Treasure Maps and Puffins


Treasure Maps and Puffins (39 Words)

Birds are very good at reading maps and this pair of puffins was no different. They followed the treasure map to the illustrated cover without any trouble at all.

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Snow, Man!


Snow, Man! (139 Words)

It was a snowman at the edge of the playground. Seeing the snowman, Gracie rubbed her cold nose and sat down.

“Gah,” she said. “What do I want to talk to you for?”

The snowman didn’t say anything.

“I shouldn’t even sit with you,” said Gracie. “You just didn’t snow hard enough. Couldn’t you have snowed a little longer so I wouldn’t have to go to school.”

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Ravens in Reflection


Ravens in Reflection (99 Words)

“But it’s just a bird!”

The man shook his finger at the children around him. “You’ll hurt her feelings if you talk like that. Ravens are the soul of wisdom. They are harbingers.”

The girl who had spoken wrinkled her nose and folded her arms. “Don’t look wise to me!”

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When Rejection Strikes the Writer’s Life


When Rejection Strikes the Writer’s Life (169 Words)

There are, perhaps, few things more damaging than rejection. In love as in friendship, in friendship as in writing, a word of rejection can cause the most torturous self-doubt. Now to be fair, a thrown-away love is a far worse tragedy than a turned-around manuscript and “No thank you.” But to be equally just, if writing is love for you—an expression of some winged part of yourself—then a formed letter is like a smack in the face.

“I,” said Katy, “am never sending anything out again!”

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The Wind and the Widow


The Wind and the Widow (174 Words)

Mrs. Lade found him in the creek just past Mr. Tips’s new fence. At first she thought he was only a lump of clothes, he was so thin and light. But when she realized she didn’t ask questions, but took the man in her arms like wet laundry and brought him home.

“I knew that Mr. Tips’ fence was no good,” Mrs. Lade said. “The old land-stealer. He’ll have my home before long. I hope you’re not hurt.”

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The Purple Nurple


The Purple Nurple (A Dragon Tale in 282 Words)

Have you ever tried to give a dragon a bath? It’s no laughing matter. For one thing, like most sensible people, dragons don’t like baths. Unlike most sensible people, dragons breathe real fire, and so getting them to do something they don’t want to is all a matter of tact and bribery.

So it is that when it came Eddie’s turn to dust off their scales, we didn’t know how he was going to do it. If you’ve seen Eddie you’ll know why. If you haven’t, Eddie is a small man with weak shoulders and large eyes. He has a very absent way with him, like he’s there but he isn’t there, too. And as you may imagine, being absent-minded around dragons is not a wise thing to be.

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Grimsward and Homeward


Grimsward and Homeward (155 Words)

The trail stretched for miles through the Grimsward forest. Already the three companions had walked for six hours. As the sun set, the trees  gathered close, and already Edgar was seeing troubling things in the shadows of the haunted wood.

“What are they?” asked Midge.

“Don’t you two know?” asked their gnoman guide. “They’re the spirits of lost travelers. Travelers who didn’t stay on the road.”

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