minutes seem like hours and hours seem like days, but there she is, walking toward me for the first time in a year. I haven't felt this much excitement since the first day we met and she was showing me the town. I can see it on her face that she can not wait to see me either. I get out and stand there. Her walk turns to a run towards me as she realizes I'm waiting for her. We hug for what seems like days for the first time in forever. I am overjoyed and we both cry tears of happiness.

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    4. "Are you hungry?" I asked. "Yes" she replied. I open the door for her to get in. We go back and forth discussing what we would like to have for breakfast. We then arrived to the conclusion that we would go to our usual spot. As we are sitting at the booth we start to discuss our next plan. I tell her that I would like to go somewhere new and get away from everything we have here. I mentioned to her that it was always a childhood dream to travel to Paris. Her eyes lit up like a kid on Christmas day. She was ecstatic. The plan was for us to fly to Paris in a few days. We had to work out our new aliases before we could travel, as our current profiles had been placed on parole and we were not allowed to leave South America.

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    5. The day has come for our flight to Paris. My stomach is in knots. I am nervous with all that has recently happened that we are going to get caught. We have retrieved all of our money in the off shore accounts and closed those. We were traveling with close to 2 million dollars. I have never been so nervous and excited in my life. Now this was the way to live in retirement. Traveling the world and seeing everything that it has to offer. It seems as though everything is going off without a stop. We check-in to our flight and off we go. We arrive in Paris the following day. It seems to good to be true, but for now we are free. We discuss on and off of all the places that we would like to travel to and see, but we will always have to be careful to not get caught again.

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  16. I sit down heavily at the small, dark wood table in the bar. She has run off to the restroom with her cellphone leaving me alone in this cool, peaceful hotel, ceiling fans slowly turning above. Sweat drips down between my breasts from hauling the luggage up the stairs. Isn't it funny after all these years, I still carry the heaviest bags when we are together as though I am still the fit, powerful woman I was at 30 or 40. There was a time my efforts were rewarded with touch, a loving smile, appreciation. Some acknowledgement. When I see a woman who lays her hand on her companion's back in gratitude for small acts of kindness or consideration, I feel a loss that goes to my bones.

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