Guest Post

HAVE A BOOK TO PROMOTE? Lyrical Pens welcomes guest posts. Answer a questionnaire or create your own post. FYI, up front: This site is a definite PG-13. For details, contact cj

Monday, July 29, 2013

Brave Momma

And least you think Tessa is timid with all her female leads, she gives us this brave encounter when a strange man walked up to her with a package.

It was like every other late night, walking through the city park with her one year old son, Ricky. She walked around the big circle like she always had for the past two years. She turned her iPod on high to block out the city noise.

When she noticed Ricky dropped his favorite toy, a blue tiger, she turned her music off and bent down to pick up the toy. When she gave the toy back to Ricky and looked at her iPod to turn the music back on, she saw a huge figure in front of her. Quite naturally, it scared her to death.

A few seconds went by before the figure said anything then he pulled out a gun from his pocket and demanded money and her iPod.

She didn't know what to think, so she acted, grabbing his hand and arm and pulling his arm forward until his whole body was on the ground.

She held the man down, grabbed her phone, and called the police.

Tessa Herring

Don't mess with this momma!     Mahala

Close Encounters

Another alien history teacher has appeared in creative writing.  See what Tessa Herring does about it.

On the first day of school I walked in my history class to find an alien at the desk. It scared me so much that I screamed, "Oh no! Who are you and what did you do to our old teacher?"

Before I knew it, I grabbed the fire extinguisher and was holding it up to this strange black eyed, green faced being - my new teacher.

"Hello, my name is Mrs. Pond. Also please put our fire extinguisher up, it's not nice to threaten people."

"Ok." I said as I watched her take the cold red extinguisher out of my shaking hands. She walked to the front of the desk and class began.

Tessa Herring

These students are learning to write flash fiction, using their five senses. Good job, Tessa!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Alien History Teacher

While some kids may think they're history teachers are aliens, this group of creative writing students got a stab at the real thing with the following prompt: You walk into history class to discover you have a new teacher. A picture of a green half alien/half human woman typing on a laptop was shown to the students. Here is one student's imaginative story.

Caroline trudged down the hall, already dreading her next class. Mr. Mote, her History teacher, must have had the world's most monochromatic and melancholy voice ever to grace her ears; he could be talking about Napoleon one day and cavemen the next, but with a voice like his, it all sounded the same to her. Sighing, she pushed the History classroom door open. 

 Instantly she knew something wasn't right. There was a hush over the classroom, a dead silence that was foreign in a high school. For a second, Caroline thought the classroom was empty but there they were; the rest of the class sat with their backs as straight as planks in their chairs, their expressions odd as they stared at the front of the room. Caroline, completely baffled, followed their gaze and nearly jumped back in alarm, letting out an involuntary half-shriek. 

 There was an alien sitting at Mr. Mote's desk; she had a shiny green, egg-shaped head with colossal black bug eyes and a thin face. She turned her unblinking eyes to Caroline, who was now somehow bravely clutching the wall at the far side of the room (as far away from the alien as possible), with her eyes bugging as big as an anime character. She stared at the teacher with horror as though she was Cerberus, the giant three-headed demon dog with rabies. The alien teacher sighed as if her hunch had been correct. 

"Ms. Forbes, I presume? Mr. Mote had the foresight to warn me about you." She gestured placidly to an empty seat. "Well, sit down. I'm your new History teacher as of today." 

When Caroline made no move to sit, the alien teacher made a disapproving clucking noise. "Sit down, Ms. Forbes. Honestly, you're only embarrassing yourself. Would you rather have detention with me at lunch?"

Caroline sat down.                            by Caroline Forbes
Looks like Caroline is in for an interesting year!  Mahala

Thursday, July 18, 2013

What Fun!

The kids in the camp Write Like You Mean It! created names for bad and good people, settings, and situations to write about. After choosing at random, this is what they created in a Round Robin. Enjoy!  mahala

Mahala, Stan, and the Giant Squirrel! (From space)
AnnaKate Brenna Caroline Grady

            Magnificent Mahala and Stupid Stan were at the boardwalk. Stan was just having a fine time, but Mahala was on her last nerve with his stupidity. There’s a reason nobody calls him Smart Stan. So, anywho, they were just walking along, playing games and eating food, when all of a sudden someone starts shouting.
            “Oh no! An asteroid! WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!!”

            Magnificent Mahala and Stupid Stan’s eyes snapped up to the sky – immediately finding the giant fiery form of an asteroid drilling ever closer through the atmosphere. But there was something… Stan was the first to speak.
           “Is…is that Godzilla riding an asteroid?! But I thought he lived in a banana kingdom with his mini me!” Magnificent Mahala was broken from her terror-stricken reverie to frown at Stan.
            “First – that’s Donkey Kong. Second, that isn’t Godzilla on the asteroid. I think…” She squinted at it disbelievingly. “But no…it can’t be…it’s…”
            A horrified shout rose from the crowd of onlookers behind Stan and Mahala. “It’s a SQUIRREL!”

            In panic, Mahala and Stan ran for the nearest car.
            We have to get out of here!” said Stan! As Mahala was starting to start the car, a rumbling in the distance started. “What’s that?” Stan asked. “It’s a…oh no…a wall of squirrels!!” The squirrels were going to meet their 3,000 year old Mother.
            “Here she comes,” said one squirrel.

            Mahala stopped the car. Mahala and Stan braced themselves, expecting squirrels to attack them. The squirrels just climbed over the car. Mahala and Stan hear their feet and squeaking as the car shook. Then silence. They released each other and saw only the setting sun. They stepped out of the car and turned around.
            The squirrels were surrounding the Mother. They all squeaked. The Mother made a loud roar. All the squirrels jumped on her back. She chirped and all the squirrels chirped back. It was like she wanted to make sure that they were safely attached.
          The Mother looked up and ran forward. Her tail began to flap up and down. She lifted off the ground. She began to fly upward and out of the atmosphere, along with many of the world’s squirrels.                                                    
The End

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Teen Writer from Exploring the Possibilities Class

Brenna Meehan took on a huge topic when using pictures as prompts.

                                                       The Dream

        The sky was burning late at night in the Philippines. It was actually burning, with the flames of hatred and war. I had been taken as a prisoner into the enemy camp when American army decided to bomb this very camp.

             At this point, the guards had left, so I was running back to American camp as fast as I could. I was dodging fireballs left and right. One landed to my right, a few feet away from me. I felt searing pain in my right arm and spreading. I could hear my wife’s voice ringing in my head.

             “Take all the safety precautions you can, Jake. Please. We need you,” her sweet voice said on the night before I was shipped off.

             I dropped to the ground and rolled like a dog. The pain was alleviating. I jumped and ran towards some bushes on the outer edge of the camp. I burst through them and ran, without missing a beat. I coughed until all of the smoke was gone from my lungs. They felt like they were burning as well as my arm. I decided that I would wait to check that later.

            After twenty minutes of running and hiding at any noise I heard, I found a tree house. It looked like any other house, just ten feet off the ground. There was a deep trench between the house and me. I walked along the edge and found a wooden bridge, which I used, against all my instincts. I scouted out the area.

             I didn’t find anyone or anything in or around the grounds. The door was locked, but I kicked it open. I went inside the house, which was abandoned in darkness. The numbness in my arm was starting to dissipate. I slammed the door back and found a chair and a lantern. I then examined my arm. Second degree burns. All my adrenaline was running out too. I could taste blood and smell smoke still. My arm was burning, but I ignored it.

            The house was empty of people. I found a bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, and closet filled with clothes and a rifle. I decided that I would sleep here for the night since the house looked untouched. I took the rifle and sat on the bed for a while. Watching. Waiting. Then the tentacles of exhaustion began to take me down into the abyss of sleep.

            At first, I dreamed of singing dogs and dancing cats. Then, suddenly, I was standing on a mountain in a tropical area. I turned around and saw Pearl Harbor. A military truck drove by with two men in it. I thought to myself, What day is it?

             One of the men turned his head towards me as the truck passed by. “December 7, 1941,” he said. That’s impossible. It was December 5 when I fell asleep.

             I heard a low rumble. I looked up to see Japanese planes. Objects began falling into Pearl Harbor. I watched in horror as men and buildings fell. It was over before I knew it. Almost nothing left. A bomb dropped on me. Then I was standing in the middle of a city square. Where am I? I thought.

            A man walked by. “Hiroshima, Japan,” he said, almost to himself.

            I heard the unmistakable low rumble again. My mouth was dry, but I could taste salt. I smelled fuel as I looked up to see American planes. I could feel my hair standing on end. The plane dropped an object. Suddenly, Hiroshima was gone. It had been a nuke. I woke up immediately.

             I knew my destiny. To make sure this war ended without any more bloodshed than was already destined.
                                                                                     Brenna Meehan
                                                                                      Age 14
Good job, Brenna!    Mahala

Friday, July 5, 2013

Teen Class July 9 - 12

Quick update. The teen class scheduled for next week will now meet Tuesday - Friday from 9 - 2 instead of 9 - 1. One person from Living Social hasn't registered yet, so I have no way to contact them. If you know who it is, please let them know.


Monday, July 1, 2013

Paperback now available.

Hey, all you romance book readers out there. DEADLY STAR is now available in paperback. Wow! It's been a long time coming, so I'm excited. Check out today's ad on

Deadly Star (Crimson Romance) by CJ Petterson (Feb 18, 2013)


To celebrate their one-year anniversary of business, Crimson Romance is running specials on all their titles during the month of July, and they've also started a Subscription Service. See for more info.

As a writer, I can tell you, we all really appreciate your business, but we also appreciate your on-line reviews. They go a long way in telling Amazon what you like and how well they promote our books.

I'm looking forward to reading what you think about DEADLY STAR.

For all the writers visiting Lyrical Pens, upcoming in Fairhope, AL, July 12-14, is the Alabama Writers Conclave and State Poetry Society conference. Small conferences lend themselves to easy access to the published authors who lead the workshops and offer great networking opportunities. I'll be there to polish my craft with bookmarks in hand.

On a personal note...My van went into the repair shop on Thursday and hasn't been seen since, but I had a great weekend despite the impending costs. Spent time weeding one of my flower beds, did some yard-sale visits with my daughter-in-law and granddaughter, and had lunch with the family on Sunday at Mobile's Asian Gardens, our favorite Chinese restaurant. It was kind of nice to be the passenger instead of the driver.

Think I'll head to the garden to do some more weeding until the repair shop calls for me to bail out the vehicle. You-all guys keep on keeping on, and I'll try to do the same.