CRUNCH TIME! National Novel Writing Month


It’s not lost on me that I’m not alone. The holidays are difficult to keep most time-sensitive commitments. I must research and find out who decided to make National Novel Writing Month in November. Was it because of the “N’s”, I wonder? In any case, I’m behind on my word count goal. However, I’m not so behind that I can’t make it to my goal if I hustle. Also, there’s a push by writing coaches, editors and other industry folks to get their products this month. It’s probably the best time of the year to market. I’d do it if I were them. Well played coaches, editors, and agents.

At the beginning of the month, I blogged about all the projects I was working on and hadn’t a prayer of finishing. I was wrong. I’m on track with the poetry challenge, and the flash fiction stories. The memoir is finished and published on Amazon and Kindle. The short story was submitted to an online contest. Sadly, the full-length novel suffered.

All is not lost. I have approximately twenty-six hours and eighteen minutes left to finish (give or take a few minutes depending on when I finish typing this entry). I won’t get any prize for finishing. I’ll know I can do this, and that’s worth more than any certificate I could earn.

By the way, my Steelers lost yesterday to the Broncos 17-24. Ben, why did you play action fake to the wrong guy? I know you owned up to it – good job. But wow.


Pittsburgh Steelers defeat Jaguars

football helmet picNeglecting my love: Football


I realized a few weeks ago that I’ve neglected my favorite pastime this month: Football. It’s not just football, in general, it’s Steeler Football. It’s hard to grow up in Pittsburgh without being a fan of at least one sports team. Most people I know are fans of the at least one of our professional teams. A great majority of those folks are fans of the big three: Steelers, Penguins, and Pirates. There’s no gender politics where Steeler football is concerned in my town. Plenty female Steelers fans have bled black and gold since they were able to speak. Literally, the baby clothes section at the Pro shops in town gets frequented plenty. It’s hard to go on social media during a season to not see someone’s post of a baby or small child in miniature sports gear. It’s a beautiful thing.

I’ve loved everything Steeler since Mean Joe Green came to my school so many years ago. At the young age of 11, Joe Green was the largest man I’d ever seen in person next to Muhammad Ali a year or two before. I’m no fair-weather fan and I have been known to perform my ritual each Steeler game.

Now to the neglect: This is National November Writing Month. I took on multiple writing projects (by choice) and spend most waking hours writing poems, short fiction or devoting time to my novel. Semi-retirement is great as I make writing a new career – slowly but surely. I’m behind on current events in the local and national news. I hadn’t realized the Steelers were on a winning streak at the present time (I hope I’m not jinxing them). I did, however, get to see the last few plays of the game today with Jacksonville. The Steelers defeated Jacksonville 20-16. So, we’re having a good season and I’m missing most of the games. It’s fine if they keep up the good work!

Besides, I’ll have multiple poems and stories written to put into a compilation and a jump on that novel. 😊

Break’s over!


Day 13 WD 2018 November Pad Chapbook Challenge

warn giyse

2018 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 13

Today’s prompt (see link above) was for a quiet or loud poem. Here’s my free verse:


“Quiet warmth”


The humming of our heater

is loud serving as music

to my ears as I sit in

beautiful silence letting

the humming and warmth carry

me back to the days of cold

and cuddling against my

siblings as we wore winter

coats day and night. My pillow

now is warm and my comforter

as soft as cotton balls. Oh,

I wish I could transport some

warmth and blankets back to

those children shivering in

their beds as a mother cried

silently in the coldest room.

I want to tell the children

they won’t always be cold.

Resounding heater humming

and soft blankets are the truth.

copyright 2018 R. H. Dorsey


My Day 9 PAD Chapbook Challenge poem

It’s been a rough time lately hearing and seeing reports of violence in the world, this country, and my hometown. I’m participating in the Writer’s Digest 2018 November PAD Chapbook Challenge every day this month.

See: http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/2018-november-pad-chapbook-challenge-day-9  for details on the challenge.

My poem for today is shared below:

“Burn Slow”


Shooters shoot aimlessly

as victims die without

reason leaving survivors

lives blown to shreds

of what once was hope

and promise of long and

natural life. Numbness

becomes a safe harbor

for our psyches to cope

and shield us from

feeling what would surely

cause our minds to

realize the last days

of existence have been

fueled and set long ago.

We helplessly watch the

unfolding of events as if

we didn’t know all along

that we are in the midst

of a slow burn of devastation.

©2018 R. H. Dorsey



MONDAY – Pre-election Day 2018

If you’re a U. S. citizen, are you ready to vote tomorrow? We’ve heard for some time now this election is the most important election in a long while. Some have gone so far as to say the election on Tuesday, November 6, 2018, is the election of our lifetime. I’m not sure about that previous statement, but with the political climate today the election tomorrow is super important. One thing I’m certain of is that my household has a personal commitment to be at the polls casting our votes.

I’m dating myself by saying I voted in the 1980 election, but it’s true. It was the most exciting thing I’d done in my life to that point. I felt like a full-fledged adult and had my driver’s license and voter’s registration to prove it.  The election of November 1980 was a Presidential election and I took it very seriously. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all of those my age who lost their youthful excitement about voting would just vote their conscious and see what happens? I mean, to just throw your vote out and hope for the best? In the end, that’s all we can do – our best.

We can argue that voters are adults with minds of their own and shouldn’t have to be convinced to vote. After all, the laws and policies that govern our lives in the United States are directly affected by the voting public. Sounds simple, right? You’d be surprised at the rhetoric of people that don’t vote. My frustration with the non-voter no matter the party affiliation runs deep. There are older members of my family that have experiences in the past of being stopped at the polls for trying to cast their vote. Knowing family members or anyone that fought for the right to vote were denied is the absolute reason I exercise that right. I believe in my country and our system of democracy (too preachy, oh well). While our Constitution gives us the ‘right’ to vote, there are always debates on whether voting is a privilege. Personally, I’m hoping to never see the day where citizens are given a ‘privilege’ to vote. What would be the criteria to grant one a privilege to vote? The prospect would seem too subjective and unfair in my opinion.

Finally, I’m noticing most people talking about voting lately in a way I haven’t heard in a long while. People are mouthing the words “no matter what your party affiliation get out and vote.” That’s new, in the past one mostly heard be sure to vote “this party” or “that party” period. It’s easy to notice the desperation and seriousness voters in this country have about this election. The fact for the apathetic non-voter is no matter your feelings about the political party leading the House or Senate, the policies trickle down to your interests on a state and local level. I’m hoping everyone in this country eligible to vote goes to the polls tomorrow. Or, if you’ve already voted in early voting or by absentee ballot – great!



macbook pro on desk
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com


It’s November 1st, the first day of writing, writing and more writing. In the past month, for whatever reason, I decided to ramp up on my writing. So, why not pick the busiest time of the year – the start of the holiday season?

Today, I’ve started participating in the ‘Write Nonfiction in November challenge, and the FlashNano 2018 challenge. Both projects are intended solely for the month of November. I’m also concurrently writing a non-fiction short story that needs to be done by mid-November. I shouldn’t forget the memoir proof copy I’m waiting for in the mail. The memoir requires one last look over before it’s published in a couple of weeks.

It may be surprising only to those who don’t love writing that I’m loving every minute of these writing challenges. Completing all the above projects would be amazing. I doubt it will happen though, but that’s okay. My goal is to get writing again. With that said, hopefully at least one or more of the projects will get done. Did I mention the poetry collection I’m working on as well? It’s said if something makes you happy, you don’t mind doing it. It’s true.

I probably don’t have the time to write in this blog today – but what the heck. I want to wish all of the National Writing month participants good luck and hope you meet all of your goals!

Coffee anyone?