Weekend Writing Warrior 5/1/16 #8Sunday

coverThis month I’ve shifting gears, away from my short story “The Stand,” which will hopefully be out as soon as my semester is over in a couple weeks, to my short story collection, The Futility of Loving a Soldier.

It’s eleven stories about veterans and their relationships with family and friends.

Today’s excerpt comes from the second of five related stories, “A Family Tradition.” This one is about Maarten, a man who served during WWII. It’s the opening lines.

* * * * * * *

Maarten glanced at his rearview mirror. Three blond heads greeted him, lolled back against the seat. The weekend scouting trip, full of canoeing and hiking and camaraderie, had worn the boys out. It was worth it though; John had placed first in archery, Ted first in soap carving, and Artie… well, Artie had tried. Maarten’s youngest son hadn’t meant to wander off on Saturday’s hike, or to drop his paddle in the lake. Twice.

While Artie’s older brothers excelled as Boy Scouts, he struggled to be even mediocre.

Maarten sighed. He didn’t quite know how to relate to his youngest boy, so different from himself.

* * * * * * *

Lots of calls-to-action today!


  1. Maybe he needs to find another activity for Artie, something the boy is actually good at. It can’t be too fun to see your older brother being great when you are struggling with everything.

  2. It’s good that he is trying to figure it out though. I feel sorry for the little guy.

  3. You could always rename this “The Futility of Loving a Youngest Son.”

  4. Aw, I was that kid. I hope he finds another way to bond with Artie.

  5. Aww, poor Artie. It’s tough when you don’t fit in. He just has to find out what he’s good at.

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