Toasted Cheese 20:3

Featured

The September issue of Toasted Cheese features poetry by Mark Hammerschick & DS Maolalai; flash by Tim Conley, Susan DeFelice, Mike Dillon, Nora Nadjarian, Mandira Pattnaik & Lucy Zhang; fiction by Genevieve Allen, Priyadarshini Banerjee, Marie Barry & Bartosz Maj; and creative nonfiction by Carol Shank.

TC 20:3 also includes the 2020 A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest winning stories by C.A. Rowland, Justine Gardner & Emma Williamson.

At Candle-Ends, Shelley Carpenter reviews The Monsignor’s Agents by Bill Lockwood.

The cover image is by stu_spivack on Flickr, with additional photos by photographers around the world, all of whom have generously made their work available for use under Creative Commons licenses. Please click through and check out their photostreams.

Congratulations to all. Happy reading!

Three Cheers and a Tiger Fall 2020 is CLOSED

Your challenge for the Fall 2020 Three Cheers and a Tiger Writing Contest:

Write a fantasy or science fiction story of up to 3,000 words on the topic of returning to a childhood neighborhood to find only one house still inhabited.

Be sure to read both the Three Cheers and a Tiger contest rules and the general contest guidelines before submitting your entry.

Your 48 hours start now. Good luck!

August 2020
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Write about a nap at an inappropriate time.
  2. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: bill, flood, modernize, history, hang.
    2. Use the phrase, “Call me back.”
    3. Write about finding something surprising.
  3. Write about a tragic anniversary.
  4. Write a coming-of-age story.
  5. Write about plans cancelled by weather.
  6. Start with this line: “I still remember…”
  7. Write about stumbling across vital information.
  8. Include a character with tattoos, a long beard, and black-rimmed glasses.
  9. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: change, veil, dribble, find, private.
    2. Use the phrase, “Cook until done.”
    3. Write about managing one’s losses.
  10. Include these 3 characters: dancer, physiotherapist, massage therapist.
  11. Write about being unable to count something.
  12. Use these five words: sleeves, compensate, foundation, crispiest, homebodies
  13. Use this: “I can do that. How am I going to do that?”
  14. Write about a fictional game.
  15. Use the phrase, “What happened to me?”
  16. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: proper, awful, bucket, catalogue, continental.
    2. Use the phrase, “I think it’s stuck.”
    3. Write about an umbrella.
  17. One character gives a concise statement of the situation.
  18. Set your story during a thunderstorm.
  19. Write about herding unwilling animals (or humans)
  20. Start with this line: “It’s a bitter pill.”
  21. Use this: “How did it get to be August already?”
  22. Use these five words: stream, ocean, gingerbread, cautiously, devastating.
  23. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: appointment, sum, bless, incentive, cafe.
    2. Use the phrase, “Let’s just ignore that for now.”
    3. Write about giving someone an unflattering nickname.
  24. Use these five words: world, sticky, political, delicacy, doll.
  25. Write about being annoyed by broken equipment.
  26. Use these five words: crude, twisting, process, pie, failure.
  27. Write about rewriting a business plan in a hurry.
  28. Write about a restless neighborhood.
  29. Use the phrase, “Who ordered that?”
  30. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: cellar, clearance, indoor, annual, state.
    2. Use the phrase, “I don’t even know what to ask.”
    3. Write about trying to leave no footprints behind.
  31. Write about the satisfaction of a job (almost) well done.

July 2020
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Write about forgetting to turn the calendar
  2. Write about a reconciliation.
  3. Use the phrase, “That’s been cancelled, also.”
  4. Use these five words: preach, junk, audio, risk, season.
  5. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Write about an anonymous message.
    2. Use the phrase, “Is it everybody, or just me?”
    3. Use the following five words: solid, cow, convention, dribble, invisible.
  6. Use these five words: required, slush, smoke, exchange, palette.
  7. Write about a dog who hides to avoid his/her pills.
  8. Write about a character who needs PTSD therapy.
  9. Write about sharing an anniversary with someone much younger.
  10. Write about a miscommunication when texting.
  11. Use the phrase, “What was I doing before lunch?”
  12. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Write about a new, larger, machine.
    2. Use the phrase, “the ones you love.”
    3. Use the following five words: dog, battle, integration, deficiency, priority.
  13. Write about a not-so-routine dentist visit.
  14. Write about a budget travel trip.
  15. Use the phrase, “What month is this again?”
  16. Include these 3 characters: urban planner, architect, general manager.
  17. Write about a bookshelf that collapses in the night.
  18. Set your story on a late afternoon train.
  19. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Write about a garden. ·
    2. Use the phrase, “maximum extent possible.”
    3. Use the following five words: necklace, basin, understand, bold, contract.
  20. Set your story in a hostel.
  21. Write about preparing for a storm.
  22. Use these five words: shame, finals, high-profile, catio, humor.
  23. Write about trying to fix a mistake.
  24. Write about your latest purchase.
  25. Write about a really annoying typo.
  26. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: rise, margin, sea, return, redeem.
    2. Use the phrase, “carnival atmosphere.”
    3. Write about a fancy word for a simple idea
  27. Rewrite the same scene, only in the dark.
  28. Start with this line: “Your dinner is waiting.”
  29. Write about carefully examining paper money.
  30. Write about a mentor.
  31. Answer a question with another question.

2020 A Midsummer Tale Winners

Toasted Cheese is happy to announce the winners of the 2020 A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest.

First: “Staring at the Sky” by C.A. Rowland
Second: “Morning Run” by Justine Gardner
Third: “The Shave” by Emma Williamson
Honorable Mention: “Personally, I Feel Nothing” by Chelsea Wilson-Flynn

Congratulations!

First place receives a $50 Amazon gift card, second place a $15 Amazon gift card, and third place a $10 Amazon gift card. All three stories will appear in the September issue of Toasted Cheese.

Kudos to everyone who entered! We received 50+ entries again this year and enjoyed your varied and thoughtful explorations of the “quarantine” theme.

We hope you are all safe and well in this challenging year. Please join us for A Midsummer Tale again in 2021 and pass the contest info along to your writing friends! Next summer’s theme will be announced April 1, 2021.

Our next contest is the fall Three Cheers and a Tiger 48-hour writing contest, which runs the weekend of September 18-20. See our contest page for details.

TC recommends: Ravynscroft

Congratulations to TC editor Richard Edgar (Ana “Broker” George) on the publication of their second novel, Ravynscroft! This new story follows Ravyn as she begins her second act after splitting with her wife. Ravynscroft is the second book in the Necessary Lies series.

Broker’s Goodreads author page

Amazon link for digital or paperback version

Ravynscroft (Necessary Lies, #2) by Richard Edgar
Ravynscroft (Necessary Lies, #2) by Richard Edgar

June 2020
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Write a character talking to themselves.
  2. Include these 3 characters: family doctor, medical assistant, pharmacist.
  3. Use the phrase “Create a diversion.”
  4. Use these five words: purchase, time, hungry, commutes, jacket.
  5. Write about forgetting a weekly event.
  6. Use these five words: scorpion, talent, curly, machine, better.
  7. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: hover. shallow, precede, depressed, traction.
    2. Use the phrase, “What am I going to do about that?”
    3. Write about a sunset.
  8. Use these five words: model, insane, morning, skirt, criticizes.
  9. Write about a garden.
  10. Include these 3 characters in a story: zoologist, chemist, microbiologist.
  11. Use the phrase “Orange paisley turtleneck.”
  12. Write about elephants.
  13. Write about losing track of the day of the week.
  14. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: decade, dramatic, ambiguous, slogan, organ.
    2. Use the phrase, “Why is this so hard?”
    3. Write about working around a broken or poorly designed widget.
  15. Write about plans for an unusual birthday party.
  16. Start with this line: “Privacy is an important issue.”
  17. Write about cheating at solitaire.
  18. Write about a devastating fire.
  19. Write about someone with an unusual number of parents.
  20. Write about taking a risk.
  21. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: filter, torch, assume, reluctance, listen.
    2. Use the phrase, “I haven’t ever been there.”
    3. Write about waiting for a delivery.
  22. Start with this line: “____ isn’t having a good week.”
  23. Write about waiting impatiently by the mailbox.
  24. Include these 3 characters in a story: merchandise buyer, model, hairdresser
  25. Write a conversation with a long gone friend or family member.
  26. Set your story at a children’s playground.
  27. A character realizes they really are different.
  28. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: exile, area, soldier, dangerous, extend.
    2. Use the phrase, “Was there a sign that I missed?”
    3. Write about something that’s on sale.
  29. Write about turning in homework early.
  30. Start with this line: “One day in [year], I got an email…”

Toasted Cheese 20:2

The June 2020 issue of Toasted Cheese features poetry by Chris Abbate, Richard Dinges Jr, Marchell Dyon, Salvatore Marici, Johann van der Walt, and Tiffany Washington; fiction by James Butt, Vidiya Dawah, Zixu Fan, Travis Inglis, and Kevin P. Keating; and creative nonfiction by Kay Marie Porterfield.

TCLJ 20:2 also includes the Spring 2020 Three Cheers and a Tiger Writing Contest winning stories by Jay Bechtol, Jason Porterfield, and Jennifer Pantusa.

At Candle-Ends, Shelley Carpenter reviews Rainforest in Russet by Cynthia Sharp

The cover image is by torbakhopper on Flickr, with additional photos by photographers around the world, all of whom have generously made their work available for use under Creative Commons licenses. Please click through and check out their photostreams.

Congratulations to all. Happy reading!

May 2020
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Write about Mayday used as a distress call
  2. Use these five words: joint, cracks, unpopular, boiling, looking.
  3. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: fork, hate, galaxy, purpose, affinity.
    2. Fill in the blank: “Did you think about ________?”
    3. Write about morning without coffee.
  4. Start with your protagonist slipping on ice.
  5. Celebrating the birthday of someone who has died.
  6. Start with this line: “That is a legal fiction.”
  7. Write about sharing from abundance.
  8. Write about good bacteria.
  9. Write about a dinner party gone slightly wrong.
  10. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: knock, qualification, essay, fair, galaxy.
    2. Use the phrase, “What is it you really want?”
    3. Write about tea.
  11. “Should I close the door when I leave?”
  12. Start with this line: “It’s hard not to be impressed by…”
  13. Write about the free offering of vital aid.
  14. Start with this line: “It was a battle of the sexes.”
  15. Write about the repeated “why?” question from a child.
  16. Start with this line: “This should be a priority for you.”
  17. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: release, teacher, gate, grimace, extinct.
    2. Use the phrase, “Which way is north?”
    3. Write about hearing voices without understanding words.
  18. Start with this line: “You won’t be disappointed.”
  19. “Tell me again why we’re doing this.”
  20. Use these five words: natural, press, damaged, symbol, completed.
  21. Write about working around a broken gadget.
  22. Write about granting a river legal rights.
  23. Write about seeing someone for the first time in years.
  24. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: punch, surgeon, jet, small, guitar.
    2. Use the phrase, “Are you staying for dinner?”
    3. Write about flipping a coin to make a decision.
  25. Write about the elephant in the room.
  26. Use these five words: opera, night, experimental, baby, thoughts.
  27. Use the phrase, “We could do this a whole different way.”
  28. Use these five words: hood, dismantled, vegetarian, episode, bridge.
  29. Write about solitary regrets.
  30. Write an obituary.
  31. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: black, main, aid, carve, suffer.
    2. Use the phrase, “I hear what you’re saying.”
    3. Write about the scent of whiskey.

April 2020
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Write about the end of a very long month
  2. Start with this line: “The statements made by _____ are pure grade-A bunk.”
  3. Write about a census worker knocking on doors.
  4. Use these five words: cushion, leather, figure, proud, moving.
  5. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: desire, quarter, pleasant, rung, promise.
    2. Use the phrase, “Don’t try this at home.”
    3. Write about struggling to stay awake.
  6. Write about who you most admire.
  7. Write about picking out a tune on a piano.
  8. Start with this line: “Define ‘woman.'”
  9. “Shall I turn all the lights on, or not?”
  10. Include these 3 characters: event planner, cook, maintenance worker.
  11. Write about improvising a toasted cheese sandwich.
  12. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: difficulty, fist, absorb, blonde, twilight.
    2. Use the phrase, “Imagine this…”
    3. Write about an interruption.
  13. Write about making up a way to deal with stress.
  14. Set your story on a rainy night.
  15. Make up a 3rd inevitability: Death, Taxes, _______
  16. Set your story on a humid evening.
  17. Use the phrase “It’s easier to get forgiveness than permission.”
  18. Write about fake news.
  19. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: consolidate, disagreement, familiar, read, bear.
    2. Use the phrase, “What’s for lunch?”
    3. Write about a stuffed animal.
  20. Start your story in late afternoon.
  21. Write about trying to work around that one crucial supply.
  22. Start with this line: “It means that we survived.”
  23. Drop everything and write a haiku.
  24. Use these five words: questions, alternative, powering, art, reality.
  25. Do you write in your books? Why or why not?
  26. Join us for a live Writing Chat every Sunday!
    1. Use the following five words: way, brain, flock, urge, convention.
    2. Fill in the blank: “It’s the best thing to do with ________.”
    3. Write about someone your character hasn’t thought about in years.
  27. Write about a parade.
  28. Start your story with a storm brewing.
  29. Use the phrase, “But before that…”
  30. Use these five words: visiting, amazing, chocolate, satellite, hourglass.