Exercise Wednesday: Easter Season

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(Author’s note: This post contains religious content. It’s intent is not to push a particular religion’s beliefs on you, but to establish a context for the writing exercise.) Imagine for a minute that three years ago or so, you were just minding your business and going about your life when this guy came and turned everything upside down. When he looked at you, you felt as if he knew everything you’d ever done. And though you should’ve been embarrassed at … Read More »

Exercise Wednesday: This is not a test…

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Forty-four years ago, radio and television stations across the country received this on their teletype machines. It wasn’t a test of the emergency broadcast system; it was the real thing. (Hatefulness is the code word that was supposed to prove this was authentic.) While most people heard the Emergency Broadcast System via its tests or when there were severe weather warnings, it was initially built to respond to a nuclear attack from the Soviet Union. On February 20, 1971, someone … Read More »

Exercise Wednesday: New Is Always Better

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The tag line and inspiration for today’s writing prompt comes from the great philosopher Barney Stinson, who had one rule: new is always better. (Barney was born around 1975 so he probably doesn’t remember much about New Coke. Just sayin’.) Today’s writing prompt introduces your character to something new, and in this case new actually is better. (So, no stories about New Coke.) This could be your character’s first day in the house she fell in loved with and bought. … Read More »

Exercise Wednesday: Flying with Hurley

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If you never watched LOST, it started with a mess of people flying from Sydney, Australia to Los Angeles when the plane broke apart and crashed on a deserted (or so they thought) tropical island. Except this island has polar bears and an abandoned zoo and other people, creatively known as “The Others,” and a tape recorded by a French woman that’s been repeating non-stop for 16 years, and a monster made out of smoke that could beat the anything alive to death. After … Read More »

Exercise Wednesday: Grandma’s House

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When I gave the eulogy for my grandmother, more years ago than I care to think about, I almost made it through without crying. Until I got to the part about running into her in heaven. In my version of heaven, my grandmother had a house. And she’d come to the door to meet you and be thrilled to see you and invite you in for a snicky-snack and there’d be a beverage she had just for you. One of … Read More »

Exercise Wednesday: Single Entendre

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The name of the song in the video is Bad Things; its hook, “I wanna do bad things with you.” The meaning of the bad things in the video is pretty clear. But let’s pretend for a minute the video isn’t sung by a fetching guy like Jace Everett to an attractive young brunette. Let’s pretend that the song was sung by the cartoon character Tommy Pickles (a toddler) to his pals Chuckie, Phil, and Lil. What bad things would they … Read More »