Currently viewing the tag: "supernatural"

Thursday Poltergeist

Poltergeist is the term assigned to those apparently meaningless noises and movements of objects of which we from time to time hear accounts. The word is, of course, German, and may be translated “boisterous ghost.” …

Professor Barrett, in the paper to which we have already referred, draws certain conclusions from his study of this subject; one of the chief of these is that “the widespread belief in fairies, pixies, gnomes, brownies, etc., probably rests on the varied manifestations of poltergeists.” –St. John D. (St. John Drelincourt) Seymour, True Irish Ghost Stories

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story involving a poltergeist.
Journaling Prompt: Do you believe in poltergeist or other supernatural events?

Art Prompt: Poltergeist

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell a dramatic story about a poltergeist.

Angel's Wings

“I like the concept of angels, but I have a hard time with the wings. Can you imagine growing something like that out of your back? You’d have to sleep standing up.” -Janet Evanovich, Wicked Appetite

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write about an angel’s daily life.

Journaling Prompt: What do you believe about angels?

Art Prompt: Angel Wings

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about your favorite questions (like how do angels sleep?) and hypothesize about the answers.

Photo Credit: Eric Kilby on Flickr

ritual

Cause-and-effect thinking is critical to human survival, Legare said. So it’s natural for people to find logic in supernatural rituals that emphasize repetition and procedural steps. If doing something once has some effect, then repeating it must have a greater effect. For example, if a mechanic says he inspected something five times, the frequency of his actions leads the customer to overestimate the effectiveness of his work. –Science Daily

Fiction Writing Prompt: Create a ritual for your character to use and then write a scene about it. Focus on the internal monologue.

Journaling Prompt: What rituals do you use?

Art Prompt: Supernatural Ritual

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about the psychology of ritual. Include stories about the rituals used by famous people.

Photo Credit: rodolfoaraiza.com on Flickr

The Truth

“Do you know any ghost stories, Mr. Fort?” asked Tony. He liked to tell us the ones his grandmother told from the old country, all about gypsies and potions and vengeful friars.

Mr. Fort turned and looked at him. “Ghost stories, my boy? They’re just the gossip of the dead. What kind of damned fool wastes his heightened awareness of all time and space to come back and tell you that he loves you? Or where the family treasure is buried? Or who killed him? They all say the same things, those ghosts, none of it interesting. None of it sublime.” He snorted. “The whole world is a ghost, echoing and fading from the perfect original. We are the ghosts.” -Will Ludwigsen, We Were Wonder Scouts, Asimov’s Aug 2011

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a supernatural story that is firmly set in the natural world.

Journaling Prompt: If you were to die unexpectedly today, what would you want to communicate to your family after your death? Why aren’t you telling them now?

Art Prompt: We Are the Ghosts

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about the fascination with the paranormal and how it affects our ability to perceive the miraculous in the natural world.

Photo Credit: h.koppdelaney on Flickr

I Heart You

On Wednesday nights, I talk to my dead sister though a silver mirror. -Mari Ness, The Shadow in the Mirror (free to read online)

Writing Prompt: Write a story, scene or poem using the first line above.

Journaling Prompt: Do you ever talk to your dead relatives?

Art Prompt: Ghosts in the Mirror

Photo Credit: Dia™ on Flickr

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Fool witch once, shame on you. Fool witch twice, oozing sores and an eternal rash in private areas. -Linda Wisdom, 50 Ways to Hex Your Lover

Writing Prompt: Write an interesting hex for a witch to use on your protagonist.

Journaling Prompt: What would be the worst hex for you to endure?

Art Prompt: Hex

Photo Credit: John William Waterhouse, shared by deflam on Flickr
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I have a guardian angel. His name is Gumbo. He’s hairier than I expected.

According to ancient Jewish belief, each person had his or her guardian angel, and a spirit could assume the aspect of some visible being… -John Vinycomb, Fictitious And Symbolic Creatures In Art

Writing Prompt: Write about a guardian angel and the physical aspect he or she has assumed. 

Journaling Prompt: Write about your guardian angel and the things your guardian angel has had to help you though. Does your guardian angel have the aspect of a physical being?

Art Prompt: Guardian Angel
Nonfiction / Speech Prompt: Tell your audience a humorous or dramatic story about how your guardian angel had to save you from yourself.

Photo Credit: AlicePopkorn on Flickr

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peter pan


“All children, except one, grow up.” -J.M. Barrie, The Complete Adventures of Peter Pan

Writing Prompt: Write something using the first line above as your inspiration.

Journaling Prompt: What would you do if you could go back to being a child and could stay a child forever? OR What would you do if you could stay the same age as you are today?

Art Prompt: Peter Pan

Nonfiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience how they can benefit from being young at heart.

Photo Credit: Loren Javier on Flickr

 

grasshopper


“When Gregor Samsa awoke from troubled dreams one morning, he found that he had been transformed into an enormous bug.” -Kafka, The Metamorphosis

Writing Prompt: Try a scene where a character undergoes a metamorphosis. He doesn’t have to turn into a bug. He could remain exactly as he is physically, but turn into a young child emotionally (a la Big with Tom Hanks) or develop a super power of hearing what women think (a la Mel Gibson in What Women Want). Or he could swap places with another character (too many movies to mention). Have some fun with your character and see what you can turn him into.

Journaling Prompt: If you could undergo a metamorphosis, what would you want to change into?

Art Prompt: Metamorphosis
Nonfiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell a touching, inspirational story about a metamorphosis you went through.

Photo Credit: odolphie on Flickr

 

Magician


The Magician is a popular archetype in science fiction and fantasy, but you will see Magicians all around you once you know what to look for. One very popular Magician is Martha Stewart, who has turned her knack for creating a beautiful home into a booming business. In this quote, we read about a more traditional magician courtesy of Jean Auel.

“Mog-ur pulled himself up to his feet, then threw his staff aside. Wrapped in his heavy bearskin cloak, the magician was an imposing figure. Only the older men, and Brun, ever knew him as anything but Mog-ur. The Mog-ur, the holiest of all the men who interceded with the world of the spirits, the most powerful magician of the Clan. When moved to eloquence during a ceremony, he was a charismatic, awe-inspiring protector. It was he who braved the invisible forces far more fearsome than any charging animal, forces that could turn the bravest hunter into a quaking coward. There was not a man present who did not feel more secure knowing it was he who was the magician of their clan, not a man who hadn’t stood in fear of his power and magic at some time in his life, and only one, Goov, who dared to think of trading places with him. Mog-ur, alone, stood between the men of the clan and the terrible unknown, and he became part of it by association. It imbued him with a subtle aura that carried over into his secular life. Even when he sat within the boundaries of his hearthstones, surrounded by his women, he was not really thought of as a man. He was more than, other than; he was Mog-ur.” -Jean Auel, The Clan of the Cave Bear

Writing Prompt: Write a scene or a poem about a Magician.

Journaling Prompt: Who in your life embodies the Magician archetype? Describe how you relate to that person.

Art Prompt: Magician

Nonfiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a story involving a friend who personifies the magician archetype.

Photo Credit: h.koppdelaney on Flickr