Tag Archives: poems

Write the Story: February 2019 Prompt

Here’s the plan:

You write a story of 3000 words or less (doesn’t matter, can be 50 words or a poem) and post it on the author site that you want to promote. Please edit these stories. We will do minor editing but if the story is not written well Writers Unite! reserves the right to reject publishing it.

We have chosen not to do full-editing. This project is based on the writer attracting new readers with their work. Therefore other than common grammar error editing, we will not edit content.

Send the story and link to the site via Facebook Messenger to Deborah Ratliff or email daratliff07@gmail.com. Put “Write the Story” in the first line of the message or subject line.

WU! will post your story on our blog and share across our platforms, FB, Twitter, Instagram, etc. WU! will also add the story to the Write the Story page on our blog…where it be for all to read along with the other stories.

We do ask that you share the link to the WU! Write the Story page so that your followers can also read the works of your fellow writers.

The idea is to generate increased traffic for all. May take some time but it will happen if you participate. The other perk of this exercise is that you will also have a blog publishing credit for your work

DO NOT post your story to this prompt. The idea is to have your story or poem published on your site, the WU! blog and shared to gain followers for your writing. We will not accept a one- or two-line caption. For the most part, we are fiction writers and poets…. please write a story or poem, not a caption.

If you have any questions regarding this, you may ask the question in the comments. Please note: you do not need to be a member of the WU! Facebook group or follow the blog to participate. If you want to join us, however, that would be great!

Thank you.

(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Now… go Write the Story!

 

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David Reiss: Solo Ascent

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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January 2019 Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Solo Ascent

By David Reiss

Mark pulled his goggles from his face and tucked them under one arm, squinting against the frigid wind; snowflakes scoured his face, but removing the fogged eye-protection allowed the field researcher to confirm that his wrist-computer’s screen was dead.

“Damnit,” he swore. Even with the sea of clouds whipping below the peak and obscuring the landscape below, Mark had been reasonably certain of his bearings. His tracker was working, at least; if he’d gotten too far off, someone should have contacted him. “HQ, this is Rover Three. I need a coordinate check. Where the hell am I?”

There was a pause. Mark shifted from side to side on his skis and waited.

“Rover Three, this is HQ. Hey, Mark.” The speaker’s voice was recognizable despite the scratchiness of the signal. Justin, Mark sighed to himself. The intern. “I put you right at site twenty-four. Good job.”

“Well, there’s nothing here,” Mark growled, shaking out his facemask and replacing it on his frostbitten face. “Not a damned thing. Site twenty-four is empty.”

“Uh…negative, Rover Three. There’s a strong signal from beacon twenty-four.”

“Then there’s something wrong with your equipment,” Mark bit out, feeling suddenly tired; it had been an eight-hour slog from the lower peak where the helicopter pilot had been able to let him off. Eight hours, for nothing! It was probably the intern’s fault. “Is Shelly around?”

Shelly was the expedition’s tech guru; she couldn’t be trusted within five feet of a pair of cross-country skis and her coffee was awful, but she knew the system better than the guys who designed it.

“Nah, Shelly’s sleeping in,” the intern replied.

“Well, wake her up,” Mark insisted. “Either I’m in the wrong place or site twenty-four turned invisible.”

“I’m gonna let her rest,” Justin chuckled softly. “She works too hard, y’know? Hold on, I got it. Rebooting now, okay?”

Shelly had horrible taste in men; she’d been flirting with Justin ever since the kid signed on.

From the sound of it, the intern reciprocated her interest; he probably thought he was doing her a favor, letting her sleep in even though official protocol was to keep the technical lead up to date if there were any anomalies. He was correct that Shelly would’ve been irritable upon being roused—her prickly pre-coffee disposition had become legendary among the other researchers—but she was going to be positively livid when she found out there were problems and she wasn’t alerted. Justin was sabotaging his own romantic aspirations…but Mark certainly wasn’t the type to offer unsolicited relationship advice.

The field researcher brought his hands to his face to breathe warmth into his cold-stiffened fingers, focusing on burying his irritation with every slow exhale. He was chilled, he was tired…but he had the open sky and a mountain to himself. And besides…once upon a time, he’d been young, too.

And, hell, maybe Justin would grow up a bit, Shelly would like him and they’d work things out. She was a good kid, she deserved a bit of happiness.

“Oh. Oh, shiiiii…” Justin trailed off. “Rover Three, this is Justin. I mean, this is HQ. Hunker down a minute, I have to figure this out.”

Hearing that kind of panic across the radio link should have been nerve wracking, but Mark was experienced enough to know better. He was alone up here, safe and secure, being treated to a view that few could ever have imagined.

Clouds poured across the horizon, whipped by chill gusts and swirling, eternal gales. Each breeze stabbed like knives, and the air was clear; Mark could see for miles in every direction, as though he had the entire world to himself.

Ten years ago, the weather would have looked completely different. That’s why the team was here: to study the changes and make sense of shifting wind patterns. Satellite footage and weather balloons could only tell you so much, sometimes you needed feet on the ground and local equipment. Site twenty-four should have had a small radio tower bristling with sensors (which needed regular maintenance, hence the team’s presence) and a survival shelter.

The tower could be only a hundred feet downhill and it would have been wholly obscured by the roiling mists.

“I was on the wrong screen,” Justin announced suddenly. “You need to head west. You’re not far off.”

Mark squinted, staring downhill where the mountain cut into the flowing clouds like a ship through the ocean waves. The wind was painful above the icy fog; heading lower wouldn’t be fun. In the emergency shelter, at least, he’d be able to get warm.

“All right,” the field researcher sighed and began shifting about to make sure that his gear was properly balanced for transportation. “I’ll head west.”

“You’re, um, not going to tell Shelly…are you?” Justin sounded so forlorn that Mark couldn’t help but bark in amusement.

Young, Mark thought to himself. Poor Shelly is going to have her hands full.

“No,” he chuckled. “Don’t worry about it, no harm done. This is Rover Three, going radio silent. Keep your ears on, I’ll let you know when I get to twenty-four.”

“Thanks,” the intern replied, relief palpable.

The old explorer laughed as he continued his own lonely, extraordinary journey.

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Please visit David’s website and click on his blog tab to find this story and other works and learn more about his books. https://davidhreiss.com

Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

D.L. Tillery: Lost in the Clouds

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

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(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Lost in the Clouds

                      By D.L. Tillery

As life leaves me bare I seek the clouds of
                        despair.
If freedom was my mother I would suffer, I would feel the warmth of her bosom even in the coldness of her stare…Yet is it fear
               that’s put me there?
Here I climb to the peak, am I lost or am I
                           free?
        When I listen I hear you speak.
           ‘I am you and you are me.’
Yet here above it all, it’s not you but the
                 cold that frees me.  

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Please visit D. L.’s blog and follow her! https://authordltillery.wixsite.com/authorsite

Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

E.C. Fisher: I climb high

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

January 2019 Write the Story Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)


I climb high

by E. C. Fisher


I begin with the huddled masses
The mountain ahead stirs us; a journey to the peak
Grasping for the hanging fruit; trying to enjoy its sweet nectar
Obstacles stand before me; barriers on my journey
Daunting tasks as I make my trek up
I climb high; reaching out for the stars

I glance back to see those who started faltered
Do I despair; give up; and join the ranks of the dearly departed
The ascent perilous; I find myself with doubt
The unknown journey ahead leaves me swaying
The sun shines through the clouds; a light in the darkness
I climb high; reaching out for the stars

I find myself at the top; alone I’ve made it
The view on high is beautiful; I wish I could share it
I climbed high; reaching out for the stars

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Please visit E. C. Fisher’s Facebook author page for more of his amazing writing and be sure to like his page!

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Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

Kelli J. Gavin: The Last Picture I Will Take

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

January 2019 Write the Story Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)
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The Last Picture I Will Take

By: Kelli J Gavin

I stand here looking out over the blinding white snow, the white clouds, the white peaks.  Some say it is beautiful. I think the stark landscape and the silence is deafening.

I never wanted to be a landscape photographer. I had lofty dreams of becoming a criminal prosecution lawyer.  I lasted two years into college and realized I couldn’t do it. Too much paperwork, not enough courtroom exposure. Not what I thought it would be. Who am I kidding?  I was horrible at it. I hated the work, I hated being told what to do and that I was always doing it wrong. I was told I had an attitude problem and that I would never amount to anything.  I no longer desired to be a criminal prosecution lawyer, but I never really told anyone what happened. I never admitted to a personal failure. I told my family and close friends that it wasn’t what I thought it would be and it didn’t work out.  A few skeptical eyes lingered on me for longer than necessary. Everyone kept telling me that I would figure it out. That I would find something to do with my life.

If I was honest with myself, I didn’t really want to do anything else.  I didn’t possess talent of any kind. I didn’t want to work when I really reflect back on that time.  I enjoyed taking pictures, but only as a hobby. One of my pictures caught the eye of an author friend of mine who asked for permission to use it on the cover of her book. I said yes of course, for a small fee and for a photo credit on the inside book jacket cover. Apparently, my friend is an amazing author. Her book sold over 500,000 copies in the first 3 months.  I said yes that she could use the picture because it was an easy $500. The offers came rolling in. Some for portraits, some for landscapes. I guess I had a bit of talent. I loved lighting, natural sunlight and discovered the natural beauty that is all around us. The commission contracts were fantastic and I was able to quit my part-time job within the first three months.

A wilderness and adventure magazine contacted me after they saw my pictures of Central Park. I enjoyed taking pictures of nature in settings you wouldn’t suspect.  The film turned out great. It appeared as if I was deep in the forest, when I was dealing with angry joggers and bikers who were competing for space at my heals on the walkway. I signed a two-year contract with the magazine.  Not only did it enable me to travel and to research and request some of my own destinations, everything was paid for. I traveled about three weeks out of every month. And occasionally came home so that my friends knew that I was still in the land of the living.

I have now been taking pictures for 12 years and turn down additional business daily.  I am 34 years old, have more money than I will ever need and have traveled the entire globe.  I am lonely, wish for someone to keep me company and have always wanted children. How did a job that most dream of turn into a distraction from real life? Apparently, women don’t enjoy dating men who travel constantly.  I dated casually each time I head home to New York, but my lack of communication while traveling, never encouraged women to stay around for very long. I find myself contemplating what bachelorhood for life would look like.  It doesn’t look very exhilarating to me. It looks like more lonely nights and an eternal empty bed.

This is my last assignment.  Quite possibly the last picture I will take. I am not filled with regret or even any emotion over this fact.  I was never meant to be a photographer in first place. You do what brings you a little happiness and hopefully make some money along the way.  So long white snow. So long white clouds. Goodbye silence. New York is calling my name. Home is calling to me. The desire for a life well lived is shouting at me now.

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This story and other works by Kelli J. Gavin can be found on her blog at https://kellijgavin.blogspot.com/2019/01/the-last-picture-i-will-take.html/

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Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

Barbra Badger: Simon

Welcome to Write the Story! Each month Writers Unite! will offer a writing prompt for writers to create a story from and share with everyone. WU! wants to help our members and followers to generate more traffic to their platforms. Please check out the authors’ blogs, websites, Facebook pages and show them support. We would love to hear your thoughts about the stories and appreciate your support!

January 2019 Write the Story Prompt


(Please note: the images we will use as prompts are free-use images and do not require attribution.)

Simon

By Barbra Badger

Simon was the only object in sight for miles that wasn’t totally snow white. Every tree, parcel of land, or even the rabbit that crossed his path ahead was sparkling, stark white. He looked up at the sky with a few innocent fluffy clouds and smiled to himself as he swooshed along. Feeling self-satisfied that he had remembered to wear his snow glasses to keep snow blindness at bay, he kept moving cross-country in a rhythmic pace. Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, he could let his mind wander. Then he began to notice a slight angle to the ground, just barely causing him to strain. His ankles bent slightly, and he had to push harder, then harder. His breath came with more difficulty. He stopped to look around. The trail he made was perfectly straight. Shook his head and went on. The subtlety of increase of effort hooked his competitive spirit, and he took the challenge. Soon he was grunting and groaning to put one ski ahead of the other and leaning forward so far he could only see his feet. When the ground leveled out, and his efforts eased, he stood straight up, and before his eyes lay an ocean of cloud. From his feet to the horizon clouds danced gently across the expanse. Thinking he had reached heaven, he stood in reverence, filled with overwhelming gratitude.

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This story and other works by Barbra Badger can be found on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/writingbybarb/

Write the Story: January 2019 Collection

Writers Unite! Announces Our Third Anthology! Realm of Mystery

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Mystery writers, join Writers Unite! for the third volume in our Anthology Series!

Submissions for Realm of Mystery will open on September 1, 2018, and closed on October 31, 2018.

You must be a member of the Facebook group Writers Unite! or a follower of this blog to enter. Click here to join WU!

The guidelines for the anthology and directions for the submissions port are found here.

Two crucial points:

  • You MUST edit your entry prior to submission. We do a light edit on the stories before they are sent to the publisher but will not correct excessive errors. Those stories will be rejected.
  • You MUST have the anthology’s theme as the focus of your story. Writers Unite! chose to do a main genre as opposed to specific themes so that authors had a broader scope to choose sub-genre of interest.

There is an art to short stories. The writer must condense a story into fewer words and also choose those words carefully. Writing a mystery short story has the added element of clues and foreshadowing that are difficult to develop within a few thousand words.

Starting on Monday Writers Unite! will offer a workshop on writing short stories and the mystery genre.

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What is Mystery?

Mystery (pronounced mis-tuh-ree, ) is a genre of literature whose stories focus on a mysterious crime, situation or circumstance that needs to be solved. The term comes from the Latin mysterium, meaning “a secret thing.” stories can be either fictional or nonfictional, and can focus on both supernatural and non-supernatural topics. Many mystery stories involve what is called a “whodunit” scenario, meaning the mystery revolves around the uncovering a culprit or criminal.

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Get writing!!  Time to tell us “Who done it?”

First trailer for Writer’s Unite! Anthology: Realm of Magic!!

Writers Unite!’s Fantasy Anthology: Realm of Magic will be published on August 1, 2018.

Pre-order info coming soon!

Check Out the Trailer for Writers Unite! Anthology Realm of Magic Here