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She went her unremembering way,
She went and left in me
The pang of all the partings gone,
And partings yet to be.

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story, poem, or haiku about partings.

Journaling Prompt: Write about the loss of someone you loved.

Art Prompt: Partings

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a touching story about a loss that changed your life.

Photo Credit: Thomas Hawk on Flickr

Samantha Reed Smith (June 29, 1972 – August 25, 1985) was an American schoolgirl, peace activist and child actress from Manchester, Maine, who became famous in the Cold War era United States and Soviet Union. In 1982, Smith wrote a letter to the newly appointed CPSU General Secretary Yuri Andropov and received a personal reply with a personal invitation to visit the Soviet Union, which she accepted.

Smith attracted extensive media attention in both countries as a “Goodwill Ambassador” and became known as “America’s Youngest Ambassador” participating in peacemaking activities in Japan.[1] She wrote a book about her visit to the Soviet Union and co-starred in the television series Lime Street, before her death at the age of 13 in the Bar Harbor Airlines Flight 1808 plane crash. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Tell the story of a remarkable child.

Journaling Prompt: What did you do as a kid that you are still proud of?

Art Prompt: Peace

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about Samantha Smith and draw some lessons that we can learn from her.

Photo Credit: U.S. girl Samantha Smith in Artek on Wikimedia

Having climbed the ranks in her finance company to CFO quickly and efficiently, Marin understands there were those who viewed her with contempt. Names whispered behind her back as she chaired meetings and led the company through mergers and acquisitions, one success following another. She worked hard for her place in the world. Others’ jealousies or opinions are not her problem, and she will not allow them to constrain her. She knows plenty of women whose self-esteem is based on the estimations of others. They choose the clothes that are in fashion, even if they don’t suit their taste. They let their colleagues define the boundaries of their careers. Live their lives according to strangers’ rules. Marin congratulates herself for being above the rest. For standing in a place of her own making, for earning her success and creating her perfect life. –Sejal Badani, Trail of Broken Wings

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story about a powerful, self-made woman.

Journaling Prompt: How do you measure success?

Art Prompt: Powerful woman

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about a powerful woman and how she gained her power.

Photo Credit: Sam Churchill on Flickr

Create whatever this visual prompt inspires in you!

Photo Credit: De vadermoorders by David Bles on Wikimedia

I shut the door of the old Victorian behind me, and the stuffy atmosphere closed in: overheated, dry, and redolent of mothballs. Remnants of cool mist clung to my skin, already transmuting to sweat. A whiff of old paper cut through the miasma. I focused on that familiar, beloved scent, and steadied myself. –Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys

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 would you feel moving into an old home that hasn’t been lived in for a while? Why?

Art Prompt: Victorian mansion

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a ghost story.

Photo Credit: Jon Dickson on Flickr

legerdemain
  • Sleight of hand.
  • A display of skill, trickery, or artful deception.

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

Journaling Prompt: What magic trick would you love to be able to do?

Art Prompt: Legerdemain

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

Photo Credit: gordon cowan on Flickr

In the Middle Ages, knighthood was often conferred with elaborate ceremonies. These usually involved the knight-to-be taking a bath (possibly symbolic of spiritual purification) during which he was instructed in the duties of knighthood by more senior knights. He was then put to bed to dry. Clothed in a special robe, he was led with music to the chapel where he spent the night in a vigil. At dawn he made confession and attended Mass, then retired to his bed to sleep until it was fully daylight. He was then brought before the King, who after instructing two senior knights to buckle the spurs to the knight-elect’s heels, fastened a belt around his waist, then struck him on the neck (with either a hand or a sword), thus making him a knight. It was this accolade which was the essential act in creating a knight, and a simpler ceremony developed, conferring knighthood merely by striking or touching the knight-to-be on the shoulder with a sword, or “dubbing” him, as is still done today. In the early medieval period the difference seems to have been that the full ceremonies were used for men from more prominent families. –Order of the Bath

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story in which knighthood (or another special status) is conferred upon your protagonist.

Journaling Prompt: Write about your favorite story about the era of knights.

Art Prompt: Knight

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about rituals from the Middle Ages, such as the the ritual of knighthood.

Photo Credit: Accolade by Edmund Blair Leighton on Wikimedia

What you seek on your journey is not a solution to a problem, not the answer to a question, but an encounter with mystery that will by very definition far exceed the best efforts of your mind, the outermost limits of your imagination. –God Hunger: Discovering the Mystic in all of Us by John Kirvan

Fiction Writing Prompt: Take your protagonist on the journey of a mystic.

Journaling Prompt: What unknowable mystery would you like to understand and why?

Art Prompt: Mystic journey

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the history of mysticism.

Photo Credit: Karacan Salkuci on Flickr

After the outbreak of World War II, the castle was converted into a high security prisoner-of-war camp for officers who had become security or escape risks or who were regarded as particularly dangerous. Since the castle is situated on a rocky outcrop above the River Mulde, the Germans believed it to be an ideal site for a high security prison.

The larger outer court, known as the Kommandantur, had only two exits and housed a large German garrison. The prisoners lived in an adjacent courtyard in a 90 ft (27 m) tall building. Outside, the flat terraces which surrounded the prisoners’ accommodation were constantly watched by armed sentries and surrounded by barbed wire. Although known as Colditz Castle to the locals, its official German designation was Oflag IV-C and it was under Wehrmacht control.

Although it was considered a high security prison, it had one of the highest records of successful escape attempts. This could be owing to the general nature of the prisoners that were sent there; most of them had attempted escape previously from other prisons and were transferred to Colditz, because the Germans had thought the castle escape-proof.

One lavish scheme even included a glider, the “Colditz Cock”, that was kept in a remote portion of the castle’s attic, completed in the winter of 1944–45, but following the Great Escape, in which 50 escapees were executed, all further escape attempts were officially discouraged and the glider was never used. When the camp was liberated by the Americans in late April, 1945 the glider was brought down from the hidden workshop to the attic below and assembled for the prisoners to see. It was at this time that the only known photograph of the glider was taken. For some time after the war the glider was regarded as either a myth or tall story, as there was no solid proof that the glider had existed and Colditz was then in the Soviet Occupation Zone. Bill Goldfinch, however, took home the drawings he had made when designing the glider and, when the single photograph finally surfaced, the story was taken seriously. –Colditz Castle on Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write an escape story set in a POW camp in a castle.

Journaling Prompt: What historic place from WWII would you like to visit and why?

Art Prompt: Escape

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about Colditz Castle.

Photo Credit: Colditz on Wikimedia

Failure is the key to success.
Each mistake teaches us something.
The Art of Peace by Morihei Ueshiba

Fiction Writing Prompt: Give your protagonist the opportunity to learn something crucial by making a huge mistake.

Journaling Prompt: Write about the biggest mistake you ever made and what you learned from it.

Art Prompt: Mistakes

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience an entertaining story about a mistake you made and what you learned.

Photo Credit: Phineas Jones on Flickr