Posted in Short Story, Writing, Writing Prompt

Word Magic: Jump

Whenever I need to exercise my brain or get the ideas flowing, I like to play a game called “Word Magic”. It’s pretty simple to play: just think of a random word and then create a story that revolves around that word.

My latest attempt was using “Jump”


For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a debilitating fear of heights. Just the thought of standing on a chair to hang a picture in my kitchen sends my stomach on a violent roller-coaster ride. Using an elevator? No thanks, I’ll take the stairs. Going to a friend’s housewarming party on the fifth floor? Not a chance. Taking a plane to the super-important conference that I absolutely can’t miss? I’d rather take the train, thank you very much.

My friends and family say I’m ridiculous. They joke that I need professional help to overcome this phobia. They laugh when I’m on the verge of tears after they literally shove me into an elevator.

I never argue or get upset with them because, deep down, I know they’re absolutely right.

This fear stems from an incidence back in elementary school, an incident that is permanently seared into my brain. I am not athletic by any stretch of the imagination and that day almost twenty years ago proved it, both to me and the dozens of other kids watching on the sidelines. The activity sounded easy enough, just run and jump over some hurdles barely a foot off the ground. You’ll finish in five minutes tops, the teacher promised us.

I made it half-way around the track before the inevitable happened. I was actually quite proud of myself for making it that far and I let my guard down as I waved to my friends, to signal my accomplishment for all to see. And then my ankle caught on the hurdle and I fell face-first onto the asphalt.

I was dazed at first, then the pain set in. I looked over to see all the other kids, my ‘friends’, laughing hysterically and my teacher shaking his head as he casually strode over to me. The skin of my face was busted and bleeding badly, but the shame felt so much worse. My entire body recoiled with sobs and all I wanted was to just disappear and transfer to another school.

Every time I run into one of my old classmates, they smile and ask me if I remember that day I face-planted in front of half the school. I just laugh and say, “Not really”.

This phobia has constricted me and controlled me for most of my life and I’m finally ready to concur it, once and for all. The local gym has a track and a few hurdles that I can rent by the hour. As I stand here at the starting line, the asphalt under my feet and the sun glaring in the distance, I take a deep breath and put one foot forward.

To beat this phobia, all I have to do…is jump.

Posted in Short Story, Writing, Writing Prompt

Word Magic: Bus

Whenever I need to exercise my brain or get the ideas flowing, I like to play a game called “Word Magic”. It’s pretty simple to play: just think of a random word and then create a story that revolves around that word.

My latest attempt was using “Bus”…


Hayley sat bolt-upright in her seat of the inter-city bus, watching without truly seeing as other passengers boarded and settled down around her. Her mind and heart were racing. She wanted out; out of this damn city. Away from all the heartbreak and disappointment. She wouldn’t be disillusioned anymore. No, her mother was never coming back. There would be no one at home to welcome her, to support her.

The bus swayed as the driver pulled away from the curb and Hayley felt herself relax. Within a matter of days, she’ll finally be able to start over, to live her own life.

After her mother left, Hayley was left with an apartment with no electricity or running water. She worked dead-end jobs every night and dropped out of high school. The only salvation she had was the man who lived next door, sweet Mr. Fieldwick. He was in his seventies, retired, widowed. Never questioning her choices or criticizing her efforts, he just smiled and offered to cook her dinner.

No judgement, just acceptance and love.

Until the day his heart gave out and Hayley had to watch him die.

She promised him through the tears that she would be happy one day, that he could look down from Heaven and smile proudly at what she’d become. It wouldn’t be the same without him, but she would never forget his teeheehee laugh or his words of wisdom or the way he smelled like coffee and morning sunshine…

Jolted back to reality by a pothole in the road, Hayley realized for the first time that a young man around her age was seated beside her, humming softly and swaying in rhythm with the bus. Surreptitiously wiping her eyes, she smiled slightly in greeting. His returning grin was breathtaking.

Holding out his hand, he said, “Hey. The name’s Sam Fieldwick. What’s yours?”

 

Posted in Writing, Writing Prompt

Writing Prompt #2

Some Ideas:

  • A hacker(s) has infiltrated the country’s most used electrical company and has shut off power to millions of buildings across the country. When the government attempts to temporarily switch to another company, it too is shut down. How can the FBI track a hacker(s) without any electricity?
  • Is the Vice President a serial killer, or is someone close to him/her planting evidence that is near impossible to discredit?
  • What is the strange goo-like substance being found in the water supply? Is it man-made, or something else entirely?

Good luck!

Posted in Writing Prompt

Writing Prompt #1

Courtesy of http://www.visualprompts.weebly.com

Some Ideas:

  • An extremely rare species of wolf that is commonly mistaken for a black bear because of its size. May also be contributed to werewolf rumors.
  • A moth that looks strangely like a fairy, with flitting wings that help it disappear within seconds.
  • A flower that blooms only during a full moon and withers in the sunlight.
  • A magical creature that can only be seen by blue-eyed people.
    • Or like a Thestral, which can only be seen by people who have witnessed death:

I like this prompt because it opens up a whole world of possibilities. It can spawn a supernatural short story, a 400-page novel, a beautiful poem, or a painted canvas.

Good luck and happy writing!