The Eclectic Blogger Award

The Eclectic Blogger Award
I think it’s freakin’ gorgeous. (Image credit: CygX1 DeviantArt)


“An award? On this blog? I mean, look at the sidebar — do you see any other award stickers? Have you known Space, Time, and Raspberries to nominate anyone for an award? Ever?” You, exercising your ironic sense of reality.

“I don’t agree that ‘the exception proves the rule.’ I think any exception proves the rule is arbitrary and capricious, and can be righteously ignored. But in this case, I think The Eclectic Blogger Award deserves to be excepted from my habitual non-rule. And accepted. Proudly. Thanks for asking.” Me, hoping for your indulgence.

The Shameful Narcissist Speaks, (gamer, writer, reader, and reviewer extraordinaire), has created an award to “give back to the WP blogging community”. I am honored to be on her list of original nominees, and I am happy to spread this recognition and love to those whose work affects me in the way she describes below:

The Eclectic Blogger Award

“…is presented to those blogs that are both eclectic and engaging, where conversation flows freely, where new and different ideas are always welcome. It’s to recognize blogs that always have interesting content to match the amazing, creative, and hard-working creators that make them possible. These are the blogs that inspire you to read, watch, play, and/or create content to further enhance not only the blogosphere but also the general zeitgeist, because they themselves enrich it with their existence.”

The Rules
  • Nominate whomever and however many bloggers you want for the award.
  • Share links from your blog for some of your favorite (or most eclectic!) posts.
My Nominations
  • The Shameful Narcissist Speaks embodies the ideal candidate for The Eclectic Blogger Award. She explores life and her favorite pastimes with research, thought, and a very clear view of both her inner self and the world around her. Lots of open and enthusiastic conversation in the comments. No BS here.
  • A Cornered Gurl I suspect Tre will graciously decline this award, just as I would have if I’d allowed my non-rule to rule on principle. And I totally understand if she does. But you should get to know her — she is eminently approachable. She writes touching stories with well-drawn characters. She writes powerful poetry that often makes my heart pound harder. Tre is a deeply human Being I consider a true friend, and whether or not she accepts, I know she will appreciate the offer.
  • Aloada Bobbins Haylee is the first to admit she’s quirky. Her writings and occasional vlogs always make me laugh. She engages on a delightfully personal level, and we’ve developed a long distance friendship-across-the-Pond. She adopted a dragon lizard named Jorah Greyscale, so she is in fact, Mother of Dragon. He has his own Instagram account.
  • Atherton’s Magic Vapour is also an award-free blog, and there’s nothing wrong with that. However, Melanie Atherton deserves The Eclectic Blogger Award. For pure eclectic entertainment, Melanie’s mind is an overflowing Victorian fountain. I can’t help but abandon myself to her tales — wildly — and leave reluctantly. They are brief time travel escapes to a more elegant era, and her comments and conversations are always supportive and beautifully adorned.
  • Laura Bruno Lilly is an accomplished musician/composer. She infuses her soul into everything she writes about: music, family, spirituality, education, society — the list is unlimited, as is her interest in those who interact with her. Oh, there will be brownies.
  • Mellow Curmudgeon might well brush off the offer of an award, but I think he’ll understand I believe his blog represents what The Eclectic Blogger Award honors. Whether it’s his answers to photography challenges or his analyses of language, prose, and poetic forms, he engages on a thoughtful, challenging level.
  • Writers Co-op is a small but open group of writers, some published and some working toward it. Subjects vary, but they don’t just elicit comments, they spawn discussions that explore, inform, and support. There are opportunities to share your own work for feedback. There are even opportunities to have a short story or two published in an anthology. Every writer’s dream, right? Write!
Links I Hope You’ll Click

Take a Breath

Glad you could join us for the next restful episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 279
Photo credit: Geoff Gallice

Beneath the churning web, agony’s wail rode the final unbreaking wave as it crossed the field to leave behind the silent, still shallows of death. The enemy Flyers who dared to attack its surface learned too late that the struggle to destroy it only drew the attacker further under. Those who witnessed it from above soon retreated toward The Arids.

Vernon and Ambassador Arturo waited at the web’s edge where an escaping whisper of breath hinted at the Wildlands ants’ approach. Commandant Marabunta was the first to emerge.

Continue reading “Take a Breath”

Above and Below

Glad you could join us for the next tangled episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 278
Image credit: mirmiran-architecture / fogdenphotos / S.T. Ranscht

The gluey silken lattices fell like a curling wave, spreading across the battlefield as the Alliance Flyers approached the Hive. Enemy land troops ran, but the smothering webs overtook them and trapped them where they stood. Arids Flyers, circling low after the retreat sounded, tangled in the ropey strands and fell, unable to escape. Webs continued to rain across the clearing, blunting the impotent struggles of the doomed, advancing toward the Hive.

Continue reading “Above and Below”

Flights of Death and Glory

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Elliot 277
Image credit: Tomás Saraceno / Guido Limardo

The Alliance’s call to retreat rang out beneath the approaching shadow. All land and air forces, except the Freelands bees, pulled back to the Hive tree, beating away the closest attackers to defend and hold the royal residence to their deaths if necessary.

Ripping away from its parent darkness and speeding toward them, a smaller shadow became Sam and Clifton leading their company in a desperate race to reach Central Fen ahead of the growing darkness. Sweeping past the swarm still tormenting the enemy vulture, Sam yelled, “Retreat! Run! Get back to the Hive!”

“Captain,” Clifton called, “those are Freelands bees—”

Continue reading “Flights of Death and Glory”

Joining the Battle

Glad you could join us for the next enlisted episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 276
Photo credit: Rosa Shieh

Scant hours before dawn, as the storm passed, the Freelands bees gathered in the Hiverarchy’s Assembly Chamber. Arturo, the Freelands wasp who served the Alliance, had returned to speak with Queen Madalena. Rumors claimed she would send them to fight with the Alliance, but they had no heart to die for someone else’s hive.

The Queen emerged from the Inner Chamber with Arturo at her side. “Our neighbors — our kin — in Fen request our help in the war they fight against The Arids tyrant. I believe this is not our war, but the Alliance Ambassador argues that our freedom depends on its outcome. I refuse to order anyone to fight for a cause they do not believe in, but I cannot deny the family bond many of us have with Queen Lilian’s people. I invite any who wish to speak for or against this request to speak now.”

Continue reading “Joining the Battle”


Glad you could join us for the next buzzed episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 275
Image credit: S.T. Ranscht

In those few moments, things changed. The sun broke through, and the birds Barry and Trevor sought had moved on. The Knights stopped short when a golden glop fell out of the sky and splopped on Trevor’s foot. They looked up. A shredded strip of honeycomb dangled from a jagged gouge in the Hive.

Birds of prey had moved in.

The leader, a vulture with a sweet tooth and a sour disposition, clung to the Hive as it swayed beneath his bulk, his scythe-like beak carving a chunk that dripped honey and larvae as he carried it to a nearby stump to ravage it unmolested.

“Crap,” Barry whispered into Trevor’s ear. “We’re gonna need a better plan.”

“Listen!” Trevor hissed, cocking his head toward an approaching hum and squinting his eyes into the glaring sun. As the drone grew louder, an undulating cloud of gold and brown, and a devouring shadow flowing ahead of it, spread across the sky to block the sun for an ominous moment before splitting apart to release a shaft of blinding light that seemed to freeze time. Blinking, Trevor snatched Barry in a jubilant hug as one half swarmed to the Hive and the other attacked the offending destroyer.

“It’s the Freelands bees!” he screamed.

To be continued. . .

Previously, on Elliot’s Adventures ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Next time . . .

Party of Two

Glad you could join us for the next excited episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 274
Photo credit: Chris Hornaman

“Run!” Trevor yelled. Eyes sparkling, he grabbed Barry by one wrist and dragged him into a tangle of undergrowth, turning to thrust his fang into the twitchy eye of the first bird to ram into the brush behind them. More Flyers crunched into the Knights’ refuge, jamming those in front of them further into the twiggy scratchiness, where they screeched and clawed to extricate themselves. The frogs hacked a path to the other side, escaping in a cloud of laughter, every muscle thrumming with life.

They emerged at the base of the Hive tree, out of sight of their pursuers. Breathing fast and hard, Trevor danced from foot to foot, until his joy couldn’t stand it any longer, and exploded in a whoop of glory.

Grinning, Barry shook his head. “Youse’re gonna bring ’em down on us.”

Continue reading “Party of Two”

They’re Here

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Elliot 273a
Photo credit: Mark Hamblin

Dawn’s tender light bled across a sky of beating wings streaking, diving, charging crimson, brown, and gray toward the Hive, glinting off the snapping, stabbing beaks, battling members of both Aero Squadrons and the Hive Elite, ripping at the Queen’s home, skewering the drones who shielded its narrow entrance and swarmed to fight them off.

Trevor vanished into the melee yelling something Barry couldn’t make out beneath the buzzing-squawking din tumbling overhead that muffled but didn’t mask the tearing, shredding rasps that screamed the inexorable destruction of Fen’s soul.

Continue reading “They’re Here”

Guarding the Future

Glad you could join us for the next protective episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 272
Photo credit: rockrose

“Knights!” Cyrus called as he flew into the Bower, raining a trail of herbs. “Creepers and Flyers are attacking the Hive!”

The Knights sprang into action. Trevor ripped off his sling, and retrieved his weapons while Barry drew the sleeping infants from their carrier to lay them beside their mother.

Wide-eyed, Cyrus asked, “Twins? You had two?”

The Princess nodded. “A girl and a boy,” she said, love and hope shining through her exhaustion.

Surveying the chamber, Cyrus hovered over Arturo as he scummed a dusty pool of the beast’s blood from the floor.

“What happened here?” the young Guard inquired as the midwife left her plastering to retrieve the Assassin’s stinger from a high shelf and hand it to Barry. “What’s wrong with the Prince?”

Continue reading “Guarding the Future”

They’re Coming!

Glad you could join us for the next anxious episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

Elliot 271
Photo credit:

At the Hive, Captain Avery’s screeching alarm yanked Vernon from his troubled dreams of nameless shadows creeping in from all sides, and threw him into a harsh reality of impending doom and death. How Lilian had remained asleep he couldn’t fathom, but leaving her to enjoy a few more moments of peace, he flew outside to find out what the hell was happening.

The Captain of the Dark of Night Aero Squadron flapped through the dwindling spatter, stark against the lumpy sky, lit in a final blast of lightning. Spying the Queen’s Liaison, he landed on a branch above the Hive.

“Sir,” his breath burst hot on Vernon’s face, “a patrol of grounded Flyers has discovered five slain Guards right here in Central Fen.”

“The General’s henchmen?”

“It looks that way, Sir. They’re too far apart and too recently dead to believe there was only one killer.”

Vernon closed his eyes. “And Cyrus? The Guard outside the Bower?”

“I’m not certain. If he’s one of the victims, he’s been dragged away and hidden. But we found another body — an enemy’s — close to the Bower.”

Continue reading “They’re Coming!”