Monday, September 27, 2010


Okay, people, when I said scare me, I meant scare me. I’m noooooot quite quakin’ yet…so be sure to send in some more creepy prompts for the October chapter of the Flash Fiction Challenge!

…One thing that’s not scary at all, and that made me smile this weekend? A post on Writerly Thoughts about the possibility of not being able to participate in this year’s NaNoWriMo:

“…my parents want me to pass all my courses, and I doubt they’d let me pull a Holly Schindler and just write all the time.”

Love that! I think I’m becoming a verb!

…I also got this super-cool review at CafĂ© Saturday. Such a great review, in fact, that it was tough to pick a snippet. But I love this paragraph:

“While the majority of the story does focus on Aura and her family, including her remarried father and estranged grandmother, there is a subplot with a boy Aura has a huge crush on. First of all, I will say that Schindler tells so much story with so little time devoted to it that I marveled at her skill. Secondly, there is a scene with Aura and Jeremy and a skateboard and a drainage ditch that blew my mind. Not because it was oh-so-romantic, but because of how Aura was affected by it in that moment. It was a perfect merging of the two plot threads, and quite possibly one of the best scenes I’ve read all year.”


Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Read the full story on my path to publication and get in the running for a giveaway of A BLUE SO DARK at YA Highway!

(Copies for giveaways are getting scarce…so be sure you submit to the contest!)


Okay, here’s the deal: Halloween is my all-time favorite holiday. I love the plastic guts, the fake blood. The pop-in vampire teeth.

For the October chapter of my Flash Fiction Challenge, I’ll need you to send me your goriest prompt. Could be a title. A character name. A sentence / horrifying description I have to incorporate. Really—the prompts are completely up to you. All I ask is that you get twisted, get creepy, get dripping in cobwebs and slime!

Email the prompt to writehollyschindler (at) yahoo (dot) com. (Prompts need to be in by October 2!)

…I’ll be waaaaaaiting. Muah-ah-ah (that was my demonic laughter…)

Thursday, September 16, 2010


Yep, I’ve done it. Me—Lil’ Miss Pen ‘N Ink. Ms. I-Loathe-High-Tech. Our Lady Of The Spiral-Bound Notebook. Moi.

I bought an e-reader.

I’m more than halfway through my first book on the Kindle (an adult thriller), and I have to say, it really is fun to read on…

…So much so, I’m already wondering what I’ll read next on the little gadget…

Whoulda thunk, eh?

Monday, September 13, 2010


Okay, those of you who watched the "Fear of Clouds" reading saw a corner of the ol' Schindler office...but to find out more about my writing environment (which is just one of the many subjects we tackled), head on over to the latest interview at Aurora Reviews!

...Also, as you can tell from the "Fear of Clouds" video, I've got quite a few funky office tchotchkes. The strangest? Think it might be my King Kong figurine (a tie-in from the original 1933 movie)! Not quite sure how a rubber figure clutching a poor terrified Fay Wray can offer inspiration, but I swear it does the trick!

Thursday, September 9, 2010


I'm so excited to post this: the first piece in the Flash Fiction Challenge! The first prompt come to us from Kate Higgins (who can be found online at and

Kate sent a collection of randomly chosen words to include in my piece: andiron, hurricane, Novocain, tomato, mustache, nephophobia, and oscilloscope. And I worked them all into my (500-words on the dot) piece you can either listen to me read in the video clip or read below...

Kate's prompt was fantastic, and I can't wait to see what prompts roll into my inbox for the October chapter of this challenge! More details about the October portion of the Flash Fiction Challenge will come the meantime, congrats to Kate Higgins, who is now in the running for the yet-undisclosed prize in time for the holidays...

The Fear Of Clouds

Holly Schindler

“Safe,” Mia says, same as she had when we first stepped through the front door five years ago, smelling like a couple gators who’d crawled right out of the bayou.

I’d trusted her, back when summer sweat lay far thicker on my lip than my spindly mustache. Trusted her like boys always trust their moms…Even though she made me call her by her first name, squirming every time I slipped and didn’t pronounce that first vowel. Squirming every time I accidentally called her Ma.

“Don’t know nearly enough to be anybody’s mother,” she’d always said, the way pretty girls roll their eyes at compliments because they already feel beautiful.

She was older than any of the other mothers in my class. And she loved that years had taught her to measure up a situation like an oscilloscope, tracking electrical currents around her. She could sense things no one else could, making decisions and moving forward without any fear she might be wrong.

“Landlocked,” she’d said when we’d first arrived, letting me think of the miles from the shore as an enormous security blanket.

I was safe. Mia said so.

Now, scraggly remnants of last summer’s tomato plants bend the way palm trees had five years ago, when we’d raced from that angry hurricane, that Katrina, who tore our house apart like old rags…just like Mia knew she would. Suddenly, Missouri’s arms don’t feel comforting at all—just hard and cold, like the andiron by the fireplace.

“Maybe we should leave,” I say, my voice buzzing against my raw gums, my sprouting wisdom teeth making me wish for a Novocain-laced milkshake. Were you supposed to run from a tornado? Or fall to the ground and play dead, like an opossum, waiting for the danger to pass? I look to Mia for an answer.

She just laughs, like I’m totally irrational. Like I’m a hypochondriac, or an agoraphobe. Nephophobia (fear of clouds). The word pops into my head. But don’t dark, churning clouds make everybody’s mind wander into a hundred murky directions? Is it a phobia if it isn’t really irrational? What’s wrong with her?

A lawn chair does summersaults. Gusts throw pea-sized hail against the glass door. This storm is a late-night invader with a gun. My heart begs my feet to move.

But Mia keeps laughing, the wrinkles around her eyes turning to ditches.

“We’re safe,” she insists, but my worry stretches. I grab Mia’s elbow as a cloud begins to grow its own black arm—a funnel.

“Hey,” she snaps as I push her into the basement. Storm sirens shriek like a wounded dog as I lock the door; the floor above us rattles beneath the angry wind. Mia’s shocked eyes hit me as glass shatters upstairs.

I push her into the corner and huddle over her like a human security blanket. She yelps when my chin rubs her cheek. A surprise to us both that suddenly—and after all this time—my beard is rough as coarse-grit sandpaper.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Okay, so I finally got my profile up on Skype an Author Network! Really...don't be shy. Get in contact if you'd like an author visit. (And feel free to refer me to any librarians or teachers who might be interested as well!)
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