Writing Prompt:Teen Fiction and Magical Things

I’ve started reading a lot of teen fiction lately. It’s not only easy to read and entertaining, it give me and my lovely niece something to talk about.

I have notice that there are certain trends in these books. They (at least the one’s I’m enjoying) tend to be written in the first person. They also seem to have outsiders as their main protagonists. Finally, there is usually some sort of fantasy or supernatural element about them.

I’m currently reading the “Shiver” series by Maggie Stiefvater. It’s about a young girl and her relationship with a boy who turns out to be part of a pack of werewolves. I’ve managed to get through most of the first book of the trilogy in about a day in a half. Not bad going.

What I would like to do is challenge you to write an outline or the premise for a teen fiction book.

Describe your protagonist (they should be 13-17 years old). Describe what they look like, where they come from and what challenge they’re going through. Try to flesh it out as much as possible. Try to include things like their family life, whether or not they have friends or siblings (who is going to be there in support when things get weird), do they have odd habits or flaws? What obstacle are they going to have to overcome? In the case of my current heroine, she’s in love with a werewolf and I suspect she might be one herself.

Have some fun with it and when you’re done, break your summary down into a few key bullet points:

  1. Who is your character
  2. What is their challenge
  3. What are their flaws
  4. who is in the sporting cast
  5. how will they triumph after a few obstacles to overcome?

Have fun, happy writing!

 

Writing Prompt:David Bowie and other miracles

The whole world is united in mourning for the death of a great and talented individual. David Bowie made it ok to be unusual. His art inspired people for decades and we’re all feeling the loss. I’ve been listening to his music and remembering where I was in different stages in my life when I heard his various songs of saw him in films. I thought of Labyrinth, The Hunger and The Prestige. All fun and all mainly because of him.

This prompt is not designed to specifically honour only David Bowie, but it is there for you to think about the various artists, actors and musicians that have inspired you throughout your life. For this prompt, think about someone who had provided inspiration and think about why. Did they make you change the way you think or write? Write everything you can remember about this person and write about what they have meant to you. Try to make it as personal as possible. Draw from specific memories about how they have made a difference.

I’m going to go write some more and listen to “Life on Mars”, which was not only a great song, but a cracking TV series as well.

RIP David.

Quote for the Day

It’s tougher than Himalayan yak jerky in January. But, as any creative person will tell you, there are days when there’s absolutely nothing sweeter than creating something from nothing.

– Richard Krzemien

Writing Prompt: A Day in the Life

Each day is different. There are so many variables that determine what the day has in store for each of us. The weather can influence what we wear, what we do, where we go and who we meet. A small, unexpected turn of events can change your day, your mood, the outcome of plan. Even people who have the same routine, however mundane, never live the same day twice and it is the little variations in each that makes a day special for better or for worse.

Try a little experiment. When you wake up in the morning, check the time and write it down. I know it’s a pain, but set an alarm for one hour later. When the buzzer/ring/tick goes, stop what you’re doing and take a note of it. Do this throughout the day, mapping out each hour until you have 10 to chose from. Pick an event/activity/moment out of the 10 you’ve gathered. Draft 500/1000 words about why you were doing what you were doing in detail. What were the reasons and steps that lead you to that moment. You might find that your mind wanders to reasons that go beyond the obvious.

The other day I found myself taking a mental snapshot of the moment I was living and I traced back the events that brought me there. It’s funny, so much can rest on a word or a thought or a gesture that at the time you think couldn’t possibly matter. I sat talking, quite simply and happily with someone and thought, how fortunate that I turned left instead of right…

Have fun, be specific, don’t edit.

 

Writing Prompt: A Day in the Life

Writing Prompt: The Snapshot

There are stories all around us. Everyone we see has a history, every scene our eyes capture has a story behind it. I once took a camera to the beach in Malibu and took random photos of people walking on the pier, sitting on the sand, leaning on the rails of the boardwalk and eating candy floss with their friends. When I developed my photos and studied them, I saw strange little subtleties that told me that everyone in those pictures had some sort of narrative hidden underneath the surface of the picture I took. I captured something interesting, an expression out of place, body language, the nature of relationships.

Try this: Take a few random snaps of strangers and study them. Create a story based on what you see in the images.

I’ll throw one in here to get you started.

the girl on the steps

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