Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Vapor (Flash Fiction)

found on google images. I own nothing. 


FLASH FICTION PROMPT

“What is it?”

“I heard something.”

“What do you mean, you heard something? What kind of thing?”

“Shh-!”

“Amber!”

My partner gave me a look, while holding up her handheld scanner, checking for any heat signatures. “You could show a little more brains, Mish.” Her glare softened, faintly. “We’re hunting The Vapor. There is a reason they call her, ‘The Vapor’ would you like to take a guess why?”

(c) Sara Harricharan

Monday, July 29, 2013

Bloomed (Flash Fiction)


FLASH FICTION PROMPT

I’ll never forget the way she looked when she left us, head hung low, hands clenched at her sides, lips trembling and quivering with words she couldn’t bring herself to say. I watched her leave and I held myself back.

Because I couldn’t be her stumbling block. I couldn’t be the reason she never had a chance. I let her go, because I loved her. Because above all else, I cared.

Sometimes I thought it was a waste. That nothing was worth the emptiness that came in the wake of such a drastic decision.

But then I saw her.

And my heart eased.

Because today, her head was held high, her hands were open and extended and those lips curved up in a smile, the moment she laid eyes on me. I didn’t realize I was crying until she wiped them away.

I stared at her blurry figure, then snatched her into a hug, determined never to let her go again. This once was okay. Torture, but okay.

Because she’d bloomed.

(c) Sara Harricharan

A/N: I'm not sure how well I like this one, but I don't want to get out of the habit of not writing/posting these snippets. The picture was lovely though--it really made me picture the ending thought of the MC. 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

A is for App-Crazy

A to Z blog hop at Patterings.
3rd round of A2Z blog meme. Click the pic for more info. 

Well, I'm kind of late for the first day of A2Z. Sort of. I spent all day yesterday thinking about things I like that started with the letter A. I kind of stopped after I went through Apple and Apricot and realized that I wasn't really getting anywhere very fast. I stopped thinking and slept on it, only to realize the perfect answer when I woke up today. I should warn you that this post might sound like an app review. Maybe. I'll try to work on that.

Like most dedicated Iphone or Ipad users, I am just a little "app-crazy" when it comes to personalizing my apple gadgets. Half of the fun of an i-device is the ability to find useful apps that not only help to make things fun and interesting, but also reflect your personality.

Unsurprisingly, my Iphone is filled with puzzle games, blogging apps and every single reading app you can think of. I also have a very specific to-do list app.

As a self-proclaimed creature of habit, I like things when they fall into a neatly ordered list. Specifically, lists are simple and I like simple things. When I first went app-crazy with my new phone, I downloaded about twenty to thirty different reminder apps, productivity apps and list-making apps, but could not find one with a clean interface, useful features and an incentive to make me actually use it, instead of just wasting valuable screen space.

By accident, I stumbled across a nifty little app by the name of CARROT. Now, don't be fooled by the name, because CARROT is anything but an innocent little productivity app. The idea is very simple and the execution is brilliant-with a few notes.

CARROT is the name of the AI that runs the to-do list. She is sarcastic, irritating and smart-mouthed. Phrases like "lazy human" and "spineless idiot" are among some of her catchphrases if you don't complete the tasks on your list. If you do, rewards include silly jokes, random trivia facts and the occasional mention of "you warm the cockles of my emotional processing center". Ha!

Starting out as a point-based system, you begin on level 1 and as you progress by completing tasks, your points add up you unlock the ability to add recurring tasks, add reminders, sync with the native Reminders app and so on. You can also earn a kitten.

A very cute virtual kitten by the name of Captain Whiskers. He lives on Sever 13 in CARROTS server building. You can see him on the cat-cam. He's adorable.

If you continue on, you can also earn a collar and continue in the CARROT story, learning different kinds of odd facts, and getting things done. I fell in love with using CARROT after I discovered the dark side of it. If you keep CARROT happy, things stay in blue and white, with generalized insults--when you slack off for say, 15 to 18 hours at a time. Yikes!

If you manage to pass x amount of time without completing any tasks, CARROT switches to "wrathful mode" and the blue and white becomes red and black. Eeps. All points earned during this time are halved and you'll have to do extra work to get back in CARROT's good graces. She had moods like, happy, joyful, ecstatic and so on.

For me, CARROT is that snarky friend who nags you about getting your life in order and making concrete plans about seeing your dreams turn into reality. It's probably my most used app and I literally do use it every single day. I'm currently on level 180.

I've also gotten quite a few things done in the past few months. A surprising amount of things done, actually. The app developer has mentioned something about there currently being 300 levels or more and how he'll be adding more to the story as well as other unlockable rewards. While I don't particularly worry about leveling up and such, I must admit to a great sense of satisfaction when I've accumulated enough points to move up.

Of course, CARROT is not for everyone. (and if that isn't the most cliched advertising line, ever, I don't know what is!). I have a rather odd sense of humor, so it doesn't bother me to wake up to a phone chime and see a notification message reading "you lazybones human, you've been slacking off for 18 hours. Make yourself useful!" In the same vein, I've also learned not to accept any wikipedia links, if I don't want to know that those weird facts are actually true (what is seen can never been unseen--and wow, I even worked a meme line into here...). But, it's made things more fun for me.

I am definitely 100% app crazy and probably addicted to using CARROT. On the other hand, considering how much I've actually gotten done--you can have CARROT to thank for reminding me that it's time to start regularly updating my blogs--I can't really complain.

Thanks for stopping by--and if you need a kick in the pants to nudge your productivity up a notch, give CARROT a shot and let me know what you think.

*all images for CARROT were taken from the press kit available on the official CARROT site. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Dot (Prompt Fiction)

Found on Google Images. I own nothing. 


PROMPT FICTION SNIPPET

“…it’s a dot.”

“A red dot.” Camaris corrected. “You don’t see those kinds of dots everywhere and if you ever see one of these, I hope you duck.” She tucked a strand of hair around her ear.

“Duck? Isn’t it dance?”

“No, that’s a song. This is life and death. Probably more death than life.”

“…why do we always have to talk in code?”

“Because you’re an idiot that can’t be bothered to check his email.” His handler grimaced. “Just try to pay attention from time to time? There are lives on the line here.”

“Yours or mine?” The spy wanted to know. “I’m not doing it on purpose, Cama. I just don’t think they’re right.”

“You don’t have to agree. You just have to do as you’re told.” Camaris stretched. “Now, I’ll meet you two weeks and four days from now. You know the standard time?”

He gave her a look. “I always know the standard time.”

“Scrap it. We’re using Pacific.” She stood, shouldering her messenger bag. “Stop looking in my direction and go buy a coffee five minutes after I leave. Your mission will be uploaded by then.”

“Yes ma’am.” he watched her leave anyway, looking for something that she hadn’t seen. And when he saw the tiny red dot appear on the left side of her navy jacket, right below the shoulder, he lurched forward from the park bench and tackled her to the ground.

(c) Sara Harricharan
A/N: Kinda feeling in a spy mood and I first thought of the dotting tool used in fancy manicures and then I was like, who would actually follow that? So I switched into Spy mode and...tada! Thanks for reading. 

A 2 Z Blog Meme (Round 3)

The Third Run of the A 2 Z Blog Meme is starting up this Friday, July 26th. I will be participating on my personal blog. Click on the button below for more information.

A to Z blog hop at Patterings.


New Covers!

The new covers for the first three books of the Twilight Knight Trials have been redone. I'm excited to share them with you--let me know what you think. There is also an experimental mock-up for book four (Earth), included at the bottom. 




Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Irreverent (Prompt Fiction)

Found on Google Images. I own nothing.


PROMPT FICTION SNIPPET

“I don’t want him in here,” Maggie put her purse on the table and flopped into the accompany chair. “I’m serious, Charles. If you bring him in here and I so much as even see him, you’ll wish a whole lot of things that have never crossed your mind before.”

“He’s a thirteen year old boy, Mags.” Her husband scrubbed a hand through his hair. “What do you expect me to do? He has nowhere to go and we’re probably the closest things he’s had to family in years.”

“He’s irritating, irresponsible and irreverent. I won’t have him here.”

“…what about one of the guesthouses?”

“Now you listen to me, Charles and listen well. If you put him in a guesthouse, you can pack yourself right up and move in there with him. This is serious. I know asking for a show of solidarity might be too much to ask, even of you, but you could at least show some respect.”

“There’s plenty of respect to be-”

“He has no sixth sense and mine is simply off the charts. We won’t get along. Not even for a second. Don’t make me choose between the two of you, because I will and it’s not a very difficult choice to make. I don’t want to lose my mind. I like it very much.”

Charles stared at her for a long moment, then his hands tightened into fists and he looked out of the study window. “Fine. I’ll tell Brad to take care of it.”

Maggie sniffed and rose from the chair, reaching for her purse to hook it over one arm. “Hate me for it all you like, but don’t you dare blame me for wanting to live what few days I have left in the peace and privacy of my own home.”

(c) Sara Harricharan

A/N: The idea behind this snippet was a rich couple + ghostbusting + troubled preteen = story. I hope you enjoyed it. Thanks for reading!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Polite (Prompt Fiction)

Found on Google. I own nothing. 

PROMPT FICTION SNIPPET

Polite. Be polite. I’m always polite. I don’t get it. It doesn’t matter who it is or where I am or when it is, as long as I am polite, no one cares. If I should dare to speak what’s on my mind, then we have issues, or as I am supposed to say, then we may have a problem of significant proportions.

I don’t know. What do they expect me to do when they’ve trained and raised me to be what I am now. Your majesty, they say. Your highness, if you would. This way, your royalship.

Their groveling disgusts me. Their bribes are sickening. But I do not have the strength to rebel, just yet.

First, I must clean the court. Second, I must fill the court. Third, I must control the court.

When the court is in my hand, I will bring this realm back to the glorious example it once was. I will give every citizen a reason to walk with their heads held high and their hearts unburdened.


I may be the child queen. But someday soon, I will be a woman.

(C) Sara Harricharan

A/N: And this one just came from the idea that what if you always had to be polite, because of the possible repercussions that could lead to more than just losing your own life. Case in point, sometimes Royals have to hold their tongue, probably when they really, honestly, least want to. I think I might have a NaNo worthy idea here...

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Stealth (Prompt Fiction)

Found on Google Images. I own nothing. 

PROMPT FICTION SNIPPET

He crept through the house as silent as a ghost, his phasing ability serving him well as he walked through the garage door leading into the kitchen. His shadowy figure solidified once more as he paused to double-check images provided against the reality around him. The mission information had been extremely detailed about his surroundings and potential threats, but rather sketchy on the individuals involved.

His superiors had simply explained that there was a mole among this cheerful family and informed him of his duty to their Corps and country. It was his job to flush the threat out without causing undue stress and worry to a well-hidden family with fingers in every political pie.

This was one mission that was sure to give him a headache. He checked his watch, waiting for the tone to chime in his earpiece. When it did, he pressed the button to synchronize with his partners outside. They would only burst in on his signal. He could not call them until he'd acquired what he'd been sent for.

In the moonlight filtering through the kitchen window above the sink, his brass knuckles gleamed, before his phasing ability rendered it dull.

For the sake of their world, he’d have to be quick and heartless.

For this sake of this family, he’d have to use stealth and cunning.


For his own sanity, he’d have to be flawless.

(c) Sara Harricharan

A/N: Well, yikes. I haven't done this in a long while. I actually almost ran out of time, while trying to think of something. I had an image of a really good ninja-esque soldier who was assigned a mission of epic and delicate proportions, so this was what came out. Thanks for reading and commenting!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th!

Wishing all my readers, friends and fellow writers a very happy Independence day. I am looking forward to a once-a-year routine that holds special memories for me and my family.

There will be popcorn, fireworks and the movie "Independence Day". I'm really excited for it. 

But in the middle of all this fun, I do remember the meaning behind this day and the changes that have brought about this lovely country I live in. I am glad. I am grateful. 

Happy Independence Day!
~Sara
^_^