One-Minute Writer – Ancient Life

This prompt over at One-Minute Writer asks about the job you see yourself having if you had lived hundreds of years ago.

My answer:

I could see myself as a travelling merchant. Wandering into shoddy inns and taverns, seeking the local gossip and learning which wares are most needed or popular.

At the same time, I’d take in so much of common folks’ lives. I’d have tales to share, which might even get me in good with the managers of the taverns I patronize. If I could read and write, I’d be writing up my tales on the side of all my work. If I couldn’t, I’d seek out the scribes of all the cities I visit – perhaps they’d find some interested eyes for my tales.

More One-Minute Writing, and a Friday Flash Fiction contest entry

Over at One-Minute Writer, a Friday Flash Fiction Contest came up, along with prompts for Saturday and Sunday.

I e-mailed in my entry for the Contest – I won’t share that just yet. I liked the prompt, “Conversation Piece”, and I think I got a nice 800(ish) word piece out of it. With a bit of polishing, I think I could get it published on one of my other favorite Flash Fiction sites if it doesn’t win this contest.

Saturday’s prompt was simply “I don’t know” – and since I tackled it just after waking up, you get this response:

Where do dreams come from? Those ephemeral visions that play out through my mind in the hours of subconsciousness. Often pieces of stories jumbled into nonsense, but sometimes with narrative strands complete with climaxes and resolutions.

If I can remember long enough, I can understand what waking events led to some elements. Most parts are a complete mystery, pieced together by some deeply hidden facet of my sleeping mind.

Alas, as the dreams fade with the creeping in of sunlight, “I don’t know” is all that remains.

Sunday’s prompt was “Book”, and challenged the writer to describe a favorite childhood book. I wrote:

A Great Big Ugly Man Came Up and Tied His Horse to Me. What a great name for a book, and what wonderful flights of nonsense it bore for my childhood. I read that book far more than any other, almost from the moment I could read. I can still remember two bits from it.

The title poem, about some poor bloke minding his own business and poof, he’s a post for some brute’s horse. The other was a bit about the Slithergadee, a sea monster terrorizing a beach full of cartoon animals. One confident rabbit says, “No you won’t catch me, old Slithergadee. You may catch all the others but you wo-” Great way to end a poem for kids!

Shortly after writing this, I discovered that the above poem was from none other than Shel Silverstein! The book A Great Big Ugly Man … is no longer in print, sadly. Old copies of it circulate, and they are not cheap – especially not if I order from here in Korea. Still, I may break down and splurge on it for my kids. It is a really funny and memorable book!

One-Minute Prompt – Awareness

Here’s what I wrote for the latest One-Minute Writing prompt – Awareness

The Prompt: You’re given the opportunity to write a long-form magazine article that will get wide public exposure on any topic that you like. What would you write about? What do you wish more people knew about and were aware of?

I wrote:

I wish more people were aware of common urban legends. I flinch whenever somebody repeats information that has been widely disproven. My article would take ten commonly repeated urban legends of the time of publishing and compare them to the true stories. I would dispel the prevalent myths surrounding them, and try to show people how a little skepticism goes a long way.

I should note, however, that I’m far from adverse from using urban legends in fiction – after all, people believe them because they are intriguing stories!

One-Minute Writing Prompt – Your Town

I stopped by the One-Minute Writer blog today, and I figured – why not?

The prompt for November 6 is: “Why do you live in the city you do? If you don’t have a choice (say, you’re underage and your parents picked it) what do you like about where you live?”

Edit: Here’s my slightly revised version:

I found my heart here, along winding trails and among the forests and mountains. The minute I held her hand, I know that these valleys would serve as the nesting place for our new love. Our hearts grow together in our many hikes and wanderings.

The original is still in the comments under the prompt on One-Minute Writer.

Pretty sure this site will be one of my frequent stops around the web – I love the concept and the contests they have.