Currently viewing the tag: "setting"

Four Times of the Day is a series of four paintings by English artist William Hogarth. Completed in 1736, they were reproduced as a series of four engravings published in 1738. They are humorous depictions of life in the streets of London, the vagaries of fashion, and the interactions between the rich and poor. Unlike many of Hogarth’s other series, such as A Harlot’s Progress, A Rake’s Progress, Industry and Idleness, and The Four Stages of Cruelty, it does not depict the story of an individual, but instead focuses on the society of the city. Hogarth intended the series to be humorous rather than instructional; the pictures do not offer a judgment on whether the rich or poor are more deserving of the viewer’s sympathies: while the upper and middle classes tend to provide the focus for each scene, there are fewer of the moral comparisons seen in some of his other works.

The four pictures depict scenes of daily life in various locations in London as the day progresses. Morning shows a prudish spinster making her way to church in Covent Garden past the revellers of the previous night; Noon shows two cultures on opposite sides of the street in St Giles; Evening depicts a dyer’s family returning hot and bothered from a trip to Sadler’s Wells; and Night shows disreputable goings-on around a drunken freemason staggering home near Charing Cross. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story where the setting is the primary character and follow it through the day.

Journaling Prompt: Write about the four times of your day.

Art Prompt: Four times of the day

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about your favorite painting.

Photo Credit: Four Times of the Day on Wikimedia

I had now travelled two hundred miles in Scotland, and seen only one tree not younger than myself. –Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland by Samuel Johnson

Fiction Writing Prompt: Set a story in a barren landscape.

Journaling Prompt: What is your favorite barren landscape? 

Art Prompt: Barren

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the beauty of the Scottish moors.

Photo Credit: Bill Kasman on Flickr

quaint village tuesday

It is a city of neat cottages and cobbled streets where wander cats without number, for the enlightened legislators of long ago laid down laws for our protection. A good, kind village, where travelers take their ease and pet the cats, making much of them, which is as it should be. –A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story, scene, poem, or haiku set in the city described above.

Journaling Prompt: Describe the kind of setting where you would like to live if money were no object.

Art Prompt: Cobbled streets

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a story, emphasizing the setting.

Photo Credit: Riccardo Cuppini on Flickr


The air reeked, a mixture of the aromas of the rotting vegetation and dead fish that were floating amid the roots of the mangrove trees growing almost on the water’s edge. The freshwater coming down the river kept the mangroves going, apparently, although the fish had been unable to withstand the avgas, oil, and grease that were regularly spilled in the water. –The Sea Witch by Stephen Coonts

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a scene that appeals to the reader’s olfactory sense in order to create a vivid impression of setting.

Journaling Prompt: Write about someplace you’ve been where the smell was unforgettable.

Art Prompt: Mangrove swamp

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Use the sense of smell to create atmosphere for your speech or article.

Photo Credit: Narayana Prasad on Flickr

The new library was as Gothic as any old pile in Europe; the reading room had ribbed vaulting and high lancet windows that gave it the aqueous atmosphere of a cathedral nave. Scholars infested it, each as jealous of his favorite desk as a badger of his burrow. Around the central tables, university students huddled, stifling laughs over bits of passed paper or searching the shadowed ceiling for profound thoughts. –The Madonna of the Abattoir by Anne M. Pillsworth

Fiction Writing Prompt: Use a library as a setting for a story.

Journaling Prompt: Write about your favorite library.

Art Prompt: Library

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience why libraries are still relevant in today’s connected world.

Photo Credit: Justin Kern on Flickr

 Agents pour liquor into sewer

The streets of San Francisco were jammed. A frenzy of cars, trucks, wagons, and every other imaginable form of conveyance crisscrossed the town and battled its steepest hills. Porches, staircase landings, and sidewalks were piled high with boxes and crates delivered on the last possible day before transporting their contents would become illegal. The next morning, the Chronicle reported that people whose beer, liquor, and wine had not arrived by midnight were left to stand in their doorways ‘with haggard faces and glittering eyes.’ Just two weeks earlier, on the last New Year’s Eve before Prohibition, frantic celebrations had convulsed the city’s hotels and private clubs, its neighborhood taverns and wharfside saloons. It was a spasm of desperate joy fueled, said the Chronicle, by great quantities of ‘bottled sunshine’ liberated from ‘cellars, club lockers, bank vaults, safety deposit boxes and other hiding places.’ Now, on January 16, the sunshine was surrendering to darkness. … -Daniel Okrent, Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story set on the eve of Prohibition.

Journaling Prompt: How do you feel about drinking alcohol?

Art Prompt: Prohibition

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about a political decision made during your lifetime that you believe will turn out to backfire. Compare and contrast with Prohibition.

Photo Credit: dewarsrepealday on Flickr

Welcome to the Carnival of Creativity for September 9, 2012. 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.


Thanks for your patience while I was doing my Toastmaster thing. I didn’t win or place, but I had a fabulous time, learned and grew a great deal, and I am re-energized!


Gabriela Pereira presents Build Your Reading List posted at DIYFMA.

Sharing Our Work

Eula McLeod presents Tully posted at View from the Wine Press.

Emi Bauer presents Out of the Mouths of Babes… er… Teenagers… posted at Emi Bauer: Confessions of an Incompetent Blogger.

Writing Quote of the Week

Jack Shepherd presents 30 Indispensable Writing Tips From Famous Authors posted at BuzzFeed.

Writing Tips and Prompts

Chrys Fey presents Your Thoughts + Your Emotions = Your Characters posted at Writing with Fey.

Charlie Jane Anders presents Children’s author crowdsources the editing of her new time-travel novel posted at io9.

Creativity Boosts

Lali Foster presents Junot Diaz and Min Jin Lee on Writer Origins posted at Asian American Writers Workshop.


This week’s podcast at Writing Excuses is all about Brainstorming with Dan. I found this episode fascinating – don’t miss it!

The Business of Creativity

Roni Loren presents Bloggers Beware: You Can Get Sues for Using Pics on your Blog posted at Roni Loren: For the Fearless Romantic.

Jeremy Biberdorf presents 5 Places You’re Not Looking for Content Ideas posted at Modest Money.

Spam of the Week

Wonderful beat ! I wish to apprentice even as you amend your site, how can i subscribe for a blog website? The account aided me a acceptable deal. I have been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered shiny transparent idea

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

Tagged with: