The Wolfe’s Den

Mine

 

Hello all, according to my last post it has been almost a year since I released a new story! So much has happened in the past ten months and I am just so excited to have logged back into WordPress and put my eyes on my blog again! I have been extremely busy learning and growing as both a writer and a photographer and, although it is something that I absolutely love doing, it has taken me away from my blog for some time now. Last February I embarked on the journey of writing a novel and it is this which consumes my time. In one year’s time I have completely outlined the storyline, written my first draft (In just six weeks when it takes the average writer up to six months!), edited it and I am now in the process of preparing a complete rewrite. In addition to this I have continued with my explores, collecting countless photos and story ideas to share with you all. I have even spent the night in an abandoned asylum as research for my novel and it was an experience that I will never forget! All of this on top of a full life of raising five kids and going back to school!

Having so many responsibilities has kept me from my blog but it has been weighing heavily on my mind lately. I love writing my novel, but it is a huge project which will most likely take me the better part of another two years (especially once my classes pick up). Writing short stories has always been fun and rewarding for me because it challenges me to keep my writing tight and seeing something finished in a matter of a week’s time is something I miss since writing my novel. I work hard on it each and every day but such a big project leaves me longing to see something completed. Which brings back here, where scanning through pages of my stories and seeing unfinished drafts has me excited all over again. I will be continuing work on my novel, but I have decided to set one day aside in the week to work on writing short stories. I am looking forward to completing the stories I have on hold and to create more. I have been to some amazing places in the past year and made some awesome memories…..it’s time to get to work. Watch this space for new stories and thank you for spending time among my adventures even in my absence.

 

~O

 

 

Advertisements

The Cottage In The Woods

FML Moment

As the jaggers pierced my clothes and scratched my face, I winced from the pain but pushed on, keeping my eyes on the clearing that was just out of my reach. The beautiful patch void of things that attack me. I struggled the last few steps and as I brought my foot out of the jungle, it seemed as if the vegetation came alive in one last effort to pull me into its depths as I twisted and pulled and yanked myself free, spinning out of its clutches with a victorious smile. But as I straightened my clothes and picked some leaves from my hair, something caught my eye and I looked to my left. I wasn’t standing in a clearing at all, but rather a stretch of a beautifully manicured path that wound through the woods and disappeared off in the distance. Seriously?? That’s just awesome. But my irritation was only short lived as my attention turned to the battered building on the opposite side of the path.

Nature Wins

Nestled among the lush green trees stood the withering remains of a cottage and although the sun was shining brightly, dark shadows danced across the brick, causing me to hesitate as I peered up at it. Built in 1886, these cottages were once part of a reform school for boys and served as the living quarters for its students. But this one, standing seperate from the others, had been reserved for the school’s worst offenders and research had revealed a most disturbing fact. I was about to enter the very place in which Albert DeSalvo, Known better as The Boston Strangler, had spent his youth. The thought brought a slight chill despite the horridly hot weather as I looked to the blackened windows but I shrugged it off, gave the path one last irritated look, and set out in search of a way in. The windows and doors on the ground level were boarded up but as I walked the perimeter I came upon a busted window which revealed a slight drop into the basement. I took hold of the rotted window frame, stepped onto the sill, spun around and sank into the lowermost part of the building. Taking one last look at the outside world, I turned around to take in my new surroundings.

Solo

Before me stood a makeshift cubby and in it were what was left of the boys’ shoes, laying dusty and filled with cobwebs scattered among the shelves. As I looked at them the musty smell of the basement crept up on me and I wrinkled my nose in disgust. Deciding it was time to head upstairs I looked for an exit but only found a doorway which disappeared into an endless darkness. I dismissed an eerie feeling as I reached for my flashlight and walked to the doorway, stopping just before my shoes disappeared into the abyss. Peering inside, I spotted a faint light on the opposite end of the room and knew if I wanted to continue on I had to pass through the blackened pit. Stepping into the void, I kept my mind on the light as my flashlight washed over broken dressers with their drawers littering the floor and discarded metal bed frames huddling in the corner. Hearing the scurrying of animals that I’m sure weren’t thrilled with my intrusion, I picked up my pace and quickly made my way to the stairs, climbing my way back into the light.

On File

On the first floor, the rooms looked as though they had exploded with paperwork, quickly suggesting this floor had belonged to those who were in charge of the boys. Among the mess stood a disheveld pile of file boxes extending at least five feet high. Some were opened, most were closed and although my curiosity wanted to read the contents, they were covered in a thick layer of white, dusty mold from years of neglect. As my flashlight’s beam washed over them I couldn’t help but wonder which files belonged to Mr. DeSalvo. Though he was brought to the reform school when he was only 12, his offenses already spanned robbery, assault and battery. As he went on to fullfill a lifetime of crime sprees, I wondered what kind of behavior made it into the repremand sheets within these offices and just how miserable he made his classmates who stayed here with him. My eyes lifted to beyond the files where a once-brilliant and beautiful wooden staircase led to the living quarters and I carefully climbed the discintergrating stairs to the second floor.

Wash Up

The first room I guessed to be where the boys had slept. At either end of the massive room stood two small bathrooms looking tattered but somehow still graceful with their claw foot tubs and artful radiators shining in the light of the day as it streamed through the broken windows. Although the main room had been stricken of all the beds, I could envision them lined up and positioned perfectly for optimal capacity. As I scanned the room my eyes fell on the walls and a closer look revealed the faded paintings of children’s murals just high enough to have been above the boys’ heads. As I stood before them, waiting for the shapes to take on a recognizable form, a shiver went down my spine. I wondered what it must have been like when nightfall crept its way inside the windows, swallowing the light and taking with it the comfort that it held. To spend hours under the darkness of night with the likes of a troubled soul such as DeSalvo. My guess was that the nights spent here weren’t as fun and care free as the fading murals depicted.

Game Time

The next room offered the same vast emptiness, only here there was a door on the opposite end with discolored writing on its wood. The floorboards let out faint snapping sounds and echoed throughout the room as I made my way over to investigate. As I got closer the words became clear and I stopped in front of what had been The Game Room. Standing slightly ajar I could see in, my shadow disappearing into the dakness as I looked around. There were no games here. The only thing left was peeling paint. Suddenly the walls took on a saddened feel to them as my thoughts returned to the boys once again. No parents. No one to care about them. Abandoned for such menial crimes as being truant or strong willed, left to stare longingly out the dirty windows at the lives they once knew. I couldn’t help but wonder if these boys, deemed the worst offenders, were just that or had they been meerely acting out due to the way they were treated. It was a sad thought, one I wanted to escape from so I gladly backed out of the room and slipped through a doorway leading to the top floor.

Today's Lesson

I climbed the tight stairwell, following its sharp turns until it stopped in front of a closed door. As I pulled it open the hydraulics hissed above my head and as the room opened up I found myself in front of a set of perfectly positioned desks, forgotten and frozen in time, as if the boys had just left class. The sun shone down upon them through failing parts of the roof, and after a moment of contemplation I stepped into the first row. I walked slowly, taking in the names of both students and past explorers which were carved into the wood and when I got to the back I couldn’t help but take a seat. I envisioned the boys gathered for their daily lessons, passing notes, whispering when the teacher had her back turned, ultimately wishing they were any place but here. As I reflected on the students I gazed out the window entertaining the thought that, unlike them, I was free to go, to leave this place and return to life.  A priviledge not granted to most and one which ended horribly with DeSalvo as he went on to begin his streak of terror on his unsuspecting victims. Suddenly my seat took on an ominous feel as the idea of him sitting in my chosen desk brought terror to my mind and I quickly stood up to escape the evil. It was time to leave this place and as I made my way back to the warmth of the summer sun, I did so with a quickened pace, anxious to leave his memory behind.

© Olivia Wolfe ~ 2013

When Life Throws Snowballs Instead Of Lemons

TimeToThink

© Olivia Wolfe ~ 2013

Writing comes from somewhere deep within and I would love nothing more than to be able to escape each day into my world of creating. Most every day this wish is granted but sometimes life happens, my mind is drawn away from my projects and I must put off my deadlines until another day. The snow has returned to our sleepy little town, bringing with it subzero temperatures which reached as low as ten degrees below zero throughout the night. With the promise to get even colder, school has been cancelled, unleashing the excitement and limitless energy of my kids as they run through the house chasing zombies, blast the stereo as the dance party continues and argue over whether it will be Build-a-Bear or Minecraft which will grace the computer screen.

It was my original plan for today to get them off to school, finish my latest story and hit the publish button, but that’s just not possible. As I sit here ducking from incoming Nerf Bullets, I do my best to block out the blaring sounds of One Direction along with the lovestruck cries they are causing but all concentration is lost in the process as my interest turns to discovering who will win the fight for the screen between bears and imaginary worlds. As I look around me I am assured that there will be no writing today, nothing will get accomplished. Some might say that life has thrown me lemons but with today’s forecast it’s more like snowballs which, unlike lemons, sound a lot more fun.

Through the chaos I see something else, something much better than any day of work can offer: I have been given the opportunity to spend more time with my kids. That thought is one that always brings a smile to my face, so my story will be put off another day for I have zombies to chase, a dance party to attend and a yummy distraction from electronics with a baking session to help keep the house warm. Have a fantastic day, everyone. I’m going to enjoy my Snowballs :’)

~ O

Behind The Lens

Urbex baby

Just who are the people behind the photographs you see of Beautiful Decay? Shrouded in mystery, many think we must have extraordinary attributes to be doing what we do but when we remove our masks, set aside our backpacks and put down our cameras, we are just everyday people brought together by the common bond of curiosity and the drive to explore the unseen places around us. A lot of people tend to get the wrong idea of who we are, thinking that because we find ourselves in the very places society tells us we shouldn’t be, that we are problematic and reckless in our adventures. Instantly, we are put in the catagory of delinquents and are often looked down upon. But this is not so and if you were to spend just a few moments’ time with us you would see we are just like you.

405915_489047104439280_1116219506_n[1]

Photo credit ~ Rodney Desolatestates Fotography

Coming from all walks of life, we are Office Managers, Nurses and Fulltime Moms. We are both young and seasoned in our years, working among you as bartenders, receptionists and railway operators. The only difference is that we choose to spend our down time a bit differently than most. Instead of camping, hiking, gardening or fishing, we choose to lose ourselves in the abandoned side of life. Rather than a day on the hot sandy beaches, we prefer to crawl through dirt and grime and will forgo the time spent in a dark crowded movie theater for the chance to scale fences and precarious staircases. But why do we do this? There are many different reasons.

392483_3592108124425_353728687_n[2]

Photo Credit ~ Peter Arnemann

For some, it’s about the photographic oppotunities which lie behind locked doors and capturing them before the location is reduced to a pile of rubble. For others it’s the fascination for what used to be and the history which draws us in. But what all of us carry is a deep rooted stint of curiosity and the insatiable need to explore uncharted territory. Whether we were introduced to exploring through the coaxing of a friend or had a fascination with the sight of crumbling buildings since we were children, we do what we do out of the need to discover, bringing us to the disremembered resorts, dissolving factories and disregarded chapels which dot our skylines.

312878_2099658934579_744030662_n[2]

Photo Credit ~ Cecily McGuckin

A day spent Climbing the machinery of industrial sites, walking among the medical equipment of asylums or in the midst of faded chalk boards and forgotten books of deserted schools is where we are content. Are we wrong for what we do? Does our chosen past time make us peculiar? No, it just makes us who we are. Through my travels I have had the pleasure of meeting so many amazing people and I look forward to meeting many more as I continue on my ventures, for never will you meet a better band of people than you will find among the explorers of the world. Carry on, my friends, and stay safe as we gear up and head into the realm of the unknown. Never stop exploring.

564454_4012960154716_1395091861_n[1]

Photo Credit ~ Joe Cozzi

Count My Blessings

inspiring2

I feel so blessed to have been nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award by lucewriter. To be among so much talent within this community of writers has been an exciting journey, and to know that I have impressed upon even one such writer is an amazing feeling.

Having been nominated carries a few requirments including:

*Display the Award Logo on your blog

*Link back to the person who nominated you

*State seven things about yourself

*Nominate 15 other bloggers and link back to them

*Notify listed bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requiremens

*******************************

Seven things about me:

1. My Cup is always half full…always

2. I’m a Scorpio

3. I’ve been writing since I was old enough to form sentences

4. I’m currently writing my first novel

5. I’m a mother to 5 beautiful children

6. I love a good adventure

7. I live life by Rule #32 ~ Enjoy the little things

********************************

There really are so many names to choose from that I found it difficult to accumulate a list of just 15 bloggers:

1. chriscondello

2. Cheryl Moore

3. Quiller

4. Ruann

5. waywardspirit

6. GiuliaGandini

7. Gregg Cebrzynski

8. The Daily Creative Writer

9. Lucewriter

10. jsngill

11. Katherine Givens

12. Clotilda Jamcracker

13. Jill Weatherholt

14. gabrielablandy

15. Aaron Leaman

IMG_1471

Writer Interupted

So, I’m bummed to announce that I have a bad case of Writer’s Block. I shouldn’t complain, as I have not been inflicted with it for a very long time. I’m not sure how it works for others, but it always seems to appear when there is a lot going on in my life. And it always seems to happen when I am at a good pace with my writing. When I am on track and in line to meeting goals I have set for myself. Writing is not just a hobby for me. It is a part of who I am so for me not to be able to create anything is a struggle in and of itself. I’m happiest when I am creating, which is the reason for this post. It may not be a story, but I wanted to release something since it’s been a while. I have been working hard on my next story. Writing, deleting, rewiting, staring at my screen for hours…until finally I decided to scratch it and start over, hoping that was the problem, but it wasn’t. No matter how hard I try I simply can’t form sentances. Nothing sounds right to me. Nothing makes sense. It’s been a while since I have released a story and I was excited to bring you my next adventure, but now that Writer’s Block has set in, all I can do is walk away from my projects and wait it out. I’d like to say Thank you to all those who have followed my Blog and once I find my way back to creativity I will release my next adventure. Until then, cross you fingers and wish me luck it doesn’t last too long.

~O