Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge – August 16, 2017

Welcome to the Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge! Join me in finding inspiration in unexpected places. Each week I post a new prompt intended to spark ideas for whatever writing project you’re working on—a journal entry, a poem, a short story. The possibilities are endless!

If you wish, consider sharing a link to your response in the comments below. There are a few simple rules, so please check them out below before posting. This week’s prompt might be a little out of season again, but it’s never the wrong time to give a thoughtful gift.

If you are still fretting about gifts, instead of rushing out and buying the hurried present, try this option. On nice paper write down what you wish you could give each person, and a little description why. Choose things they really need or would want vs. material things, i.e., good health, a publishing contract, a baby girl, one more day with Grandpa before he passed away.

Thanks for playing along! Happy writing!

Rules for posting to Wednesday Writing Challenge:

  1. Must be family friendly.
  2. Hate and intolerance will not be accepted.
  3. No pornography, erotica, graphic violence or excessive profanity.

Have fun. Be creative. And let’s write more words!

Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge – August 9, 2017

Welcome to the Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge! Join me in finding inspiration in unexpected places. Each week I post a new prompt intended to spark ideas for whatever writing project you’re working on—a journal entry, a poem, a short story. The possibilities are endless!

If you wish, consider sharing a link to your response in the comments below. There are a few simple rules, so please check them out below before posting. This week we turn in a slightly different direction – editing!

Good grammar counts! Use today (this week!) to revise and edit earlier pieces.

Thanks for playing along! Happy writing!

Rules for posting to Wednesday Writing Challenge:

  1. Must be family friendly.
  2. Hate and intolerance will not be accepted.
  3. No pornography, erotica, graphic violence or excessive profanity.

Have fun. Be creative. And let’s write more words!

The Maze Runner, by James Dashner: A Review

I have been eager to read The Maze Runner, by James Dashner, since I watched the movie adaptation back in 2014. At the time, I wasn’t aware it was based on a book. When I found out, I was excited to read it. Thus, it seemed perfectly appropriate that this book join my 2017 Reading Challenge list as #4, a book that became a movie.

The Maze Runner is the story of Thomas, a 16 year old boy who joins a group of other boys ranging in age from about 13-18 who have all been sent to live in what they call The Glade. But there’s a catch. No one can remember anything about their life before The Glade, or why they were sent there.

The Glade sits inside a giant maze, and every day the boys of the Glade run through it, mapping it in detail and searching for an exit. Every night, the walls of the Maze move and the doors close, locking out horrible, mechanical beasts they call Grievers. This has been going on for two years without success. Until Thomas arrives. Then everything changes. I found myself pulling for Thomas and the other boys to succeed.

I have to admit, this book didn’t quite have the “wow” effect I was hoping for. There were a few quirky things I found difficult to get past, especially early on. Maybe this was because I’d seen the movie before reading the book.

Overall this book was a fun read. It’s well written, the plot moves quickly, and I couldn’t help but care about the characters. And the sequel is set up nicely in the end so that I am now eager to continue reading the story. I will say this, however, if you haven’t read it yet, and you haven’t seen the movie, read the book first.

Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge – August 2, 2017

Welcome to the Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge! Join me in finding inspiration in unexpected places. Each week I post a new prompt intended to spark ideas for whatever writing project you’re working on—a journal entry, a poem, a short story. The possibilities are endless!

If you wish, consider sharing a link to your response in the comments below. There are a few simple rules, so please check them out before posting. This week’s prompt:

Pretend you’re a guest at a famous Hollywood wedding. Write about the wedding, describing who was there and what everyone wore.

Thanks for playing along! Happy writing!

Rules for posting to Wednesday Writing Challenge:

  1. Must be family friendly.
  2. Hate and intolerance will not be accepted.
  3. No pornography, erotica, graphic violence or excessive profanity.

Have fun. Be creative. And let’s write more words!

Technology Gone Awry

The writing prompt for this week is: Include a piece of technology that goes berserk. I love this one because it could really be anything. At first glance, it might sound like it has to be science fiction. But technology has existed since humans created the first tool.

What then could go wrong with the technology? In every age throughout history, things go wrong with the latest in modern advances. Whether that is a simple stone dagger used by a caveman, or the most sophisticated AI of the future, things can always go wrong. The stone dagger breaks during a crucial battle. An intelligent space ship malfunctions and turns off the life support. Things go wrong.

This makes me wonder what sort of things might go wrong with technology in my own novels. Mostly I write fantasy fiction with a medieval-type setting. Technology consists of things such as lyres, horse-drawn carts, swords, and siege engines.

I have a science fiction novel I’m working on that involves kidnapping, espionage and intrigue on an intergalactic stage. Guns, bombs, spaceships. With a little magic thrown in for good measure. Now, what could possibly go wrong with technology like that?

Then there are my middle grade adventures that are based in the current day world with current day tech like cell phones, tablets and skateboards. Skateboards may be “low tech,” but things can still go wrong.

How then, do I include a piece of technology gone bad? The prompt seems to imply that the technology itself goes berserk, like a robot with a short circuit issue or AI that goes rogue. But what if it is the human element behind the technology that has gone bad?

I had some fun with this prompt, playing a little “what if?” game to explore the various technologies in my novels. For this exercise I chose to stick to low tech gadgets such as a skateboard belonging to one of my boys from the Silver Compass Adventures, and the lute played by the bard in one of my fantasy novels. This led to imagining a variety of scenarios ranging from humorous to embarrassing to downright disastrous. Some of these ideas could even end up in one of my novels someday.

This is where writing is a lot of fun. If a prompt isn’t exactly working for you, build on it, move beyond it, play around with it and make it something that works for you and your writing. I challenge you to create your own “what if” scenarios involving the technology in your own writing, whatever that might be. Have fun with it and see where it takes you. I guarantee it, the ride will be worth it.

Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge – July 25, 2017

It’s Wednesday Writing Prompt Challenge again! This is the place to find unexpected inspiration to encourage creativity.

I post a writing prompt, or exercise, here each Wednesday. Follow the prompt precisely, or use it to spark your own writing—a journal entry, a poem, a short story. If you wish, consider sharing a link to your response in the comments below. There are some simple rules, so check them out below before posting.

Thanks for playing along! Happy writing!

Camp NaNoWriMo, July 2017 edition, is nearly over. If you are participating, I hope things are going well for you. But whether you are, or not, there’s always room for a little inspiration. Once more the writing prompt this week comes from NaNoWriMo’s Young Writers Program Dare Machine. I dare you!

Include a piece of technology that goes berserk.

Rules for posting to Wednesday Writing Challenge:

  1. Must be family friendly.
  2. Hate and intolerance will not be accepted.
  3. No pornography, erotica, graphic violence or excessive profanity.

Please, have fun. Be creative. And let’s write more words!

The Worst Birthday Party Ever

For this week’s writing prompt challenge, the dare was issued to send my characters to the worst party ever. Now several scenarios came to mind, none were quite as compelling as the birthday party I’ve already written for one of my middle grade novels. The book is written from the perspective of Mike Triplett who is the birthday boy.

The birthday party is hard enough for Mike, but for his twin sister AJ, it gets pretty awful. Between having to share her birthday with her brother and a baby sister who doesn’t recognize boundaries, things aren’t what AJ had hoped for. While this scene doesn’t belong in the novel, it seemed worthwhile to spend a little energy writing it anyway. I hope you enjoy it.

AJ’s Worst Party Ever

After the purple monstrosity of a cake, AJ didn’t think anything else could go wrong with her birthday party. And for all that, the cake wasn’t all bad. It was her favorite kind of cake on the inside, chocolate with raspberry filling. Her very best friends were here, and they would stay the night tonight. Her brother and his friends were leaving them alone, mostly. What could go wrong with what was left of the party?

“Time for presents!”

The shout rang out across the back yard and a dozen kids thundered into the family room where two piles of gifts sat waiting in the center of the floor. One pile was a tumble of blue, red and superheroes, while the other one had an overabundance of pink and white and unicorns. AJ wondered when everyone would realize she had long since grown out of unicorns.

“Pretty!”

Gabby made a mad dash for the pink pile, and before anyone could stop her, had snatched up a gift and run off with it, tearing the paper as she went.

“Gabriella! You get back here with that this instant!” Mother’s shout was about as futile as an umbrella in a hurricane.

Jonathan grabbed for the little girl, but Gabby jumped away with a shriek and a laugh. AJ could do little more than look on in horror as the contents of the package tumbled free of the gift wrap and landed right in Tommy’s lap.

Tommy held up an economy sized package of girls’ panties, and all the boys hooted in laughter. AJ only wanted to die and sink into the floor. Jonathan, seeing what it was, snatched it up and stormed out of the room.