Monday, April 8, 2013

Week 22 (week 20 on list) Playing with Fire

Sorry I missed a week. We decided to share our germs around the house. Add to that all the work that goes into starting a company and you wonder how I find time to sleep.

Prompt: Playing With Fire
You come across a pack of matches that sets of a series of uncanny events. Start your story with "My mother always told me not play with fire."

My Creativity
My mother always told me not play with fire, but I never was very good at listening to her. Perhaps this time I should have. Just don't tell her that I said that.

It all started with my daily run. While, what I like to call a run. Anyway, I was out for my morning run, and I stopped at my usual bench to rest. I bend down to tie my shoe lace when something caught me eye. It was a small box of matches. I picked them up and put them in my pocket. I didn't want to leave them at the park; I visualized some child picking them up and playing with them.

I stood up and returned to my run. I was refreshed with energy. It was strange though, I wasn't panting, I had no pain in the side, and my legs had no cramps. Even stranger was how quickly I was running. As I continued on my regular route, I started to smell smoke, not a nice fireplace smoke, but almost a burning rubber. I tried to slow down, but my legs were determined to keep moving. So I continued to run; the smell of smoke following me. Sirens now in the background.

I caught the faint sound of someone yelling, "Mam, mam, you need to stop running." It stemmed like an odd request. Again I tried to slow my pace but my legs would have nothing to do with it. "Mam, mam," the panting voice continued. Rather than slowing down, I turned around and started running backwards. That is when I saw it.

Etched in the path was a clear line of smouldering ashes and small flames, very clearly following in my gait. Behind me, people were running towards me. They were so far away. No one seemed to even be close enough to catch me up. Who was calling?

"Mam, you need to stop running."

I looked to the right. Beside me was a police car. I was easily keeping pace with it. How was that even possible? "I wish I could," I called back. "My legs won't stop moving."

There was a moment of silence. The officer was likely trying to figure out how to respond. "This is no joke. We've had to close the park. Thankfully the fire isn't out of control yet." Another short silence. "The joke is over. If you don't remove what ever motor or jets you have in the soles of your shoes, we will have no choice but to apprehend you with force."

Motor? Jets? And the fire, the fire that I someone how seemed to be creating. I put my hand over my pocket and felt the small box of matches. No? Was it? It couldn't be. I grappled the matches and threw them towards the ground. Instantly my pace returned to one that I was more accustomed too.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Week 21 ( Week 19 on sheet) A Cold Where You....Instead of Sneeze

A cold where you (fill in the blank) instead of sneeze.

My Creativity
I woke up and could feel the start of a cold tickling the back of my throat, and clogging up my sinuses. Even though I hadn't slept well that night, I knew that I needed to go to work. I'd taken too many sick days already. This was my year for catching ever cold or flu that was going around. Before heading out the door, I took a swig of DayQuill, grabbed my purse, and headed out the door.

I didn't mind that the traffic was moving slowly this morning. Usually I'd be cursing under my breath or mumbling rude comments. Not today. Today, I enjoy listening to the radio. Today, I enjoyed the long pauses in traffic. It gave my dry eyes a break.

I parked in my assigned spot and walked towards the elevator. I knew I was too late to make the mild- run morning stops. Part of me felt like pressing extra buttons just to get some extra stop on my way to the 25th floor. Unfortunately, I wasn't alone. I didn't think the stranger would appreciate that sort of child-like behaviour.

We'd just passed the fourth floor when I felt a sneeze building up. I was hoping to contain it. I am known for my perpetual sneezing chains. Not one or two sneeze, generally four. I brought my elbow up to cover the blow, but an odd thing happened. Instead of the normal "a-cho", a loud whistle, almost like a train, echoed around the tiny space. As if one wasn't bad enough, it was followed by three more. I kept my head down, knowing that the stranger was staring at me while trying to contain his laughter. Thankfully he got off at the 20th floor.

On the 27th floor I dragged myself to my office, still trying to figure out what had happened. I'd just taken off my coat and flopped down into my blue-swirly chair, when my assistant knocked on the door.

"Did you forget about the budget meeting this morning?" She questioned politely.

Of course I had, "No no, ran into nothing but silly obstacles this morning. To top it off traffic was slow".

"Shall I let them know you are on your way?" She was still new. A student intern. Very polite and professional, but also very shy. Sometimes she spoke so softly it was hard to make out words.

I stood up and grabbed a stack of papers, which were perched on the corner of my desk, "No, No. I'll head straight there."

Just as I was heading out the door another strange train-like whistle escaped my nose. My assistant was so caught of guard that a small chuckle easily escaped her mouth. As soon as I looked at her she blushed and looked towards the ground.

"Send any calls to voice mail," I half snapped. I turned before leaving her alone in my office,"please". I tried to be calm. It wasn't her fault that I was making strange noises. If I was on the other side of things, I would likely have a hard time containing my laugh as well. Not just because it is somewhat funny, but also because of the strange newly created awkwardness. All I could do now was hope that I'd be able to make it through the budget meeting without sneezing.

The team had already finished the breakfast and were now sharing quick weekly progress reports. Trying not to make a scene I quietly grabbed my coffee and went to my usual spot by the window. I loved looking out at the city from this head. Of course on the way to my chair, my quiet entrance turned into a major production as the whistle escaped my nose. Instantly the room went quiet. I looked at the coffee now decorating my blows and sat down. Just as my bum hit the chair out came the second, third, and forth new version of my sneeze.

Instead of silence the room burst out laughing. Was it shock, awkwardness, or an attempt to make me feel less embraced. "Um," I paused. "Isn't anyone going to say bless you". Confusion. I'm sure they were all trying to figure out how a loud, echoing whistle was a sneeze.

As I looked around the room a strong scent of someone's perfume waffled over. Great, here it came. Another whistle. Again laughter.

Today was going to be a long, long day.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Week 20 (week 18 on sheet) - You See a Face Through Your Dark Window

You always look out of dark window windows and wonder if something is out there. One night when you look, a small face with bright eyes appears at the window. Write about what you do, who/what it is, and why it's there.

My Creativity
I'm about to turn the lights out in my office. As always, I stop at the door and look out the window and into the darkness. Something I've been doing since I was a little girl. Just as I am about to turn around to leave the room, I spot something. Slowly I walk towards the windows. In the distance, out the left window, I see a pair of bright green eyes. Clear as can be, there is a small face with vibrant eyes staring at me just as I am staring at it.

I tilt my head slightly, the small head mimics my movement. I return my head to the centre, the small head does the same. I worry that if I leave the room to go outside, the being will vanish. Perhaps run off out of fear. I just know that I can't stand in my office all night without knowing who it is and why it is there.

I put my hand up, trying to motion for it to wait. I walked towards the doorway without averting me eyes. I am so focused on keeping eye contact that I bump into the door. Again, I put my hand up I, asking it to stay. I hope it can see the gesture.

As quickly as I can, I run towards the backdoor. I swing it open. The noise of the springs are louder than I realize. My heart stops. I can't see the eyes. I've lost the face.

"Hello," I call out in almost a whisper. No reply. I take. Step out into the darkness. "Hello," I call a little bit louder. Still nothing.

I can't even feel the frost on my feet as I walk away from the door towards my office window. I am trying to make myself small and less intimidating. I hear the rustle of leaves. I stop, although every part of me wants to run towards the sound. I look towards the noise and standing only a foot or so away is the small face, with its glowing green eyes.

I open my mouth to speak. Nothing! I am suddenly muted of sound. We both take tiny steps forward, almost on tiptoes. We are so close that we can feel each other's breath.

"You don't need to fear me," I hear inside my mind. It is not my voice, but no lips moved on the face. "I have watched you since you were young,". I'm not sure why, but this relaxes me slightly. An odd comfort has wrapped itself around me. "You know me," she pauses. "We have met before".

A rush of strange thoughts, completely irrational, illogical, random thoughts. I see red, and water, and cords. I do know know her. She was my...No it wasn't possible. It couldn't be.

"Don't fight it. You know it is truth."

She was my twin. A twin only in utero and never in life. "I show myself to you now only because I must." There was a hint of fear in her voice. "I show myself to you now only too warn you that he is coming."

He? "He is coming? He who? He why?"

There is no reply. I strain my eyes slightly to find the small face, the eyes that were standing I front of me, but they are gone. "He who?" I scream into the night air. Nothing. Silence. No reply.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Week 20 - Jan. 29 prompt from Writer's Digest Website

You are helping out a certifiable center by organizing donate items. When searching through an old suitcase, you suicide note dated six months prior. What's peculiar is that you know the person. What is even more peculiar is that the person is still alive. Write a story about when you pay that person a visit and ask him/her about the note. (500 words or fewer)

My creativity
You are standing outside her door; you are trying to decide whether you are going to knock. What would you say when she opened the door? Was it your place to confront or maybe it was comfort her. She obviously hadn't done anything. It was just a note - a note that was hidden away in a suitcase, which had been given away.

Your hand extents towards the doorbell, while you silently wish that she isn't home. Before your hand even returns to your jacket pocket the door opens.

She looks at you, surprised. "Hello," she says quietly. Perhaps it is your imagination but her voice sounds whacky. "What are you doing here?"

What were you doing there. "Um," you paused hoping that she will say something, waiting to be invited in. "Well um," still she say nothing. "May I please come in. I was hoping we could talk.

She looks behind, studying the inside of her home. Even from the door You can tell it is a mess. "I wasn't expecting anyone, so my house is..."

You stop her, "you should see my house."

She opens the door wider and motions for me to come in, "sure, please come in."

The moment the door closes you realize that this was a mistake. It was a personal affair, and you weren't close enough to be stepping in. Or maybe that was why you should. You were a bit removed. Less emotional.

"Have a seat," she politely offers. "Tea? Coffee."

"I'm fine that you," you reply while taking a seat beside a pile of what you hope is clean laundry waiting to be folded.

She sits in the chair opposite you. She offers nothing in the way of conversation, just stares at you.

Your throat is dry, maybe you should have asked for water. "I was going through some donation boxes and I found an old suitcase," you paused waiting for some type of reaction. Nothing. "I opened it to make sure there was nothing inside, and I found this, you take the folded paper out of your pocket. "A note, oneyou wrote." You clear your throat. "I believe it is a suicide note."

She starts laughing. Was she nervous? Emberrased? You certainly hadn't expected laughter.

"I was concerned and though perhaps..."

She stops you, "I working on a scrip," she giggles. "It was a monologue for the main character."

A play. A script. All that worry for nothing.

(494 words)

Monday, March 4, 2013

Week 19 (17 week on sheet) Voicemail From Boss

You get into work and find that your boss has left a voicemail message is urgent. But what's peculiar is that it is not work relate.

My Creativity
I got into work early, threw my stuff on the floor, and was about to get my coffee when I noticed that the message button was flashing on the phone. Normally I wouldn't think anything of it, but I couldn't remember the last time it was flashing first thing in the morning. Out of curiosity i thought I'd listen to it first.

Still standing, I grabbed the phone. I entered my password. I hated the message about having a message. I mean no kidding; why do you think I want to check for messages. It took me a moment to realize that the voice leaving the message was my boss.

"Julian, we need to discuss something of a personal nature. Please come to my office as soon as you get. It is urgent."

My heart sank. She wasn't the type of person to discuss non-business related information. I didn't even grab my purse or close my office door. I went straight there. As I walked into her office, she stood up.

"Julian, please sit down."

Without hesitation I sat. I didn't even notice that there were other people in the room.

"These gentlemen are here to talk to you." She gestured towards two police officers.

It was something to do with my children. Before they even started talking I started to cry. One of the officers walked over and put her hand on my shoulder.

The other started to talk, "Julian I am sorry to say that there has been an accident." My crying turned into full on sobbing. "Your husband was involved in a..."

That's all I heard. It couldn't be real.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Week 18 (16 on sheet) Treasure Awaits

Treasure Awaits
You receive a letter in the mail from an out-of-town relative asking you to drop everything and meet him in Boston. He doesn't say why, but signs off the letter (just above his name) with the phrase: "Treasure awaits."

My Creativity
I'd just sat down with my afternoon tea and had started sorting through the mail: bill, bill, junk...I stopped. I didn't recognize the handwriting on the ivory envelope. It was addressed to me, but the return address was smudge. All I could make out was the word Boston. Who did I know in Boston?

I examined the off-white envelope, deciding whether to open it. It was sealed with a tiny sticker. The sticker looked like some type of bird, maybe a parrot. The corners were a little bit tattered; had it been dropped in a puddle. It would certainly explain the smudged return address. Without even realizing it, I started opening it up. Hopefully the inside content hadn't been ruined.

For the most part it was ok. There were some smudged words, but none that I couldn't fill in or make out. My eyes instantly went down to the signature at the bottom. What caught my eyes first was the words, "Treasure Awaits". Just below was the name, Kyler. Wow, I hadn't heard from him in years. I think the last time I saw him was at another cousin's wedding.

Dear Mandy,
I know it has been awhile since we've seen each other, but it is urgent that I see you now. I have recently moved to Boston. You must drop everything and meet me. I can't say much more in the letter; I fear someone else might read it. Once you flight is booked, text me at the following number (555)-555-5555. Make sure all it contains is a single line was time of arrive. Nothing more. I will figure it out from there.
(Treasure awaits)

I retread it a number of times. Why so cryptic? What was he talking about? I couldn't just drop everything to meet him. Or could I? My curiosity getting the better of me. I pulled out my laptop to look at flights. There was one leaving in a few hours. Could I make it? Where was my passport?

I quickly booked my ticket, leaving the return date open, and then through a bunch of cloths and toiletries in a small suitcase. I grabbed my keys and looked around the room. Was I forgetting anything? I went back in and quickly called the office, "I won't be able to come into work for the next little while. There is a family emergency. I will phone once I have a better sense of timing."
I hung up; hopefully I would still have a job to come back to.

I was so frazzled when I got to the airport. I hadn't given myself much time. Of course I peep a number of time while going through security. Eventually we concluded that it was likely the underwire in my bra. I walked briskly to the gate and sat down. I barely had time to text "AC123" before they began general boarding.

I fumble with my ID, holding up the line, and tried to pull my carry one with the uncooperative wheels. When I finally sat down in row D, by the window, I took a deep breath. I'd made it. Shortly after the plane took off, I stood to go to the toilet. It was then that I noticed my pants were inside out.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Week 17 (15 on sheet) Anonymous Love

Prompt ~ Anonymous Love
You've been playing Scrabble with an anonymous person online. After some Internet chatting, you realize that you both live in the same town and decide to meet at a local pub. What you didn't expect was to fall in love.

My Creativity
I stood in front of the mirror with my third outfit on. Nothing that I chose seemed right. The red dress was too sexy and said I was easy; the jeans and sweater were to casual; the jeans and blouse were to business like. In the end I settled on a cute little shirt, leggings, and high boots. I wore my favourite 3/4 length shirt, with a v-neck line; underneath I wore a coordinating tight undershirt to hide some of the cleavage. Why was this so hard? I was simply going to meet a friend. Someone I've known for months: for months online.

There is was, the problem. Did I really know this person? Sure we've been playing scrabble for months and chatting for weeks, but did we really know each other? You hear all the time about people becoming someone else on line, creating a new persona. He seemed to honest though. I guess they all do. I only agreed to meet him because it would be in a very public setting. I figured that nothing could happen to me there. I also made sure that my friends knew where I was going and who I was going to meet. I gave them all the information about him that he'd given to me. I felt like I was being paranoid, but you just never know.

My hair was in a simple up do and my make-up was very light. I felt good. I grabbed my long red jacket and walked out to the cab. I decided that if the evening was a big disaster I could at least drink the night away. It never occurred to me that drinking also meant I'd be more vulnerable. Maybe I should have had a friend drop me off and pick me up?

I took a deep breath and got out of the cap. Even though it was cold outside, I stood in front of the pub door. What was I doing? I didn't meet strangers from online? I couldn't just stand him up. I took my cell phone out. I was prepared to call him to cancel. I was curious though. What did this stranger look like? Was he the same in person? Plus, it seemed a bit harsh to cancel when I was already at the bar. What if he'd seen my red coat get out of the cab? So, I walked into the pub and looked around. We'd agreed to meet by the pool tables. I had no idea there would be so many people at the pub on a week night.

I'm not sure how confident I looked walking towards the crowd of people, but as I passed a table I heard my name. Did I turn around? Could I pretend I hadn't heard him? As I stood there contemplating my decision, I felt a tap on my should? Once again I heard my name, only as more of a question this time. I put on my best glad to be here smile and turned around. He was just as I'd pictured him. Medium height and build, with dark brown hair (almost black), and hazel eyes.

"Hello" I replied

"I got us a table."

He pulled out a chair for me. "Um, thank you." Was this an act? Did gentlemen still exist?

"What are you drinking?"

I had sort of thought we'd have separate bills. I should have known he'd be treating. "Um," what was all my "ums"? He'd think I was an airhead. An articulate airhead. "Vodka Seven."

"I'll be right back."

I couldn't help but look at his cute little ass as he walked towards the bar. He wore a pair of jeans that weren't too tight or too loose, so they really shaped it nicely. It felt strange checking him out like that. Would I look at my other male friends' butts? I suppose I would or perhaps I've have.

He returned to the table and sat across from me. I thought the conversation would be awkward, but it wasn't. We were two people, two friends chatting. The problem was that as he talked I couldn't take my eyes of his. I don't even remember him leaning forward and taking me hands. The sat in the middle of the table wrapped in his hands. His strong hands. They were dry. His fingers were long. I noticed the way the corner of his lip turned up slightly as he said certain words. I watched his from his Os. Something was happening that I hadn't counted on at all. I was falling in love.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Week 16 (week 14 on sheet) - Rejection Letter to Your Past Self

Rejection Letter to Your Past Self
Write a letter of rejection to your past self, explaining why you needed to go through the rough patches that complicated your life to grow as a writer.

Note: I have to be honest,I am not sure that I understand what this prompt is asking me to write. I'm not sure if it is the wording or the fact that I am still half asleep. I will give it my best.

Dear Bronwen,
Life is full of failures and successes. Sometimes life goes along smoothly and other times life gets complicated. It is these complication that often cause feelings of inadequacy and full the desire to give up. The thing is, these rough patches actually help to change the individual that you become.

For as long as I can remember, you've wanted to be a writer. I remember a number of times when the possibility of that dream ever coming true seemed impossible.

You can't be a writer because you don't know how to spell, and your grammar is atrocious. Great writers do not have dyslexia or other non-verbal learning disabilities. No one wants to read things that are littered with errors. (Thankfully the invention of computers has taken some of the pressure off. Add to that the fact that mom is great at grammar. It is also nothing that a few English courses won't help with. In fact, one day you will even teach a tight-writing course.)

You find it difficult to complete longer stories. The end never seems good enough and there is always more you can say. Eventually, you do need to let go. A natural ending will write itself. Plus, there is nothing wrong with writing short stories or even a whole series. Don't be scared to end the story and move onto another project. I know that part of it is fear, but fear of what? Really ask yourself that. No one wants incomplete work.

Don't stop writing your poetry? It is a valuable release for your emotions. Write them for yourself and no one else. If you try to fit a certain mold, the poems will come across empty. No one wants to publish poems that seem false, unless of course you pay. Don't get discouraged by the awards that you "pay to win". Lots of writers have fallen for those.

When people don't like your writing, it is not a reflexion on you. As hard as it is, you need to separate yourself from your writing. They are not rejecting you. If a publisher says "no" don't stop trying. Grow. Ask yourself why they won't publish it.

Writing requires a commitment. Are you committed? I don't think you are. Now yet. You need to really want to be a writer. You need to explore various avenues to break into the market. Look at associations and opportunities to do readings. Enter contests, write for magazines...grow your experience and your portfolio. Practice the craft.

Above all, write because you enjoy it. Write for yourself.

Yours truly,

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Week 15 (Week 13 on Sheet) - Hypothetically speaking

Write a paragraph where every sentence contains at least one five-syllable word. Begin with "Hypothetically speaking..."

My Creativity
Hypothetically speaking what would change if all animals could talk? Perhaps even only telepathically. Would it change the classification of all being? Did I spark your curiosity? I think we, as humans, tend to underestimate what animals are capable of. We automatically assume to have the highest level of intellect. Is it a means of self-preservation? Many evolutionist agree that all things living are changing; even some neurologist agree. Change of any kind is inevitable.

note: This was really hard; as you can see by my lame attempt. I wish you better luck than I had.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Week 14 - (Week 11 from sheet) Create a New Human-esque Race

Create a new human-esque race and describe it as thoroughly as possible. Be sure to describe appearance, culture, values, beliefs...

On a small island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, a small tribe of creatures exist in relative harmony. Very few people are aware of the island, much less the tribe. It has been said that from a distance they look like humans, but up close their skin sparkles and their tiny ears sit on either side of their forehead. Some have described their ears as soft tuffs of fur similar to a rabbit, others say they are harder like antlers. I say why can't they be both? Perhaps it is the females who have the soft tuffs of fur and the males have the antlers. They are of slight build and stature. Their joints for flexible than ours. Graceful? I believe it is what makes the so agile. Life on the island is very different from the societies we know.

Each home rests high in the trees and connected to the other homes only by vines. Even though children enjoy swinging to each home, elders glide across the tight-rope paths. Should they need to venture to the ground, their sharp claw like fingers make skittering up and down the tree trunks easy. Given that they are forgers, the opportunity seldom presents itself, though the older children enjoy sneaking off and venturing on their own. Always careful to blend with the nature around them. They can not risk being seen by their prey or worse a human. Only a couple of times has a human boat stumbled across their secret sanctuary.

Family is important to them, not just as a necessity for survival (strength in numbers) but also out of loyalty. From the moment of conception the fetus creates an attachment and knows its roots. Parents live in the hut opposite their grown, married children. Those who have yet to wed do not leave to live on their own. It becomes their responsibility to tend to their aging parents and to one day take the home on as their own.

While whom they chose to marry is not prearrange, each individual is only allowed to court others from within an assigned clan. The pre-selection process is assembled by the elders. Part of it is to avoid unintentional within-family marriages, but the main reason is to ensure genetic comparability. Children must posses certain skills and appearance based on their heritage.

Even though they live within family units, they work as a community. Each clan has a responsibility to undertake. Some as are simple tasks and others much more complicated. Those who hunt and those who look after the vines risk death everything the job is underway. These heroes, along with healers, teachers, and spiritual guides are revered. The community need them for survival. They are decorated in jewels and given the first right of refusal on food. Celebration are held in their honour. To work with them is a privilege.

Should conflict arise, which it seldom does, the individuals are banished to the ground. They are left in a virtually unexplored area of the forest. Should they survival and find their way home, they are welcomed back. Time as been served. The individual(s) were given time to reflex on their deeds. Should they committee any other offence, they are banished to the ocean in a raft with few provisions for survival. While there is no formal judicial system, the revered tend to play a large role. However they do look to the community for advice. Each clan sends a representative to speak on their behalf.

Earth, the connectivity between nature and energy, is what guides them. Protection of life, all things living, is the foundation of most choices. They represent the entities who provide for them. They act on the earth's request.

Most might not have heard of them or their little island, but they are with us in so many ways. It is because of them that new spices are discovered. It is because of them that creatures from centuries ago still roam. The talk the to the sun and mood. They guide the winds and ocean waves. They are the forces we can not see.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


So here's the thing, I've lost the sheet with the prompts. I think I left it behind when I went away for the holidays. Instead of looking for more prompts online, I've been busy filling my time with other things. I have now added a reminder in my calendar for every Monday morning. I promise I will do what I can to never miss a week again.