Join my journey... I am Tammera, a writer and a photographer, southern born and raised. Sometimes that's a blessing and sometimes a curse. I will write about my days and nights as I work on my novel.
Washington NC, Underground Railroad, Freedom Trail
The oyster shells shattered as his skiff slid up the shore, the scrapping noise sent shivers up Abram’s spine. There was no one on the beach, just the deserted fishing shack in between the dunes, sea oats blowing in the wind. This was no gentle breeze. The nor’easter had turned the wind against him and lowered the temperature to a bone chilling cold. His simple cotton attire did not shield him from this.
Hopefully the friend in the shack had a fire going, but there was no evidence of any occupant. He slowly approached the shack’s door. Knocking softly at first then intensifying to be louder than the howling end. The sea oats rapped against the weather beaten shiplap walls. Finally he pushed the door open. His eyes taking a moment to adjust to the dark room. In the corner a young boy cowered. “Hello friend. A friend of a friend has sent me for a package.”
The boy came out of the corner slowly. “A friend sent you?”
“I’m the package.”
“Gather your things. We need to sail before the tide drops.”
The boy look at him and stared blankly.
“We need to go. Do you have anything?”
He nodded and then scooped up a piece of blue and white cotton and started tying the corners to make it easier to carry. The boy’s fingers shook and refused to cooperate, the knot coming together.
Abram watched him struggle. “How about some food first?”
The boy jumped up, “Yes please. I haven’t eaten since I was dropped off. “
“Okay, I’ll gather some wood and get us some fish. You can sit over there.”
Abram left him standing in the middle of the small building. He didn’t have time for a child to slow their progress. The boy’s voice was too high to be older than 10. He would be assigned to a boat if he was his master’s. Abram could remember the day he left his mom and started on Master Robert’s fishing boat. He just turned eight. He couldn’t remember life off the shoals. He tossed out his net and drug it ashore. There were a few, it was enough.
This one will make it out. I will make sure.
March arrived with a bad hair day. A low water and high wind warning was issued as I listened to the radio coming home from work. They explained the combination of tides and 50-mile-an-hour winds will make the river special. The car bounced around the highway as I drove in a straight line. “High Winds no joke.” The dogs were on alert all night and barked at the noises that went bump in the night. Crashes and scrapes. The new roof funneled the wind whistling and as the night continued grew louder and louder.
The next morning, exhausted from no sleep, I readied myself for work. I was up early because there was no reason to try to sleep with the noise. The yard was a mess with the construction supplies blown where the wind thought they should be. As drove across the Runyan Creek bridge, I checked out the view. I couldn’t believe what I saw. The water was super low.
It was decision time. Do I risk being late for work? Or do I miss the photo? One promise I made on January 1st was Always Choose the Photo. Those of you that follow me know I post my pictures after my drive to or from work. So, I drove to town and snapped some shots. And I wasn’t late for work.
On the way home, the wind was worse, but the traffic was horrific. Washington had grown by 5000 cars. I told myself I already had my pictures, but I couldn’t resist after seeing the children running up the river at Havens Gardens. There was no water in the river. I needed my camera, but I was 15 minutes away and the sun was setting. Patrick called me, and I told him there was no water. “No” he said “There is water in the channel. Its on the other side of island.”
“There is no water. I have to go get the camera. I’ll send you a pic of the boathouse.”
The car went as fast as the traffic would let it. I made it back just as the sun was setting.
Please enjoy the pictures. I would love to hear about what your March has been like this year.
So, you have decided to jump into the great adventure of being a writer. You read all the advice blogs and know you need to sign up for some events and workshops to grow your craft. But, you are just starting out and you don’t have a huge budget. You definitely don’t need one that is affordable to start, only to talk you into a huge expensive package. Where can you find affordable workshops that are a good value? The first place to look is your local writers group.
Your local writers group is a great resource for critic partners and workshops. Take my group for instance, Pamlico Writers' Group located in Washington, NC. It is one of the oldest groups in Eastern North Carolina and has an eclectic group of writers, most of them published. The mission of the group is one of inspiration and support. The big event of the year is The Pamlico Writers’ Group Conference, filled with quality workshops for writers of all levels.
If poetry is your thing, you must come to both days of the event. Friday night is the introduction of the New Heart of the Pamlico Poet Laureate and poetry reading. Saturday is filled with information and starts at 8:30 in the morning with registrations. This year’s focus is “Shape Shifting Your work.” Most of us on this journey of authorship have a story within us and are working to get it down on paper. But what do you do with it after it’s down on paper? This is the conference that will help you with that.
The first workshop will be a panel discussion with three guests: Marni Graff discussing audio books and the process of putting your work on Audible, Michael Colonnese discussing editing and revising your work, and Bev Horvath discussing screenplays based on your work. Following this will be smaller sessions with more focused presentations on the same subjects. The afternoon sessions are based on Poetry, graphic novels, inspirational writing, YA and marketing. There is something for everyone and it is only $59 for both days, a true value.
If you are in Eastern North Carolina, I invite you to join us. If you are not, check out your own local group and ask them when their next workshop is. Happy writing.
All photos on the website are taken by Tammera Cooper and remain her property.