Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Freak Storms

Welcome Back! Hope you enjoyed the World Blog Tour. Did you visit the sites? Meet new people? I know I did.

But as all little side excursions must come to an end, it’s time to settle back into a routine. Time to get back to work. Actually, while you were out and about visiting new writers, I was hard at work moving Karen’s story along.

When I began this project, I drafted a list of the ten worst things that could happen to Karen. So far, I’ve used up three of the ten. Today I decided to share a short excerpt from one of those scenarios. Let me know what you think. 

The days were already getting shorter and with the continuing snowstorm, the darkness brought a sense of foreboding. Karen kicked the snow off her boots and hit the garage door button to close it before more snow came in. Nothing happened. Great. She tried again. Nothing. “You pick now to go one the fritz?”  She stood on tiptoe, stretched to grab the short rope attached to the door and pulled hard. Slowly the door returned to its closed position leaving Karen standing in the middle of her cold dark garage. What would Susan say if she knew I didn’t turn the light on first? Karen chuckled at her own forgetfulness as she gingerly made her way back to the inner door leading to her house.

She felt for the light switch and flipped it on. Nothing. She opened the door leading to the kitchen. The room was eerily dark. Shadowed light from the window allowed Karen to locate what Bill called her junk drawer. She reached in until her hands wrapped around the cold metal cylinder she knew to be a flashlight.

No electricity meant no heat. First things first. Karen returned to the garage and piece by piece she brought the wood into the family room and set it on the brick hearth, tripping once as she knocked into the small table at the end of the sofa. She caught the lamp before it plummeted to the floor and repositioned the telephone on the tabletop. A fire in the fireplace now would provide more than a cozy atmosphere. She struck a match, held it near the base of the iron log holder and turned a knob. Flames shot into the fireplace, catching the wood in their wake. Thank you, Bill for insisting on a gas starter.

She closed the door to the hall and the one leading to the kitchen. The small fire wouldn’t be  enough to warm the whole house. Now what? Wait? If only she had a portable radio. The fire was stronger now. Warmth, light, comfort. And accomplishment. “I am woman.” Karen reached for the phone. No dial tone. The bravado swelling in her only seconds before, quickly evaporated. The electricity and the phone? How could that be? She searched for her cell phone. She finally found it in her purse on a chair in the kitchen. Dead. For a moment she thought about putting it on the charger, then remembered with a laugh why she was in this predicament in the first place. This stinks. At least I know Bill is safe and Matt's at Ernie's. I hope he doesn't try to drive in this mess.

The kitchen was growing cold. Karen carried cheese and crackers back to her fireside refuge. She needed to think. Who knew how long the electricity would be out? Road crews weren’t prepared for a freak storm in mid-November. January? Maybe. November? No. Especially since the weather forecasters expected the storm to miss them entirely. Karen needed to make a list. She found a pen and envelope in her purse and began planning.

A few minutes later, armed with resolve equal to that of a pioneer woman of the 1800’s... and her battery powered flashlight, Karen located two sleeping bags in the basement. She brought blankets and pillows from her bedroom and made a pallet on the floor in front of the fireplace. Something warm to eat would be nice. Especially if her son came walking in the door. Please, Lord, please keep Matt safe. And keep my mother warm.

Okay is there a theme here? Am I obsessed with the danger of snowstorms? Remember Laney in Breathing on Her Own had a terrible accident on a snowy night. And personally, I'm not all that fond of driving when the roads are icy. Being alone with no electricity during a freak snowstorm? No way. Karen may be a bit like me. Then again, I think as writers we always leave a bit of ourselves on the pages we write.


  1. I'm hooked. You've really set the mood!

    1. Thanks Patty! Good to hear from a fellow writer!

  2. You have my interest. I can't wait.

    1. Thank you, Gloria! It's amazing how getting a bit of feedback encourages me!


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