anthology, around the world, bite-size stories, book trailer, debut, experience, Flash Fiction, human experience, life, Locations, lunchtime stories, ripples, Ripples on the Pond, settings, short stories
I’m unable to share the book trailer I made for Ripples on the Pond on WordPress unless I upgrade my membership and pay a monthly fee. So, I’m going to share the photos in the trailer and a link to my Instagram post where I uploaded the video. I hope it works.
Most stories in Ripples on the Pond don’t have a specific setting. This is deliberate on my part, as a writer, because I want to make them universal. They can happen anywhere in the world. They depict echoes of the human experience, our strengths, weaknesses, failures, achievements, and observations. We are the sum total of everything in our lives, in our search for happiness.
Yet, some stories have specific settings, due to a memory, life experience, a public figure or a work of art that inspired me. So here’s a summary of a few titles from Ripples on the Pond set at various locations around the world.
The Southern Aegean and The Mediterranean
Gemiler Adası, St Nicholas Island, Fethiye, Muğla, Turkey
A tribute to Florida
Time to put that book in the bag,
and begin to read, anywhere, any time, when you have a moment. Bite-size stories, lunchtime stories …
Thank you very much for reading. 🙂
I wish I were taller
wish I were stronger
but I’m not
sometimes I lack the strength
mediocre, vulnerable, and weak
I rise from the shards of my psyche
damaged, cracked and chipped along the edges
but not defeated, yet-
with my imperfections.
Ah, finally the Paperback and the Kindle editions of my debut book, Ripples on the Pond, are combined and the ‘Look Inside’ feature is working for both.
Amazon UK link:
Here is the blurb for my collection of short and flash fiction stories:
A man infatuated with ivy. A woman pining for lost love. In a Turkish square, ancient buildings lament a devastating explosion. An unlikely friendship struck up with a homeless person. A journey to a magical place that once visited can never be found again. The camaraderie between the patients in a cancer ward. A writer who has lost his muse. A tragedy that leads to dementia.
These are just a few of seventy individual tales set in locations straddling continents, which portray war, love, hate, hope, greed, revenge, despair, humour, mystical happenings, fantasy, and so much more. Like ripples expanding on the surface of a pond to reach its banks, they converge in this anthology of flash fiction and short stories by Sebnem E. Sanders in her debut release.
Edit: December 7th, 2017 19.07 GMT+3
A day to remember / Tarihi bir gün
Ripples arrives home
Yay, the most expensive copy of Ripples on the Pond has arrived in Marmaris. Thanks to UPS. I can’t describe the joy of holding my book in my hand. The cover and design look great, David J Meyers. I’m forever grateful to you. 😍
Kitabımın en pahalı baskısı Marmaris’e UPS sayesinde ulaştı. Onu elimde tutmanın heyecanını anlatamam. Tütsü, mütsü, eskarabe, melekler, şu buyla selamladım.
I boarded the plane and settled into my aisle seat, after saying “Hi,” to the young woman sitting next to me.
She turned her misty gaze from the window, to greet me, and resumed her dreamy state.
The engines began to roar as the plane taxied down the runway. Without averting her eyes from the window, she began to sob, her shoulders shaking. The loud sounds from the turbines muffling her voice. From the corner of my eye, I saw tears rolling down her face, wetting her t-shirt. I’m not a nosy person, but I thought she needed help, yet didn’t know how to. Ignore it or try to communicate?
“Here tissues,” I said and offered her a pack from my handbag.
“Thank you,” she replied and took them, without looking in my direction. She wiped her nose and face, and continued to cry until we were high up in the clouds.
“Drinks,” the stewardess asked. I opted for a glass of wine and asked her if she’d like some.
“Something strong,” she muttered, turning her distraught gaze at me.
I passed her a miniature bottle of Scotch and a glass filled with ice. She opened the bottle, poured it in and began to sip.
“Did that help?”
“A little,” she said and cocked her head.”Sorry, for being a nuisance.”
“Not at all. I’m sorry if you feel I’m intruding. I just can’t bear to see tears on such a beautiful, young face. It must have been bad. You need not explain.”
“It was. A big heartache.”
“Hmm, life is full of them, unfortunately. So, shall we say cheers and try to make it better?”
“Cheers, though it doesn’t feel so. I’m just going numb now.”
“Nothing wrong with that. Numb is good. Takes the pain away.”
“Hope it lasts. Have you had heartaches?”
“When I first fell in love, my head in the clouds, I used to get angry at my mother for not understanding my feelings regarding my choice of boyfriend. She said to me ‘You’re not the first one in the world to fall in love. We all have.’ So, at my age, probably around your mother’s, I’ll add to that. We all fall in love and suffer.”
“Is that so?”
“But of course. A heartache is the most common ailment in the world. There is no immediate cure. It only heals with time. Naturally, there are exceptions. Some people find the right partner and manage to keep the flame going all their lives.”
“Not even when I thought I was wiser. My mother was right about my first boyfriend, but the heart doesn’t have a compass showing you right the way. It has its own magnetism which cannot be explained. After my teenage flop, in my twenties, I thought I made the right choice, but that didn’t work either. I think I have the tendency to attract heartaches. Wrong choices.”
I did. By the time we arrived at our destination, she knew more about my love life than those closest to me. I did not exaggerate. Just told her the truth, over many drinks.
She picked up her luggage from the carousel, waved to me, and walked away. I stared after the deja vu of my youth, a brief encounter, and prayed for her to be strong. I knew nothing about her, not even her name. Yet, I sensed sharing something mutual perhaps would help her deal with the pain.
adventure, alternate universe, beliefs, children, circular, curiosity, experience, experiment, flat earth, herbs, moon, nature, patience, proof, questioning mind, rotation, round, sun, theories, time, universe
A large gilt framed painting dominates one wall of the Mystical Plains School’s Assembly Hall. A scene of an idyllic valley, surrounded by a narrow body of water which cascades down a steep fall, sweeping the sailboats and people at its end into the deep void. Children watch the painting and wonder. Sometimes they dream of falling into the great beyond and disappearing, forever.
Aloe fluttered her long eyelashes and pursed her lips. “I want to see The End of the World.”
“Are you mad?” Basil said. “You’ll fall off the edge.”
“Why would I? Won’t you come with me to discover new herbs and prove the theory?”
Although Aloe and Basil were the same age, Basil, being a ten-year-old boy, was more naive than his female friend. “What theory?” He rolled his eyes.
“That the earth is flat, as grownups say in Mystical Plains. And as it’s shown in the painting.”
“It is flat, also the sky is flat.”
“How about proving it? We’ll stop when we come to the end.”
“Are you sure about this? We don’t know how far it is.”
Aloe twisted a long strand of her celadon mane around a finger and shrugged.
“Only one way to find out. Meet me here tomorrow at dawn. Bring a sandwich and some fruit. Also, your notebook and crayons. We can draw the herbs we find on the way and collect samples. What say you?”
“What do we say to our parents?”
“Say it’s a school project. It’s true.”
“Great!” Aloe planted a kiss on Basil’s cheek and scurried away, the skirts of her pale green dress swaying in the breeze.
Basil could never refuse her. She was the most beautiful and clever girl in the Plains. Proud to be her best friend, he always relented to her whims, and she had many.
At dawn, they set off on their journey. Aloe pulled the hood of her olive cape over her hair. Fizzy jade curls that escaped the grip of Basil’s wide-brimmed hat bounced on his cheeks in tune with his quick step.
As sunlight burned away the chill of the spring morning, green fields spread out forever in their view. Basil was good at drawing, Aloe with writing the descriptions and colouring. They stopped several times to examine new finds and added them to their scrapbook.
When the sun was high in the sky, they rested for lunch and shared the fruit. Aloe figured they’d been on their journey for six hours. They’d need another six to return to the village before dark. She shaded her eyes with her hand and perused the surroundings. Eternal green without an end, but The End of the World nowhere in sight. She looked towards the way they came. There was no sign of the village or any familiar sights, nor the trees they’d marked as they moved on.
Biting the apple in her hand, Aloe pondered. “We must head back now and find our path in daylight. I don’t think we’ll reach The End of the World today.”
She studied the fruit closely. “I have an idea. Let’s see if it will work. Look at this apple. It’s round. If you were a tiny insect on it,” she picked up an ant and placed it on one side of the apple, “you wouldn’t be able to see the other side, would you?”
“No,” Basil said, eager to hear the rest.
“But if you keep moving towards the other side, you’ll be there and see it. That’s why we can’t see the village or The End of the World from here. It’s beyond our view. If it were flat, we’d see it.”
“Are you saying it’s a false theory?”
“Yes, but we’ll have to prove it. Let’s go back the same way, and see how the view improves as we get closer.”
Re-tracing their steps, making note of the landmarks, they resumed their hunt for various herbs. Three hours later, they had another break, and shared cookies and a slice of cake. Though they looked back and searched for the spot where they’d stopped for lunch, they could see no further than the forest in midway.
Aloe muttered pensively. “There is no End of the World. It doesn’t end, but continues.”
After two more hours of trekking and drawing, the village appeared in the distance. As the sky turned to shades of marigold and poppy, the sun began to sink behind the hills.
The amber beams of the sunset danced across Aloe’s green eyes and she sighed. “Maybe that’s why the sun and the moon are round. They don’t disappear, but go elsewhere.”
“But they will be back tomorrow,” Basil said, confident.
“The sun, definitely tomorrow, the moon to repeat its different phases next month.”
“Are we going to tell our parents?”
Aloe fiddled with the hem of her skirt. “Not yet. This is still a theory. I have to do more tests. Perhaps, we’ll keep it to ourselves for a while. Tell you what, let’s write down everything in a log, and wait until we’re old enough to prove it. Meanwhile, we have a beautiful scrapbook of different herbs to present to the teacher for our project.”
As twilight spread its velvet blanket over the Mystical Plains, Aloe and Basil chased each other down the road to their homes, their childish laughter filling the air with promise.