Writing Prompt: First Line

Below are first lines from a few well-known works of literature. Let’s hope that if we borrow them, some some of their literary magic will rub off on us. Choose a number and continue writing. If you’re planning on sharing it in the comments, please keep it under 500 words.

1.) This is the saddest story I have ever heard. (From The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford)



The movie poster for "Presenting Princess Shaw"

Presenting Princess Shaw

I saw this movie last night at the Meadowridge Library in Madison, and it was fan-TAS-tic: inspiring with a capital ‘I.’ It was playing as one of the Wisconsin Film Festival’s pop-up screenings. Check it out–just be prepared to shed a tear or two.

Princess Shaw holding a wine glass
Photo courtesy of the Wisconsin Film Festival


Writing Prompt #64

I was browsing writing prompts, and this one got my juices flowing. Eww, not like that. Get your mind out of the gutter and start writing.


Writing Prompt 64

Writing Prompt #64: She had no idea what he’d been through until she saw the video.

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The back of a boy waiting at a digital crosswalk sign that says "wait"

Writing Prompt: Your Best Excuse

This week, imagine the most ridiculous excuse–or excuses–for being late.

A woman shopper on a bench at the mall


Verizon workers on strike

Do you have the “right to work” this Labor Day?

Let’s recall how nothing comes easily, including the 40-hour work week, weekends, paid holidays, & company benefits. But there are many Americans who aren’t benefiting from the Labor Movement’s hard-won battles: we live in “right-to-work” states.

The relationship between RTW status and wages remains economically and statistically significant …

–Economic Policy Institute

 And which states have passed these laws against “compulsory” union membership? 


A resume with a pair of glasses lying on it

Writing Prompt: Your REAL Resume

A few months ago, a fellow blogger wrote a post titled “What My Resume Should REALLY Say,” which inspired another blogger to write about what her resume should really say.


A scene from the movie Soylent Green

Writing Prompt: Invent a Food

You may have heard of Soylent, the all-the-nutrients-you-could-ever-need meal replacement drink. If the name rings a bell, it’s because Soylent’s inventors based it on the dystopian thriller, Soylent Green, where it turns out that the substance feeding most of the populace is made from human flesh. Interesting inspiration for a drink, isn’t it?


A woman's mug shot in Madison, Wisconsin

Let’s share a giggle, shall we?

The suspect refused to get out of the car and opened a can of beer.

Alas, this article was too funny not to share. No one got hurt, so we can at least share a giggle over it after the fact, can’t we?

For those of you not from the Madison area, State Street is an 8-block or so pedestrian zone that allows delivery drivers, buses, and bicycles, but not regular motorists.

From NBC 15:


Dan Price of Gravtity Payments high-fiving an employee

Paying a living wage: who wins?

According to Gravity Payment’s CEO Dan Price, everyone wins. After raising the minimum wage of his employees to $70,000/year–and cutting his own salary to the same–Gravity Payment’s profits have soared.

“I want the scorecard we have as business leaders to be not about money, but about purpose, impact, and service,” he says. “I want those to be the things that we judge ourselves on.”

And Gravity’s employees are happier–they’re sticking with the company and having babies:


A notebook, a pencil, and a pair of glasses on a desk

Writing Prompt: The How

This Sunday’s writing prompt is courtesy of LetterPile.com. If you’re feeling brave, share your response in the comments.

The How

The gist is simple: Get a piece of paper (or open up a fresh project in your word processor) and copy a prompt. After the ellipsis, keep writing whatever comes into your head. (Be sure to highlight the writing prompt in some way so you know you started with a prompt when you review the piece in the future.)

Continue Writing from Here….

Gabriel clenched his teeth feeling the porcelain slide. He took a deep breath, relaxed his jaw. “You have two choices,” he said, “you can leave on your feet or on a gurney…”

(Continue to write about who Gabriel is and who he is talking to.)