Daily Writing Prompt #32

Daily Writing Prompt #32

It's late August, and you pull to a stoplight behind a school bus marked with the name of a school district you’ve never heard of before. As you sit and wait for the light to turn, the back door of the bus opens, and zombie kids hop out and start marching towards your...

What Is Setting in Writing?

What Is Setting in Writing?

Setting is the background against which you tell your story. At its most basic, setting includes the place and time of your tale -- the where and when. But to really nail setting and tap into its power to grip the reader and pull him into your world, you need to dig...

Daily Writing Prompt #31

Daily Writing Prompt #31

After a night of camping, you develop a terrible sore throat and decide to go to the local clinic. The doctor comes in, checks you out, and says you have an infection. He gives you a shot and tells you to wait a while before leaving to make sure you don't have a...

50 Twitter #WritingPrompts to Stoke Your Imagination

50 Twitter #WritingPrompts to Stoke Your Imagination

TOC Ideas ... They're the writer's stock-in-trade. We take the seed of an idea and transform it with our words into a world full of characters and events and other ideas. If we've done our job right, readers are left wanting more and full of their own ideas about what...

Daily Writing Prompt #30

Daily Writing Prompt #30

You normally wouldn't pick up anyone so late in the night, but the old man looked so pitiful that you couldn't pass him by. Now you find yourself in a zombie nightmare: do you eat him and take the chance that his aged meat will make you sick, or drop him off and go...

Daily Writing Prompt #29

Daily Writing Prompt #29

You go to confessional and tell the priest that you hit a dog on the road. He prescribes a dose of Hail Marys and Our Fathers and sends you on your way. That evening, after a day of church and football games, you walk into your dark house, and the door closes behind...

Can a First-Person Narrator Die?

Can a First-Person Narrator Die?

Let me state right up front ... YES, your first-person narrator can die. Your story is your story, after all, and you can make anything at all happen within the confines of those pages. That said, whether you should kill your first-person narrator is another story....

Daily Writing Prompt #28

Daily Writing Prompt #28

You're having dinner with your new girlfriend and her parents. Her mother serves a pot roast that tastes strange and is really tough to chew, but you're polite and don't mention it. After the meal, her father goes to the front door, engages the deadbolt, and turns...

What Is a Mary Sue Character?

What Is a Mary Sue Character?

"Mary Sue" is a shallowly written character with few flaws. "She" can be either female or male, though the latter is often called "Gary Stu" or something similar. Mary Sue has her origins in fan fiction, but she has been identified in more traditional forms of...

Daily Writing Prompt #27

Daily Writing Prompt #27

At Christmas, your mother brings your daughter an old teddy bear she found at an antique shop. After your mom leaves, your little girl runs to you crying because she dropped her bear and "broke" it. When you look closely at the stuffed animal, you find that an arm is...