Wednesday Writing Prompts XXIII

1. Write a revolution. It doesn’t have to be a bloody, cut-off-their-heads kind of revolution (unless that’s your thing)– it could be any kind of revolution. It could be a peaceful, loving, John Lennon kind of revolution, it could be a revolution like the Industrial Revolution, or any other kind of revolutionary upheaval you can think of. Be creative, try new things, and try to inspire the spirit of change within your reader, force them to think and leave them pondering what they can do to make the world a better place.

2. Write a classroom romance. Start simple– two people meet in the classroom and eventually fall in love. Be creative– the people can be of any age, in any kind of school, and you might even consider using the setting of the classroom to frame the piece, making all the action, from the first “hello” to the first kiss and beyond bound within the classroom. Make it real, make it your own, and put the effort into it that it needs for your reader to truly feel the piece the way you do.

3. From the Ghibli museum to the De Young museum, there are a million different ways to bring different fragments of history and art into the public eye. Spend some time brainstorming up a unique and interesting museum of your own that has its own interesting allure to it. What’s on display? Describe the art/artifacts that passerby might stop and ponder. Now, write a story about this museum or a tale that occurs within it.

4. Jot down some notes about a dream you’ve had (or several) and then do the same with a dream you have (either for yourself, for a friend, the world, etc.) What aspects do they have in common (if any?) Even if they’re totally different, integrate them and see how different parts fit together to inspire you. Now, write your story.

5. Previous decades have shown instances of cross-cultural transference (like the appearance of “Black Bart” Simpson on T-shirts, or white rappers like Vanilla Ice) Try taking something you’re interested in or even that you choose to research and understand better, and then encroach upon it with another ethnicity altogether. (Ubangi Country/bluegrass? Mormon deathmetal? Bollywood’s take on Star Wars?) Be creative– the wilder the jump, the better. Next, turn it into a story.

6. Take a moment to consider the phenomenon of video dating. What do you think about it? Jot down some notes, brainstorm some ideas, and put yourself in the shoes of someone who either chooses video dating, makes a career out of making the videos, or anything else. Get inside the minds of the people involved with it and put it down on paper. Now, write your story.

7. Write a story about two people who fate keeps tossing together. Make it interesting, not just a story of two people who cross the same stretch of street on the way to work or meet every Tuesday in the grocery store– create the worlds in which each of them lives, the realities of which they are very much a part, and then add the bit of spice and fate that makes those two worlds come together suddenly and when least expected.

8. Write about a time when you were genuinely frightened, when you felt the icy talons of fear steal across your spine and seize your heart. What happened? Where were you? Fill your tale with imagery that brings the reader right into your shoes and forces them to feel the same fear that you did. Show them what it means to truly feel the fear that you experienced first hand.

9. Craft a story that holds some interesting and unique tribal religion at its core. Whatever the action, the plot or the theme, have it revolve and interact with this religion. Ask yourself– what kind of issues might crop up around the animistic beliefs of a people who believe in the spirits of the earth, the trees, the rocks, bright orange fungus and the stars. Be creative, make it fun and mystical, full of mystery and charm.

10. Write a story about the life of someone whose occupation is outside the “norm,” something that you would never normally think of, like a professional sound-effects maker, the person who crafts the firmware coding that makes your computer hard drives know how to function, or the person who does the janitorial work for a place like NORAD or CERN. Be creative, have fun and bring to your reader a world they might never normally see or even know exists.

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