Just to switch things up a bit today, I decided to look elsewhere for writing prompts. A minor setback in the book I’m writing has me needing a way to fill up my 800-word quota for the day. Creative writing is all about taking a piece of information and helping it evolve. Using a writing prompt gives us the information. It is great if you want to write about what’s outside your window right now, or what’s behind the closed door, but those stories usually end up lack luster for me. I want something that has a little more of a twist to it. Something that is real and has emotion already tied into it. So, today I went to Craigslist.org.
Inside Craigslist there is an abundance of writing inspiration just waiting to be used. In the personals section, there is a heading: Missed Connections. Now be warned that some of the things are of a very adult nature. However, there are some that are quite interesting and give enough information for a potential short story, poem, or maybe even that novel you have been dying to write. It only took me a minute of browsing before I found my first prompt.
Been hoping for the impossible – w4m
We started then we parted but it never really ended for me. I reach out here and there because I can’t convince myself to let go 100%. It’s complicated for me, if only I could hear how you truly feel.
I have hope for what seems impossible but maybe one day all of this will make sense.
I loved US
This is a woman reaching out to a man. Talk about a tear jerker, right? I liked this one for the raw emotion displayed. You can hear it in the words that the writer is depressed and finding it hard to move on after their relationship has ended. It sounds like he ended things abruptly and left her wondering how or why it ended. All the information of a full-length novel is sitting right there. You add the details and soon the story shapes up. For instance, imagine she is scrawling this across the concrete walls of her cell at the insane asylum. What if she is a serial killer and she cuts this into all her victims. As you can see I’m not a romance writer. My brain functions the other way. Point is, you have a good base for a story.
The next prompt I found particularly interesting was this:
180 Tacos – w4m
I can’t stop thinking about why you were so nice to me. Maybe because of connor or you maybe wanted to win a new customer, but thank you. You were so sweet to give me a free taco but now my thoughts keep falling on you. You’re also kinda cute. If that was you, let me know what was on my face and what you said to me.
Again, this is a woman reaching out to a man. FYI, the women ads are generally not as vulgar. A chance encounter where a man was kind to her. She cannot fathom why. Clearly she has some self-esteem issues, or is not used to being treated in a respectful manner. This act of kindness has awakened something in her, something she can’t understand, but also something she wants more of. And the real fun part, what was on her face? Is this a homeless woman, down on her luck with a bratty child in tow? She has a large dirt smudge across her face from the odd jobs she is forced to do for money. Perhaps she is a single mother just having a really bad day. How about a young girl, 16-year-old that was stuck at a carnival with her little brother and she fell head over heels for the man at the taco stand. Her face was painted with a butterfly. Could the prompt above be the thoughts and emotions of an irrational teenage crush?
Okay, I think I have made my point about how a couple of sentences can turn into something greater. Now the challenge I put to you. Pick one, or both writing prompts and tell a story. Send it to me, post it on your own blog, never show anyone. It is your story, do with it what you will. I would love to read them if any of you would like to share. I am now going to work on my own and see what kind of mischief I can get into.