03 September 2012

What I Did Last Summer: Fact or Fiction? Blog Hop and GUTGAA!

Today's the day! It's the start of the What I Did Last Summer: Fact or Fiction? Blog Hop Melodie and I are co-hosting. The rules for the blogfest are here, but I'll sum them up for you. Included in this post is my first story, either fact or fiction. You don't know. All you know is it's a summer story under 500 words. It's up to you to decide if it's the truth or the lie.

The "what I did last summer" theme made me think of the movie I Know What You Did Last Summer. Both of my stories have an eerie feel in honor of that creeptastic movie.

My first story:

While buying ice cream one hot summer afternoon, a strange man approached my children and me in the freezer aisle. He wore a scruffy red beard and army surplus clothes (I live in a Navy town, so his appearance was commonplace). He said hello and then proceeded to warn me that someone had been stabbed near the grocery store yesterday and to be careful. I thought it was odd that he said this out of the blue. Odder still, he had no groceries with him. When he finished speaking to us, he turned and left the store.

I maneuvered my cart to the checkout stand and asked the cashier if she’d heard of a stabbing in the area. As she bagged our ice cream, she said she had not. I repeated what the man had said, and we both agreed it was weird.

When I left the store, I looked for the red-bearded man, but didn’t see him.

At home, I scooped up ice cream for my children and got on my computer. I logged into my Facebook account that I’d opened days before and saw I had a friend request. I didn’t recognize the name, so I looked closely at the picture—it was the man from the grocery store.

It took me a moment to compute what I was seeing. The man from the grocery store found me on Facebook…but how did he know my name?

Fear lodged in my throat. I ran to the window and looked outside to see if he’d followed us home. Was he watching us now? Had he watched us earlier in the day and followed us to the store? My neighbors were gardening in the sunshine while their kids played in the sprinkler. I didn’t see anything out of place.

I phoned my husband. He recommended I visit my in-laws. My father-in-law had retired as the Chief of Police in my hometown not long before. He made some phone calls and found out the man from the grocery store had previous arrests for selling illegal drugs, but no violent history. He also discovered there had been no stabbing near the grocery store the previous day.

My father-in-law guessed the man used my Facebook account to find me. Although only my name and town were listed in my personal information, he advised me to set my account to the highest security level. I did better than that—I shut it down.

I never saw the red-bearded man again. To this day, I don’t know if he was following me or why he warned me about a stabbing that didn’t happen.

Don't forget this is a blog hop! Check out the entries and vote on your favorite.




Today is also the start of the epic, month-long Gearing Up To Get An Agent Blogfest! Here are my answers for the meet and greet:

-Where do you write?
At my desk in the middle of the living room. I have to have an uncluttered desk or it distracts me, but noise doesn't. I always have kids and husbands and cats in my ear, so I've adjusted to writing in the hubbub.

-Quick. Go to your writing space, sit down and look to your left. What is the first thing you see?
My printer. Boring, I know.

-Favorite time to write?
Morning, afternoon, evening. Whenever I can. Writing moms need to be flexible.

-Drink of choice while writing?
Diet Coke, which is currently caffeine free. No buzzed Baby King for me.

-When writing , do you listen to music or do you need complete silence?
I need noise. At night, when everyone is asleep, I turn the TV on as background noise.

-What was your inspiration for your latest manuscript and where did you find it?
My inspiration came from a dream. Yep, I'm one of those people. The dream is as vivid today as it was when I first woke up from it.

-What's your most valuable writing tip?
Don't give up. DON'T. GIVE. UP.

Nice meeting you all!

(If you're looking for Kelley's post on the three C's of querying, there was a mix-up. It will be next week. Come back then!)

53 comments:

Suze said...

Truth.

Tara Tyler said...

great story! i'm waiting til wednesday to decide

Kimberly Gabriel said...

I'm really, really hoping this one is false....but I'm holding out on my official vote. This is creepy!

M.J. Fifield said...

I'm with Kimberly. This is a creepy story that I'm hoping turns out to be false.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I so hope this isn't a true story . . . Creepy!

Oh, and I love that movie. :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Totally creepy . . .I hope it's not truth, but I'll wait until Wednesday.

ilima said...

Scary! That would freak me out big time.

michelle said...

Crikey, the red-bearded dude sounds scary! *shudders*
Ummmm... it's the truth!

Aidyl Ewoh said...

I’ll have to say, you did a good job of writing a creepy story! I’d feel all weirded out! I’m not gonna decide yet. =)
~Aidyl

J. A. Bennett said...

If this is true and that's the reason you don't Facebook account, then I guess I shouldn't tell you that I really want you to join for our secret little group. You're totally allowed to join under a fake name if you want, just send me a friend request. My Facebook name is Jennie Bennett :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That is just creepy!!!

Sangu said...

I'm thinking... lie? Though it sounds like the kind of creepy story that that's, believe it or not, true!

Jessie Humphries said...

Oooh, red beards are way creepy!!! :) I say fact and I also say you should get the heck out of there (just in case he comes back) and move to Las Vegas where there are no creepy people at all! ;)

Kathryn Purdie said...

That is story is so odd and freaky, I'm betting it's true. (Yikes. Now paranoid about my Facebook account.)

And I actually don't like "complete silence" either, though my solution is usually an oscillating fan--which is a must for sleeping or when it's actually silent in my home. ;-)

Heidi Schulz said...

Oh my goodness, I hope that that story is a lie. Creepy!
Love your writing advice.

Angelina C. Hansen said...

I wish I could write with distractions! Yay, you! And best wishes with #GUTGAA and especially with growing a healthy baby King. ^_^

Kelley Lynn said...

That is SO creepy!

And I totally forgot about this bloghop! Ah! I'm so bad... I got all GUTGAA and dropped the ball on this one. Hopefully you'll forgive me...

S.P. Bowers said...

I'm guessing the first story is true. Either way it's a good story. See you around GUTGAA

Shell Flower said...

Wow. This is so scary. I'm glad I don't have a Facebook account, either. Whoa. I hope this isn't true, but it seems true. It would make a great horror novel.

Jenny S. Morris said...

This is all sorts of creepy and I think it's truth.

Melodie Wright said...

Oooh. This is almost creepy enough to be true...but I do spy some holes.
I'm waiting until Wed., too. You are a crafty one and not to be underestimated. ;)

Angela Brown said...

Okay. Your red-beard story totally creeped me out.

And I completely agree, writing moms have to be very flexible :-)

Diana Gallagher said...

Awesome that your dream prompted a novel! Good luck with GUTGAA!

Juliana L. Brandt said...

Oh girl, I bet you're missing that caffeine, I know I would be! I'm impressed you can work with all that business going around you. I'm betting though that you've adapted over the years!

Lara Schiffbauer said...

I totally hope your story is just that, a story, because otherwise that's freaky scary!!

On my GUTGAA question, I wrote a line about silence making me uncomfortable and then erased it (the answer was already too long) but it sounds like I'm a kindred spirit to you. I always have something on, whether it be the tv or radio. Even with the kids home and playing. My husband totally doesn't understand it.

L.G.Smith said...

And people ask why I don't have a Facebook account. Hmmm....

I really hope this didn't happen, but I wouldn't doubt it for a second. I tend to attract this kind of nut in my life quite often.

Medeia Sharif said...

What a creepy encounter! I think it's true.

The Golden Eagle said...

That was a more-than-slightly-creepy story, regardless of whether it was true or not!

I've had stories inspired by dreams. It's interesting how some lodge in your mind.

Megan Frances said...

The blog hop is such a great idea. If I have time, I might enter.

I have a feeling your story might be true.

And, thanks for commenting on my blog. I'm glad the tree prompted you to get back into an abandoned story.

LisaAnn said...

I love dream inspiration! And I'm stoked to be doing this blogfest with you! :)

Rebecca Taylor said...

This would scare the bejezuse out of me. I'm going to go with fiction, mostly because I hope it was!

Carrie Butler said...

That's so creepy! I hope it's not even remotely true. *Shudder*

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Fiction. I really hope it was fake though. So creepy. Nice posting for GUTAA.

tfwalsh said...

I'm going to guess this is true:) Great story.

Trisha said...

Great meet & greet post! and yay for dream inspiration - I can relate to this right now :)

Caitlin said...

Oh man, I got pretty creeped out reading that. I really hope that it's not, but I think it was true.

Connie B. Dowell said...

I'm going to guess false. Good story though.

Diana said...

Yikes! Scary story. I understand writing when and where you can. It's almost impossible to have a set chunk of time when you have kids.

Shiela Calderón Blankemeier said...

Love the new look! Us mom are nothing if not flexible :)

Melissa Sugar said...

This is a great, but frightening story. It is way out there, but for some reason, I believe it is true. Thanks for hosting. I also enjoyed reading your answers for GUTGAA's meet and greet.

Jay Noel said...

That is one messed up story. I would have shut the whole thing down too. In fact, I often think about doing that.

Gave me the chills.

Emily R. King said...

I want to reply to everyone, but I'm afraid I'll give hints away. All I'll say is yes, this story is creepy. :)

Thanks for commenting!

Stephsco said...

Very cool that you are doing GUTGAA (I already follow your blog). I tried to write a story from a dream once, but I really hadn't thought out what happened beyond the dream and got stuck. It was a great exercise though. Now I would probably plot it out first :)

Amy L. Sonnichsen said...

Definitely creepy! Um, I'm guessing true, but I'm going to hold off on a FINAL decision until Wednesday. :D

Angela Cothran said...

Oh this is hard! I think that story just might be true, or have some element of truth to it. Wait! You don't have a facebook account. I vote false...I think :)

And your printer may be boring but you certainly are not :)

Michael Offutt, Tebow Cult Initiate said...

Oh how innocent it began too with the ice cream.

Michelle said...

I was thinking it was true until the Facebook bit.... Creepy!!!

Jeannette said...

Ha! I laughed out loud about a "buzzed baby King". I wouldn't wish an infant with a caffeine buzz on my worst enemy. See you around GUTGAA!

Morgan said...

Ohhhh... what a fun hop! Why am I not doing it? LOL.

I say... Fiction... as much as I believe it could happen, my gut says fiction!

And I love your writing advice. You are too cool, Emily. :)

Suzi said...

This would freak me out. My guess: fact.

cleemckenzie said...

I'm going with fiction!

Robin said...

I thinking this one is a fact. I've better approached by a lot of scary people in the produce section. So creepy!

Raquel.Somatra said...

It's too bad I missed the chance to guess about these stories, but I can't believe they're both real! How can people be so creepy? I have a couple stories like these but I don't like to remember them. I hope that's the last of the creeps you ever encounter!