Wednesday, July 3, 2013

A Pirate Curse Writing Prompt

It's been some time since someone on the ship challenged the crew and passengers to a writing prompt so I'm stepping up to have to walk the plank after this one.

Recently, I discovered this fantastically awesome writing prompt blog that includes details on core writing anchors for each prompt. It not just about the creative side of a writing prompt, but also about exploring the type of writing that is needed in certain scenes. Does it need to be persuasive? Informative? Should it develop a narrative that includes clear event sequences?

What do you need a scene to accomplish to more your story forward. This is something I desperately need to work on, the idea that every single scene must move things forward.

So, today I'm offering up this writing prompt to not only stir your creativity, but to also look at it as an exercise in considering at what part of the story is this scene happening and what is your goal with it.

Curse away ye pirates of The Revenge!


MsHellion said...

Should ye light-finger the treasure within,
Be advised, pirate, your sorrow begins.
Forevermore, your days will be haunted by strife,
Plagued by taxmen and dear relatives all of your life.
No concern will be about you, only about your bank,
And you have your greediness here to thank.
Finally once every nickel and half-penny is spent,
You’ll wonder where all your good friends have went,
But don’t judge them harshly for their thievin’ ways—
It’s clear by your actions you share the same DNA.

Terri Osburn said...

Yeah. I can't top that. But I'll think on it a bit, maybe have some rum, and see if I can come up with anything. Love the sound of this writing prompt site.

Di R said...

Wow! I cannot even begin to come close to Hellie's. Of course, my brain refused to come up with anything at all.

I am currently juggling my regency and my contemporary. Every time I try to focus on only one, the other one starts moving. So I'm not fighting it any more.

I too am wondering what that website is.


Sabrina Shields said...

Hellie - that is fabulous!!!!

There should be a link for the writing prompt site up there - but here it is again:

Terri Osburn said...

Put your hands on this chest
And you'll know no rest
Your ship will sprout holes
And you'll lose all your toes
Try dancing, me hearty
With no balance to party
And you'll wish you stayed true, yo ho.

Terri Osburn said...

Not great, but best I could do with only a Wendy's burger for fuel. :)

I love that Tumblr site. The three personality one looks like the most fun. If we each have three personalities in our brains, what are they?

I'd have to say a stubborn old woman, an ambitious do-gooder, and a deeply serious child.

Maureen said...

Three personalities? That's all?

Let it be known ta all who seek treasure
It not be found in this here chest
The key ta good times, merriment and pleasure
And knowin' yerself as bles't
Resides in knowin', measure ta measure,
The truth a' what is best

And tho this box be holdin', me dear,
The best the world can offer
And no, tain't a keg a' nasty old beer
Ain't vodka, whiskey nor scotch in this coffer
Nothin' ta bring ya ta tears
But it may spark the best a' yee authors

Be warned, if ya open without tankard in hand
It be seen as lack a' respect
This stuff requires, nay demands
That ya be prepared ta lose yer perspect

Screw this...

Show some respect when you open this chest
I left some rum on the ship
Not just the rum of common day drinking
But my treasured bottle of the Kraken.
If ya don't treat it right, the old monster will come and drag you into the deep.

...I need some coffee. And a muffin...

MsHellion said...

I think the hamburger provided sufficient fueling! Well done!!

MsHellion said...

I'm still snorting at Mo's--she outdid us both until she said, "SCREW THIS, treat my rum right or you'll pay." *LOL* Perfect!

Maureen said...

Rhyming is hard! Even when I cheat...

P. Kirby said...

Don't follow directions, and can't write poetic curses to save my life. Instead a scene w/teenage treasure hunters came to mind--short curse, included....
As pirate treasure chests went, it was terribly disappointing.

Emma studied the thing that Julian and Tom had pulled from the freshly dug earth. Rather than the classic wooden box, wrapped in aged leather and secured with brass fittings, the chest was an ordinary, plastic storage bin. The dark green plastic showed no signs of aging or wear and in fact, carried the distinctive chemical stink of new. Instead of a creaky lock requiring a skeleton key, the top was held closed with silver duct tape.

“You’re fucking kidding me,” said Julian. He shoved a hand through his black dreadlocks, and panned a look at the rest of the group, his dark eyes almost pleading, as if he hoped that someone would say it was all a joke and that the real treasure was several hundred yards away, in the next corn field.

With a sad shake of her head, Emma turned her gaze to the map in her hand. It certainly looked authentic: coarse handmade paper, the edges crumbling, the condition so poor that she had slipped it in a plastic sleeve to keep it from falling apart.

Heck, the map even came with a curse, scribbled in fading, water-smeared ink on the lower right edge:
A flip of the lid
Lays bare the gleaming that’s done been hid.
But ware the siren’s keening,
For in her song, the devil’s own luck is teaming.

“Well,” said Bonita, who stood at Emma’s side, eyes also on the map, “at least we don’t have to worry about the curse.” She shoved her glasses up her nose with a sniff that reeked of “I told you so.” Typical Bonita, thought Emma, always playing Scully to the rest of our Mulders.

“Wait!” said Tom. Still standing in the hole that he and Julian had dug, he set his foot on the edge and made to climb out. Except the ground crumbled and his foot slipped, and he fell forward, stopping himself with his hands. With a sigh, he climbed out on his hands and knees. Standing, he fumbled in his hoody’s pocket, pulled out a bag of trail mix and pushed a dirt-crusted hand into the bag. Tom was built like an emaciated scarecrow even though he was constantly eating.

He offered the bag to Julian who waved it off with disgust. Emma and the rest waited impatiently, while he grabbed another handful of trail mix, liberally dusted with filth from his hands, shoved it in his mouth, and chewed and swallowed. “What if it’s real, and-and this,” Tom gestured at the unassuming plastic box, “is supposed to throw us off, make us think it’s a fake?”

“Bullshit,” said Julian, bending down to start picking at the duct tape.

“You sure, Julian?” said Tom with a sardonic note.

For an instant Julian actually paused before ego got the better of him and he reached for his pocket knife and began to saw on the obstinate silver tape.

Maureen said...

More, Pat. More...

Terri Osburn said...

What's in the rubbermaid?????

Marnee Bailey said...

Wow, lots of creativity. I need to think on this more. Rhyming is a requirement?

Terri Osburn said...

Guideline, Marn. Guideline.

MsHellion said...

I don't think it was even a guideline. *LOL* I thought Sabrina just wanted us to write like a madwrite of a cursed pirate treasure...I did the poem to get out of coming up with a backstory. *LOL*

quantum said...

Brilliant pirate poets!
I shall be forever in shade when such brilliance illuminates this deck.

However as a writing prompt perhaps I might quote from Sophie Kinsella's 'The Wedding Night' when a toddler, with no real understanding of the goings on keeps asking
"Have they done it yet ... has he put the sausage in the cup cake?"

Doesn't that prompt some imaginative thoughts! LOL

quantum said...

Drat ... I forgot the curse:
Open this chest and forgo cupcakes (male pirate)/sausage (female pirate) for ever.

MsHellion said...

I read WEDDING NIGHT, Q! Hilarious!

Marnee Bailey said...

Guidelines. Right.

Hmmm.... Here goes....

It is our crew's solemn behest
That you not touch this treasure chest.

If you do
Piss off this crew
You will see
Your words will flee.
It's fair recompense
For such a dire offense.
'Cause we get kinda ticked
If you mess with our shit.
You'd be ticked too
If you were part of this crew
because we guard our chocolate
like zealous lunatics.

So try if you must,
It's no loss to us,
We understand, it's true,
We'd be tempted too.

Maureen said...

Sausage eh? Cupcakes? Chocolate?

Is the crew hungry?

Marnee Bailey said...

I'm always hungry. I think I have a tape worm. Except then I'd lose weight. And I don't.