From the monthly archives: June 2017

  • worn or wearied by travel

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

Journaling Prompt: Write about how you feel when you get home from a long trip.

Art Prompt: Wayworn

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

Photo Credit: kris krüg on Flickr

In 1898, when Bert Barrett was 13 years old, a shotgun blew off almost half of his left arm in a terrible hunting accident. In compliance with the laws of the time, he buried his severed appendage. The marker reads simply: “His arm lies here. May it rest in peace.” The rest of Bertram’s body is buried 11 miles away at Oak Hill Memorial Park, and his story is the source of local campfire tales.

After his amputated limb was interred at Hacienda Cemetery, the rest of Richard Bertram Barrett went on to live a very successful life. He went on to become the Chief of Sanitation for the Santa Clara County Health Department, and the road that bisects the cemetery in which his arm is buried is named for him. In 1959, he passed away at the ripe old age of 74. Though the man rests in peace, local legend tells that Bertram’s left arm comes alive on Halloween night to seek out the rest of him, buried eleven miles away from the verdant pioneer cemetery. –Grave of Bert Barrett’s Left Arm

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a haunted body part.

Journaling Prompt: Write about the creepiest campfire story you ever heard.

Art Prompt: Haunted arm

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a tall tale about a haunted body part.

Photo Credit: eflon on Flickr

The king died a little before nine o’clock on Thursday evening. His death was made a secret; but in the same hour a courier was galloping through the twilight to Hunsdon to bid Mary mount and fly. Her plans had been for some days prepared. She had been directed to remain quiet, but to hold herself ready to be up and away at a moment’s warning. –James Anthony Froude, The Reign of Mary Tudor

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a king or queen who is waiting for the current ruler to die.

Journaling Prompt: What are you waiting anxiously for and prepared for?

Art Prompt: Waiting

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience the story of Mary Tudor’s rise to the throne of England.

Photo Credit: Maria Tudor on Wikimedia

To reach the secure psychiatric unit’s visitors room, which is where Bergwall and I will talk, this is what you must do: walk through the security entrance, put your passport in a tray where it is kept by a man in a secure booth, go through a heavy metal door that is opened remotely, walk through a metal detector, go through another remotely opened heavy metal door, sit in a waiting room where a coffee table is littered with Swedish women’s magazines, then go through two more locked doors, each opened with keypads.  –The Serial Killer Has Second Thoughts: The Confessions of Thomas Quick

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story set in a secure psychiatric hospital for violent offenders.

Journaling Prompt: What was the creepiest building you ever went into? Describe what made it creepy.

Art Prompt: Creepy building

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a dramatic story that is set in a creepy building.

Photo Credit: Todd Ehlers on Flickr

They say cancer runs in the family. In our family, it doesn’t run so much as chase. It caught my mom the year I turned thirty. I feel like I became her as I watched summer sweat drip from my own nose, her turn to shiver beneath a blanket, crooked ruts in the sand stretching behind us toward the boardwalk. –Hugh Howey, The Shell Collector

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story involving beach memories.

Journaling Prompt: What do you think about when you picture a beach?

Art Prompt: Beach

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about how places become associated with pivotal times in our lives.

Photo Credit: Michael L. on Flickr

Welcome to the Carnival of Creativity for June 25, 2017. 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.

Creativity Quote of the Week


100 STORY IDEAS provided by E.A. Deverell.

Writing Tips

Ali Luke presents Is a Fear of Technology Holding Back Your Writing Career? Here’s What to Do posted at AliVentures.

Bonnie Randall presents Upcycling and Upending Clichés posted at Fiction University.

Mary Carroll Moore presents Kid Lit! Writing for Different Young Readers–Who Is Your Best Audience? posted at How to Plan, Write and Develp a Book.


Stephanie Ruopp presents Why You Don’t Want Your Client to Be Any of These Six Types posted at Be a Freelance Blogger.

Editor presents Using Cryptic Writing For Personal Blogs posted at Blogging Pro.

Peter Daisyme presents How to Select Better Images for Your Blog posted at Blogging Tips.

Nina Amir presents Multiple Blogs can Make You Struggle posted at How to Blog a Book.


This week’s podcast at Writing Excuses is all about Words as Words, with Linda Addison.

This week’s podcast at The Sell More Books Show is all about Reviews, Lists, and Indie Opportunity.

This week’s podcast at The Self-Publishing Broadcast is all about Writing to Market with Chris Fox.

This week’s podcast at The Creative Penn is all about Story Genius: How To Use Brain Science to Write a Riveting Novel with Lisa Cron.

This week’s podcast at The Joined Up Podcast is all about Flash Fiction.

This week’s podcast at The Story Tool Kit is all about Breaking Bad & Justice League — Inspiration.

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 Credit: F3Tour Wroclaw on Wikimedia

I committed my first multiple murder at the age of six. –Confessions of an English Psychopath by Jack Strange

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: How do you feel about killing bugs? When did you kill your first bugs?

Art Prompt: Bug-o-cide

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about how we make choices on who lives and who dies every day.

Photo Credit: Carolien Dekeersmaeker on Flickr

  • To treat with contempt and disregard; to show contempt for.
  • To mock, to scoff.
  • Mockery, scoffing.

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

Journaling Prompt: What convention or rule do you flout? (I wear white year-round.)

Art Prompt: Flout

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

Photo Credit: Enric Borràs on Flickr

Late on the night of June 14, 2015, deputy sheriffs in Greene County, Missouri, United States, found the body of Dee Dee Blancharde (born May 3, 1967, Chackbay, Louisiana, as Clauddine Pitre) facedown in the bedroom of her house just outside Springfield, lying on the bed in a pool of blood from the stab wounds that had killed her several days earlier. There was no sign of her teenage daughter, Gypsy Rose, who according to Blancharde suffered from leukemia, asthma, muscular dystrophy and several other chronic conditions, and had the mental capacity of a 7-year-old due to brain damage she had suffered as a result of her premature birth. Her neighbors, who had notified them after growing concerned due to Facebook posts earlier in the evening suggesting she had fallen victim to foul play, were fearful that Gypsy Rose, whose wheelchair and medications were still in the house, might have been abducted and in serious danger.

Police found Gypsy Rose the next day in Wisconsin, where she had traveled with a boyfriend she had met online. She was alive and well, but “things are not always as they appear” the sheriff said the next morning. Public outrage that someone might have had taken advantage of a severely disabled girl to kill her mother gave way to shock, and some sympathy, for Gypsy Rose when investigators soon announced that the younger woman was, in fact, an adult and had none of the physical or mental health issues her mother had represented her as having.

Further investigation found that some of the doctors who had examined Gypsy Rose both locally and in the New Orleans area, where she and her mother had lived before allegedly being displaced by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, had not found any evidence of the claimed disorders and in one case suspected Munchausen syndrome by proxy (MbP). Dee Dee had changed her name slightly after being confronted by her family over her treatment of Gypsy Rose and her possible poisoning of her stepmother. Nonetheless, many people accepted her situation as true, and the two benefited from the efforts of charities such as Habitat for Humanity, Ronald McDonald House and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Dee Dee, who apparently did have MbP, had been making her daughter pass herself off as younger and pretend to be disabled and chronically ill, in the process subjecting her to unnecessary surgery and medication and controlling her through occasional physical and psychological abuse. MbP expert Marc Feldman says this is the first such case in his quarter-century of experience where the abused child has killed the parent. Gypsy Rose has pled guilty to second-degree murder and is serving a 10-year sentence; her boyfriend is awaiting trial on a first-degree murder charge. The case was the subject of a 2017 HBO documentary, Mommy Dead and Dearest, directed by Erin Lee Carr. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story about a child who kills a parent and the strange circumstances surrounding it.

Journaling Prompt: What is the strangest disease you’ve ever had?

Art Prompt: Victim

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience the strange story of Gypsy Rose.

Photo Credit: Mo springfield.jpg on Wikimedia