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Totally Tolerable: Vocal's Wonder Twins

Lena's Ridiculously Verbose List of Vocal's Top Totally Tolerable Creators Returns

By Lena FolkertPublished 8 months ago β€’ Updated 8 months ago β€’ 7 min read
Top Story - July 2023

There doesn't seem to be a shortage of Vocal creators who write stories to showcase their favorite fellow creators. It's one of the things I love about this platform.

In fact, no matter where you are in your own co-dependent, love-hate relationship with Vocal, there is simply no point in denying the one sure thing that Vocal has done for each of us ....


... No disrespect intended, dear Vocal team... you know us "artists" are a bunch of flip-flopping, wishy-washy, can't make our minds up, overly egotistic, constantly needing reassurance flibbertigibbets!)...

The best of us (yes, I'm including myself in the "best" -- he he he) all share this one thing in common: We simply love our fellow creators. We are one another's biggest fans! So, it's really no surprise that so many of us want to recognize our fellow creators! Whether it's with an article listing our favorite creators or an interview with them, we want to help shine that spotlight!

Personally, I've done both of these things, but I stepped back from it because so many were doing it. I didn't want to step on toes! But honestly, I really LOVED doing both. I am especially fond of conducting interviews, and I'm seriously thinking of resuming that passion. But I digress (I do that a lot!)...

Recently, the wonderful Mariann Carroll asked me if she could interview me for her series, and I was, of course, delighted!

I have been a terrible interviewee, however, taking up to a full week to respond to her questions. But to her credit, she is forever patient and kind! And hopefully, that interview will be out soon this month, so keep your eyes peeled, because we just KNOW that Vocal will Top Story it, right?! πŸ‘€πŸ‘€

Anywho, Mariann asked me the dreaded question:

"Who are your favorite Vocal Writers?"

My reaction, of course:

(AAH! I just love that movie! 😜πŸ€ͺ)

So, basically, I wrote Mariann a novel... literally, if you printed that Facebook Message out, it would be thicker than the large print version of War and Peace!

That's when I realized... I really need to get back to writing about my favorite creators. And this piece is dedicated entirely to my TOP TWO! I can't help it, guys. I love you all!! But for more than just the fact that they're related in real life... These two have to go together and be their own article!!

Okay, okay, okay... I know what you're thinking right now...

**** AHEM! ****

SO... Without Further Ado...

My Top 2 Vocal Creators:

Cathy and Gerald Holmes!!!


Okay, so why them?

How dare you ask that! It's so obvious!

So, I guess we'll conquer Cathy first because well... ladies first!

Cathy Holmes!

Cathy is just a FREAKING CLOWN!! At least that's what I told Mariann! But wait, before you get offended, here's an example to prove my point!

And if that doesn't get you, than surely you've read her Abigail stories, right?!

But here's the awesome thing about Cathy:

She's SO much more than just a clown! Cathy is also an amazing poet and fiction writer who uses humor to tackle some of life's most difficult problems. Maybe that's why I love her so much!

Cathy's characters are real and raw. Believable. When you read her fiction, you can see her characters, because you've met them before. Her plots are believable and real, full of the same kind of humor and pain that we've all learned life brings. But they're also full of hope. Sometimes subtle. Sometimes barely perceptible. Sometimes grabbing you by the collar and screaming at you like that annoying gym teacher that you wanted to beat the living tar out of with his own clipboard! But hope nonetheless!

I'm just so beyond stoked that Vocal has figured out her genius! I see those top stories coming regularly, Cathy! And I tell you, I might be jealous, but not once do I ever think, "why would this get top...?" NEVER! Absolutely deserving! All of them!

I wanted to pick a fave, but yeah right... So, here's ONE of my faves:


And then there's Gerald!

So, to be honest, I fell in love with Gerald's writing first. Actually, I think he may have been the first Vocal creator that I was blown away with. Now, we all have our faves, and for some, maybe it's another creator who's received more recognition or has gotten more of a cult following... but Gerald's writing is EXACTLY what I would expect of some of my favorite authors.

Gerald pours himself into every word. That typewriter is indeed covered in his blood! And like his sister Cathy, Gerald has received his share of Vocal recognition with numerous Top Stories and a couple Runner's Up/Honorable Mentions in the challenges! All well deserved!

The best writers always say to write what you know, and Gerald does. But he also puts that poet's, that writer's twist on every word. When you read one of Gerald's stories, you can FEEL their realness. There's a genuine and vulnerable honesty to the characters, and to the writing itself. It's just so... HUMAN! The following is one of my favorites... that song... that video... I cry every time!

I also love that when I read his writing, and Cathy's, I am able to completely disappear into their world. They write in a way that really captivates! I LOVE THAT!

A while back, I was privileged to be a part of a collaboration of writers working off the prompt "winter." I was the first writer in the series. And I have to say, everyone in the collaboration did amazing! Seriously... awesome writers. Each. And. Every. One!

But I messed up when I wrote that story... I wrote something that was deeply close to me. Something I genuinely loved. I didn't mean to. I just wanted to give my best to the group. But then, I learned a valuable lesson.

NEVER collaborate with other writers on something you love unless you KNOW they are on the same page with you!

(EEK!! I love that movie too! Zachary Levi... total babe! πŸ˜πŸ™ˆπŸ™‰πŸ™Š)

Again, it's not that the other writers weren't good!! THEY WERE AMAZING! But it didn't feel like the story I wanted. Again, my fault!

But then Gerald wrote his portion. And it was just PERFECT! I really felt like he did honor to the character and world I'd built. But more than that, I felt... understood! He got me. He got my writing. He got my characters!

And that's probably what I love the most when I read Gerald's writing!

I feel understood. I feel heard. I can feel his soul in his writing. And it's beautiful! It's also one of the first male voices I've read (or known) that made me feel differently about men... that some are wonderful, safe, kind, GOOD people!

And Gerald is. You can just tell!

Now, I've removed my first installment in this series from the Vocal platform because I have high hopes of building on this wonderful world I created, but here is Gerald's installment. And while we did not win, we were BOTH runners up in the BIG fiction contest Vocal had... you know the one.... the one with the book coming out! Now, I wish we'd made it... but honestly, I'm glad we didn't. Because one day... one day... Me and Gerald are going to write this series together!!!

(Hint, Hint, Gerald!!)

So, here's his chapter! (I just love this so much!)

Okay, okay, I know what you're thinking...


So, I'm basically done and ready to step down from my self-appointed podium, but before I do... I just want to put this out into the universe and hope it swings back at me one day...

Cathy and Gerald... the next great duo?!

I'm thinking the funnier, cleverer, more real... Douglas Preston/Lincoln Child collaboration!?!

I would SO read that!!

Cathy and Gerald...






About the Creator

Lena Folkert

Alaskan Grown Freelance Writer 🀍 Lover of Prose

Former Deckhand & Barista 🀍 Always a Pleaser & Eggshell-Walker

Lifelong Animal Lover & Whisperer 🀍 Ever the Student & Seeker

Traveler 🀍 Dreamer 🀍 Wanderer

Happily Lost 🀍 Luckily in Love

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Comments (27)

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  • unknown person8 months ago

  • Congratulations on your Top story, well deserved

  • Thanks for coming back & sharing a couple more of your favorites with us, Lena. Gerald & Cathy are always good reads.

  • Naveedkk 8 months ago

    Great story. Congratulations!

  • Congratulations on your Top Storyβ€οΈπŸ˜‰πŸ“πŸ’―πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰

  • Naomi Gold8 months ago

    Cathy is one of my favorite creators for all the reasons you’ve stated here. I wasn’t familiar with Gerald’s work, but thanks to you I will be. I’ve been active here a few short months, and it has already been life changing to be in a community of writers. This was such a warm and fuzzy read. Congrats on Top Story! πŸ₯‚

  • Melissa Ingoldsby8 months ago

    Very well done and I feel you highlighted some excellent talent here! πŸ₯°

  • Babs Iverson8 months ago

    Wonderful, totally wonderful!!! Therfore, I loved it!!β€οΈβ€οΈπŸ’•,

  • Dana Stewart8 months ago

    Awesome choices, and fun story Lena!

  • The Dani Writer8 months ago

    Full on LIGHTS HIGH AT BEAM! Great job Lena! A great top story to read.

  • Cathy holmes8 months ago

    Yay! congrats on the top story, my friend.

  • Kendall Defoe 8 months ago

    I loved this! Top Story indeed!

  • Heather Hubler8 months ago

    Congratulations on Top Story!

  • Tiffany Gordon 8 months ago

    Great job Lena! Cathy & Gerald are fabulous writers as well as fabulous people! I enjoyed this very much. I ABSOLUTELY loved the Humor sprinkled throughout too! :)

  • Dana Crandell8 months ago

    This was an incredibly fun read and I couldn't agree more with your choice of creators!

  • Heather Hubler8 months ago

    I love that you referred to them as the Wonder Twins!!! This was fantastic, Lena!! What a wonderful way to lift up these amazing creators (really just amazing people in general). Awesome work!!

  • This Article stood Special while I read it and I agree with the words you used to describe these wonderful creators β€οΈπŸ˜‰πŸ’―πŸ“I Love both of their work as well❗

  • Cathy holmes8 months ago

    Aww, Lena. I am so humbled to be one of your faves and want to say I feel the same about you. Thank you for this. Somebody loves you, and it might be me (don't tell anyone, okay. Btw, I love being a flobbertgibbet. I have no idea what it is, but hell yeah!

  • KJ Aartila8 months ago

    Awesome article! I wanted to be a little snarky, but I can't! I agree so much! Gerald and Cathy are wonderful people and talented writers whose works I always look forward to diving into! 😍

  • Gerald Holmes8 months ago

    Lena, thank you so much for this. I feel so humbled by your words. You have to know that you are one of my favourite writers, not just on vocal but anywhere. I've been dealing with a lot lately but you have lifted my spirits more than you know with your kind words. You have brought tears to my eyes and goosebumps to my soul and I thank you for that.

  • Donna Renee8 months ago

    Loved this so much! 😁😁. Your writing style is so fun too.

  • Judey Kalchik 8 months ago

    The mystery is solved! I wondered where that chapter went because your team hit it out of the park!

  • sleepy drafts8 months ago

    This is awesome!! Yesss, Cathy and Gerald!! πŸ‘πŸ»β€οΈ

  • That was a fun read and they are all great Vocal Creators and something to aspire to

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