June 14th, 2021


Magpie Monday

[personal profile] dialecticdreamer is hosting Magpie Monday today with a theme of "unconventional parenthood." Leave prompts, get ficlets! Boosting the signal extends your wordcount.

Another goal is, frankly, to make some money. If someone wants to sponsor a story, I suggest two cents per word, which makes a thousand word story twenty dollars. If there are $150 in tips, I will post a bonus story which effectively doubles the total word count for readers to enjoy.

System Test
A badly-planned prank by one of Loudmouth’s old friends locks Loudmouth, Torrin, Lucas and David in the basement. Literally. They’re sealed in under a timed lock for a full day! Part of the Independence and Mercedes story arcs in the Polychrome Heroics universe.


Monday Update 6-14-21

These are some posts from the later part of last week in case you missed them:
Today's Smoothie
Maybe-Colors for Unisex Dressing
Poem: "A Fabric of Our Own Making"
Poem: "All That Tyranny of Biology"
Community Building Tip: Creative Incubator
Recipe: "Chicken Tortilla Filling"
Coping Skills: Read
Cuddle Party

Saturday night, half a walnut tree fell down in our yard. I posted some pictures. A tree guy is coming out tomorrow evening to look at it and estimate the cost of removing it and attending to the goldenraintree damaged by the fall.

I'm done writing for the fishbowl prompts, but still have a few poems I haven't had time to post. :/ Losing Saturday night to a power outage really messed up my schedule. I'm working on a poem for the Stronger Wings arc that needs to be finished, sponsored somehow, and posted in sequence. But I had to spend yesterday setting up for today.

There will be a half-price sale in Polychrome Heroics running this week, as soon as I can get that posted.

Poetry in Microfunding:

There are two open epics at present. "The Hobbomak" has been completed, just not finished posting yet.

"Rainshadow Road" belongs the Daughters of the Apocalypse series. It introduces Maggot to the Clearwater Caravan.

"The Hobbomak" launches the Bear Tunnels series. Emma and Jesse explore the images on the walls.

"A Celebration and a Consolation" belongs to Polychrome Heroics. Keira comforts her mother after the breakup.

The weather has been warmer here, and it rained on Saturday night. Seen at the birdfeeders this week: a flock of mourning doves, a small flock of house finches, a small flock of grackles, a male cardinal, a rabbit, and a squirrel. Currently blooming: white penstemon, orange butterflyweed, Asiatic lilies, daylilies.  Hollyhock has buds.  Blackberries have green fruit.  Black raspberries have pink fruit.  Mulberries, serviceberries, and pie cherries are ripe.


Poem: "The Loving Embrace of Night"

This poem came out of the April 2021 Crowdfunding Creative Jam 100. It was inspired by a prompt from Dreamwidth user Fuzzyred. It also fills the "Physical Touch" square in my 4-4-21 "Aspects" card for the Genderplay Bingo fest. This is the linkback perk poem for the June 1, 2021 Poetry Fishbowl.

The Loving Embrace of Night

The Ice People live
within the frosty skin on
the Night Side of the world,
their skin the same pale blue
as the ice in which they live.

Everything in their lives
is slick and smooth as they
glide through the tunnels.

It is always dark there.
Dark means safe.

They have eyes, barely,
enough to warn them away
from dangerous light and
sense meaningful colors,
but little more than that.

The Ice People live in
a crystal wonderland
that they can hardly see.

Their world is defined
by touch, the feel of
each other's skin as
they cuddle close.

* * *


A hot eyeball planet is tidally locked close to its star. The day side is a burning desert. The night side is a solid icecap. Anything living on either side would need extreme adaptations to survive the harsh environment, which makes burrowing a great strategy in both places. Between the two, a twilight ring holds meltwater and probably more diverse lifeforms. Because one side is always hot and dry while the other is always icy, the differential fuels violent storms. As water evaporates from the edge of the desert, it rises to form clouds that rain over the twilight and snow over the icecap.

Ice is typically clear, white, or blue, but can be any color due to inclusions.

Animals in extreme climates have adaptations for cold, dry, and otherwise inhospitable conditions.  Burrowing is a tactic that protects against many hazards, and there are traits that assist a subterranean life.

Gastropods such as slugs and snails live in a wide range of environments.  Some of them are among the photosynthetic animals.  These aliens are black like solar panels.

[To be continued ...]


Today is mostly sunny and warm.

I fed the birds.  I've seen house finches, doves, and a squirrel.

A tree guy should come out tomorrow evening to check out the fallen tree.

EDIT 6/14/21 -- I picked a bag of mulberries.  On the way back, I discovered that the black raspberries are starting to ripen.  Also, the plum tree has green fruit on it, the first that I've seen.  :D

EDIT 6/14/21 -- I picked and pitted a bag of pie cherries.

Half-Price Sale in Polychrome Heroics

This week, the poetry of Polychrome Heroics is on sale for half price from Monday, June 14 through Sunday, June 20. This series is superhero fantasy. It features themes of heroism, coming of age, diversity, identity kink, family of choice, friendship, and cultural engineering. Sale prices range from $19 to $167.50, so hopefully there will be something for everyone.

Prices on open epics are locked at the time of opening; however, if anyone wants to donate to open epics and buy poetry, spending $100 will get you the quarter-price rate on the new poems, regardless of the rate on the open epic(s) you support.  There are two open epics at present, so you may start another if you wish.  "Rainshadow Road" belongs the Daughters of the Apocalypse series. It needs $262 to be complete.  "A Celebration and a Consolation" belongs to Polychrome Heroics.  It needs $100 to be complete.

We are repeating the special discount for purchases of $100 or more, in which you get poetry at 25% of its original price instead of 50%. (Note that this increases the amount of poetry you get, rather than reducing the amount of money spent; the point is to get this stuff off of my desk. Yes, I can afford it.) That size of donation also makes you a k-fan which comes with some other perks, like a year-end collection of a poetic series. If several folks want to bundle their orders to make the $100 threshold and have one person send it all, that's okay; you'll get the discount and I'll list all your names as donors, but you'll have to decide amongst you who gets the k-fan credit. If you host a pool, please close it the day before the sale closes, so you have time to collect funds and turn them in on time.

Some of the poems are in sequence of related action, so in places there are prerequisites before a poem can be published. They can be sponsored at any time, just might have to wait for publication until something else gets posted first. Those are marked accordingly. I have also made lists of poems which unlock sequels, and poems which have prerequisites.

Linkback perk: The followingpoems have verses left to reveal. Boost the signal for this half-price sale andtell me which poem you want to extend.
"Spirit of Truth"
"Everything That Blooms"
"In the Shade of the Mighty Oak"
"Let the Children Lead Us"
"Autumn's Palette"
"Pumpkin Spice Prosperity"
"Delight in Another"
"A Sense of Weather Changes"
"Ouroboros Insects"
"The Loving Embrace of Night"

About characters and storylines: The storylines feature multiple characters, so if you want poems about ONE specific character, look closely. The thumbnail descriptions here give some indication who features in each poem. The storyline pages are adding precise, complete information about which characters appear in each poem. If you need more than what's already visible, you can ask me.

About timing: If you want maximum choice, shop early. We usually send a batch of things to my parents near the end of a sale, and those poems will be posted as I have time.

About pools: Yes, you can combine your funds with other prompters to get the quarter-price rate. Yes, you can combine your funds with other prompters to buy a bigger poem. Yes, you can offer to match donations by other people. However, the wordsmith is not also a math whiz! After several attempts to find a way that I can work with pools and matches, I have concluded that this is over my head. (I did figure out how to avoid generating fractional pennies, though: all initial prices are now whole dollars, which means they cut evenly into halves and quarters.) So if you want to host a pool or a match, make a post for that in your blog or other venue, then comment here with what you're doing and include a link to wherever the discussion will be. You figure out the poems, you collect the funds, and when stuff is fully funded, you send me the money and the list of what it's for. Then I'll post the goodies. Please close the pool in time to collect donations by the end of the sale, so I can start posting pool poems no later than the day after the sale.

Before placing your order, please check this sale page to see what is still unsold! I will try to update the page as things sell, and it's likely to be the case that some poems will be marked SOLD before appearing in posts. People often buy things in batches, which means that selling gets ahead of posting. Also sometimes people ask for the same thing at the same time, so that not all overlaps are preventable. If you have alternate instructions in case you request something that has just sold, please include that in your message; otherwise I'll email you back and ask what you want to do.

Currently available are the following poems. Some are in series chronological order, and others are just kind of stuck wherever, because sequencing Polychrome Heroics is like trying to sequence a dozen different comic book titles from the same publisher. See the thread page for Shiv.

Poems that unlock sequels: "Escape a Thousand Memories," "Who Can Create the Future," "Good Food Choices are Good Investments," "Layering Flavors, Tastes, and Textures," "A Vibrant Symbol of the American Dream"

Poems that have prerequisites: "Who Can Create the Future," "Good Food Choices are Good Investments," "Layering Flavors, Tastes, and Textures," "A Vibrant Symbol of the American Dream," "The People Who Give You Their Food"

14 poems, $2348  ÷ 2 = $1174
prices from $19 to $167.50

KRAKEN (2 poems, was $229, sale price $114.50)

"Solace, Hope, and a Tasty Snack"
Story Date: Saturday, April 4, 2015
Summary: Genna offers to teach Hatter how to make Salted Caramel Powerballs.
229 lines, was $115, sale price $57.50 POOL

"A Strong Set of Collective Values"
Story Date: Monday, July 6, 2015
Summary: President Latheef, Captain Left, and Dr. Infanta discuss social engineering to help connect the cultures of Thalassia and the Maldives.
227 lines, was $114, sale price $57 SOLD to Librarygeek

RUTLEDGE (9 poems, was $1638, sale price $819)

"Why People Hold onto Memories"
Story Date: Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Oscar and Labib deal with an unpleasant prelude to the Fourth of July.
453 lines, was $227, sale price $113.50

"Essential to Well-Ordered Living"
Story Date: Sunday, October 5, 2014
Gideon takes Ibrahim and sons to a thrift store for winter clothes.
568 lines, was $284, sale price $142

"Before the Nature Wants"
Story Date: Thursday, October 9, 2014
Liyan talks with other Syrian women, and discovers that Janna is unhappy in her marriage.
427 lines, was $214, sale price $107

This set needs to be posted in order:

"Escape a Thousand Memories"
Story Date: April 2014
Summary: Kardal Abdullah moves to Rutledge, Vermont and explores opportunities for education and employment.
139 lines, was $70, sale price $35 POOL

"Who Can Create the Future"
Story Date: June 2014
Summary: After passing a class on American food handling, Kardal applies for a job at Mandy's Diner.
76 lines, was $38, sale price $19 POOL

"Good Food Choices Are Good Investments"
Story Date: June 2015
Summary: After working at Mandy's Diner for about a year, Kardal Abdullah launches a Syrian food truck.
529 lines, was $265, sale price $132.50 POOL

"Layering Flavors, Tastes, and Textures"
Story Date: July 2015
Summary: Kardal tries a regular Vermont grinder, then invents the Hummus Buster sandwich as a Syrian equivalent.
156 lines, was $78, sale price $39 POOL

"A Vibrant Symbol of the American Dream"
Story Date: August 2015
Summary: Kardal's food truck attracts hungry teleporters.
670 lines, was $335, sale price $167.50

"The People Who Give You Their Food"
Story Date: 6 PM on August 19, 2015 outside of Aleppo, Syria
11 AM on August 19, 2015 in Rutledge, Vermont
Summary: A cape team wraps up a battle against terrorists in Syria, then takes salvaged ingredients to trade with a food truck in Vermont.
254 lines, was $127, sale price $63.50

SHIV (3 poems, was $481, sale price $240.50)

"Sharp Sauce"
Story Date: Friday, September 25, 2015
Summary: Shiv and Gray explore hot sauces in the kitchen.
238 lines, was $119, sale price $59.50 SOLD to zianuray

"An Elusive, Tantalizing Partner"
Story Date: Monday, March 7, 2016
Summary: Boss White and Buttons discuss possible changes.
216 lines, was $108, sale price $54 SOLD to zianuray

"The Only Real Stumbling Block"
Story Date: Monday, April 25, 2016
Summary: Tolli and Simon take Shiv to a private dinner party with a great cook.
508 lines, was $254, sale price $127 SOLD