Author Archives: trentpmcd

About trentpmcd

Trent P. McDonald Musician, composer, author, photographer, general creative.

Where to Next?

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

A chill went up my spine.  Was it the wind across the moor or just being there?  I turned to study the standing stone and inspiration came in waves. A thousand and one new ideas popped up.

There was a flick and everything changed.  The open moor was gone replaced by a cluttered room, obviously used by an artist and author.

I instantly recognized the photos on the wall and smiled.  Yes, hundreds of one-hundred-word stories were inspired by the photos posted through that computer there.

I wondered where the “Settings That Inspired My Blog” tour would take me next.


word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by  Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo by @ Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. If you want to join or see other stories, go to the inlinkz linkup.


For those who didn’t recognize the first stop in the story above, it was a visit to the moors Sue Vincent loved so much. Her wonderful photos for her writephoto challenges inspired so much fiction. (As have the photos posted by Rochelle :) ) Sue passed away a little over a year ago.

Oh, subtitle of this might be “Magical Mystery Tour”, even if the Beatles have already used it…

The Weekly Smile for the 16th of May, 2022 #weeklysmile

Hi All! Let’s talk about the weather…. ;)

A lot of people around here have been complaining about how wet and cold it has been this spring. Truthfully, it has been a little cooler than normal, but not much. First, I find that most people have a very very short attention span when it comes to the seasons. There is also that we had slightly milder springs the last couple of years, though they weren’t the warmest I can remember. But, yeah, we have been trending a little cool.

Until last week.

The week started close to normal. And it warmed up from there. We had two days at around 90F/32C. And it was humid. We have also had some days closer to 80F/27C, which is still very warm for this part of the world at this time of year.

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If We Were Having Coffee on the 14th of May, 2022 #weekendcoffeeshare

Hello and Welcome! Lets sit here at this table looking back into the woods. It is nice and shady here with a pleasant breeze. Ah. It is warm, isn’t it? OK, it is only about 80 F/27 C, but it is very humid. It will get around 90F/32C later in the day, as it did yesterday, and will most likely feel a bit steamy. I hope the breeze keeps up! Where are we? Some of you may recognize the photo at the top as being from New Hampshire.

It was a pretty warm week and it is ending hot (for spring in New Hampshire). I did a bit outside, including running a few times, including earlier this morning. I did my normal weight exercises and such. I walked the dogs a lot and did a few walks without them (they aren’t big on walking when it gets warm). I played with cats and such,as always.

I picked up a new lens for my camera and spent a little time playing with it. I hope to get out a lot over the weekend and do a lot more! Of course,the real test will be when I kayak with it on Cape Cod, but that will have to wait. Here is a Moon shot.

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Ooops. a Little Late

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

Never a thought for anyone but himself.

I drove home, that self-righteous voice narrating my way.

He would mutter his “’Morning” and paid no attention to me after that.

And then yesterday he snapped when I dared walk into his office!

Seems to think he can do everything by himself?  Fine.  Let him cross the Styx by himself.

Imagine my surprise when I got home and found the single rose and the note apologizing for his behavior as he finished his super important project at work, the note that promised a special second honeymoon where ever I wanted to go.


word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by  Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo by @ Dale Rogerson. If you want to join or see other stories, go to the inlinkz linkup.

The Weekly Smile for the 9th of May, 2022 #weeklysmile

Hi All! It was a pretty low key week. I was active and the weather was mostly pretty good, but not too much happened. Still, I do have a smile lined up.

I am the typical guy in a lot of ways. One way is that I do not like to shop. Nope. That being said, I am not huge on getting clothes on line either, I want to see and feel what I am getting, even if it is the same thing I’ve gotten a million times before! OK, I do order my turtlenecks because I have found only one brand that works for me and they don’t have a physical store, so…

Anyway, back to the story.

It has been at least three years since I have picked up jeans or shorts, and even back then it wasn’t a one-for-one replacement – most of my clothes is at least 5 years old. When I took my summer clothes out of storage I noticed that my shorts, well, fine for sitting around the house, but they were all in pretty bad shape. And then the knee blew out in my favorite pair if jeans. Over the winter I “lost” another pair. It wasn’t the knee there, but let’s say I do not want to be arrested for indecent exposure…

Only one thing to do.

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If We Were Having Coffee on the 7th of May, 2022 #weekendcoffeeshare

Hello and Welcome! Come on in and I’ll get you a nice large mug of super strong dark roast, a cuppa tea or a hot cocoa. It is a little cool out there today, but not bad. We’ve had a cooler than usual spring, but the last week wasn’t too bad – we had a few warmer days mixed in with the cool. The weekend will be cool again, but next week we will get down right hot, with a couple of days over 87 F (31 C). Were are we? Some of you may recognize the photo at the top as being from New Hampshire.

I drove back from Cape Cod on Saturday evening. I did have a good, if low key, day down there after my coffee post, but needed to head north.

There wasn’t much happening during the week. I did run twice, and each time it was warm enough for just shorts and t-shirt (I think in the 70s/20s C both days). I did my other exercise routine three times and had massage. I walked every day, both with the dogs and without. I spent more time than usual chatting with neighbors (good weather?). I played with cats and kittens (Tiberius is doing great after his surgery).

Work was tough and I returned to over 400 emails on Monday. OK, enough about work, it is the weekend…

I practiced music, but really didn’t do a whole lot. I wrote a little but have been avoiding “real work” in my writing. I read some.

I’ll admit that I went down a couple of Internet wormholes (or are they rabbit holes? I guess it depends on if the journey is sci-fi or whimsical fantasy). Anyway, as an example, I would remember an old movie. I do a search and find the name, say Sunset Blvd. Then I would get sucked into reading about it and watching clips on YouTube. I would finally emerge and wonder why the clock said 9:30 PM when I knew it was 7! The dangers of sitting too close to the computer!

As usual I have a busy weekend planned and need to get to it.

Thanks for stopping by! If you have a coffee share I will try to visit, but, as usual, no promises (I typically hit at least 90% of people who link, though can’t leave a “like” if it is non-WP and I don’t comment as much as I should).

Natalie the Explorer is now the host of the weekend coffee share and she is doing a wonderful job. Stop in at this week’s main share page or go to the InLinkz-Linkup to see all of the other shares!

Door #writephoto

Door – Image by KL Caley

Another day, another dozen old buildings.  A lot of them were called “castles”, some “towers” and then there were the ancient manor houses, though anything newer than 15th century was right out.  This struck me as strange since most of the restoration jobs made these places about as authentic as Disneyland.

OK, I’ll admit, my sense of romance had worn a little thin after the first dozen.  As I entered, my first thought went to lack of indoor plumbing and how cold and damp they must have been.  Brrr. 

And let’s face it, it wasn’t just the castles.  I had lost the romance over pretty much everything in life. 

Life.  It had become a bore and a challenge.

No.  Romance was something for children.

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A Cold, Spring Morning

PHOTO PROMPT © Na’ama Yehuda

What a rough night.  It’s Spring, but still frigid, and last night’s rot-gut barely cut the edge before it was gone. I was shivering so much that I even spilled some of the precious fluid. 

Well, I have been shivering even when it is warm for a while, and sweating even when it’s freezing.  Stupid world.

Damn, though, it’s cold.  I can’t move, seem frozen to the spot.

I don’t remember coming to this garden, but all I see are flowers and people in heavy coats.

Here comes someone with a blanket.  Why did they put it over my face?


word count = 100

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by  Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  This week’s prompt is here and uses a photo by @ Na’ama Yehuda. If you want to join or see other stories, go to the inlinkz linkup.

Bleak House – Dickens Challenge One Month Countdown!

Charles Dickens at his Desk in 1858 – This was from Wikimedia and I make no claim to ownership

Imagine the scene.

“Smoke lowering down from the chimney pots, making a soft black drizzle, with flakes of soot in it as big as full-grown snowflakes – gone into mourning, one might imagine, for the death of the sun.”

Cheerful, no?

“Fog everywhere. Fog up the river, where it flows among the green aits and meadows; fog down the river, were it rolls defiled among the tiers of shipping, and the waterside pollutions of a great (and dirty) city.”

London is notorious for its weather.  It is in a natural bowl that holds the air, and a sea-level river runs through this bowl, pumping moist air in.  Back in the 19th century, at the start of the industrial age, when every chimney emitted coal smoke, when factories lived in with the dwellings, that heavy fog was mixed with smog.  And then there was the raw sewage in the streets and in the river, filling the air with their pungent tones.  Not pleasant.

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