Writing prompt – viewpoint

Abandoned hotel1 cr James HainsworthThis abandoned hotel overlooks the Twin Lakes, one of the most famous viewpoints on Azorean island of Sao Miguel. Stripped of all its glitz and promise, the building echoes with the laments of regretful ghosts.

Abandoned hotel by James Hainsworth

Why not use it as the setting for an unsettling story?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – roots

Ficus Macrophyla Australia cr Judy DarleyI met this Australian Banyan tree at the Jardim José do Canto botanical gardens on Sao Miguel, the Azores. Planted on the island in 1845, this particular Ficus Macrophyla Australia is the kind of tree that might well serve as a fairytale citadel. The root system and half-hollow trunk feel ripe with metaphor and possibilities.

Use it as the starting point of a fantastical tale.

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – restless

Terra Nostra tree by Judy DarleyI just got back from visiting São Miguel island, part of the Azores archipelago. The volcanic landscape there is like the Jurassic Park movies crossed with Labyrinth, with touches apparently dreamt up by Terry Pratchett.

So when we saw this tree at the Terra Nostra botanical gardens, we were almost certain it was just taking a rest before setting off to get on with its day. Any moment now, we thought, it will give itself a small shake and poddle away.

I particularly like the fact it’s crossed a few toes contemplatively.

What do you think? Turn it into a story.

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – dystopia

View from church tower by Judy DarleyLooked at from above, much of England resembles a jigsaw puzzle, from neat fields and allotments to orderly lines of picnic benches.

Use this scene as the starting point of a dystopian tale. What rumblings of dissent could be heard just below the surface, if you listen hard?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – refuge

Home by Judy DarleyI picked up a leaflet recently about Refugee Week at b-side. It asked: “If you could never return home, what would you do and where would you go if you were granted just one minute to be there?”

What a question. Use this as the starting point of a tale on displacement, family or whatever else strikes you as you consider that possibility. Put yourself in the shoes of someone far from home, and imagine the refuge they might crave.

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – science

Krakow Botanical gardens palm house cr Judy DarleyI’ve been immersed in Tania Hershman’s beautiful collection Some Of Us Glow More Than Others, and was struck with how elegant, creative and fantastical the stories seeded in science can be.

I took this photo in the palm house of Krakow Botanical Gardens, Poland. What concoctions could be brewing here? What investigations might be underway, and with what aim? How could you use that as the root of a tale?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – derelict

Ruin, Villahormes cr Judy DarleyI have a quiet abiding love of abandoned hollows, where you can feel a sense of the people who once lived there, and of the wildlife and plants reclaiming the space now.

As you walk past an empty building, imagine the characters who filled it with light and cheer. Then add in a weary travelling pausing for a night’s rest. What might they encounter?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – alone

Old man and pigeons by Judy DarleyWhile looking after my nephew recently, we visited a local park. An old man was minding his own business feeding pigeons and squirrels from a carrier bag of monkey nuts.

My nephew wanted to make friends with him and help feed the wildlife, but it was clear the gentleman wanted only to be left alone. I got the impression this is something he does every Saturday, or perhaps every day, and that it is a source of rare pleasure to him.

I also had the sense he prefers animals to humans and has perhaps learnt to be wary of people. It made me wonder what his story is, whether he lives alone, or may even be homeless. How did he come to be like this? What might happen if a child insisted on befriending him?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – curious

Child holds beetle cr Judy DarleySpend time with any young child and you’ll soon realise they’re overflowing with curiosity. Why is the sky blue? How does the moon stay up? Where do beetles fly away to? How does electricity work?

Instead of throwing your hands in the air with exhaustion (now, there’s a funny mental image), use one of these questions as the start of a story, trying to answer it in as elegant, funny or enchanting way as you can.

Why not?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.

Writing prompt – glimmer

Easter egg cr Judy DarleyA few weeks ago I was leaving my house, when I spotted a small foil-wrapped egg on the footpath. Intrigued, I picked it up, then put it in the bin. Days later, a glimmer of gold caught my eye and I found an identical egg nestled in the leaves of a dandelion like a small precious meteor.

#Writingprompt Where could these eggs have been coming from, and why? And more curiously, if they’re intended as Easter offerings, why were they appearing so early?

If you write or create something prompted by this, please send an email to Judy(at)socket creative.com to let me know. With your permission, I’ll publish it on SkyLightRain.com.