Thursday, March 31, 2011

Delightful cult heroes

Choose one of the following randomly generated scenarios and see where it takes you. (Feel free to mix and match.)

The story is about a eccentric creation who is a bride and an utterly delightful creature who is a cult hero. The setting includes a mist enshrouded palace. Include the following words: cure truth complete

The story is about a emotional giant who is an explorer and an anti-social griffin who is an outcast. The setting includes a ruined labyrinth. Include the following words: ring rejection indifference

The story is about a confused ferret who is a royal and a secretive mouse who is a story teller. The setting includes a muddy carnival. Include the following words: loom illusion act

The story is about a crimson alien who is a pawn broker and an aggressive android who is a priestess. The setting includes a smoky side street. Include the following words: report hyperdrive repair

The story is about a hard-boiled dwarf who is a monk and a wise-cracking demon who is a playwright. The setting includes a busy bakery and cafe. Include the following words: silhouette sacrifice gain

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The rock or the hard place?

Your character has finally made a decision between two seemingly right choices. It could be they've decided which of two perfect people to marry. It could be they've decided tax dollars should go to the development of faster than light travel rather than cheap, renewable energy. It could be they've decided to slay the troll that has been threatening the village with ravaging for a dozen years unless tribute is paid to him.

And then your character receives a message from their character's future self persuading their current self why they need to make a different choice.

And then, to put a twist on it, once the character is persuaded, have a message from the future self of the other choice arrive to persuade the character why they need to make a different choice.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Reject a hit

Writer's Digest has an ongoing challenge to write a rejection letter for a hit book. So far the winning entries have been for The Cat in the Hat and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

You can "take the WD challenge by humorously rejecting a hit in 400 words or fewer. Send your letter to with “Reject a Hit” in the subject line."

Or, as a personal challenge, write a rejection letter for a hit movie, a popular product, a successful internet site, a mega franchise.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Deviant DESERT

Deviantly describe the scene without using the names of the objects. Don't use rocks, sand or bushes. Dig into what objects look and feel like rather than telling what they are.

Capture the senses' experience. What does it feel like to your whole body? Does it get inside your clothes? Does it get inside you? What does it smell like? Taste like? Sound like?

Go further and find a mood or personality of the place and let those inspire the descriptive words you choose.

Try unexpected adjectives and vivid verbs. For example, svelt, sleek, oozing, crouching aren't words normally associated with places, but can create fresh images.

(Hopefully the images I've collected for the picture version of Deviant Descriptions have an other worldly feel to them for you and don't just look like mundane old Earth!)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tangos and tea

Write an introductory article for travelers interested in exploring the unique culture of Earth that has evolved around a species that needs two (!!) versions to reproduce. Touch on a few of the fascinating oddities visitors really must see. Provide tips for blending into the culture unnoticed and some dos and don'ts of social contact.

(Maybe you'll come up with some great ideas that could have improved the list of movies linked in the image.)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Transformation overload

Okay, I've been trying to cobble together a writing prompt from the tropes generated by TV Tropes story generator for 3 days. As is true of most generators, and especially true of the complex ideas from TV Tropes, the items generated don't always work together.

Not a problem. I just have to compile the ones I like and generate more until I have a full set. Except at TV Tropes, once you dip in you can get lost for hours!

But one page I landed on seemed especially fertile for story ideas. Here's an attempt at compiling every transformation idea ever used more than once. So take one and come up with a fresh approach.

The Shape Shifting page linked also has a long list of shape shifting tropes (which are different from transformation tropes!) And each of the links below goes to a page with an longer explanation and loads of examples from literature to video games to music. But, trust me, just use the short explanations listed here. TV Tropes has got to be one of the biggest black holes on the internet. You really don't want to go to there unless you've got hours to spend.


Tropes related to transformations as an event:

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

GRAVEly deviant


.~          How does one Deviantly Describe?          ~.

Short version ...
From the given mundane, snoozer (though not so snoozer today!) of a word, generate as many different-from-each-other descriptions as you can. (Set a timer for 10-15 minutes if you wish.)

Longer version ...
Is preserved at the HOME of the first Deviant Description.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Queasy quince

Quenton felt queasy after eating quince and quail.

Keep going, using as many "qu" words as possible.

Quick one today! #126 from Unjournaling: Daily Writing Exercises that Are NOT Personal, NOT Introspective, NOT Boring! by Dawn DiPrince and Cheryl Miller Thurston.

No lotion for that

No lotion for that

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Corporate voodoo

See other cool illustrations by Michael Heald
List at least a dozen reasons why the world's largest corporation would hire a voodoo priestess to practice her craft in their corporate office.

It might help to imagine specific corporations rather some generic evil money grubbing empire as you list ideas. Bank of America, Apple, Exxon, Disney, Coca Cola and Wal-Mart would all have different reasons.

This is one of those "Why couldn't I come up with a cool out of the box idea like that!" that I just had to share from Inkprovoking. :-)

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Easy cheesy

"Why do you have ten cans of Easy Cheese?" Lorni stared into her friend's shopping basket.

Ari grinned with a touch of wickedness. "You'll never guess."

So what's going to happen with those ten cans of processed squirt cheese food product?


*What Would Bart Simpson Do?

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Accidents happen

They say, "Accidents cause History."

Begin with a great event (either positive or disaster, real or imagined) and tell the story of the ordinary, maybe even bumbling accident that began a series of events that resulted in the big event. Maybe it's a cat that knocked the muffins from the table that began a war between neighboring planets. Or a dropped jar of pickles that ended in the collapse of the kingdom's economy. Or a phone dropped in a puddle that resulted in two celebrities getting married?

You can write it as a story or as a sort of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie series of events. (You can view the pages at the Amazon link.)