From the monthly archives: November 2013

confusing signs

This morning, going against all convention, I turned right instead of left and took my circuit—one of my circuits—in reverse. -Sven Birkerts, The Other Walk

Fiction Writing Prompt: Use the first line of the week as the starting point or inspiration for a scene, story, poem, or haiku.

Journaling Prompt: What is your usual routine? How do you feel if you break routine?

Art Prompt: Routine

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about the benefits and dangers of routine. Suggest some ways that breaking a routine can lead to growth.

Photo Credit: Ian Halsey on Flickr


verb (used without object)

  1. to deal, swap, or trade with petty bargaining; bargain; haggle.
  2. to barter.
  3. to try to arrange matters by mutual bargaining: They dickered for hours over some of the finer points ofthe contract.


  1. a petty bargain.
  2. a barter or swap.
  3. an item or goods bartered or swapped.
  4. a deal, especially a political deal.

Fiction Writing Prompt: Use the word of the week in whatever you write today.

Journaling Prompt: Do you enjoy dickering or do you prefer to pay a fair sticker price?

Art Prompt: Dicker

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Use the word of the week in your article or speech.

Photo Credit: Keith Chastain on Flickr

Natures's Simple Creations....

Nature holds a store of comfort for those who love and seek her—she has all sorts of balmy messages to give them; a thousand mellow influences steal upon the jaded consciousness; hope is written legibly in the blue sky, the clear air, the sunshine; every flower, every leaf is a token of love; the birds sing, and, in spite of ourselves, our hearts grow lighter. -Rosa Nouchette Carey, Our Bessie

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story, scene, poem, or haiku inspired by nature.

Journaling Prompt: Write about nature and your relationship to it.

Art Prompt: The balm of nature

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about the salutary effects on nature and how to incorporate more time in nature in your life. 

Photo Credit: gayang3 on Flickr

Give up?

People will react wildly differently to identical sets of facts if you present those facts different ways. That’s why the incumbent politician will always talk about employment rates, while the challenger will talk about unemployment rates. Although they mean the same thing, they don’t have the same effect. –Esther Inglis-Arkell

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story or scene in which the framing effect changes the outcome of a decision.

Journaling Prompt: How much attention do you pay to statistics and the way they are presented? 

Art Prompt: The Framing Effect

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Inform your audience about the framing effect and how it is used to manipulate public opinion.

Photo Credit: Purdueþete on Flickr

I Am Fluent In Three Languages ...item 1.. For-Profit Colleges Pay Executives Based On Profit (07/27/2012 ) ...item 2.. RACE TO THE BOTTOM (Thursday, July 5, 2012) ...item 3.. Senator Harkin's Report: (JULY 29, 2012) ...

Ping was always amused when he ran across what his great-grandma had called a potty mouth, though he had no idea what a ‘potty’ was. This really wasn’t too often in the modern world. Even in the filthy circles of his old hell as a vice cop, he’d only run across a handful of people who regularly swore. There just weren’t that many people left in the well-educated world who were willing to sound this dissociatively stupid, no matter how black their hearts or how dirty their hands. It was going to be a shame to kill this guy. It would be like killing one of the last buffaloes, the last wild turkey, the loneliest dodo… Lee Doty, Out of the Black

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story about a world where no one swears. How do the people express their frustrations and anger instead of using profanity?

Journaling Prompt: Do you use profanity? How does it make you feel to use it or to hear it?

Art Prompt: Profanity

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about your opinion of profanity.

Photo Credit: marsmet523 on Flickr

Awaking from a steampunk caffeine nap.

Our brain-wave patterns cycle in ultradian rhythms as well, and about every hour and a half to two hours, we experience a significant “ultradian dip,” when our energy drops and sleep becomes possible. When we work through these dips—relying on caffeine, adrenaline, and stress hormones to keep us alert—instead of letting our bodies and brains rest, we become stressed and jittery, and our performance falters. –Christine Carter

Fiction Writing Prompt: Add to your character sketch. What  are the rhythms that drive your protagonist? Does he or she work with them or fight them? How do they affect his or her performance?

Journaling Prompt: Do you feel the natural rhythms of your day, or do you fight against them with caffeine or other substances?

Art Prompt: Ultradian rhythms
Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Inform your audience about their natural ultradian rhythms and how they can stop fighting them and work with them.

Photo Credit: Zach_Beauvais on Flickr

Welcome to the Carnival of Creativity for November 24, 2013. All links will open in a new tab or window, so feel free to click through and leave some love in the comments. Once you close that window, you’ll be right back here for more linky goodness.

The Creative Mindset

Laura Stack presents Don’t Think Yourself into a Corner! posted at The Productivity Pro.

ebele presents There is a story inside of you posted at Street-side Convos

Markeyus presents THERE IS NO SPOON posted at Live2Conquer.

Creativity Quote of the Week

Everything you can imagine is real. -Pablo Picasso

Writing Tips

Chris Gerwel presents Crossroads: The Cores of Literary Fiction and Speculative Fiction posted at Amazing Stories.

Art Holcomb presents The Fragments of Once Whole Things posted at Story Fix.

Lisa Walker England presents Mastering Multiple POV in 6 Steps posted at Mythic Scribes.

Chrys Fey presents Plagiarism is NOT Writing! posted at Write with Fey.

Lovelyn presents Is Podcasting Your Novel Worth It? | H. Lovelyn Bettison posted at H. Lovelyn Bettison


Stefani Flaxman presents 15 Copy Editing Tips That Can Transform Your Content into Persuasive and Shareable Works of Art posted at Copy Blogger.

Creativity Prompts

Various editors presents List of Unusual Deaths posted at Wikipedia.


This week’s podcast at Writing Excuses is all about Editing with Aeryn Rudel, publications manager of Privateer Press‘s Skull Island X imprint.


Visual Arts

Christopher Jobson presents Meticulously Wrapped Aluminum Wire Sculptures by Seung Mo Park posted at This is Colossal.

Journal Writing

Ronda Palazzari presents Art Journal Conversations: Karen Grunberg posted at Help Me Ronda.

The Business of Creativity

Colin presents The Generalist vs. The Specialist posted at Daily Writing Tips.

Jeff Goins presents 3 Steps to Building a Killer Tribe posted at Goins Writer.

Laura Spencer presents When the Client Ruins Your Work–What Would You Do? posted at Freelance Folder.

Rachel Sprung presents The Do’s and Don’ts of Using Vine for Marketing posted at HubSpot.

Spam of the Week

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That’s all for this week. Be sure to submit your article for next week’s Carnival of Creativity by Friday at midnight!


Create whatever this visual prompt inspires in you!

Photo by brickteen.

Old Train Station, Wakefield, Quebec

Create whatever this visual prompt inspires in you!

Photo by Ian Muttoo.


Create whatever this visual prompt inspires in you!

Photo by atl068.