Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Sunday Drive

Take your imagination on a Sunday drive. What does that mean to you? For me, it reminds me of my childhood when my father would divert from our trips to grandma's house and take an extra half hour or so to drive along country roads just to enjoy the scenery. Write a scene that takes a character on a Sunday drive.

Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

What if...

If you were a piece of furniture what would you be? Sounds like a question from the Newlywed game doesn't it? For today's prompt, decorate the room of your choice with authentic detail. But that's not all! Take the same room when you finish and decorate it in another time or era.

Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author

Monday, January 29, 2007

Distraction

Distractions side track--sometimes from the mundane and other times from things important. Write a scene based on distraction. If you're looking for ideas, use one of the following writing prompts:

  • phone ringing
  • a news announcement
  • baby crying
  • dog scratching at the door
  • buzzer on the dryer goes off

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers
  • Saturday, January 27, 2007

    Training

  • Boot camp is a training place--strict training.
  • Potty training is a process.
  • On-the-job training teaches new skills.
  • Drivers education allows stuents to learn how to drive.

    Develop a character in a training scenario. Write the scene from either the POV of the one doing the training OR the one receiving the training. Either way, weave in elements of emotions and feeling involved.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers
  • Thursday, January 25, 2007

    Fire

    The powerful element of fire destroys, warms, and works as fuel. Write a short paragraph describing fire. Include color, movement and heat.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Wednesday, January 24, 2007

    Take 2

    Take an action scene from one of your favorite movies and write it out to practice writing movement with an active voice. Here's the one rule. Don't use the word was

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Tuesday, January 23, 2007

    Story Starter

    Start a story with this dialog:

    "Did you hit something?"

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Monday, January 22, 2007

    Waking Thoughts

    For the next week, take the first five or ten minutes of the day to jot down waking thoughts. The ones running through your mind before your feet hit the floor. These thoughts are the fibers that connect our sleep world with everyday reality. They can be creative, retrospective and future looking. Writing them down provides nuggets of inspiration unsoiled by the day's busyness.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Friday, January 19, 2007

    Ate Too Much

    Remember the old Alka-selter commercial? The "I ate too much; I ate to fast" slogan was one than many people related to then and today. For today's prompt, create a setting ripe with the opportunity to eat too much--but your character is on a diet. How do they do?

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Thursday, January 18, 2007

    First Person POV

    Write a short scene using first person POV. Choose one of the following subjects or choose one of your own:

  • Christmas memory
  • Playing a sport
  • Finding the perfect pair of shoes
  • Buying your first car


  • Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Wednesday, January 17, 2007

    Ice Cream--Hot Day--Action

    Part of learning to show not tell deals with showing action. Today's prompt places an ice cream cone in the hands of a character. The weather is hot and humid. Show them eat the treat.

    Here's the challenge: Use the following character possibilities to practice difference techniques and results.

    3-year-old--chocolate ice cream
    14-year-old--chocolate chip mint in a sugar cone
    35-year-old--stressed woman looking for comfort food
    83-year-old--reliving his childhood through a special treat

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Tuesday, January 16, 2007

    Animal Behavior

    Writers strive to show not tell. One way to accomplish this is behavior. Don't tell the character is angry. Show it. For today's prompt we'll have fun with animal behavior.

    Choose at least one of the following:

    bird
    dog
    cat
    horse
    or choose another animal

    Now SHOW that animal:

    angry
    relaxed
    happy
    hungry
    moody

    Keep these tidbits in a journal where you can find them later.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Monday, January 15, 2007

    Story Starter--The Falls

    Ice storms, snow and unseasonable weather combined with a friend's recent vacation highlights after a hike to Zapata Falls inspired today's story starter. Use the following sentence as the first sentence of a short story.


    The falls froze into an undulating 30 ft high silver and white sculpture with clear cold water running behind it.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Sunday, January 14, 2007

    A Long, Long Time Ago...

    The 70's tune American Pie is an 8 1/2 minute song loaded with snippets of life as the author Don McClean saw it at the time.

    A long, long time ago...
    I can still remember
    How that music used to make me smile.
    And I knew if I had my chance
    That I could make those people dance
    And, maybe, they'd be happy for a while.

    Lyrics for the entire song are loaded with story ideas. Pick a line or two and use it as a story starter. You can have characters shivering in February, or good ol' boys drinking whiskey and rye. Who knows, maybe you'll get more than one story from this prompt. And while you're at it, a nice tune will be rolling around your head.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Saturday, January 13, 2007

    Picture Worth 1,000 Words

    Find a snapshot of people you don't know. Write a short story inspired by the photo.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Friday, January 12, 2007

    Clouds In The Night Sky

    I stood on the back deck and looked out at the overcast sky. Faint back light defined fluffy gray clouds as if looking up at dirty cotton balls spread across a glass top table.

    Take the time to look at the night sky. Gather some descriptive tidbits to have on hand when writing. Not every night sky is black. Studying the sky as a writer is what inspired my book Pumping Your Muse. You never know where it will take you.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Thursday, January 11, 2007

    Juggling

    Create a busy character juggling an overwhelming list of things to do. Write it with humor as things spiral out of control, but bring the scene to resolution.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Wednesday, January 10, 2007

    Your Favorite Writing Experience

    Today's prompt is more a journal entry.Write about your favorite (or one of your favorite experiences as a writer. Is it when you figured out the missing piece to your plot? When an editor contacted you with an acceptance letter? A phone call? A fan telling you how much they liked your writing? How about your first publication?

    Here's the challenge. Write it as a piece of creative non fiction.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    P.S. You know there's a market for these stories.

    Tuesday, January 09, 2007

    My Town

    Create a scene in the town where you live, but change a few things including the name:

    Add one or all of these items:

    • A grove of trees
    • A body of water
    • A new business
    • An apartment complex
    • Demolition of an old building

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Monday, January 08, 2007

    Stomach Ache

    Describe a stomach ache without using stomach or ache more than once in the scene.

    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Sunday, January 07, 2007

    Unpacking

    Recently I moved to another state. I stored boxes for months. Opening these boxes later, memories of other times flooded my mind as I handled things forgotten.

    Today's Prompt:

    Have your character find a box that's been packed for 100 years or more. What's inside? How do they feel about opening it? Where did they find it?

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Saturday, January 06, 2007

    Crossroads

    Wooden plaques nailed to a post point to nearby towns or villages at a fork in the road. Take your character down one of these roads only to find out they made a wrong turn. But here's the twist. It's a good thing.

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Friday, January 05, 2007

    Nerves

    Writers craft words to convey emotions. It's so easy to say a character looked nervous, but that's the author telling information. Write a sentence showing each of the following acting nervous without using the word nervous:

    1. a young boy as his father pulls in the driveway
    2. a woman waiting in the doctor's office
    3. a man waiting to meet someone

    Once you complete your sentences, choose one and use it as the first sentence in a short scene or story.

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Thursday, January 04, 2007

    Tricking the Senses

    My husband and I drove along a country road running between my daughter’s home and ours. The pungent odor of skunk leaked into the car. Our headlights shined on the small dead animal, but it was gray. An opossum. We rolled down the window and let the fresh air clear out the smell.

    The following day we drove by the same smelly dip in the road. I studied the animal one more time—I was almost positive it was an opossum. By the third day, it became the topic of conversation as my husband and I both said it looked like an opossum but sure smelled like a skunk. I hate to admit it, but the fourth day we were wondering if GA had a different kind of stripeless skunk.

    Finally, I saw the real culprit wedged between the tall grass and blacktop. But the smell almost had me convinced that the opossum was a skunk.

    For today's prompt, generate a scene that seems to be one thing but is not.

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Wednesday, January 03, 2007

    Naming Your Character

    Pick out a name for a character based on meaning. If the name means warrior--create a warrior. If the name means chosen one, put your character into a setting where they fulfill a prophecy. Research names, find the meaning and write the scene.

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author
    or my fantasy blog for writers

    Tuesday, January 02, 2007

    Death of a President

    With the death of President Ford filling the news, take time to write down your feeling, the facts as you known them and preserve a bit of personal history.

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author

    Monday, January 01, 2007

    Huddled in the Cottage

    Write a short story starting with this sentence:

    They huddled in the cottage listening to the strong wind howl, hoping they wouldn't lose any more roof tiles.

    Donna
    Check out more articles and classes on writing at the Inspired Author