Creative Copy Challenge #104

Today we have Joanna Penn, blogger at and author of thriller novel ‘Pentecost’, choosing the words for our writing prompt challenge. I’m super excited to have Joanna choose today. Show her how talented you all are. 

BET YOU CAN’T do this writing prompt. Take the 10 random words below and, in the comments, crush writer’s block by creating a cohesive, creative short story tying all of them together! And remember: after (if) you finish, highlight your words and click the bold button to make them stand out and help you determine if you forgot any words. (If you’ve missed previous writing prompts, we BET YOU CAN’T do those, either.)

  1. Lucid – Easily understood; intelligible; sane or rational; Translucent
  2. Extinct – writer’s block at the CCC & dinosaurs 
  3. Radical
  4. Vengeance
  5. Sylph – A slim, graceful woman or girl; myth, imaginary beings assumed to inhabit the air
  6. Elemental
  7. Tapestry – A heavy cloth woven with rich, often varicolored designs or scenes
  8. Ruby
  9. Illusion
  10. Gospel – Bible One of the first four New Testament books; Something accepted as unquestionably true

NOTE: Don’t copy and paste from MS Word. Use a program like notepad that removes formatting or just type in the comment field itself. Also, finish your submission, THEN bold the words. Thanks. (And don’t forget to tweet this and share it with your friends.)

Resources you should check out:
Thesis: Best Damn Theme on the Web
Collective Ink Well: Personalize Your Thesis Theme
Third Tribe Marketing: Marketing done the right way
Story Structure Demystified: Best damn writing book out there


37 Comments on “Creative Copy Challenge #104”

  1. Shane Arthur says:

    It was a lucid dream. A strong-willed sylph floated over me, a mixture of aggrevated frustration and radical vengeance flashing from her ruby eyes.

    “Listen to me as if this is Gospel…because it is,” she hissed.

    Her voice had a familiar ring to it, something routine, something elemental about it, but I couldn’t place it because I was eyeing her curvy figure buldging from the blood-soaked tapestry she wore.

    “I come to you as an illusion this time, but make no mistake; you will be extinct if you leave the toilet lid up again.”

    I awoke to see the sylph sleeping peacefully next to me like an angel.

  2. margaret says:

    When I look through magazines
    at the sylphs in ads for jeans…
    whose bodies have been altered,
    as though maybe God had faltered?

    Know that I am lucid  and urbane,
    but I think that it’s insane
    that for the price of rubies
    women have to get new boobies.

    Sometimes it really seems
    that they go to such extremes
    changing all that ‘s elemental
    from eye color to their dental!

    Radical disfiguration
    has become chic in our nation
    And it really is quite sad, to
    dismiss what they once had.

    We start with nature’s tapestry
    and I feel it is a travesty
    to cause the body such intrusion
    just to create a new illusion.

    With a vengeance I declare
    that I wouldn’t ever dare
    to change what is natural to me
    even to a small degree.

    The gospel never told us
    we should slice and dice with boldness
    so that when God turned and blinked
    his original became extinct!!

  3. The elbow to the ribs kicked it all off.

    “Whooaaa… check out the sylph, dude.” Johnny’s eyes swivelled to follow the tall blond walking by.

    James grimaced and rubbed his side, already plotting vengeance for the jab. “What about her?”

    “What about her?!” Johnny gaped at James. “You better get some coffee into you, buddy. You’re not even lucid this morning. She’s so hot. That’s the gospel truth. S’all I’m sayin’.”

    “Yeaaaahokay.” James’ scepticism was plain as day. “If you say so.” Personally, he thought the bell-bottom jeans on the woman were extinct in fashion, and who the hell wore ruby heels these days?

    “I say so. God, she’s like an illusion from heaven.” Johnny stared following the woman, forcing James to keep pace. “The thread of my tapestry… the radical light of my life…”

    “Have you been smoking pot?” James peered in Johnny’s face. “You have, haven’t you. Where’d you get that?”

    Elemental, my dear Watson.” Johnny stopped on the sidewalk and flourished a small bag. “The cops gave it to me.”

    “The cops?!” Now it was James’ turn to gape. “How the hell did you get the cops to give you pot? Isn’t that why they arrested you in the first place?”

    “No.” Johnny winced and tucked the bag back into his pocket. “Remember that painting I did?” The blonde forgotten, he waited to cross the street.

    “Uh huh.” How could he forget?

    “Yeah. Well. After Brogan called the fuzz… it was all downhill from there. Don’t ask.”

  4. MRMaguire says:

    Her life was simple and elemental. Light as air, she was a sylph, gracefully slipping through her days like water upon rock. Her name was Ruby and she brought fire and mystery, weaving a tapestry of gentle well-being that many assumed was extinct. In fact, Ruby was quite aware and intentionally viewed her life not as an illusion, but as reality filled with hope; a radical departure from the common gloom of her neighbors. Those who knew Ruby would often comment on her eyes, which were deep-brown and lucid, absent of any self-serving vengeance, and filled with a natural curiosity. She had a message to bring, a gospel of loving others — and her method of delivery was as distinct as a snowflake.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @MRMaguire: Ohhhh, you are good! Welcome to the CCC. Loved your style and I’m sure others here will too.
      What did you think of the challenge? Hope you had fun.
      Everyone welcome MRMaguire to the addiction. We have challenges every Monday and Thursday, so hope to see you then. I’ll add your name to our CCC Community Links page now.

  5. Anne Wayman says:

    Here you go, and in the order presented as well:

    I wasn’t lucid, ideas were extinct. I was instead focused on radical vengeance because that sylph stole my love in a most elemental fashion. I’m hiding in the tapestry, my mind ruby with illusion, not the least bit interested in the truth, gospel or otherwise.
    yikes, I missed 103!

  6. MRMaguire says:

    Shane, thanks! I follow you on Twitter and couldn’t resist having a little fun with the copy. I did this before looong ago and was glad you posted the link. I enjoyed it and need to refresh my perspective frequently. This is the ticket! I really got a kick out of the other submissions, too. Yours was hysterical, nice ending! Margaret’s was very inventive! (I love poetry.) I know James’ writing and always enjoy it. We’ll see if Johnny B. Truant responds, lol. Anne did the best job with keeping all the words in order. “Radical vengeance” is now going to be running through my mind, especially when driving on the highway…. 😉

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @MRMaguire: You did the CCC long ago? If so, sorry for forgetting. I checked for the email you used this time and didn’t see it previously used. In any event, glad you had fun, and glad you like what the other people did too. Everyone is so super talented in this place.

  7. MRMaguire says:

    Shane, I might have used another name or email address. I can’t remember. I did change my website to http://www.bootstrapgraphic. Could you update my name in the CCC Community Links? In 2011, I will be ramping up my side biz and focusing more on copywriting. I subscribed, too, so now I’ll get the updates via email. Thanks so much!

  8. Book Titles That Never Made it To Print

    Lucid – The Life and Times of Ozzy Osbourne
    Act Extinct – Hugh Hefner’s Guide to Getting Laid
    Radical Reveals – Handbook for Sunday School Fun
    Vengeance – Memorable Sarah Palin Comebacks
    Sylph – The Original Big Mama Script
    Elemental – Keeping it Sane, by Elle May Clampett
    Tapestry – Keeping Life Simple, by Nadya Suleman
    Remembering Righteous Ruby – Web Design for Beginners
    It Was An Illusion – The Blizzard of 2010
    Goths and Gospel – Forces That Influence the Commodities Market in a Deflationary Double Hoop

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @GL60: Wonderfully funny! Love your sense of humor. Poor Ozzy. I don’t know what’s holding that man upright these days.

  9. Here is my entry, the Dungeons and Dragons geek in me inspired this one:
    The earthen elemental attacks with some radical vengeance tearing down trees while trying to reach the small and delicate sylph girl who is it’s apparent target.  The sole surviving member of a nearly extinct race stands her ground with a lucid expression on her face, knowing neither fear nor doubt.  Arcane words begin dancing from her lips like Gospel hymns to some ancient deity.  It is no illusion when a tapestry of ruby colored flames erupt from her fingertips and scorch the creature until it collapses into a pile of molten rubble.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Justin: Excellent, man! This submission brought back memories of the original Dungeons and Dragons arcade game, and another game called Zelda which I played on an old IBM with a green screen.
      Loved the Arcane words sentence.

  10. The sylph girl with ruby eyes runs toward me with a ragged tapestry draped around her shoulders yelling, “I seek vengeance for the death of my father Isaiah.
    Good lord. Not Isaiah from three weeks ago. The grungy man who sat next to me a Kentucky Fried Chicken who leaned over and told me he wrote the fifth gospel then summarily swallowed a chicken bone whole? I tried to save him with the Heimlich Maneuver, but the bone refused to dislodge and that’s my fault?
    Clearly this girl’s not lucid or didn’t read the coroner’s report, otherwise, where would she get such a radical thought. So much for trying to be a good Samaritan. I decide right there in the middle of the discount mart to feign ignorance, hoping she’ll fall for the hastily concocted illusion long enough for the security guard to take notice.
    “I’m not sure what you’re talking about, ” I say, hoping I wouldn’t become extinct in the next few minutes.
    She rips my purse out of my hands and tosses it at a nearby mannequin mumbling in a British accent, “it’s elemental, Watson.” Out of the corner of my eye I see the guard put down his tabloid and make his way over.
    “Is there a problem here?” he asks the back of her head.
    “Why no officer,” she says in a demure southern drawl while turning around. She readjusts her threadbare shawl before quickly exists the store.
    I pick up my purse and its strewn belongings, thinking, “this will make a great story for next week’s Creative Copy Challenge.”

  11. Anne Maybus says:

    She seemed to float serenely in her perfect elemental space as the sun rose behind her but the sylph-like image was just an illusion.
    She was very real and she reeked of fury and vengeance.  Her eyes were filled with ruby flames that spat at me and scorched me with derision.  She drew herself up to her full height and stalked towards me with radical superiority.  She trapped me in a tapestry of  gesture and verbal abuse that reduced me to the cowering sinner that I was.  Suddenly, as though touched with tongues of gospel fire, her words were made lucid.  

    Extinct!  I am extinct and it is your fault!” she hissed at me and vanished from my sight. 
    It was a surreal experience.  I will never forget how she made me feel, nor will I ever again forget to feed my feline Siamese lady.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Anne Maybus: Welcome to the CCC. Excellent cliff hanger submission. I love this style, and I’ve used it quite a bit in the past. I’m sure the CCC gang is going to love you. Great picture you gave us there.
      I’ll add your name and URL to our CCC Community Links page next. And as always, everyone welcome Anne to our addiction (which is every Monday and Thursday by the way.). Also, what did you think of the challenge and the concept?

      • Anne Maybus says:

        Thanks, Shane,  I followed Joanna’s link on Twitter and I love what I have found here.  What a great way to get my brain started after Christmas.  I’ll be back.  🙂

        • Shane Arthur says:

          @Anne: Joanna’s real cool. Glad you found us. It is great here. I went back and read the earlier submissions we did here and am amazed every time I do so (highly recommended). I believe doing these challenges rewires the brain to see creative connections between seemingly unrelated ideas. I now boss my muse around at will as opposed to the other way around like it used to be for me. You’ll see if you do, say, 10 challenges. You’re reach a magical point where you just KNOW you’ll find an idea to write.

        • Cathy Miller says:

          @MR Maguire and AnneMaybus-Welcome to CCC!

          Now that I have a lucid moment, I’d like to officially welcome you to CCC where worries are extinct and the radical is a way of life. We write with a vengeance as we look to grasp words that at times are as elusive as the mythical sylph, yet as elemental as the air we breathe.

          So offer us your tapestry of words that are as welcomed here as ruby is to gold. There is no illusion to the truth we all know. The written word is the gospel of our souls.


    • Anne, another great read! I can’t wait until your next submission! 🙂

  12. katirra says:

    A ruby tapestry hung on the wall, hiding the safe and its treasure. Dr. Bock was smug in his knowledge that the ancient gospel was well-protected. Sipping his tequila, feet propped on his desk, he nearly choked when a sylph winked at him.

    “Impossible!” He poked at the cloth wondering if he was indeed lucid. Paranoid perhaps a rival angry with his possession of the text, he tested his liquor for poison. Sweating he waited to discover if he’d soon be extinct.

    Negative. A whoosh of air as he sighed his relief.

    Vengeance shall be mine!”

    He turned to see an elemental standing before him. This can’t be real! There must a rational explanation for this radical illusion. As she stuck her hand through safe and flickered away, he collapsed in fear knowing she’d be back another day.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Katirra: That was great. I had a fun time reading that. Reread it even. Thanks.

      • katirra says:

        Thanks Shane! I thought yours was hilarious & laughed out loud when I read it. I’m glad I discovered this site & think it’s my new addiction!

        • Shane Arthur says:

          @Katirra: That’s what I love, those laugh out loud moments. Love when I get to giggle like that over other people’s submissions.

  13. A sylph in a ruby veil wove a tapestry of words. The shouting of the crowd tore through it, but as a whisper I heard: “Elemental morality and lucid common sense should prevail. It’s a radical Gospel that calls for extinction or vengeance.”

    The crowd hid behind their illusions, and looked at their feet; it’s easier to find good stones that way.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Steven: Great example of a message right under the surface of the words. Love those types of reads where you could interpret it several ways. Write on.

  14. Kelly says:


    Only the city has ever been real to me. I know, you love the world at its most elemental… wide open fields, lonely snow-covered mountains, rocky beaches visited by no one but you. For you it works. For me, it’s more illusion than anything in my glass-and-steel jungle. That world you claim is so true… I know it’s all but extinct.

    New York—calls to me. Come, find my secrets. No matter how many millions have looked for them, she says, that sylph floating over my bed at midnight, the secrets I hold for you will never be found until you look. There’s beauty in the poor, the strung-out, the desperate people I show to you at this hour. There’s joy in a ripped-open trash bag if you know how to find it. And you do, she whispers, for that fleeting moment when she knows I’m lucid.

    She knows I’ll ignore her most days. Uncovering the radical beauty in the way we really live today isn’t something I can undertake nightly. But because I do, rush out in the crazy hours, to watch the raw reality of the city, she rewards me with an artist’s eyes. Bright illuminations. Dark hosannas. Always, the divine presence of Hope, sweet vengeance on a mainly unbelieving world. Those secrets, my secrets, revealed in glowing light. She lets me see the Gospel of Now.

    God is in that stinking, insane tapestry outside my bolted door. I’ve seen that. No ruby could ever mean more.

    I’ll let your beaches be.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Kelly: So what you’re saying is you’re going to try and write a fiction book soon right? Damn, Kelly, you should seriously concider doing so. Major parts of this are headed for the Swipe File too.

      • Kelly says:

        Shane—There’s already a humble book filed away in a drawer, from a couple of years ago. (Shouldn’t everyone have The Great American Novel hiding on a drawer?) Neither Simon nor Schuster seems to have knocked on my door, though…

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