Tara Fox Hall's Blog - Posts Tagged "tara-fox-hall"

Transient Happiness - Poem

This poem was published in On The River magazine last year in early 2011. It remains as one of my favorites:

Transient Happiness

The night air is cool and insistent on my face, moving my hair like leaves in the wind
The coastal lights glimmer and sparkle like diamonds
My mother laughs and raises her glass for a toast
We toast to many more nights like this one,
Many more adventures.
I am tired but happy.
All is as it should be.
I look across the skyline toward the future to come.
I know this moment cannot last.
Instead it snaps, stretched tight like a rubber band that has lost all resiliency and strength.
The bill comes due.
The moment is over.
There will be other nights like this one, other happy times.
Each one doomed to pass as a flowers bloom fades
So I hurriedly scratch these words on a soiled napkin
To catch the moment for always
To freeze the frame in motion
Holding still in memory a moment of perfect yet transient happiness.
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Published on November 27, 2011 12:11 Tags: happiness, poetry, tara-fox-hall, tara-fox-hall-nonfiction, transient

Black and Blue Christmas - some offbeat Christmas Cheer!

I wrote this for the Songwriter's forum Christmas Constest Last year. Enjoy!

Black and Blue Christmas

T’was the month before Christmas
I was feeling real good
I’d started the shopping
And gotten the eggnog from Hood

My spirit was peaceful
The gift-wrap had been found
There was order, not chaos
A happy holiday sound

Fa-la-la-la, fa-la-la-la, fa-la-la-la-La!

T’was the day before Christmas
I was decking the halls
When I fell off the ladder
Right onto Mr. Claus

Santa Baby dashed rolling
Into the fire to roast
Tangled in lights, I followed
My chestnuts were toast.

Fa-ow-ow-ow, Fa-ow-ow-ow, Fa-ow-ow-ow – Ow!

The silver bells rang
To the hospital I rushed
The night wasn’t silent
Nor was it hushed

The drumming of my heart
Was loud in my ears
What would become of my Christmas?
More important, my beers?

Argh-argh-argh-argh, Argh-argh-argh-argh, Argh-argh-argh-argh- ARGH!

Ahead in the fog
The emergency sign glowed
Looking to me
Just like Rudolph’s nose

Then who to my glazing eyes
Did appear
but grandma and grandpa
They’d crashed into a deer

And sister was there
Having eaten some nuts
She’s allergic, you know,
To that kind of stuff

And Uncle and Brother
They were there, too!
They’d cut down a tree
and gotten hit by the yew.

It was all just too much.
We were all black and blue
We all started to laugh
(You would’ve, too.)

Ha-ha-ha-ha, ha-ha-ha-ha, ha-ha-ha-ha- Ha !
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Published on December 17, 2011 15:47 Tags: funny-christmas-song, tara-fox-hall

A Long Winter's Nap - Merry Christmas!

I forwent the usual Saturday post in favor of a Christmas one.
Today is Christmas day, 12/25. We are all frantically seeing family, delivering cookies, maybe even wrapping a last minute gift. Enjoy all this, as it comes only once a year.
But later tonight, when the gifts have all been opened, the cookies eaten, and the guests and childen have either left for home, or are busy enjoying their gifts, I recommend a nap.
For many people, particularly those in service jobs, tomorrow is another workday, and the grind begins again. Even for those of us that have 12/26 as a holiday, tomorrow will be filled with more meeting and greeting, if not a quest for deals amidst the crowds. So take some moments for yourself tonight. Grab some eggnog (or something more spirited), ease into a comfy chair, and invite up your favorite cat (or a warm lap robe, if you are cat-less). You don't have to read anything, or think anything, or talk to anyone. You don't have to be anything but yourself. Just relax, and be warm, and let yourself rest. You earned it. You've made it through another year! My best wishes to you and yours!
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Published on December 25, 2011 09:49 Tags: christmas-message, tara-fox-hall

2012 begins

As the new year dawns and the old one draws to a close, take a moment to think about what you want in the new year. What really makes you happy?
There was a book I read in my childhood called "The Big Orange Splot"
The book is about being who you are, and the refrain is that your house should refect who you are, and its okay if its weird to other people. I suggest in 2012, you take it a step further. Let your life reflect who you are.
Maybe you can't quit that job you hate, because you need the money. Maybe you aren't happy with your spouse, your kids, or your friends. Maybe your relatives hate you, and you're estranged from them.
The above probably applies in some way to everyone. We're all not perfect, though this is the season when we all try to be what everyone in our lives expect us to be. But in 2012, I invite you to just be who you are for an hour each day.
If you dream of being a wolf biologist and you're an accountant, take some time each day to read about what you love, or correspond via email with someone involved with wolves. If you wanted to be a teacher, but ended up a construction worker, look for volunteer opportunitues where you can work with children. If you wanted to do something with your life, and you didn't do it, find a way to get some of that happiness back, even if its just for a few minutes a day. Maybe you can't live your dream right now. You can still nuture it, and find some happiness. Embrace your own orange splot proudly! And then, make it yours! A Happy 2012 to everyone!
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Published on December 31, 2011 07:29 Tags: tara-fox-hall, tara-fox-hall-new-year-s-message

Win an e-copy of Spellbound 2011

Hi all,
There's still time to win an e-copy of Spellbound 2011. I'm blogging today at Tori L.Ridgewood's blogspot:
Come on over and say hello!

Also - good news! My first horror novel, Lash, has been accepted for Publication by Bradley Publishing! Look for it in April, 2012.

Check out Just Shadows, my first horror anthology, publishing on Monday, 1-9, also from Bradley Publishing! :)

Here is another excerpt from Just Shadows, a short story entitled Hangers. It first appeared on Flashes in the Dark:


Fiona sat bolt upright, startled from sound sleep. Her full lips curved into an angry snarl. Damn it, it was those hangers again. They were rattling on the closet door hook, the steady breath from the fan near the open window beating the flimsy metal against the door. It was never regular or loud—just enough to startle her awake the moment she began to drift off.
But she was comfortable, too comfortable to move. Just ignore it, and sleep.
Twice, she nestled back and began to succumb to her body’s yearning for rest. Twice, she was jerked awake, the metallic banging jolting her senses.
Swearing, she got out of bed, and threw the hangers off the hook onto the floor. Yelping at the cold air on her warm toes, Fiona jumped back into bed, lying down.
She was almost asleep when the noise started up again.
Livid, she jumped out of bed, and yanked open the closet door. Grabbing the empty hangers and the full ones, she jerked them all off the long dowel, her clothes rustling as they fell to pool on the closet floor.
“Damn it, I need my sleep,” she said angrily, yanking the covers back over her head.
Blissful silence descended, the only noise the slight pattering of rain on the roof. With a relaxed smile, Fiona let out a sigh, then let her head sink back into the pillow. Her thoughts began to drift, becoming vague impressions and feelings.
There was a slight rustling, as if a piece of cloth was sliding across the floor.
Fiona snapped open an eye, unsure if she’d really heard something, or had begun to dream.
There was no noise, other than the now steady rain.
She closed her eye in relief, letting out another sigh. Stretching languidly, she yawned, then rolled onto her back.
Something settled beside her in bed, a weight pressing down along her side.
Fiona’s eyes snapped open, her mouth opening in a scream that never came as dark red lips pressed against hers. Powerful, clawed hands held her down to the bed. The succubus leaned into her, its heavy weight crushing her. Fiona writhed frantically, desperate to escape, the suffocating kiss stealing her oxygen. The demonic beast atop her fanned its leathery wings, then pushed its lips harder against hers, gathering her life force in long swallows. Fiona gave a last futile push, then sank back into the mattress, jerking slightly as the creature took her last breath.
“Another heart attack,” the coroner said, shrugging his shoulders.
“You just said she suffocated,” the detective replied, aggravated. “So which is it?”
“She’s lying on her back, and there’s no sign of anyone else being here,” the coroner retorted grumpily. “Yet people don’t suffocate themselves, in my opinion.” He stood up. “There’s no evidence of any respiratory ailment in the victim’s medical history. So I have to conclude her heart stopping caused the lack of air, not the other way around. Therefore, the most reasonable cause of death is a heart attack. It sure wasn’t her great housekeeping.” He indicated the piles of clothes and hangers mounded in the empty closet and strewn out into the room.
“Likely not,” the detective agreed. “But it’s odd that the closets of all these recent heart attacks have all their clothes on the floor.”
“Not really,” the coroner said with a snort. “You just don’t have experience with teenagers. Trust me, this is normal.”
The detective picked up a hanger, and then another one, looking at the smooth, thin wire as he hooked them together. “I almost wish she was strangled, instead. Then at least I could go after the maniac that did it.”
“You’re morbid,” the coroner said, picking up his bag. “But I agree. A death at that age is a terrible waste of life.”
The detective paused, staring at the hangers, his expression thoughtful. “Something still seems off to me—
“Come on, already,” the coroner said, striding out. “Next you’ll be telling me there’s a demon hiding in closets and harvesting souls, or some other nonsense. Let’s get some coffee.”
The detective carefully hung the hangers on the closet door. “You’re right. Let’s go.”
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Published on January 07, 2012 10:17 Tags: demon, hangers, horror, just-shadows-by-tara-fox-hall, paranormal, scary, suspense, tara-fox-hall, thriller

Just Shadows has published!

My first anthology, Just Shadows, published today!
Here is the Amazon link:

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Published on January 09, 2012 20:45 Tags: anthology, bradley-publishing, horror, just-shadows-anthology, scary, tara-fox-hall

Announcement: "On The River" is now Online!

I originally got my start writing non-fiction stories of animal rescue in the pages of a small paper magazine called "Catnip Blossoms!" This was published by Harald Moore from his catnip farm, Dusty Miller Farm, in Johnsonville, NY. Over the years, the magazine changed names; first to "Meanwhile...", when a tragic fire burned the barn down, shutting down catnip production, and then later to "On The River", when Harald and his wife Liz moved to Troy to spend their later years. Harald has always loved to write, and he usually writes a good deal of the magazine himself, with contributions from readers now and again (like me). He has gone digital in the new year, and you can now find copies of the magazine online at http://ontherivermagazine.com.

Back issues of the magazine are up now to read for free, complete with pictures, including the big Tara Fox Hall issue this past summer (Issue 6, first one listed) :) Take a look!
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Published on January 15, 2012 06:16 Tags: dusty-miller-farm, harald-moore, on-the-river, on-the-river-magazine, tara-fox-hall

The Treadmill Game

In winter, I tend to walk more on the treadmill than outside in the sometimes kneedeep snow. This almost always incites a round of the Treadmill Game.
The goal of the game is to get me to play fetch with my dogs, Tawny and Hunter for the entire 45 minutes I'm walking. Their plan of attack is two fold:
1) Sytematically hold toys just out of reach near the front, so I must lean over while walking to grasp them. If toys are not grasped in a reasonable amount of time, they are dropped, becoming hurdles to step over before they trip me up.
2) Attack the moving "floor" with paws, sometimes holding them in place against the rotating belt, effectively making a noise like the metal against grinding wheels in the fabrication shop where I work.
Needless to day, the plan of attack usually works :)
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Published on January 28, 2012 10:56 Tags: tara-fox-hall, the-treadmill-game

Ventures into FaceBook

"I can't get my picture to come up on my Facebook page," my mother said grumpily over dinner last night.
"You need a tutorial," my stepfather said.
"Come over tomorrow," I offered, bold with the happiness of inebriation. "I'll teach you."
Less sure of my skills this early am, I dutifully began teaching Mom the ins and outs of Facebook. While we were there, we tackled a few other things, too, like Googling, messaging, and bookmarks. She was excited yet hesitant, much as I must have been years ago when our roles were reversed. Carefully jotting down notes in a small paper notebook, she went through the different options slowly. A mutual friend in a far off city helped, giving her practice in liking posts and responding. "It's like you're there chatting back and forth," she said in amazement.
"Yes," I agreed. "Except that you can chat with many people at the same time, and everyone can see and join the conversation. See, she posted a response to you here, and down here."
"Aren't they the same thing? Why are there two places?"
"Down here is for chatting. She also sent you a reply to your post. All your posts are on your wall."
"What's that red thing?"
"That shows you there's some thing new on your page. It's called a notification."
She rolled here eyes at me, an annoyed expression forming. "This is hard."
"Keep playing with it," I encouraged. "It's not too bad once you get used to it."
By the end of two hours, we'd practiced posting and most all other acts on FB, including finding long lost friends, liking pages, messaging, loading pictures and links, and friending people. Then Mom looked down at her watch.
"That can't be right!" she exclaimed. "I've been here two hours!" Hurrying, she logged off, then packed up all her stuff.
With a quick hug, she was on her way.
As I watched her go, I wondered how long it would be before I was visiting someone younger to get my own tech update, because the world had outpaced my knowledge. Something tells me it won't be the few decades it was for her.
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Published on February 11, 2012 20:17 Tags: tara-fox-hall, tara-fox-hall-s-blog

Please Vote...even if not for me

Keeping in the spirit of the last few weeks posts, I'll continue with real life news, with some humor.

Having indulged in a buying spree recently of Rob Lowe Movies, I have spent the last week watching again some of my old favorites. Masquerade was much more understandable years later. Salen's Lot was just as wonderful as the first time. A Stroke of Midnight was very nice, though I lamented that Jennifer Grey got that nose job. Midnight Man was enjoyable, though I found I liked the villian better than Mr. Lowe. First Degree was excellent, though it joins the ranks of movies I'm turning off before the end, while a HEA still is possible.

The other development this week-- besides having some articles on writing post at both Book and Trailer Showcase, and at The Short Review :)-- was becoming a finalist at the Unwritten blogspot contest for best love at first sight scene. That my scene from LASH was picked was a shock, albeit a welcome one. My upcoming release is action/adventure, involving a weresnake and his adventures, beginning in 1921, when he is 16.

Blurb: Scarred from a childhood spent in perpetual indigence after being forced from their home in the Everglades, weresnake Trystan Valeras and his family make their way to the Case Hotel. When his wealthy gangster father arrives the summer he turns sixteen, Trystan’s dream of a better life, along with the lovely aristocrat Mara, is suddenly within his grasp. Instead of paradise, a series of devastating events unfold, leading Trystan to become the instrument of his dying father’s revenge. His violent reprisal instigates a backlash of murder and death, forcing Trystan to flee with the remains of his family to the sultry city of New Orleans where he sells himself into the service of the Vampire Lord Abraham. Becoming the assassin Lash to hide his identity, Trystan finds a measure of peace, even as his skill with killing heightens, bringing to him not only new allies, but also new adversaries.

Please consider voting for my entry Lash, if you have not already voted in Mysti's Blog contest!:
Have a wonderful week! :)
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Published on February 18, 2012 12:59 Tags: lash-by-tara-fox-hall, tara-fox-hall