Saturday, November 24, 2012

ForWord Writing Prompts

Today I had the ForWord writing workshops at Glasbox Studios. The class was small, intimate. I participated with the young authors in the writing prompts I'd created for them called, "What Happened?"
I gave them a sentence and they decided what would happen to the characters situation. Here is what I managed to write. I'm posting without editing.

I wish I could  have kept some of the stories they wrote from the prompts because their talent continues to awe.

Prompt ·         While I was pumping gas a man came up to me.

I had been driving for two hours. Only one more to go and I would reach my destination of Austin, TX. I hadn’t seen Lori for six months, and now we going to enjoy a weekend in Austin. It was dusk, that time of day where the light and the night meet half way in the sky. My gas gauge was a little less than halfway. Although I didn’t want to stop, I knew I had too. Austin traffic could be murder and the thought of being stranded on I35 was not something I even wanted to imagine.
As I pulled off the highway and onto the axis road I saw my only option was a desolate small town gas station. I hated these. They made my skin crawl and the color of my tan skin seemed even darker compared to the gas attendant that talked to me through brown stained dip teeth and worn baseball cap. They looked at me suspiciously as if I would steal or my tan skin would rub off.
No bathroom break, I would pay at the pump to avoid this. The pump handle was caked with grease and I hesitated to touch it. I shook my head. I was only prolonging my stay. I punched the numbers and watched at the numbers ticketed the money I would owe. $25.46 $25.47 $25.48 $25.49
                “Excuse me, ma’am?”
                I had been so engrossed in the numbers I hadn’t seen the small dwarf walk towards me.

Prompt  ·         When he woke up the dead dolphin was there.

The light streamed in through the curtains. Tiny slivers of light cast directly over my eyes, taunting them awake. My body fought hard, needing more sleep, but the light won the battle. I blinked my eyes awake. Sleep making them sticky and difficult to keep open. Then the smell hit. My nosed twitched in an attempt to identify what it was that overwhelmed my room. I sat up quickly only to find there was a weight holding me down. I tried to shake my head, to wake up, to figure out what was going on. I finally saw that I was not in my room. Surrounding me was blue. Deep blue going on and on forever and ever. It was water. I was in water. Algae and pebbles, mounds of sand going on and on. It looked like the ocean. I was in the ocean. How did I get in the ocean? Was I breathing? What was the smell? Was I smelling ocean? Tiny particles danced in front of me as I finally lifted myself off the ground. My head ached. I looked down and saw my body covered in a black suit. How did I get in a black suit?
Then it came to me. I had been scuba diving. The light was from the sun above. I looked down at my gauge and saw that my air was almost out. What happened? In a daze I tried to push my way up. I felt weak, my limbs swayed like the seaweed. As I floated paddled to the top, red waves surrounded me. I couldn’t stop to think if I was hurt. I looked down once more and saw her there, a dolphin with my spear through her middle. Her eyes were dead, but they still stared at me. Accusing. The red surrounded me even more and the smell, a smell; I knew was not there came with it.

Prompt ·         Mom, don’t throw that knife!

“Mom! Don’t throw that knife!” I yelled in a high voice.
It was difficult to keep the sound of desperation in my voice, because really, I just wanted her to throw it already. The ties on my wrists were tight. The lights were bright. I could feel the weight of the make-up caked on my skin. No one liked to be tied spread eagle. But, the show was packed tonight and that meant we had to let the energy in the crowd build. We would feel the right moment as the energy moved in waves across the room across all of them and finally onto us. Then she would throw the knife.
“Mom! Don’t throw the knife!” I yelled with more force. I yelled from my belly that was tightly girdled. She hesitated still. Her hand trembling in exaggeration.
“And now, the Magnificent Lily will throw her murderous daggers at her very own daughter! Will she hit the apple off her head? Or will she miss??”
Fred the ring master held out the ssss on miss. His voice slithered like a snake, like the snake that he was that is. We had to make sure we had the right amount of our cut after every show. He was sneaky like that.
The audience cheered. Roaring. Sometimes I thought they wanted her to miss.
“Mom, throw the knife!” I yelled again making eye contact with her. 

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