Thursday, April 20, 2023

Q is for Dr. Quedlin #giveaway #AtoZChallenge 2023 Proof of Existence #WEPFF #UrbanFantasy

Post - April 19th to 21st 2023

A to Z Theme:
A behind-the-scenes look at and inside scoop on PROOF OF EXISTENCE, Book Two of the Existence series.
📚 Proof of Existence - Published April 4, 2023


Excerpt from Proof of Existence by @JLenniDorner

Excerpt from Proof of Existence by @JLenniDorner

Excerpts from Proof of Existence by @JLenniDorner

Not a traditional "flash fiction," to be sure. I've never seen this movie, so I wasn't sure what to do for this prompt. I looked up more details about the movie and picked these four scenes. 
  • Heath has bravery. He isn't afraid the "bad guys" will come for him.
  • One small event can change a life forever. 
  • There is a secret being kept from Wend's family, much like Guido keeps a secret from his son and other children. 
  • Nazis made a point of saying some people didn't fit in and would never belong. That's a far stretch from how Wend is feeling here, like one of the many they hated and put into concentration camps. Still, plenty of the terrorized victims probably did want to go home and do simple, normal things, like drinking chocolate milk. 
Yikes, I'm not even close. 
But there is a glimpse of (Dr.) Sir Heath Quedlin, D.C., M.D., F.A.C.S., D.G.S., Ph.D.
(It isn't mentioned in the book, but a knighted doctor would go by "Sir" instead of "Doctor.")

So, there's a separate flash fiction for WEP below, because I had no real way to connect my book to that movie.

QUESTION — How would you tie these to the film in under 1000 words?

Enter the GIVEAWAY

#AtoZChallenge 2023 letter Q 💻📚🛒📦😃📖#AtoZChallenge 2023

Please check out the April Blogging from A to Z Challenge

#WEPFF April 2026


By J Lenni Dorner

quis = son

To equate the genocide committed by the Nazis to the genocide of Native Americans would be wrong. The two should not be compared. 
To use the feelings of a character in a movie to recreate the probable thoughts and feelings of a real person from long ago for a work of flash fiction, however, is acceptable. That is what this is. I used Lenni-Lenape words for the family structure because that feels the most right to me. The dad character is based on a real person, though little is known about him beyond his bravery and efforts. The title uses antonyms from the prompt. 

MPA: 607 
Tag: A father prepares his son to leave with him in hopes of surviving. 

"Here, quis. You see the bend in the sapling?"

"Our trail marker." He claps his hands, knowing he's right. 

My broken heart fills with pride. "Yes. We must break it."

"But this one leads to the place we buried her."

I swallow hard, the river of tears barely at bay. "That is why we must break it. If they deduce the code, they will find her body and take her and the others from their rest. Hurry now, help me keep them hidden."

The monsters hold nothing sacred. A burial place becomes holes where they leave feces. It matters not to them that there is no river or creek to cleanse after. 

We spend hours removing as many trail markers as possible. Some trees are too old or sacred for us to undo the marks. One marker is made of stone. I kneel before it. How long has this stood? Since the crow first flew? Since the wolf first howled? How many of my people have crossed this path to get here? 


Do I honor them by what I do today? Is my quis better off alive? The monsters outnumber us. They have taken so many of our resources. And too many have been lost in the battle for our home. 

I pull my quis nearer. "All that this stone means, and all those who have come to it, that is in you now. You must carry all we are in your heart. We keep only what we can pass on to our children. Remember the stone, my quis."

I smash it. The sacred stone does not go easily. I must do it again and again until I can lift my arms no more. They cannot take what no longer exists.

The arms of a hunter. By my bow, our people were once fed. The last arrow I shot was into the heart of my own ànati. The monsters took her. We all know what they planned to do. By the time I was near enough to draw back an arrow, she was already as naked as the babies she helped bring into this world. All of her knowledge, all her love, gone. By my arrow. Better than the fate they planned. 

We sleep beside the smashed stone. It will be the last slumber on the land of our people. I'm grateful for the ants on my arm. At least they will remember we were here. 

"Come, quis. It is time to wake." I hold a handful of berries. Will we ever taste these again? 

"Nuxa, when we leave this forest, how will my ànati find us?"

"She was taken by the monsters on the great water. We will not see her again."

"What if she swims home? The great turtle might bring her back to shore."

The monsters took her while I went for my ànati. It had been only a few days after we buried my other child. Sick from the blanket. We should not have traded with the monsters. A wolf is a wolf and a dog is a dog, it was unwise to believe we could sway the spirits to form a mutualistic relationship with monsters. 

"If the turtle brings her back, the turkey will guide her to us." There is no coming back. I haven't the strength to tell him this again. Today we will join the others as we leave our home. Perhaps others will keep the monsters at bay. Maybe one day our people will return to our land. We may again be known by our name, not by the name of the monster who claims ownership over us.


  1. *wipes away tears* Devastating and beautiful. The evil of some humans is beyond belief. This line is so powerful "We keep only what we can pass on to our children".

  2. Loving the story. I'm not sure most readers know about bends in trees that are cultivated to create directions.
    Btw-- thanks for use of your wifi, but you were right, the connection suxxxxxs. Google didn't even know who I was. 🤦‍♀️ Hope you and yours are hanging in. I know it's rough right now.
    And Life is Beautiful, and so is Heath. 😉 I'm just saying.

  3. The flash fiction story leaves a lump in my throat. Good writing, J.

    Ronel visiting for Q:
    My Languishing TBR: Q
    Queen of the Gods: Hera

  4. You never fail to hit the heart. Devastation so deep, but the hope that lives in the child, precious. A great entry.
    And thanks again for the shout out via Operation Awesome!

  5. Hi JLenni - an interesting take on the prompt ... I admire your take and combining these aspects of life on different continents - there's so much to learn about our culture and history - cheers Hilary

  6. Absolutely stunning. What a powerful story! Best wishes for your book. I guess the giveaway is only for the US.

  7. What a moving story. All the best with your book!

  8. This story is magnificent and so tragic. Wonderful writing

  9. JLenni, magnificent in its tragedy. You've used your storytelling power to communicate with us! This line especially entranced me: "We keep only what we can pass on to our children". Hope lives on in our children. Thanks for this moving story which will be remembered for some time to come.

  10. Every injustice is wrong, its weight is as much as any of the others in history. Indigenous Peoples the world over were treated, are some are still being treated, in the most inhumane and unjust, unimaginable ways. Thank you for sharing this tragic and gorgeously written flash at WEP. Brilliant use of the prompt.


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