Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Writing { and reading and publishing } ~

Tag Archives: Story Bazaar

A Non-Political Thinking “Out Loud” about What’s Wrong with the World . . .


The first thing that’s wrong with the world—well, my world—is that WordPress still hasn’t fixed their reblog buttons… Corruption

The discussion in the forums is turning a bit desperate and slightly nasty…

The brand of WordPress I’m talking about is the free version—what this blog runs on…

So, why should folks be so upset when something provided free to them is having problems?

Perhaps because WordPress advertises how many blogs use it—millions—which advertisement gives people the “message” that it’s a platform you can “trust” to get the job done (it’s almost been a week with no ability to reblog…)…

The thing I think is “wrong” with this huge niche of the blogosphere is wrong about many other things in the world—the constant glitchiness of the Wattpad platform even though they’re wooing movies deals, the increase in deaths from being in hospitals, the cranking out by traditional publishing of one-month-wonders, the inability of the United States Government to stop the killing of kids trying to get an education, the nearly total takeover of the movie industry by shows with various methods of killing a critical part of the plot (and, the fact that it was just so easy to use the word “industry” for the folks making moving pictures…).

Oh, I’m sure anyone reading this could add a few more ripe wrongnesses…

And, if we all got in a room to discuss what we felt was wrong with the world, I’m sure a few ripe and even rancid arguments would break out:

“Strict gun control? What about the 2nd Amendment?!”

“That Amendment makes gun ownership dependent on a well-regulated militia!”

“So why does the Supreme Court always uphold it in cases that have nothing to do with militias?”

“The Court is corrupt…”

Sure, I made up that argument; but, I bet it’s happened…

And, is it so outrageous to say the Supreme Court is corrupt?

I mean it’s hard to find anything (including this writer) that doesn’t have a bit of corruption hanging on it.

Etymology time“corrupt” =

mid-14c., from Old French corropt “unhealthy, corrupt; uncouth” (of language), and directly from Latin corruptus, past participle of corrumpere “to destroy; spoil,” figuratively “corrupt, seduce, bribe,” from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + rup-, past participle stem of rumpere “to break” (see rupture (n.)).

Yep, parts of me are “unhealthy”, “broken”, “ruptured”, “seduced”, “spoiled”………

So, what can cure corruption?

What’s the cure?

When I began this post, I thought I was going to provide some of my hard-won answers to what’s wrong with the world; but, the flow of free-form writing that just happened has led me to a state of slightly corrupt feelings; so, I will direct you to my short story collection—Story Bazaar—a bunch of Tales that fall just this side of didacticism…

Etymology:

1650s, from French didactique, from Greek didaktikos “apt at teaching,” from didaktos “taught,” past participle of didaskein “teach,” from PIE root *dens- “wisdom, to teach, learn.”

Definition:

in the manner of a teacher , particularly so as to appear patronizing

And that’s another thing that’s become corrupt—the use of language…

Did you know that the makers of dictionaries put words and their definitions in their books when they show a marked usage by the “educated” public…

So, over time my didactic Tales have become patronizing; and instead of just saying I have this urge, in a world run amok, to write short stories that, hopefully, have a moral to teach, I have to tiptoe around the word’s original meaning and smack the adjectival phrase, “just this side of”, on it…

Sure, someone can bring up the argument that language responds to culture and changes with the times…

Does that mean that when all this earthly corruption has been effectively banned, by folks cleaning up their internal corruptions, we might return to a purer form of communicating…?

O.K., my free-form engine just broke down…

Tune in tomorrow for our Monday/Wednesday Conversations; and, if you want to get in on the current one, leave a comment on this post.
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If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
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Visit The Story Bazaar
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Friday Story Bazaar ~ Tale Seventy-Eight


Personal Diary of a Lunatic

by
Alexander M Zoltai

~~~~~~~~~

March 2025:

This is my diary for folks back on Earth. We’ve been up here now for five years. We got here because an Entrepreneur decided to use his rocket company to secure a future for Earth…

Of course, anybody who reads this, if I ever send it back to Earth, will know why we came here; but, they won’t know how things have changed…

And, yes, I’m a “lunatic”—we all decided we are, ‘cause it originally meant “of the Moon”…

I like the Moon, always have. Still, living and working here makes it even more amazing. We get our air and water by processing rocks. We use the metal that’s leftover to build our shelters; sure, we came up here with enough to survive, the thousand of us; but what we were able to do since then is pretty remarkable.

Back to what folks on Earth who might read this in the future won’t necessarily know: the people in charge up here aren’t working for Earth anymore, don’t care about Earth anymore, would rather Earth just went away…

We were supposed to be an outpost of humanity—people who would breed and prosper and come back to Earth when it wasn’t radioactive anymore…

I still can’t believe they did it—threw all those bombs around. But then, they boxed themselves in. Every single interaction was us versus them, me versus you, profit versus people. I suppose it was bound to happen…

But, to watch the folks up here, carefully chosen people, duplicate the thinking that nearly killed the Earth. What a shame…

But… I have to live here, I have to work here, I have to hope that soon I can start talking to certain people I can trust, so we can, maybe, turn things around…

January 2026:

We’re getting no more radio signals from Earth. But, we do know plenty of people are still alive, if plenty can mean thousands.

We don’t know how long they can hold out…

There are a few of us working on a plan to construct a small rocket that could be sent to orbit the Earth, gather images, and radio them back.

All we have to do is convince the few who’ve taken control that it’s worthwhile…

If we can’t do that, we might have to do away with the leaders; but, that has to be the worst solution; still, there has to be some solution, I mean there’s no logic in staying alive and not helping the Earth.

May 2029:

Been very busy…

We might have convinced some of the leaders to get back on track and make this a project to save Earth again…

March 2031:

One man has grabbed complete leadership for himself. He’s got about 20 security forces around him. But really, this seems better to me than when there were a whole crew of leaders. I hope it doesn’t come to war…

September 2032:

Been busy… The leader was vanquished by his security forces ‘cause we were able to “educate” them…

April 2033:

We’re building the rocket to send to Earth orbit…

December 2034:

Images radioed back from Earth showed definite signs of fresh farming activity—many locations…

We’re tired out but happy.

May 2035:

We decided to rename our colony “Unity” since that’s what it’s going to take for us to help Earth from way up here; but, we were selected for our scientific and practical knowledge and we’ll share it with Earth—send more satellites, drop some radios—only when we’re sure their unity has them well on the road to recovery—I mean, from what we can see, they’re not college graduates, if ya know what I mean; so, until they’re back to what we’re calling “developed agrarian”, we can only cheer them on, in our hearts…

Still, I think I’ll stay up here because it’s going to take Earth a hell of a long time to get to the level of living comfort that we have here on the Moon…

~~~~~~~~~

December 2058:

The past couple of decades have seen a lot of progress, here and on Earth…

I’m going back as soon as we finish the shuttle; so, I really don’t have to keep this diary anymore—didn’t do such a good job at it anyway—never liked writing much…

I suppose I’ve been talking to myself all these years…

But, this colony will continue without me and it will continue to help Earth…

Still, even though I’ve been up here a long time, I really do have to go home…

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Read More Story Bazaar Tales

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If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best Source for “Book Promotion” Ideas
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~ My Bio
Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Getting Back into the Stream . . .


I find it crazily refreshing that I began my blogging today with the re-blog just before this post… Getting Back into the Stream

I’ve been spending the past month regaining my blogging bearings, as well as deeper levels of stability.

Back on January 7th, I wrote:

“Something has happened that has shattered my emotional life…

“I cannot write…

“I don’t know how long this time away will last—perhaps forever…”

Time, as it inexorably will, moved on and by January 21st I was able to do a “real” post that shared some of what I was doing to heal from my fractured psychological state. In that post, where I talk about the reading I was doing to help me heal, I wrote:

“I’m sitting here writing a blog post where, before the books, I could barely get a re-blog out.”

So, it only took a month of mostly re-blogs to have me start today with a re-blog rather than this post, which is my wobbly re-entry into my recommitment to this blog…

I’ll still do re-blogs on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with my own original posts on Mondays and Wednesdays, and a Tale in the Story Bazaar on Fridays.

However, there are only 18 more Tales to write before I do “Something” else on Fridays—perhaps you have an idea or two about what I can do here on Fridays…?

I haven’t decided what Saturdays and Sundays will be yet; and, for now, I’m happy to wait and do what the Spirit moves me to do…

Big However:

I want to enlist my readers, you and you and you, in a long-term project…

I’m hoping my regular readers at first, then, perhaps, folks who happen in, will begin commenting on the Monday and Wednesday posts, in a way that creates “bridging ideas” that I can carry into my next original post—either your thoughts, feelings, hopes, dreams, experiences, lack of experiences—you name it—perhaps, call it “creative writing prompt invention”—something to help me “thread together” a series of posts…

Sometimes, I may have only one comment that inspires what I write in my next post—sometimes, hopefully, there’ll be a whole bouquet of comments…

Maybe Fridays (after the final 18 Tales in the Story Bazaar) can extend this threaded post concept—maybe Saturdays and Sundays can join in the process………

Small However:

I do want to keep at least Tuesdays and Thursdays for re-blogs—there are just too many good ones out there to not share them with you.

So…

I had a whole different idea about what this Getting Back into the Stream post would be; but, when I write fiction, I depend heavily on spur of the moment inspiration; so, serendipitously, this is the post I’m writing…

~~~

I know I have a few regular readers.

I’m not quite sure how to encourage you to join me in this “threaded posts” endeavor…

Maybe it can start by your responding to the very idea of threaded posts—exploring the “nature” of blogging at bit…

Perhaps your responses will lead to a challenge for me—something I never considered blogging about; though, I really do have to keep things within the parameters of Writing, Reading and Publishing…

Yeah, I’m going out on that Limb of Faith—jumping out that Window of Trust…

Wanna join me………?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Visit The Story Bazaar
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
FREE On-line Course in Self-Publishing & Book Promotion
Even though it may say “Fee”, it Really is FREE :-)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Friday Story Bazaar ~ Tale Seventy-Seven


True Believer

by
Alexander M Zoltai

~~~~~~~~~

“It’s what other mortals say—there’s nothing divine about it…”

Anualia was answering the proprietor of the food establishment.

“I hear you Anualia and I wonder at your boldness…”

“I don’t feel I’m being bold, just logical, Manion.”

The proprietor excused himself with a nod to wait on two young people.

Anualia knew, at his depths, that he had logic on his side; yet, the Seneschal certainly had a very different idea of logic—a cruel, unjust “logic”—logically, it wasn’t religion at all—so many people had been lost to its unholy demands…

He almost let the tears fall but reached deep inside and touched the love that burned in his soul…

Manion returned with: “You know logic won’t work with the Seneschal, they’ll request you appear at their Tribunal…”

“If I must…” He smiled yet groaned a bit.

“Anualia, why are you putting yourself through this? They have all the weight of the Government behind them…”

“My friend, you know I answer to a different Order of Authority.”

“Yes… But, damn it, you know the Seneschal claim all right of Divinity and the Government backs them up.”

“True—just as true as the fact that my wife and child are in their Detention Center.”

“Oh, my; I hadn’t heard…”

“Yes, dear friend… I cry inside, I groan outside, and I carry my broken heart in my hands…”

“But…”

“There are no buts for me—my family will never be released and I will soon join them; and, all because I live for Truth; and, because Truth extends far beyond the mortal and temporal trap the Seneschal demands obedience to.”

“What will you do?”

“I will cling to the Truth, pray for my family, and gladly suffer to, hopefully, lead others to the Eternal path of Reality.”

“I must, Anualia, say again, I wonder at your boldness…”

~~~

Three cycles later Anualia was incarcerated—nine cycles after that, he and his family were publicly executed, for “Treason to the Government and to the Government’s God”………

Manion would always bear in mind Anualia’s maxim of being rational about one’s beliefs; and, to the day Manion himself passed on, every day, he remembered something Anualia had often said, “Be overwhelmingly careful of what you pray for…”

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Read More Story Bazaar Tales

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If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
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FREE On-line Course in Self-Publishing & Book Promotion
Even though it may say “Fee”, it Really is FREE :-)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Friday Story Bazaar ~ Tale Seventy-Six


This World Is Way Bigger Than I’d Ever Imagined

by
Alexander M Zoltai

~~~~~~~~~

My name’s Mary and I’m gonna try to tell a story…

I was born an only child—don’t think my folks planned that—it just happened.

Like everybody, I was totally self-centered for my earliest years; but, also for all the time up to my twentieth year, ‘cause my folks fought a lot, and Dad left, and Mom put me up for adoption…

So, at twenty, I fell in love and my cramped world expanded to include John…

Then, we had Suzie and my world became much larger ‘cause I watched my daughter’s world unfold right in front of me—I was two worlds wide, with an extra world barely orbiting around—eventually, John left, too…

Of course, Suzie grew up and went and got married herself—still two worlds; but, kind of like far apart in space…

Suzie became a bit more distant as her family grew—can’t blame her ‘cause her husband was an international lawyer and they were always moving around and always having babies…

Every year or so, they’d visit and my world would be very wide again with the planets Suzie and Ronald and all the grandchildren moons…

But, there was something about all those letters and pictures from Suzie as they went all over the world—I could sort of expand my world to include little pockets of other people’s worlds…

Plus, Ronald being such an intelligent man and Suzie living so close with him, her letters started having bigger words—I looked them all up on-line—started thinking in new ways—made my world even wider…

Then, around 2021, Suzie said she’d become a member of an International Faith…

I’ve never been all that spiritual, unless you can count the love I feel for so many other souls; but, there was one Principle of Suzie’s new Faith that knocked me flat and picked me up and filled me with, well, I guess I’d have to say, Spirit…

That spiritual Principle was the Oneness of Humanity…

Something about it crawled into every hour of my day—it showed itself as I watched the News—it lingered near as I chatted with neighbors—it even made Suzie and Ronald and the kids seem to be orbiting closer no matter where they happened to be…

The Oneness of Humanity…

Oneness in Space and Time—no Real separation, of Time or Space—linked into a single Family…

Still, some of my World-Expanding Family, well lots of them, are still blind to our Oneness…

Did I mention Ronald is exceedingly Rich?

So, I guess this is the final little chapter of my little story:

Suzie convinced Ronald to fund a Round the World, rest of my life, Trip…

With a few beautiful little strings attached:

— Only spend a year in each country, until you’ve visited at least five other countries.

— Make sure you tell as many folks as possible about how they belong to this Huge Human Family.

— Be sure to Schedule a few months between countries to visit with Suzie, Ronald, all those amazing Grandchildren Moons :-)

I really recommend that all of you meditate on this Deep and Wide Spiritual Principle:

The Oneness of Humanity…

Then you, too, can say: “This World Is Way Bigger Than I’d Ever Imagined”.

 

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Read More Story Bazaar Tales

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
FREE On-line Course in Self-Publishing & Book Promotion
Even though it may say “Fee”, it Really is FREE :-)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com