For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: the symbol above the PLAY arrow will switch to a full-screen slideshow . . . which I advise for the best experience (press Esc to exit). You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: the symbol above the PLAY arrow will switch to a full-screen slideshow . . . which I advise for the best experience (press Esc to exit). You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

Colorful leaves on rocks

The Alphabet Challenge “P” Stories are experiencing what has become the norm halfway through voting rounds. Namely, the voting goes from slow to glacially slow. Actually, given the changing climate, glaciers might be changing a tad faster than the vote count.

I suppose it could be the daily reminders act more like a deterrent than an incentive. I mean, there is such a thing as being too needy, and that’s aggravated by constant nagging. Starting with the next round, I might drop the frequency of the reminders to every other day. Of course, some readers enjoy both the photos and the constant reminders to read and vote.

If you are one such reader, thank you in advance for eventually reading our stories and for eventually casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge P-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

Of course, it could also be that our plots are a bit like that panel . . . a bit too complicated and requiring reading expertise that is lacking in most people . . .

The Alphabet Challenge “P” Stories voting has — with apparent reluctance — started back up and we’re getting a trickle of readers wanting to make their preference known. 

If you are one such reader, thank you in advance for eventually reading our stories and for eventually casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge P-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

So, Outside . . .

That’s the color version of the Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA . . . but it seems to me this might be a more suitable version . . .

The Alphabet Challenge “P” Stories went live last week and almost immediately . . .

That’s the current voting speed . . . dead slow. It could be readers are saving themselves for a last-minute voting frenzy (hey, it could happen!) but it could also be readers are getting tired of all this reading. Our hope, then, rests in thinking readers took the time off for the Labor Day Holiday and are — even as I write this — contemplating getting back to their pre-holiday routines . . . like reading our stories.

If you are one such reader, thank you in advance for eventually reading our stories and for eventually casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge P-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

Here’s the above photo with a bit of Topaz Impression and a bit of Glow . . .

I like both the texture and details of this version . . .

Here’s a quick reminder to please — if so inclined — read the “H” Alphabet Challenge Stories. After, if receptive to the idea, the writers hope you’ll make the effort and vote for your favorite HERE.<<<this is a link

Clicking on the link will magically transport you to a post. There, you ‘ll find the poll where you can vote for your favorite of the three stories. Unless you want to deprive your friends of the experience, you can share that link and help expand the readership. if we say so ourselves — and we have to — most of the stories aren’t that bad.

If you’ve already voted, thank you. If you’ve already asked friends and family to read and vote, thank you again.

So, itsy bitsy spider . . . Two days ago, I told the tale (<<<this is a link) of me hurting a spider, likely breaking one of its legs. As I said, I rarely (intentionally) hurt spiders. But, I do intentionally post-process their photos with effects I find interesting. Today, I’m using a few Topaz Labs Plugins and Standalone Apps.

Writers — well, some writers — are needy people. Writers want readers for their works and hope said readers will find something to like in what they read . . . but writers also dread the possibility of rejection if not outright derision. That fear of rejection often keeps writers from sharing their work.

The writers of the Alphabet Challenge are — perhaps — made of sturdier stuff because they not only choose to share, but also hope that — if you’ve read them — you voted for your favorite of the “Alphabet Challenge G-Stories” HERE. That’s also where you can find links to the stories in case you want to read them before voting (you should totally do that).

If you’ve already voted, thank you.

Oh, yeah . . . the writers were wondering if you could, you know, like, share these stories with friends and families. I mean, only if you think the stories are worth reading, of course. That would be swell, we think.

Anyway, solid stuff . . .

Before we get to the hard subjects, if you’ve read them, the writers hope you voted for your favorite of the “Alphabet Challenge G-Stories” HERE. That’s also where you can find links to the stories in case you want to read them before voting (you should totally do that).

If you’ve already voted, thank you . . . and please consider making your friends aware they can help shape the self-image of three writers. But only tell good friends; these are much too good to share with regular or not-so-good friends . . . unless you want to turn them into good friends.

Anyway, hard subjects . . .

. . . for the low voter turnout for the “D” stories offerings. Perhaps me asking you to vote for your favorite”D” story HERE is annoying and getting old.

Perhaps people feel pressured into voting (even though I specified no one need feel guilty if they don’t feel like reading/voting) and resentment is setting in.

Perhaps the thought of 22 more rounds of short stories sounds too much like a commitment (although no one should feel obligated to stick with us for the whole run).

Perhaps the “content warning” for the stories is turning people off (although it doesn’t apply to all the stories and the warning is probably unwarranted and I was only being extra cautious).

Or, perhaps people are too busy worrying about COVID-19 and are out shopping for toilet paper.

Whatever the reason, we’re less than half the number of votes we had at this juncture of the “C” stories voting period.

Not a big deal in the scheme of things, but one wonders. Still, there’s another week of voting, so perhaps a late surge will bring the tally up to respectable levels.

Anyway, remember this photo? I mean, you should because it’s been used in the last two posts.

It’s falling on deaf ears, but here’s another reminder — if you’ve not already done so — to vote for one of the stories in the “B” Alphabet Challenge Submissions. You can vote HERE and for them who have yet to read them, there are links to each of the stories in that post.

I’ll be closing the vote for the “A” Alphabet Challenge Submissions (HERE) on Wednesday. It’s seeing little traffic but in case there be a straggler or two out there, I’m giving fair warning.

To be clear, you can read the stories and not vote (as some people have done). It’s also perfectly OK to not like any of them (it’s one of the voting options).

Any reader involvement is appreciated and we welcome comments and questions. They will be answered anonymously, but answers you’ll get (if you have questions, of course).

Click for a larger view. Full-size can be seen HERE.

That’s a Topaz Glow 2.0 conversion of the previously shared flower photo.