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The Ladies of Lit: Volume XXVI

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 12:01 AM
Welcome to volume twenty-six my Literature series, The Ladies of Lit!


The premise here is simple. Below you will find an assortment of Literature features from a selection of female deviants here on DeviantART, all of them suggested by you. In this article, you will also find a variety of other things of interest, including:

:bulletwhite: This article’s deviant spotlight: featuring the talented DrippingWords. She has offered to answer a few questions as well, to tell us a bit about what inspires her writing and which piece in particular she favors.

:bulletwhite: Additional information about our upcoming events, including a special critique Q and A session in our official TheLadiesofLit chatroom. And we also have a selection of other interesting Literature news links to share with you.

:bulletwhite: Our “meet our contributors” section. Be sure to note me if you would like to volunteer your services or offer additional suggestions as to how to improve this series.

:bulletwhite: We also have a new series format for this news article, due to DeviantART website changes. Deviants are still able to :+fav: this journal, so please take a moment to do so, to continue to show your support for our devious writers.


Now – On With the Features!



laurotica
Hannah, This Is ItI wake up Saturday morning to a purple sky.  A pale lavender; similar to the color I wanted to paint the bathroom.  The house is quiet.
I rise and pace down the hallways to find that I am alone.  All of the beds are made and all of the clothes are put away neatly, but there is no sign of my family.  It's as if they were taken, and any sign of them was erased on the way out.  It is as if I have been alone on the farm the entire time.  Their shoes are still at the back door.  They weren't even wearing socks.
I wander onto the porch just as a rusted pickup truck turns onto the driveway, skidding down the loose dirt and gravel path between the wheat.  I can just make out Jacob in the front seat, his dog riding shotgun.
There is something wrong with the sky.  It is a purple that does not exist in nature.  An angry purple.  It contains rippled clouds that look like fingers held stern
A Sniper At Cavalry Baptist.Ten years later, we still talk about the day a man came to church with a gun.
Peter gave the sleeve of my shirt a gentle tug and I turned away from the front of the sanctuary, peeling my eyes from the always-enigmatic sermons of Pastor Arhipov.  Peter did not say anything.  He let his eyes do the talking, directing me to where his line of vision fell, far above the first floor and to the balcony.  It was a fairly recent addition to the church; still not open for parishioner use.  Donations and bake sales paid for it, though that morning it was home to an unexpected visitor, leaning over with his elbows on the ledge.
There was the gun.  It was a big enough of a weapon to grab my attention, with a long and thin barrel and a scope mounted on top.
He was an odd man at first glance; unshaven yet well-dressed, and a bald head with a scar that ran around his left ear.  He didn't look down at us from his perch, only straight ahead to
Mono.One morning a black pillar appeared in the center of town, within the boundaries of the park and right outside of the library.  It stood at least thirteen feet tall and was as wide as a mature oak.  They deduced it was made out of some kind of polished stone.  Some guessed it was obsidian; others argued it was too strong to be such a fragile stone.  It could have been granite, but when was the last time you saw black granite in that quantity, and in that shape?
"We should knock it down and drag it away!" someone shouted.
But they were too afraid to touch it.
"Why not just leave it here?" another suggested.
But they wondered what would happen if they didn't do anything at all.
Whoever put it there didn't do it alone.  They'd need a truck to transport the thing, and they'd need some way to get it off the flatbed and stand it up straight.  But why go to all of that trouble for a pillar of rock?  Or was it part of someth

Suggested by: LiliWrites

laurotica is a very talented story-teller. Her works tends toward the bizarre, but always explores some element of what makes us human.”



fainting-goat
AnchorAn anchor had five minutes in which to reorient themselves.  One.
I stared at the heavy steel loop around my thumb.  My world was a sand castle, constructed by the subconscious in a vain hope that it would stand up on such a treacherous foundation.  The ring was an unfamiliar weight and the foundation of my castle started to crumble.  I did not remember it.  The tide was ebbing in around my mind, whispering that my carefully imagined world was wrong.  That it was lies.  That the 'when' and the 'where' were pure fancy.  I stirred in the nest of wires that poured information through my brain.  There was a man with me, his bare back against mine.  He, too, was lost.
An anchor's duty was to the pilot and the pilot alone.  Not to their employer, not the guild, not even to themselves.  Two.
There was an image engraved on the ring, a nautical anchor from the days when man sa
River StoriesThere is a river that bisects the city. We see it every day, when we commute, when we go shopping, and for some of us when we simply look out our windows. It is a quiet thing, languid and complacent, a silent presence we easily forget about. Even in the spring, when the runoff from the snow swells its banks, it remains docile, carefully lapping at the cement pillars of our bridges. Polite. Gentle. We forgot it was there.
Our city has no stories. Its memories are young, immature, and it knows more of the present than the past. We have no understanding of what is beneath our sidewalks and highways, what was once the foundations of our buildings. The river is merely a river – we do not know its heart, we do not know its bones. They were all forgotten, neglected and left to die, or perhaps they never existed to begin with. Earth is simply earth. A river is simply a river. We have no secrets.
I first heard the whispers in my dreams. This was how it began for all of us. Every night, the
InfectedThe hunters came for me first. Pastor had moved me into the church basement – a dim cellar of cement with one light the went out whenever it stormed – and set up a narrow cot for me to sleep on in one corner on the uneven floor. He locked the door at the top of the stairs and I wasn't sure if he was trying to protect me from overzealous townsfolk unwilling to wait for the hunters or if he believed I had murdered the doctor. Old Telly, the post master with chronic asthma, had found his body. It had been torn in half lengthwise, a jagged seam starting at the shoulder down to the hip, the ribcage popped open like a peanut shell, and then discarded on the floor of his exam room with the bright lights and the cold white surfaces drenched with red. There was nothing else disturbed – all his medicines were locked away in their cabinet, his tools were untouched and his computer had been left alone even though he had a habit of not locking it under a password when he was away fro

Suggested by: SadisticIceCream

fainting-goat's fantasy and science fiction works center around worlds so detailed and characters so compelling that you can't help but keep reading. Her capacity for imagination is incredible.”



NocturneJewel
AUTUMN WOMANDeep within the belly of my home...
I sip gingerbread tea and line my bed with
the skin of October, groaning beneath my feet
the floor creaks like aging bones, I hear the
air's cookie crunch outside, it breaks up the
fast of my fantasies with its crackling cold,
whispering that Autumn's pantry has been
stocked with a bounty of seasonal reruns,
I see the Sky skirt low before the nibbling
frost as I step outside, I am not as cold as
others may be, I am warmed by Autumn's
plump lips upon mine, keeping me warm
with her mulled applespice, I kiss her-deep
and probing even deeper-our love leaves us
tangled on the Earth, steaming and sweating
-but the mirror has never been clearer, looking
into the slow simmer of creeping years when
I will age into a crone-I do not fear them or her.
Age will make me an Autumn Woman, my belly
full of Wealth and Wisdom, an abundance only
matched by Autumn's full harvest belly, sinking
low, sunken hollow, this little world of me will
be drawn into the slow steady
GHOST SONGBeneath a hollow Sky I lie far below,
cold under the sleeping daisies, colder
under my silent gravestone, as the
Fire stirs up from the ashes of old,
what is dead in the world I can see-
whispering through the velvet velour
of my mind, I feel the secrets that
slumber in the dusky gaze of Forever,
they speak to me in the Moonlight wine
I drink, brewed by the beasts who walk
the landscape of visions only I can
see, I see them even on a Moonless
Eve for I exist in the celebration
between Dusk and Dawn, in the heart-
beat every spirit hears between Death
and Rebirth-there I will be, I exist
in the rays of the Midnight Sun that
illuminates the subconscious, in the
mist that separates the Known from
the Unknown, though others may not
see me-I live, I breathe, I dream-
not cold in my crypt of Solitude,
but warmed by the Wisdom tumbling
down on me from Stars long dead.
By NocturneJewel
Copyright: April 11, 2009
I HEAR THE COSMOS COLLAPSING...I hear the cosmos collapsing against my soul.
Black space exploding, my imperfect face imploding
into a million skinless Stars, screaming into the
palpable Silence that has been touched less often
than even I have, into the abyss and the blackness
that beckoned me forward I stared, shapes realigned
the perimeters of my reality into a new glaze.
I felt the gravity slip away from under my feet.
Do you remember the time you poured liquor into my
virgin glass and made cocktails from the universes
spinning under my skin? I said "cherish me, please,
this gift that was mine" you said "why" and laughed,
you didn't see the tears I cried, multi-faceted like
the memories imprinted on my little piece of Forever.
I saw a familiar metaphor storming your eyes.
Do you remember when you traced constellations over
my spine? Andromeda role-playing her virgin unrest
and Astraea crying for Purity's sake, that's when
you extinguished your joint on my skin, I pretended
not to feel the sting-but I did, the sc

Suggested by: LadyofGaerdon

NocturneJewel has a distinctive style, her imagery sings with potency, each line blending seamlessly into the other to create a vibrant tapestry of literary enchantment.”



BeyondJen
ConnotationsBetween pressed sheets
I am laid out before you—
with spine splayed
and my soul bared.
I ache for your eyes to see my truths,
plead for your fingers to explore me;
turn me and grasp at my edges, my corners,
before folding me down, to mark the place
where you'll return.
--
5/8/2012
Copyright © 2012 Jen Fowler
All Rights Reserved.
PlowIt's finally snowing again,
blankets of peace falling
with a freshness that lacks innocence.
Nearly forgotten, they're here as expected,
clearing the streets,
trying to push aside all the worry
that makes things unsafe, but
the steel mouth askew grates against my heart;
its thick bass scrape pushing more than piles of white aside,
it pushes my blood aside too,
piling it up in the corner of this pumping vessel that falters,
ice-caked and bitten, stiffened,
and keeps faltering,
again,
and again,
and again,
until the air is silent
and the street no longer shivers in torture.
The only evidence is the blanket of white
that keeps falling,
like fluffy stuffing that's been yanked out.
All is silent,
except the fond memories that peel away
from my heart in little shreds,
and the plows, scraping fresh wounds again.
--
1/20/2012, 1/22/2012
Copyright 2012 Jen Fowler
All Rights Reserved
MapsRed and blue and green and black veins stretch
across pages, spider-webbing out across expanses,
across golden fields, green pastures,
and evergreen blanketed hillsides
that reach towards mountain tops.
The cardinal nor the rose can claim us.
We are more free than these boundaries insist upon,
free to break through their dashed lines;
it's all just an illusion, like so much else
between destinations and dreams.
We speak of wants and desires so freely
until we submit to being folded into creases,
never neatly, and always with a struggle
to open up and expand beyond outstretched arms.
Our seams will never touch like this, never flourish
into roots of family trees in gardens of our choosing.
I wish the wind would whisk us away on clear currents,
and toss us to fate and chance; hardships be damned!
Why do we never take our chances one step further,
testing the strength of our confines?
--
1/27/2012
Copyright © 2012 Jen Fowler
All Rights Reserved

Suggested by: SilverInkblot

BeyondJen's work often has a softness to it that is very appealing - it's the kind of poetry I want to read on a cold night with a mug of tea.”



xlntwtch
The Perversity of WeSometimes on a quiet night
due to my perversity,
or perhaps my common nature,
I dream awake of what may happen
should my twin die before me.
I may be walking calm and laughing
down city street or red rock ridge
and she would reach me over the miles
reaching straight to all five senses
reaching intense with her actions
reaching deep inside me.
Stronger than telepathies
often had when we were kids
stronger than futile restlessness
unexplained 'til mail arrives,
stronger than what may surround me
I know how she would reach me.
I would see her clear as day,
clearer than the sights around me
and I'd know her way of going
and how she takes it
and what she knows if she goes.
It would bind, it would blind me,
it would choke me up completely.
I would stumble, likely fall,
and knowing all, be speechless
in the face of reachless
closeness sundered by her pall,
Whatever takes her liveliness
I couldn't stand at all.
THAT Woman     First they said, "No wind chimes outside the cottages. Three warnings will be given, then you are subject to eviction."
     My Granny said, "Humph. I like my old bamboo windchime. I can't even reach it no more to take it down. It's gonna stay, dammit, and I will too."
     I told Granny, "Not if they evict you, you won't. I can take it down."
     She looked at me over her reading glasses, with that Look she has.
     "If anyone's evicted, you can go with em, Sonny. I'm stayin put. Me and that damn windchime."
     I said, "Granny, I don't even live here. C'mon. It's just a windchime."
     She said, "And we're just a buncha old senior citizens in a QUOTE retirement community END QUOTE, and I, for one, am gonna keep whatever I want right here. Me included."
     I sighed. I know Gran
Crow Girls and Literature     We decided Juliet should finally reach literary heaven, but Romeo--oh hell no. Maybe heaven and hell are unfortunate words to choose, but here's the deal with those two characters. First, we studied Juliet's literary life carefully and yeah, she kills herself, said to be a big no-no, but she's really veryvery young and she knows better, she says so in one act, way before she unfurls that red-scarf-fakeblood at the end, seen on hundreds of theater stages a few thousand times a year.
     Romeo though, he's a bad boy throughandthrough. He's madly in love with one girl at the beginning of a single party, then madly in love with another by the end of the same party. What nonsense! He kills a few guys before he kills himself, then kills himself because he thinks little Juliet is dead. That girl is lying there veryvery much alive! Why doesn't he make sure she's dead? He even talktalks about how alive she looks. What a hotheaded go

Suggested by: neurotype

xlntwtch was a professional journalist at one point, and that wonderful, crisp style characterizes her works.”



My Spotlight Deviant:



DrippingWords
:rose: :rose: :rose: :rose: :rose: :rose:

ExplosionsHis eyes met mine through the crowd. It was electric; like I had looked into his eyes and jumped off a cliff. Their hazel depths swallowed me whole, and time seemed to stand still. The people around us disappeared, and we were alone. It was just me and him, him and me. We walked towards each other, slowly, but ever faster. We collided together, a shower of wonderful fireworks.
***
His fingers ran through my hair, and it was like multi colored sparks raining down from the sky. His touch was warm, unlike everyone else's icy cold skin. It was making me melt, breaking down the wall around my heart. My mask was crumbling, slipping off, and I didn't care. I wanted to melt; wanted to dissolve and become a part of him, to feel for the first time.
***
Our lips touched, and the world exploded. It was like an earthquake and a thunderstorm and a tsunami happening at once. Time sped up, and the people bustling by became streaks on the canvas of our kiss. Magenta and crimson and ruby d
From a DistanceI'm writing to you from India,
and I wish that you were here.
I think you'd like to try curry;
it's far too spicy for my taste.
You'd talk to every person on
the street, and they'd question your
footwear, because wearing rain-boots
in the summer is irrational.
               You'd correct the tour guide,
               but you'd whisper it in my ear,
               because the last time you did,
               you were thrown out.
And when nightfall came,
you'd drag me outside to look
at the stars; different from the
ones back home. You'd paint a
               picture of the moon, and
add it to your collection.
But I
Chapter 1: Ungifted
Chapter 1: Ungifted
The cottage was in the middle of a dark forest, where timber wolves could be heard howling in the distance. Inside the cottage, mice scurried across the wooden floor and the glow of a single candle lit up the tiny room.
Screams rent the night; the screams of a mother giving birth. Lena gripped her husband's hand tight as the mid-wife crooned encouragement: "You're almost done, just push a little harder. That's right, just hold on. You're almost there."
Lena panted, her chest heaving with the effort of child-birth. 'Almost there, yeah right.' She thought. 'She said that three hours ago, and look where that's got us.' She screamed again, and squeezed Liam's hand harder, making him grimace with pain.
"It's okay, honey," he said with teeth clenched. "I know you can do this." Lena nodded, and pushed again. She screwed her eyes shut with the attempt, and bit her tongue so she wouldn't scream again.
"Look," the mid-wife whispered. "She's a girl." The mid-wife



Caitlan’s writing style is creative, relatable and down-to-earth. She easily endears  readers to her characters with her vivid descriptions.
(This amazing deviant was also suggested by SilverInkblot.)



She has also taken a few moments to share some of her own insights as a writer. I asked her a few questions:

:rose: Why do you write?

This is a very good question that I don't have a good answer to. Honestly, I don't know why I write. It's become so much a part of me that I wouldn't be myself without it. There's this little voice in the back of my mind that is constantly urging to sit down with a pen and paper, or my laptop, and just let the words flow out. It's been happening since I can remember, but the voice got stronger my freshman year of high school, when my depression sank in. I couldn't express my feelings to anyone, so I let them pour out of me onto the paper. If I think about it, the voice is the only thing I've put my whole and entire trust in; I've let it push me this far, so why not farther? I guess, then, the answer to this question is: I write because it's an integral part of me, and I'd be empty without it.


:rose: What other hobbies in your artistic life inspire you to keep writing?

I actually have a myriad of talents (some better than others). I play the viola (it's like a big violin, but smaller than a cello), I can play songs on the piano by ear (not very well, it takes a while to get the notes down), I've been in choir since I was in elementary school, I was on the color guard (flag twirling (but it's not a girly girly sport, we totally kicked butt)) team at my school for three years, I dabble with the guitar, I draw fairly well (but it usually goes very wrong), I love trying my hand at photography, I play a few sports (tennis and volleyball), and I've been reading since I was 3 1/2 years old. I guess I've trained myself to do a lot of different things so that I can draw from all of my experiences and throw them together in my writing.

:rose: As a published writer, what motivated you to get started and what sorts of tips can you offer others looking to publish their works?

I've always wanted to be published. Ever since I read my first book (real book, not the little picture books) when I was 3 1/2 old (incidentally, the book happened to be Harry Potter), it's been a dream of mine to see words that I've written in print. When I was seven years old, I wrote my first 'book;' it wasn't so much of a book more than a stupid little story that I came up with. But I worked hard on it, and it was about fifty pages long when I was done. I knew that it wasn't good enough for others to read, so I strove to make myself the best writer that I could be.

Actually, I never thought about publishing my poems that I'd written until one of my friends on another website mentioned it to me. So, I entered a contest to get published, and I won. I started to realize that I had improved enough to put myself out there, and that's what I've been doing ever since I held the anthology wherein I was published in my hands. When I send in my first manuscript (hopefully the middle of 2013) I want my name to already be part of the professional writing world.

Hmmm. Some tips for others. I'd say, be organized. Seriously. You might thinks that's stupid, and you won't have need for it, but I mean it. Keep a log with all the information: who you sent your piece to, what piece you sent, when you sent it, how you sent it, when they got back to you, if they said they would publish it, when it was published. That way, you don't accidentally end up sending one piece to two publishers, as that would cause a mess of copyright (unless it's stated in their submission guidelines)). On that note, be sure to thoroughly read the submission guidelines, and read them more than once. You don't want to be rejected just because you didn't format your submission right. And, keep trying. Remember, J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter was rejected 12 times before it was published.

:rose: What motivates you to share your writing on DeviantART?

I want people to be able to access my writing easily, and deviantArt allows me to do that. Also, it makes me feel all warm and bubbly inside when someone comments on one of my pieces and tells me that it made an impact with them. I want to help people change their lives, or realize something that they never had even given thought to before. Sometimes, people just need to read something good, and I hope that I can provide that when they do need it.

:rose: Which piece featured is your favorite and why?

Oooooh, that's a hard one. I'm wavering between Fire Touched, Chapter 1 and Explosions; the former because it's my baby: I've been working on the project for going on six years now, and I've revised the plot, the characters, everything so many times. But this time, I've got it right, and I know it; the latter because it's something that very lucky people get to have in their lives, and I hope to be able to experience it one day with someone special to me.


DrippingWords will also be joining us in the our TheLadiesofLit chatroom for a special critiquing session for her wonderful literary work. If there are any critiquing tips you would like to offer her toward any deviations that you have seen featured here today or others that interest you – this is the place to be on November 11th at 7pm EST! (What time is this for me?) And as an extra incentive: for those of who offer DrippingWords the best critiques, there will be a few extra goodies in store for you, so don’t miss out!


Meet Our Contributors:



I want to express my gratitude toward everyone for all of the ongoing support of this project. I duly hope to see even more suggestions in the future. Also – those of you who did not see your deviations selected and posted in this article, they may be featured on the next one. We will have plenty of upcoming deviants to spotlight in the future. If you would like to be one of those, or to suggest others, feel free to note me and be sure to tell me what you love most about them and why these writers appeals to you. Do not be shy – get involved! The more suggestions I receive, the more writers that get featured. For now, check out our volunteers who sent in their features and offered assistance, and don’t forget to thank them!




November is not only set aside for NaNoWriMo, but it is also Lung Cancer Awareness month. After you take a look at all of these wonderful features today, be sure to stop by my group LungCancer-Awareness and show us support by becoming a member to help make a difference! Help us to continue to spread the word. Together we can all continue to combat this disease.


Blessings,
LadyLincoln

:heart:

Volume XXVI of a feature series showcasing our talented ladies of DeviantART Literature and more. Do not forget to :+fav: the article to show your support for our devious writers.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconbeyondjen:
BeyondJen Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you so much for the feature. I truly appreciate the honor and support. :heart:
I was on a bit of a hiatus when this was put out and missed it until now.
Reply
:iconladylincoln:
LadyLincoln Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
You are welcome, honey. :heart:
Reply
:iconladylincoln:
LadyLincoln Nov 11, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:tighthug:
Reply
:iconladylincoln:
LadyLincoln Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:tighthug: :heart:
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Nov 7, 2012  Professional Writer
:clap:
Reply
:iconladylincoln:
LadyLincoln Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:heart:
Reply
:icondrippingwords:
DrippingWords Nov 7, 2012  Student Writer
Thanks so much again for featuring me :huggle:
Reply
:iconladylincoln:
LadyLincoln Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
The honor was mine, sweetpea. :heart:
Reply
Add a Comment: