Over the past few weeks I’ve been such a slacker. Dust has been collecting on my laptop, and my writing inspiration has left me. No matter how long I sit down and try to get the words, nothing comes out of my fingers.
This is where writing prompts can get the juices flowing. I was recently ‘Hanging Out’ with my critique group and did the prompt, ‘Describe a Spider’. In just 10 minutes I had the start of a flash fiction or short story.
I reached out one of my long thin arms and touched the cool surface of the stucco wall. The rough texture prickled my claw. This was not a good place for me. The last time I spun a web here, the little human that screams smashed it after its mom wouldn’t give him any ice cream. I hate humans, especially little boys. There wasn’t anything nice about the bipeds and most didn’t like spiders.
Hairs on the back of my legs raised as the swish of wind from the back door swung open. I scurried up the stucco wall, and a large nub of stucco scratched my under belly. The little human that screams didn’t have a chance to catch me. I could see him coming in any directions. My posterior row of eyes didn’t miss anything.
The sun was setting and silken thread spewed from my spinneret. It felt soothing. I know my web won’t last long, which was a shame. Works of art lost forever.
Not bad, huh? I can feel the words churning and I’m slipping back into form. Happy writing and until next week.
When I started to write fiction, my first story was a full-length murder mystery with a romance woven in. I struggled with plot points, turning points, and character development. Basically, I had difficulties with everything. The whole thing of writing 70,000 plus words was intimidating.
This is a problem for most new writers. The feeling of being overwhelmed can stall and even turn people off. But I keep chipping away at my murder mystery. It’s still not done but I’m persevering. I’m sharpening my writing skills and getting better.
However, if I had to do it over, I think I should have started with a short story or a flash fiction. Small steps are definitely a better way of easing into something. Here’s a flash fiction I did for a contest for Edgar Allan Poe inspired stories with a word count 250 words or less.
I didn’t do it. At least that is what I told everyone, and to my amusement, they believed me. Funny how a young innocent face can manipulate opinion.
It was a cold snowy night, and I just finished my shift at the diner. The walk home wasn’t something I relished. A car stopped, and I snapped at the chance to be warm.
Opportunity. It all came down to that. Months had passed since the last time I felt the euphoric plunge of the knife.
“You want a ride?”
“Yes, thanks,” I said.
“No problem. You’re the dishwasher at Ruby’s, right?”
We exchanged small talk for the next few miles. She was pretty for a middle-aged woman. I usually targeted the less desirable, but the redhead fascinated me. With each swish of the wipers, the need inside me grew. My fingers tightened around the hilt of my knife.
Thud. Thud. Thud.
That was all it took. Three downward thrusts of the blade and I had my high.
It has been days since my ride with the woman, and I smile at the power I yielded that night. The town is in a quandary wondering who did it. Fools. They’ll never figure it out. I pull my coat tighter against the cold wind and quicken my steps toward home.
“You want a ride?”
“Huh?” I lift my eyes from the road and pause.
Thud. Thud. Thud.
With my lifeblood staining the snow, I realize not everyone was fooled.
Thanks for the read. Give writing a try. You never know, you might like it.