From the monthly archives: February 2015

Kevin the Magician

“Ladies and gentlemen, let’s hear it again for The Amazing Jimmy!” a child’s voice announced, trying to sound grown up. –The Amazing Jimmy by Jason Thomas

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: Write about a show you put on as a kid. What did you learn from the experience?

Art Prompt: The Amazing Jimmy!

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a funny, touching story about a show you did when you were a kid.

Photo Credit: Kevin Makice on Flickr

mordant adjective

  1. sharply caustic or sarcastic, as wit or a speaker; biting.
  2. burning; corrosive.
  3. having the property of fixing colors, as in dyeing.


  1. a substance used in dyeing to fix the coloring matter, especially a metallic compound, as an oxide or hydroxide, that combines with the organic dye and forms an insoluble colored compound or lake in the fiber.
  2. an adhesive substance for binding gold or silver leaf to a surface.
  3. an acid or other corrosive substance used in etching to eat out the lines, areas, etc.
  4. Music. mordent.

verb (used with object)

  1. to impregnate or treat with a mordant.

Fiction Writing Prompt: Use the word of the week in whatever you write today.
Journaling Prompt: How do you react to sarcasm? How do you use sarcasm? How do you feel about sarcastic people?

Art Prompt: Mordant

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

Photo Credit: Kelly Teague on Flickr

Suicide underground

More than one million people worldwide, including over 40,000 North Americans commit suicide on an annual basis, according to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2012 estimation.
In a research article, Flett and his co-authors Professor Paul Hewitt of the University of British Columbia and Professor Marnin Heisel of Western University note that physicians, lawyers and architects, whose occupations emphasize on precision, and also those in leadership roles are at higher risk for perfectionism-related suicide, citing the recent cases of prominent perfectionists who died by suicide…
The authors document how being exposed to relentless demands to be perfect, a concept they refer to as socially prescribed perfectionism, is linked consistently with hopelessness and suicide. Other key themes discussed are: how perfectionistic self-presentation and self-concealment can lead to suicides that occur without warning; and how perfectionists often come up with thorough and precise suicide plans. –Science Daily

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the internal dialogue of someone who is considering suicide as he or she goes through the day.

Journaling Prompt: Write about your experience with perfectionism and how it affects your mood.

Art Prompt: Perfectionism and suicide

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the dangers of perfectionism.

Photo Credit: Simon on Flickr

Student Teacher Dinner Spring 2013-40

I don’t believe that I have to tell you how dangerous this would have been. She was a young girl of 15, 16, 17 and he an adult man in his late 30s, old enough to be her father. Although this type of relationship would have passed as acceptable and even normal in Medieval England, the modern world frowns on such dalliances, and prosecutes the men – and women – who take advantage of adolescent students in this way. The two of them, then, would have been facing the threat of discovery, tarnishing of reputation, and even time behind bars; throwing their relationship in the face of society, if you will, but doing so quietly, in order to avoid detection.
Have you guessed, yet, that the story I’m telling you is true? Have you guessed that it’s more than just a rhetorical question, more than an idea that developed in my head one day? –Sweetest Taboo by Eva Márquez

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a forbidden relationship.

Journaling Prompt: What taboo have you broken or are tempted to break?

Art Prompt: Forbidden fruit

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about how our views of children have changed over time.

Photo Credit: Alvin Trusty on Flickr

Mike Walsh (Tomorrow)

Deep inside us is a desire to be the best in the tribe at something that matters to the tribe. We want to be the go-to person for some skill or service the community values.
This desire is not about having higher status than others (that’s a different issue). It’s about having our own special way to contribute to the community. If others rely on us for our skills as much as we rely on them for their skills, we feel we belong.
This desire for unique competence drives us to develop diverse skills. If the older brother is already valued as the smart child, the younger brother might work to become the funny child. The high school student who lacks talent for playing football might work hard to become the best beat-boxer, artist, dancer, mathematician, chess player, expert on comic books, song lyric memorizer, or drug dealer in the school.
A drive for unique competence is good for individuals in the tribe. It also helps the tribe as a whole. A tribe with diverse talents extracts resources from the environment more effectively than a tribe whose members compete with each other to master a narrower range of skills. –Jim Stone, PhD

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a character sketch for someone who is driven to find their unique contribution to their tribe.

Journaling Prompt: What do you feel is your unique contribution to your tribe? Describe how you feel about this.

Art Prompt: Unique competence

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the human drive to develop a unique competence to the tribe and give examples of how this has moved culture forward.

Photo Credit: Jarle Naustvik on Flickr

Welcome to the Carnival of Creativity for February 22, 2015. 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

James presents The Myth of Creative Inspiration: Great Artists Don’t Wait for Motivation (They Do This Instead) posted at James Clear.

Mary Carroll Moore presents Getting Time in Your Every Day for Eminent Creativity: How It’s Different from Everyday Creativity (and Understanding the Demands of Each) posted at How to Plan, Write and Develop a Book.

Jackie Johansen presents How to Transform Your Inner Critic Into an Inner Cheerleader posted at The Write Practice.

Response to Writing Reader Prompt

Check out Joyce’s response (in the comments) to Prompt #1299 First line of the week – Esmi Rowan. Then go Like her Facebook page for her Haiku Happy project.

Check out Win’s response (in the comments) to Prompt #1303 Psychopaths at Happy Hour.

Sharing Our Work

Eula McLeod presents On Another Night posted at View from the Winepress.

Amanda LJ presents One Foot in the Grave posted at Accessible Reaction.

Liz presents The Scattered Life Collective #14 posted at Liz Andra Shaw.

Creativity Quote of the Week

I don’t think we need to narrow down creativity to just mean paintings and music. -Calvin Correli

Creativity Prompt

Melissa Donovan presents 25 Creative Writing Prompts posted at Writing Forward.

Writing Tips

Christine Frazier presents 6 Simple Ways to Write a Physical Description posted at Better Novel Project.

Maria Popova presents The Sense of Style: Psycholinguist Steven Pinker on the Art and Science of Beautiful Writing posted at Brain Pickings.

Summerita Rhayne presents Careers in Romance Novels and How They Affect Characterization posted at Romance University.

Cari Bennette presents Why You Shouldn’t Say ‘Boo’ to Being a Ghostwriter posted at Live Write Thrive.

Mark Nichol presents 7 Tips for Overcoming Writer’s Block posted at Daily Writing Tips.

Alice Leiper presents Using History as Inspiration for Fantasy posted at Mythic Scribes.

Becca Puglisi presents Four Logic Problems that Will Ruin Your Day (and Your Manuscript) posted at Writers Helping Writers.

Alex presents Money vs. Wood: Learning about Subtext and Theme from Chekhov’s ‘Cherry Orchard’ posted at Ride the Pen.

Joanna Penn presents Commonalities Of Successful Indie Authors Plus A New Way To Find An Editor posted at The Creative Penn.


Robin Houghton presents How’s your blog doing? Top 5 things to measure and why posted at Elizabeth Spann Craig.


This week’s podcast at Writing Excuses is all about Who Are All These People.

This week’s podcast at The Sell More Books Show is all about Happiness, Author Ethics and Hachette Makes a Deal.

This week’s podcast at The Self-Publishing Broadcast is all about Marketing Your Books with the Help of an Audio Partner (with Rachel Fulginiti).

This week’s podcast at The Author Biz is all about Creating Your Production Plan for 2015 – With Elizabeth Spann Craig.


Visual Arts

Christopher Jobson presents Surreal Collages by Eugenia Loli posted at This is Colossal.

The Business of Creativity

Michael J. Sullivan presents Some Free Advice posted at Amazing Stories.

Gary Parkes presents Social Media for Authors 101 posted at Fiction University.

Carol Tice presents Why You Should Stop Writing Blog Posts (and What to Do Instead) posted at Make a Living Writing.

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


Scooter Gets A Bath

Create whatever this visual prompt inspires in you!

Photo Credit: Maggie Osterberg on Flickr

Whispered Dreams

She could not remember a time when she had not known the story; she had grown up knowing it. –The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley

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 story did you grow up knowing? 

Art Prompt: She had always known the story

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience your favorite childhood story.

Photo Credit: Lotus Carroll on Flickr
Tagged with:

Storyteller Indiana Bones at the Library

regale: to entertain with something that delights.

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

Journaling Prompt: Write about a recent piece of entertainment that you enjoyed.

Art Prompt: Regale

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

Photo Credit: Rapid City Public Library on Flickr
Tagged with:

The colour of bokeh

A glimmer of true love was an astonishing thing, and if an ounce of it was stolen, the emptiness it left behind, that time of loneliness, that time of despair, could never be relived, never be refilled. It remained forever empty, a hole in the soul. –Chasing Amanda by Melissa Foster

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story about the loss of true love.

Journaling Prompt: Write about a time when your heart was broken.

Art Prompt: Broken heart

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell a touching story about a time when your heart was broken.

Photo Credit: Alessandra Inzerillo on Flickr