Story (Prompt) Time

Occasionally I give you all a chance to write something of your own based on written or visual prompts.  The time has come once again. But I am doing something a little different this go-round.  Below are four original illustrations of the same character (which I have named Fenster Sutcliff) engaged in different activities.  However you are not being asked to use those specific activities in a story.  I contend that we are what we do.  Therefore I would like you use the illustrations to determine his personality and character. Is he 12, 22 or 52? Is he harmless, simple minded, mischievous or malevolent? Is he human, ghoul or a sprite of some sort? Once you have that all sorted, use the profile you have created to write a scenario not pictured.

Let’s put a word count limit on it too, shall we? Say, 300 words or less.  That should give you enough room to lay something out but is limiting enough to challenge you to keep it nice and tight. I hope you have as much fun writing to this as I had creating the illustrations.  Share your story in the comments section or link back to your blog. You can even email your story to me (ahblack57@hotmail.com) and I’ll post it for you.

four activities of Fenster Sutcliff 2click to enlarge

Here is an odd little tale about an odd little man that I came up with using exactly 300 words:

Fenster Sutcliff turned out the light and smiled. He liked the dark. However, a moonlit night, like tonight, was absolute heaven. He loved how it turned everything silver as if rendered in pencil.  He liked the softened corners, the deeper shadows.

The gibbous moon was just a fingernail clipping past full—maybe only a day or two beyond—a sort of chestnut shape. “I bet for sure,” he mused with a light clap, “the cockroaches, they will soon come out tonight.”

Carl was the biggest and most highly regarded of the roaches. Margaret was a close second but she was a bit overbearing, in Fenster’s opinion. A few crumbles of blue cheese slightly past the “use by date” would do the trick. Fenster was not convinced that one could tell if blue cheese had gone bad.  Sure enough.  There was Carl, making his serpentine way towards the cheese, clicking with approval.

“How’s about a leetle walk, my friend of amber? The moon, she iss out.” He extended a bone-like finger and Carl climbed on without hesitation. The roach scampered up Fenster’s arm disappearing beneath his green sleeve. “Kee-kee-kee-kee,” he giggled, “Dat teekles like all get in.”

Back and forth, across pale skin, the insect raced on pin-prick feet. Fenster’s shoulders mounded up around his ears. “Carl! You, right now, stop thees,” he barked but the roach continued its frantic dance. He reached back, extracted the bug, hurled it to the floor and quick as a snake tongue flick, his foot bore down on Carl with a wet crunch.

Margaret was the biggest and most highly regarded of the roaches. Phil was a close second but he was a bit conciliatory, in Fenster’s opinion. “How’s about a leetle walk, sweet Margaret?  The moon, she iss out…” 

*  *  *  *  *

I’ve gone to the (albeit enjoyable) effort of creating illustrations to try to help in the inspiration department, so humor me. Please write me a little story…

Got 300 words? Share ’em in the comments section.

Illustrations by Andy Black

4 comments on “Story (Prompt) Time

  1. Cool! I didn’t try your last prompt, but maybe I can come up with something on this front.

  2. I love this! Though, I was kind of rooting for the cockroach. Some great phrasing.

    The gibbous moon was just a fingernail clipping past full—maybe only a day or two beyond—a sort of chestnut shape.

    • Lauren– Thanks for the vote of confidence. It was an enjoyable write. I always seem to think in fingernail slivers to describe the incremental phases of the moon. Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for stopping by!

  3. […] Andy always comes up with great prompts to try. He provided a neat illustration and tasked us with crafting a story around the personality we develop from looking at the picture. His character’s name is Fenster. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: