Saturday, January 30, 2016

My Writing Companion


My cat Eleanor is currently upstairs in my bedroom, wrapped up in my comforter, and probably sharing a bowl of cream and some cookies with the fairy, named Sassi, who resides in my house plants. This is Elli's day off. Yesterday she was out, doing important C.A.T. work for the agency. Top secret, you know.

Okay, so not really. But I'm sure that she's telling Sassi something like that.


Elli is pink. Well, partially pink. She has a pink streak down her face and pink spots all over. Her markings are really quite similar to her Tortoiseshell sister, Arwen.


This was little baby Arwen. This is behavior that she still frequently engages in.

Elli likes to be in the thick of things. Which, since she is a cat, means that she likes to sleep curled up in the exact middle of whatever we happen to be working on.


This is Elli. There really is a cat in there, I promise.

One of my favorite things to do when I'm writing is to have an hour or two entirely my own, a cup of hot chai tea at my elbow (but not too close or I might knock it over), and Elli curled up nearby (but not on my wrist.)


This is okay.



This is my writing desk. This is less okay.

Elli likes books. She likes to be read to, she likes to sleep on them, she likes to bat at the pages with her paw when I turn them, and she likes to weave herself in, under, on, or around them while I'm reading and not paying enough attention to her. She probably reads them too, but she doesn't write book reports for me so I can't say for certain.



Classic novels are a good place for a luxurious bath.

Yes, I asked her permission before I shared pictures of her. She didn't mind too much as long as I didn't start telling embarrassing stories. She is a cat, thank you, and has dignity.


In front of the kitchen cookstove is a good place, if I'm working in there.

Elli likes to sit on the dog crate in the kitchen while I'm cooking and glare disdainfully at Lute. Lute is my family's black Lab. They are not the best of friends.


And the best place to be is right in the middle of whatever I'm working on.

Elli is just generally a helpful sort of cat, you know?


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Monday, January 25, 2016

House of Books

I wrote the basics for this poem back in November while I was resting one afternoon, in between being stepped on by a horse and supper being ready.




Dedicated to my mother, who taught me that the greatest thing about books is what can happen when you share them.


House of Books
Annie Louise Twitchell

I made a house of books.
I built the walls up high;
I built a door of hardcovers
and tightly closed my eyes.

I made a house of books.
Like a hermit, lived inside.
All alone with the words
until I wanted to cry.

I made a house of books,
and opened up the door.
I opened up the windows
and opened up some more.

I took the books away,
and revealed something new.
I had a house already,
and in that house, was you.

We made a house of books,
lined the walls with shelves.
Put curtains on the windows,
made the words ourselves.



And a image copy because I love you guys and also because I got bored the other day and decided to have some fun with Paint, OpenOffice, and Snipping Tool.



Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Friday, January 22, 2016

My Favourite Quote For Today



So today this is my favorite quote. It's from my work-in-progress 'A Promise Rose'. I wrote it a few days ago in a comment I made while half-asleep and it haunted me so I put it in my story. I'm wondering if maybe I should do some more creative thinking while I'm half-asleep, it's almost as if the muse can get the information through my thick skull faster and more easily that way.

And also, I did the thing again - I used British spelling. I hope nobody minds because I like spelling 'favourite' that way...

Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Winter's Breath


Winter's Breath

Encased in ice,
with the sunlight
flooding through
like I walked into
a world of prisms,
the trees stand tall,
frozen; waiting
for spring to peek
around the corner
and say hello.


Annie Louise Twitchell



We can all thank my mother for this picture. How she managed to get it out of a moving vehicle, I haven't got a clue.


This was inspired by a memory I had while trying to find a specific picture in my dad's Facebook albums. Instead of the picture I was looking for, I found this. This was from Christmas Eve 2013. There had been a huge ice storm the night before, and on our way to my grandparents for dinner, we went over a mountain. The trees on the mountain were completely iced over and it remains one of the most stunning sights I've seen. 


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Saturday, January 16, 2016

A Master Passes




One winter, two or three years ago, I came down with a cold. It wasn't a bad cold, you know, just the kind that makes you want to lie in bed all day and not move. So that's what I did. And while I was doing that, I read. And that, my dears, is how I read all eight Harry Potter books by the fabulous J.K. Rowling in two weeks.

I have no idea who took this photo, but thank you, unknown camera-wielding person.




I really, really loved Professor Snape in the Harry Potter movies. The mental image I had constructed in the first few books didn't work by the time I reached the end of the series (somewhere around day 9 3/4), and when I watched the movies several months later, something clicked. Oh, of course that's Professor Snape. It all just made sense.

Then, this past summer when I was housesitting for friends, I watched Sense and Sensibility. I'd listened to the book off Librivox (which is incredible and if you haven't heard of it, go check it out: librivox.org/) and I knew how the story went - but Alan Rickman's potrayal of Colonel Brandon was breath-taking. There was so much heart in it, so much passion and feeling. It was hugely relieving to come to the end of the movie and feel so satisfied. He got rewarded for what he had laboured so hard for. It was... awe-inspiring.

I don't feel like my poem has encompassed all that I wanted it to, but I haven't been able to figure out how else to express what I'm trying to say. So here it is:


A Master Passes
Annie Louise Twitchell

A master of acting,
he stained my mind
with vivid pictures that
are hard to brush away.
He brought the words
to life like so many others
before, but he used his
own special way with them.
So much heart in his works,
and richness, depth.
I'll not forget them soon.

He had a wide touch,
a deep influence.
He has left an expansive
sadness in his wake.
But his stories are there,
a breath away, to be touched
and remembered and felt
all over again.

Rest well, Mister Rickman.
Thank you for all the stories.


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Love Lines, Part Two




Okay, so this set is goofy and cheesy. What can I say? It's late at night (quarter to nine) and I feel goofy and cheesy. Besides, I kind of want ice cream, which is in short supply at my house right now since we're in the middle of winter and just had a foot of snow fall from the sky the other day. Ice cream isn't that high on the priority list at the moment. Which is sad. Because I kind of want ice cream. 


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Home




Home 
Annie Louise Twitchell

Home is here in your embrace,
where the wild crashing waves
fade away into quiet and calm;
where the turmoil and wildness
softens into the curve of your lips
as you whisper my name to me.

Where the wild crashing waves
threaten to drive me under the
foamy pressure of the ocean,
your arms are steady and calm
to hold me, protect me, love me.
Home is here in your embrace.

Threatening to drown me under
the weight of living, this world
tries to tear from my grasp the
one thing that I will not let go;
the feel of your hand on mine,
the unspoken promise of a red rose.


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Friday, January 8, 2016

An Ending




An Ending
Annie Louise Twitchell

I do not wish to live forever,
while those I love leave
this earth at their appointed times
and fly, soar, into the heavens
to peace, rest, comfort, to go home.

I do not wish to live forever,
to see even the words carved
in stone fade and pass, until
I stand alone and friendless
on a barren world at the end.

I do not wish to live forever,
to slowly fade into the restless
oblivion of living death, a hell
I cannot bear the thought of,
my darkest fears come true.

I do not wish to live forever,
but to love and breathe and feel,
pulsing with vibrant energy and
running towards the finish line
with those I love and hold dear.

I do not wish to live forever,

merely to live.



Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Published!

In October 2015 I had my first piece of writing formally published by the Homeschoolers of Maine (HOME) e-magazine. The piece, entitled 'Remembering Apple Blossoms', won first prize in HOME's short story contest 2015, with the contest theme 'Remembrance'.


Here's what some people have said about 'Remembering Apple Blossoms':



My cover art, photo credit to... me. 

  • Oh my goodness, I almost cried when I read your story. And I'm not a crier. Fantastic work!!! 


  • Aww, sad ending, but I love it!!


  • What a great story! It made me cry (which admittedly isn't hard). The last line reminds me of a quote - "The veil that hides the face of futurity is woven by the hand of mercy" (And I love the image of "furiously knitting")


  • I just read your story. Great job! I loved the imagery, especially the use of twilight. Such a sweet story! 





Copyright 2015 by Annie Louise Twitchell  

Love Lines, Part One

First of all, Happy New Year! It's 2016 and for the next month anything I handwrite a date on is likely to look funny because I may have to change it from a 5 to a 6. Please don't be offended.


Secondly, a collection of love lines that randomly occur in the middle of a batch of cookies. Actually, the first one occurred to me while I was elbow deep in lemon-scented soap suds. I made my brother get out my laptop and type it out because it was a glorious sink of water at just the right temperature and I didn't want to waste it or the line.






Most of these are inspired by Ethan and Sophie from one of my works-in-progress, A Promise Rose. Honestly, Ethan and Sophie are so much fun to write. I have lots of happy giggles from writing them. And the younger siblings are so cute!

When I sit down to work on Tattoos and Tiaras a bit more, I might have to find a baby to babysit or just play with. Toddlers, I'm all good. Kids, oh yes, I've got them covered. Teenage boys I feel like I understand pretty well, from living with hordes of them for much of my life. Teenage girls I have less understanding of, despite the fact that I was one. I'm weird and don't count. But it helps that I did some summer camp work this past summer, with a cabin of teenage girls. I learned a lot and have been able to apply it. But babies? My minion was a baby ten years ago. That was a long time ago and I haven't had charge of many since, and certainly not enough to get a better idea of development and learning and growth, which is something I need a better grasp of for that story. 

Ah yes, the problems of Annie. This is almost as much of an Annie Problem as accidently making soft caramel candies. Sometime you should try explaining why that is a problem and see if anyone believes you more readily than they believed me. And no, I don't have a recipe. Sorry.

~AnnieLou


Copyright 2015 by Annie Louise Twitchell