Goodbye Fictitious Amo – Hello

Well the day has finally arrived. This is my last post on Fictitious Amo.
The new home for me and all things fiction is now live.

AM logo

I’d love you to head over to the first blog post and find out what it’s all about – there’s a freebie too :)

Click here and off you go….

Thanks so much for reading and commenting here – I look forward to catching you on the other side!

A x

Passing the Blog Tour Baton

The perfect day to highlight some great writing going on in the Emerald Isle

I was more than a little chuffed to be asked by Ken Armstrong take the baton of ‘The Blogging Tour’ from him and pass it forward. There are a few of these pass-it-on blog thingummies (yes that is the technical term) and this one is where writers with blogs, write a bit about themselves and the work they are doing.

I remember the first time Ken slapped my wrist on Twitter. I was so delighted that he responded to my tweet – didn’t really care that he was admonishing me. :) Actually it was good advice he was giving me. It was early days for me on Twitter and he taught me well.

ken armstrongHis blog is one of my faves and has been since I found it more than 3 years. I think I like it cos it’s real. There’s the odd bold word but not just for the sake of it.  He shares some very honest and emotional stories and memories. Ken is funny and sincere. He takes no nonsense and if as a writer you don’t learn something from him… well I’ll eat my hat.
His blog is called Ken Armstrong Writing Stuff Go have a look whenever you can.
(PS I don’t know about you but I think he has a Simon Cowell thing going on –   but don’t tell him I said that or I’ll be in big trouble… :D )

So who have I got for you…?

CarolannCarolann Copland is the founder of Carousel Creates; a picturesque writers’ centre in the Dublin Mountains, offering writing experiences to writers of all ages and lifestyles. A primary school teacher, writing between Dublin and the South of Spain in her spare time; Carolann is happiest when she is sharing her passion for writing.
Her novel Summer Triangle is published by Emu Ink and her second novel Dominoes will be published in October 2014.
Carolann’s Website
Carolann’s blog
Twitter @CarouselCreates

KatieKatie Keeley has been writing a lot longer than I have. I remember as a kid she used to show me stories that she had written about all sorts of wonderful lands and characters. (She’s my niece btw, I didn’t just follow her around… :) ) She’s 24 and when she’s not busy writing children’s stories she works in a crèche full time. She also reads, A LOT of fantasy and fairy-tale books which she credits her vivid imagination to. As well as having a passion for writing she also has a passion for photography and can get snap happy quite a bit.
Katie’s blog
Twitter @katie_cait

StaceyStacey Covell is a writer of literary fiction, flash fiction, poetry and the occasional blog post. She likes to ask questions and explore. What if we tilted our perspectives and looked at the world from that view? What would things be like/look like then? Living in Ireland for the past 10 years, she is simultaneously a writer, wife, mother & cross cultural mentor.
Stacey’s Website
Stacey’s Facebook Page
Twitter: @staceycovell7


And then there’s me…

amo is a writer1) What am I working on?
I’ve so many things on the  burner – my problem is getting stuck back into things as I’ve had a difficult couple of months.
I’ve got a first 50k draft of a novel that I worked on during NaNoWriMo last November. I have a second novel rolling around my head. Really need to get that down on paper.

But the major project for 2014 is to get another collection of short stories together to publish before the end of the year.
The Long and The Short of it… Volume 2 :)
You can find info about Volume 1 here.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Wow what a question?!
I don’t know really. I’ve always said that my stories are very ‘normal’. No Jack Bauer cliffhangers – no bodice ripping love scenes. I just write ordinary stories about ordinary people. I try to give a happy ending or even an aspiration towards a happy ending. A chance for tomorrow to be a bit easier than yesterday.

I’m sure that’s not unique tho…

3) Why do I write what I do?
I can only write what I know. The stuff I write has to be believable – by me first. I believe in hope and second chances. I believe that restoration is possible and forgiveness changes things. So I write that stuff – hopefully to inspire or even just encourage readers that things can change for the better.

4) How does my writing process work?
Carolann, who I mentioned above, introduced me to Free Writing. It’s probably the most powerful part of my writing process. It is certainly the most productive.

I try to free write regularly and just write what ever is in my head. Almost every time I come back and there is something I can use. One time I had NO ideas and as I wanted to keep writing I just wrote a shopping list. That made me think of someone finding someone else’s shopping list and what would happen if they bought the stuff on it.
That was the beginning of ‘Corned Beef Sandwiches on Brown Bread’, a story that went into The Long & The Short of it and turned out to be very popular.

When it comes to edits and rewrites – that is another thing. I’m not good at 3rd and 4th revisions. I get bored easily. When it comes to editing novel length stuff I know that’s gonna be a problem.

* * * * * * * * * *

So there you have it. Please do pop over to see what Ken, Carolann, Katie and Stacey are up to won’t you?.

This is one of the last posts here on Fictitious Amo as the all new website will be launching soon. Very excited to get that up and running. It will probably be sometime this week.
I’ll let you know where to find me and I hope you’ll join me there :) x

A belated ‘thank you’, ‘sorry’ and news of a change

I have to say thank you and I’m sorry!

The last couple of months have been difficult for me with some sad stuff going on; but I want to thank all the contributors to the Christmas story collection. The response was fantastic and I ended up with more stories than I needed. What I loved most was that writers of most stories became readers of the others. I hope all the authors feel greatly encouraged by the feedback.

It’s been a pretty amazing year and a half here on Fictitious Amo :) So much has happened since I wrote my first every fictional tale and posted it here. I’ve loved the journey along Writer’s Road and the soon I’ll be swapping Fictitious Amo for an all new website. Most of the posts will be coming over with me – so there’ll be plenty to see and plenty more to come.

I’ll let you know what it happens and hopefully you’ll come and join me there. There’ll be lots going on – and I won’t be leaving 2 months between posts either…


It’s time to get packing…

photo credit: rubyblossom. via photopin cc


If you are reading this on Christmas Day… well thank you for taking time out of this special day.

Today’s post will mean more to my family than anyone else. It is written by one of my sister’s in law – another Ann Marie, about Christmas morning in my mam and dad’s house. My mam Betty is gone almost 9 years and as I prepare this post, my Dad Christy is ill in hospital – so I don’t know what kind of Christmas morning in it will be in my parents’ house – Number 45.

Ann Marie has captured the magic of what Christmas morning was like in my mam and dad’s house. I hope that those of you who have never been there, will get a glimpse of our special times together.

Number 45

 Car doors slam
Gate latch clangs
High heels click
Through open door
Welcoming clamour and
“Happy Christmas” chorus

Small hall jammed
Perfume filled air
Colour and style
Through the crush
The parade of
Squishy Aunty hugs
Scratchy Uncle hugs
Gentle girl hugs
Bashful boy hugs
Bewildered baby kisses

Divert to kitchen
Dishes in sink
Smell bread-sauce simmer
Cold Red lemonade
Hot reviving tea
Back into hall
Sitting on stairway
Excited children chatter

Into living-room
Heart of home
Irreplaceable Betty hugs
Mother to all
Christy bear hugs
King of clan
Bestowing his gifts
Perhaps a special
Wall-paper wrapped

Ceiling strung streamers
Fairy-lit tree
Santa on door
Wrapping paper rustle
Hub-bub, babel and
Kris Kindle banter

Families begin farewell
Return to reality
But we leave
Buoyed up and
Blessed by the
Loving Christmas spirit
of Number 45

I actually got more submissions than I needed. So there’s another couple of posts to come over the next few days.
Thank you all for submitting and reading. And have a fantastic Christmas Day!

Day 24 – Santa’s missing??? oh no…. not on Christmas Eve!!!

Today and tomorrow we’ll have contributions from some of my family. Today is the turn of my niece Katie. Katie has been writing since she was old enough to write. I remember her as a small kid, coming up with all sorts of tales and handing me little boklets of stories to read. She usually writes stories for children, but at this time or year aren’t they the best stories?! :)

FYI to those outside Ireland – we usually call him Santy and not Santa :)

Missing Santy by Katie Keeley
santy clausOnce upon a time in the North Pole all the elves were busy rushing around preparing Santa’s sleigh and loading it with presents. They were all very excited because tonight is a very special night. Tonight is Christmas Eve and Santy would be flying all over the world to leave everyone presents underneath their Christmas tree. Only on one condition though, that they were on the nice list and that they were all fast asleep when he arrived at their house.

When it came time for Santy to set off on his long journey around the world, there was only one problem …….. Santy was nowhere to be seen. All day, no one had seen him, which the elves thought peculiar, but soon forgotten about it in all their busy preparations. He wasn’t in his workhouse and he wasn’t in his bedroom getting ready either.

“Where could he be?” asked Mrs Clause. She was standing in the middle of the elves massive workshop with all the elves standing around her. Each elf was totally bewildered at how Santy could’ve gone missing on Christmas Eve.

“Who knows” said an elf.

“How are we gonna find him on time for Christmas?” asked another elf.

“Yes, if we don’t find him soon, no one will get their presents in the morning” said another elf. Suddenly an idea struck head elf Jolly Snowflake like a bolt of lightning.

“I know who can help us!” he exclaimed.

“Who could possibly help us?” said Mrs Clause, with a lot of worry in her voice.

“Cloudy of course” said Jolly Snowflake with a clever smile on his face.

“You’re right” said Mrs Clause “Why didn’t I think of that?” All the other elves cheered at the thought of someone finding Santy in time for Christmas.

Just at that moment there was a loud crackle and a loud pop and a cloud of smoke and silver glitter filled the centre of the room. Everyone turned to look as the smoke and glitter cleared and saw a very tall snowman appear in the centre of the room.
He wore a purple top hat and green woolly scarf. His eyes and mouth were made from coal as well as his buttons that closed his silver cardigan that was made from snow. He had sticks for arms with a glove on each end as hands. He had no feet and he seemed to glide across the workshop floor.

“Cloudy! Just the snowman we were looking for” said Mrs Clause she made her way through the crowd of elves to where her frosty friend was, but before she could say any more, cloudy interrupted.

“Mrs Clause, I come with worrying news” said Cloudy.“My goodness, what is it dear?” asked Mrs Clause.

“It’s Santy, he’s stuck out on the frozen lake, there was an avalanche and he’s pinned to the ice by a massive heap of snow from the waist down” said Cloudy. He was all in a fluster and was very upset that he couldn’t bring better news. There was a kafuffle amongst the elves, while Mrs Clause stood in front of Cloudy speechless.

“What’s even worse is that the ice beneath him is beginning to crack” said Cloudy in an even louder voice.

“What do we do?” an elf spoke up. Mrs Clause began to think while everyone around her broke out into a nervous chatter.

“Silence” Mrs Clause said suddenly finding her voice. All the noise stopped and all the attention turned to the woman. “Here’s what we’re gonna do..” said Mrs Clause. She went on to explain how they were going to save Santy and right in the nick of time.

In no time at all Mrs Clause’s plan had been put into effect. Along with seven other elves they rode on the backs of Santy’s eight reindeer through the darkening sky towards the frozen lake where Santy lay stuck on the breaking ice. They all carried shovels and planned on digging him free. When they reached the icy lake, the reindeers landed and slid to stop only feet away from where he lay.

“Thank God you’re here, quick I may not have much time before the ice breaks completely” said Santy desperately reaching out his hands towards his wife and elves. Immediately Mrs Clause and the elves started to work on shovelling the now off of Santy’s waist and legs to set him free. With every movement they made there was a loud crack from the ice below as it shifted beneath them. Soon there was water coming up between the cracks.

“We have to move quicker or we’re all lost” said Mrs Clause. Just as the ice were Santy lay dropped into the ice cold water, the last bit of snow was moved and in the blink of an eye Santy moved to dodge the drop into the water. No one spoke or wasted any time and they all hopped onto the reindeer and the flying animals took to the sky. Santy and Mrs Clause rode on the same reindeer as they flew back to the workshop and as nothing had happened Santy was sitting in his sleigh ready to begin his nights work.

With a smile, a wink of his eye and a crack of his reigns, Santy took off in his sleigh.

Now we reach the end of our story and that is how Santy was saved on that cold Christmas Eve.

The End

photo credit: LadyDragonflyCC – >;< via photopin cc

Find out more about Katie Keeley and her writing
on her blog KaytoPotato
or follow her on Twitter @katie_cait