Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #121

Today we have  Justin Germino of the Wanderer Thoughts Poetry blog choosing the words for our writing prompt challenge. Show him how you rise to his 2nd challenge.

Writing prompts cure writer’s block. Take the 10 random words below and, in the comments, crush writer’s block by creating a cohesive, creative short story tying 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, do those too.)

  1. Flagship
  2. Stellar – consisting of stars 
  3. Cosmic
  4. Corona a white or colored circle or set of concentric circles of light seen around a luminous body, especially around the sun or moon.
  5. Gleaming
  6. Vacuum
  7. Gaseous
  8. Milky
  9. Indigenous – originating in and characteristic of a particular region or country
  10. Meteor

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


131 Comments on “Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #121”

  1. Shane Arthur says:

    “Hey, Billy! Can you help me with my science homework? We’s studying space stuff and such.”


    “What happened, Billy?”

    “No, I meant shoot as it go ahead, not like a meteor shootin’ from the sky and landed in my mountain oysters.”

    “Oh, Okay den…So the first word be flagship. What dat?”

    “Dats a spaceship with a flag on it to let aliens know there ain’t no air in space to be flappin any flags.”

    “Okay. Next one is stellar.”

    “That shouldn’t be in there, Bobby. A steller is the steps to the cellar. That word should be in a carpentry book. Dats a cosmic error on their part. Hey, grab me a Corona and a Milky Way so I has something to eat and drink while I vacuum these mountain oyster crumbs off my shirt.”

    “Hmm. They made three more mistakes then, Billy. Corona, Milky Way, and vacuum done should be in a house cleanin book. They’s gaseous, gleaming idiots who wrote this here book. I may be indigenous to these here sticks, but I know my Lit-Rit-Chur.”

  2. margaret says:

    It was the flagship location of the very popular chain of singles bars.
    He had checked himself in the mirror several times before coming here and was convinced that his appearance was nothing short of stellar.  He was dressed
    impeccably and his practiced smile showed a perfect row of gleaming teeth, a result of the very costly whitening procedure he was sure would would pay off big time.

    He ordered a corona for himself and a fruity, milky, rum drink indigenous to the area… a ‘cosmic meteor” to put him in a festive mood. Unfortunately, he did not realize the effect that this blend of ingredients would have in the vacuum of his intestinal tract.

    No, this charming, handsome, self satisfied man would not get lucky tonight. His gaseous aura would be a sure deterrent to any companionship or conversation remotely possible. He might as well be walking on the moon.  

  3. Anne Wayman says:

    The flagship Cosmic Stellar traveled the Milky Way with a gleaming corona in spite of the non-gaseous vacuum. Indigenous space beings surfed the bow wake on meteors just like earth-bound dolphins.

  4. Here was my own contribution to the game today:

    Milky tears gleaming in starlight
    Once Stellar flagship of a home
    now a cosmic vacuum of suffering

    Wondering why this life, this house
    indigenous people of lies and hate
    desperate escape the only salvation

    Now fleeing into the night so fast
    like a meteor leaving a corona trail
    gaseous apologies a thing of the past

  5. Chris F. says:

    “Gimme a Hint”

    Rhonda was pissed.

    Being a guy, I sometimes miss things, but this time I had no problem picking up her subtle clues.

    When the door to our office-slash-spare-bedroom flew open with a slam, and I saw Rhonda walk in carrying the vacuum, I figured something was up.  When bent over with a huff and briskly unwrapped the cord, then reached over to plug it in, without even once looking at me, I assumed she was irritated.  When she turned on the vacuum and drowned out the Grateful Dead’s “Cosmic Charlie” that I’d been listening to on the stereo, I took it to mean that her irritation was significant.  When she began jerking the vacuum around like she was trying to sand the weave completely out of the carpet and slammed the thing into the computer desk right next to my foot, nearly knocked over my bottle of Corona, I finally put the pieces together and guessed that she was mad at me.

    I paused the game of ‘Mythos’ from Flagship Studios that I was playing, downed the remainder of my beer to rescue it from any further violence, shut off the Dead’s CD, and then stepped away from the desk.  Then I walked over to the wall and pulled the vacuum’s plug.

    Rhonda looked up and glared at me.  Her eyes were gleaming with a fierce intensity.  I knew I had to tread lightly, and be extremely delicate in how I handled the situation.

    “What’s all this?  Are you mad at me?”  I said, showing her that my sensitive nature had been able to successfully sympathize with her emotional state.

    Rhonda stood up fully, releasing the vacuum. She clenched her fists and put them on her hips with her elbows out wide.  “Geez, you think?!?”

    A-ha — She was evidently still willing to talk to me, and was also using some humorous sarcasm instead of just calling me names.  I took these as good signs.

    I just had to figure out why she was mad.  I should subtly draw her out; get her to share her feelings so I could probe into her heart; listen with an open mind to fully understand her wants and needs.  Then I could emphasize and work to better meet her needs.

    “What the Hell for?” I said.  A subtle, probing question that asked her to share.

    I saw her jaw clench, but then her shoulders sagged and she dropped her arms to her side. Her dark, clear eyes turned milky with tears. “You really don’t know, do you?”

    Damn.  I was evidently doing a less-than-stellar job at this communication thing.  It was like I was hacking my way blindly though a tangled emotional jungle, trying to make sense of the bizarre and alien indigenous life forms there.  I needed information, guidance, and direction.  I decided to try opening my heart and sharing with her.  Maybe it would help.

    “What?” I said.  “I don’t get it.”  Showing my open and vulnerable state to hopefully build sympathy.

    She looked at me like I’d just filled the room with some hideously flatulent, post-spicy-bean-and-cabbage-burrito gaseous emission.  She sunk onto the desk chair and slowly shook her head.

    “I tried to not drop any hints.  I wanted to see if you’d remember. But now it’s almost eight o’clock and still there’s nothing. I purposely haven’t said a thing all day, thinking, ‘well, maybe he’s just waiting for the right time’.  But here you sit, back here playing on the computer, ignoring me, and not saying a thing.  You really forgot, didn’t you?”

    Ding-ding-ding!  We had target acquisition and lock-on!  Now it all made sense.  I smiled.

    “Of course not.” I reached out my hand.  “Come here, Babe.”

    She wiped her eyes and let me lead her into the bedroom.  I sat her on the bed and tried to explain.  “The first time we met, it was late — probably around 11:00 at night at that college party.  Our first date, we went to the astronomy lecture and I figure our first kiss that night was around 11:00.  The first time we made love, it was after we watched ‘Star Wars’ at your apartment — probably around 11:00 or so.  The night we were married, it was almost 11:00 at night by the time we made it out of the reception and back to our hotel room.”

    She began to smile as she looked up at me, here eyes sparkling.  I sat down next to her on the bed.  “You were right — I was waiting for the right time.  So now can you guess what time I was thinking of?”

    I reached over to my nightstand and opened the drawer, pulling out a small package wrapped in red and gold paper.  I held it out between us.  “But I don’t mind going early, if you’d prefer.”

    She took the package, holding it gently.  “Oh, Sweetie, I’m really sorry for thinking the worst.”  

    She opened the present and gasped when she saw the diamond bracelet she’d been admiring for the past year.  Then she threw herself at me like a meteor exploding into a planet.

    Bullseye.  Target hit and destroyed.

    Sometimes I can take a hint.

    • Sweet. Playing the bumbling oaf with a well-timed, “What the Hell for?”
      That was a priceless read, Chris. Didn’t I read somewhere earlier that this wasn’t your genre? Are you pulling our collective leg? This was great!

      • Chris F. says:

        Thanks, Mitch!  I really appreciate the positive words.
        And I guess the answer to your question depends on what you consider ‘this genre’ to be.  Relationship humor?  😉
        Yeah, being a sci-fi fan, it would have been so easy to take Justin’s words and do something, anything, everything, in that genre.  But for some reason I thought there’d be no challenge there, and then the image of a vacuum cleaning drowning out the Dead’s ‘Cosmic Charlie’ jumped into my mind.  So I went with it and this is what spewed out…   :shrug:
        And while I now see several edits I’d make, I like how this off-the-cuff piece turned out.  So I guess I’m just a softie, love-wins-over-all, romatic fool after all.  lol!
        Thanks again!  I really appreciate the comments.  Even if I seem to be the guy that a certain person always ignores ( :cough: Shane :cough: ), I eagerly welcome all feedback!


        • Chris, I was thinking more about your disavowal of being the “romance guy”. First we get a gem of a Five and Dime recollection (lol remember when we called books five and dime thrillers?)
          Now, you come back with an authentic “He Went To Jared” hero with a humorous twist.
          But, then, that is the mark of your talent – able to dip your quill in many wells.

          • Chris F. says:

            Thanks again, Mitch.
            Yeah — I guess while I’ve never read any bodice-rippers, I must just have a romantic streak.
            I’ve been happily married for 11 years.  So I only dip my quill in one well.  😉

    • This was an excellent story, loved the anger and tension only to be diffused at a simple token of appreciation.  The product placement(s) references in using the words were great too.  “Try the Hot Pockets, their breathtaking” -Dr. Evil

      • Chris F. says:

        Thanks, Justin!!!  I appreciate it.
        Awesome words you selected, by the way.  I came this-close to going for the intergalactic epic, but — thanks to some refreshing Pepsi Cola (R) before-hand — ended up with this piece instead.
        Glad you liked it!

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Chris: I knew when I saw your comment to Mitch stating “Thanks, Mitch! I really appreciate the positive words,” that something happened again. There on page 3 of my comments was yours. OUTSTANDING AGAIN. How funny is it that today my wife and I are celebrating 10 years of marriage. So cool to read this today. Thanks buddy.

      • Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. CCC!

        • Shane Arthur says:

          @Mitchell: Thanks man. I just have to figure out why some of Chris F’s comments are posting to my admin screen hours after he submits. Annoying. I saw his one comment responding to me, but I know I didn’t see his own submission until later.

          • Chris F. says:

            Probably because my submissions are TOO DAMN LONG!!!  ;^)
            Your system’s hanging up like a garter snake chokin’ to swallow a moose…

          • Shane Arthur says:

            @Chris: I’m seeing trackbacks from CCC regulars land in the spam folder lately too. Odd.

      • Chris F. says:

        Again — no worries! It’s not oversight — just a build of dramatic tension before you post.  😉
        Thanks for the kind words, and CONGRATULATIONS on the anniversary!!!  I wish you and the Missus all the best, and am glad this came out today. Have a wonderful day and many, many more happy years!!!
        P.S.: My wife and I are celebrating our 11th this April.

    • Ember Bianco says:

      Chris this had so many amazing twists, turns, reality, incredible comedic timing, this was the best story ever!!!!!!!!!!!   

      Plus!      “I just had to figure out why she was mad.  I should subtly draw her out; get her to share her feelings so I could probe into her heart; listen with an open mind to fully understand her wants and needs.  Then I could emphasize and work to better meet her needs.” 

       You’re a guy and you put those words together?   I am super impressed!

      • Chris F. says:

        Thank you very much for your extremely kind words, Ember — I’m very happy that you enjoyed it!!!
        And yeah, I put those words together — I at least get the concept in theory, LOL!  But I thought it was funny to have that as the guy’s inner monologue, coupled with his reply (“a subtle, probing question that asked her to share’):  “What the Hell for?”

  6. natalie says:

    “Sam.” It wasn’t a question, wasn’t a statement. It was just her…saying my name. Shooting through me like a meteor.

    Her shoulders were gleaming and milky white, and I wondered how she’d react if I leaned over and bit one of them. Not hard, just enough to taste her skin. Enough to feel the pull of her, the vacuum she created around her.

    “Sam, what is it?” She examined my face, and I examined the sketch. “I mean, where is it?”

    I didn’t know; the castle drawn out with sure, simple strokes could have been indigenous to anywhere in Europe. It hunched over the edge of a precipice, glowering at a forest growing down the mountain. The stone of the structure melted into the stone of the earth, and above the ground, it was hugged by the stellar sky. Even in the yellowed sketch, you could see the builders had meant it to challenge both the cosmic and the earthly. It was like every other medieval fortress, and like no other: a flagship to declare the power of the ruling class over the serfs. A fortress built of fear and power.


    I brought my eyes back up. They snagged for a moment on those bare shoulders again, and then met her eyes. The lamp lit her from behind, and for a moment she was like a sun, pulsing coronas outlining her shape. “I don’t know. It could be anywhere.”

    She sighed, and I matched it. That’s how it was with a woman: you echoed her sighs, her smiles. Unconsciously or not, we all did it; they ignored our echoes, knowing what they were: the mating call of the human male. The desire to be close to the woman out of your league: not a solid thing, blocking your way; but not liquid either. No, not liquid. Not flowing and floating. That desire that wrapped around us–around me–and made us echo a sigh over a library table: it was gaseous. It was useless.

    And still we–I–echoed.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Natalie: Holy Bleepity Bleep! That was outstanding. The CCC regulars are going to LOVE you. We have these challenges every Monday and Thursday, so please stop by then. I’ll add your name to our CCC community links page. You shoud have a website and put your writing on it. Check out our sidebar for a great theme to get you started, too. Again, Wow!

      • natalie says:

        Thanks, Shane. Oops…Can’t believe I forgot to link to my blog. D’oh!

        I just discovered your site this morning and thought it would be a good exercise for me. The novel I’m currently working on is told from “her” point of view, but I thought it would be helpful to stretch the creativity a bit and use your exercise and write from Sam’s POV. Lots of fun–expect me back! 🙂

      • Cathy Miller says:

        @Natalie-Welcome to CCC!

        Welcome to the flagship of creativity.

        You’ll love our stellar community with the cosmic touch of words. Each challenge is the corona around the CCC mothership, gleaming brilliantly in what would be a vacuum of a world without words, a gaseous waste of the unfulfilled.

        We are glad you joined us on our milky way journey of fantasy and all that is real as we reveal the beauty that is indigenous to the soul, as it races on its meteor rise to be heard.


    • Hi Natalie. You write good. LOL
      Seriously, that was a slam-dunk. Definitely man-centric, even down to the scowling castle. I loved that description!
      Welcome to the CCC. I can’t wait to read more from you. 🙂

    • Wonderful, the imagery of Sam being completely enthralled by her while she kept trying to bring him back to reality and get his attention was felt.

    • Ember Bianco says:

      WOW Natalie what a flagship entrance that was – Really thought provoking and enchanting at the same time – Welcome to our Castle of creativity!

  7. Chris F. says:

    Riviting and wonderful, Natalie!
    Tremendous job!  Welcome to the site here.  I’m a fellow n00b, veteran of only a week, but I’m already hooked and I love it — I know you will, too!
    :Glassy-eyed:  Come… Don’t fight it…  Join us…

  8. Wrapped more tightly than a vacuum-sealed brisket, the wife of Stephen Hawking rose through the healing balm of mummification to a semi-conscious awareness of being. She still had no sensation in her extremities – the end result of her cosmic voyage as a human meteor. Due to her strenuous training under the aegis of her dearly departed husband, the wife of Stephen Hawking had not only survived the Apocalypse, but also the trans-Pacific flight from Mystic, Iowa to the little town of Ipil in the province of Zamboanga Sibugay, Philippines.

    The treachery of the gaseous mines beneath her rudely constructed hut had ignited without warning. Indeed, the wife of Stephen Hawking had no idea what hit her. Thankfully, she had no inkling of the rough treatment she had endured on her path to recovery.  Her five senses had been ripped apart, rendered useless by searing flame, noxious fumes and a percussive thump that had rolled across the central Iowan plain, flattening all indigenous life for forty square miles.

    Right now, though, she was only aware of a milky corona, gleaming just above some imagined field of inner vision. Slowly, she became aware of an even brighter, pulsating light. It was an impossibly sharp electric blue flash, stellar fireworks alternating between hues of cobalt and lapis lazuli. Rotating her mental eyeballs did nothing to diminish the increasing intensity of bright blue blindness. Tingling. That was not imagined. A faint, crawling dance around her fingers and toes kept staccato time with the blue beat bashing her inner eye. Vainly, she tried to focus on the end points of her body but, of course, she had no control of her former flagship. Helplessly, she watched and felt. Watched and felt. No blinking respite, no soothing scratch and – what, now? A smell, too?

    The wife of Stephen Hawking was experiencing the flooding rush that signaled accelerated healing, Egyptian-style. Her bones were healing at hyper-speed, infused with coral. The absinthe-soaked wrappings had awakened spasmodic hypertonia in every muscle, exactly counteracting the calcification of the coral knitting needles. Rejuvenated nerve-endings chattered excitably amongst themselves, wondering why their messages were being ignored. Her blood, boiled away in the blast, reconstituted in her chambers and vessels, contributing to the cacophony with the roaring splashes that she mistook for tap dancing ants.

    The wondrous rebirth drew nigh.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Mitchell: Such a wonderful tale. I love reading words that so clearly demonstrate a love of language and storytelling.

      • Thanks, Shane. “Meteor” was the magic word around which all else bowed humbly. I gotta shout out my gratitude to Justin for these fine words.
        What is it about prompts that enable the muse? Anybody? I mean, look at Aaron’s Addan and the Prince series. That is major league prompt crushing. If we do enough of these, it seems a novel would write itself!

        • Shane Arthur says:

          @Mitchell: Prompts are special things…and inside the CCC they become collective magic. Other prompt sites have little or no magic. We are a unique, special bunch over here.

          • Shane, it must be magic. Nothing else make me write like this.
            The folk here are inspirational on both ends: giving us great, challenging words and then clapping warming at the end of our little recitals.
            Thanks, everybody!

    • Chris F. says:

      Oh wow — fabulous job, Mitch!!!
      I love the language, how every word seems to seamlessly fit together, the imagry, and now — with a little more familiarity — what had first seemed confusing after my first exposure in a previous prompt, is now so able to pull me in and immerse me in the story.
      Great work!  I really like it!!!

      • Chris, thanks! I tried to make those connections for you 😉
        This was the first time I put a critical eye on one of these challenges. It wasn’t me, per se, it was the wife of Stephen Hawking, admonishing my first draft for doing too much “telling” and sharing her limelight with that Queen lady.
        I appreciate your comments. Now I know I have to actually listen to these characters’ wishes.

    • Really excellent story, I wonder if Stephen Hawking really will preserve his wife in some sort of cryogenic or stasis state?

    • Ember Bianco says:

      Yea Mitch! I’m finally catching up with the series, I love the impact of the visuals and the colorful dimensions you gave this story– super job as usual.

  9. Argan regarded the scientist as he struggled with the INDIGENOUS Chinese for the remaining parachute in the space shuttle.

    Loneliness, some said, bordered on insanity. It left a VACUUM in one’s soul. See how the scientist sat, biting his untrimmed fingers and muttering to himself while around him the sky was about to collapse. He had been in space for twelve years, repairing the damaged FLAGSHIP.

    Argan and the Chinese had been launched into space to bring him home. But then a METEOR had hit them as they were re-entering earth’s atmosphere.

    Argan continued grappling with the Chinese as their shuttle descended on, leaving GASEOUS smoke in their wake. The clouds roared by, veiling the COSMIC darkness above and its MILKY STELLAR clusters, and endowing the GLEAMING sun with a CORONA.

    He considered the scientist again and stopped tussling. “We should give it to him. We were, after all, charged with bringing him home safely. None of us will survive if we continue struggling.”

    The Chinese hesitantly nodded and they wore the scientist the parachute, instructed him, and shoved him off the shuttle.

    As soon as they saw the parachute sprout out and spread, they leapt off the shuttle. Their descent was faster, as they hadn’t parachutes. Soon they fell past the scientist.

    The scientist started. “Ah, you didn’t tell me you will land first!” He quickly removed the parachute and joined them to their demise.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Walter: I love the story…and everything that’s just under the surface of it! Well done.

    • Oh my Gawd! What the deuce?! Sigh. And you wonder why we ignore those less fortunate.
      I love the way you portrayed the scientist, foreshadowing his dim-witted action. It was a funny ending but, upon reflection, not unexpected.
      I feel so sorry for the sacrificial lambs, though. What a waste!

    • An almost sad and bitter ending, ironic that they both sacrificed themselves to try and bring their “charge” back safely.  It was a fun read.

    • Ember Bianco says:

      Walter this was an outstanding paradox of a story about human nature. And the unexpected ending was a bonus treat.  

  10. Chris F. says:

    Very nice — with a totally unexpected ending!  I really enjoyed that.
    All that effort and sacrifice to save someone, and the fool just throws it away.  There’s a deeper message in this piece.  Excellent!

  11. Joe Passmore says:

    Several bottles of Corona later the women seemed more attractive. It’s surprising the effect of a pair of beer goggles. But there was no mistaking this one, a stellar brunette. She sidled up to me, sized me up, heavy breath gaseous in my ear, her hand glancing along the inside of my thigh. I could feel it through my jeans. . . ‘Cosmic!’ I gasped unable to believe my luck. At this stage my head was positively gleaming with perspiration. I could scent her milky skin, my heart pounding, it felt like trying to breathe in a vacuum. She whispered in my ear in her unmistakeable accent. . .
    “Is that a flagship indigenous, or are you just pleased to meteor me?”


  12. Space. The final free beer.

    This is the story of the Flagship Urth. It’s 5-billion-year mission: evolve an indigenous intelligent life form capable of leaving the planetary cradle and surviving the inevitable death of the solar system.

    “Will you turn that psy-phi crap off!?” StepSis yelled. “I’m tryin’ to watch Oprah!”

    I reached for my headphones, scowling. “Okay!”

    The vacuum offered no resistance to the radiation streaming from the corona of the stellar nursery. The Milky Way, a gleaming cosmic backdrop, looked on paternally as the new star was born. The outer ring of debris erupted in a dance of meteors and gaseous incandescence.

    StepSis’s screeching penetrated like an icepick. “Hey, UPS just dropped off a package for you!”

    Headphones hit the floor. “I got it!” Running up the stairs.

    Box open. Parts assembled. Real Working Lightsaber(tm) acquired!

    Now, let’s talk about that “curfew”, StepSis…

  13. Ember Bianco says:

    At the flagship theatre it was a stellar performance, a night at the Improve couldn’t compare to these cosmic challenges of comic delight, even the Kodak Theatre never attracted a vacuum of stars such as this place. The planet of token treasures and free Milky Way bars, passed out during each nightly episodic view of meteor showers in between shows.
    If your ancestors are not from here you wouldn’t know what this planet is all about. I came here by way of the last flight of the now retired Challenger, voyage 280, from way back when; originally I believe it was the year 4331 if I’m not mistaken, when a burst of gaseous fumes ignited to create this star shaped planet. Since its inception every day and every night is filled with fame and fantasy comedy and tragedy; all claim the giant stage that hovers above, illuminated by gleaming torches, one designated for each point of the planet, powered up by the reflection from the corona of neighboring moons; spawned from the galaxies of Golloff, MyrthSinder, Eroesine, and Yalkyrite.
    So why is this planet so special over all the others? In a nutshell, no politics of any sort can land here, no criticism, no snide remarks, no ill fashioned debates, and absolutely no negativity; one jot and it’s all over, immediate cause for instant vaporization, and no one wants that.  Here there are just endless days and hours filled with tales of every sort. In fact, the planet spins its tales so fast that there is never any time for aging. I believe I’m still only 164 1/2 years old. Because the way the planet nourishes itself, by recycling its energy with the ebb and flow of its stories indigenous to its self, there are no endings and only continuations of the beginnings. Yes this Plant called the CCC created for the sole purpose of pleasing souls is here to amuse and astonish. Now pardon me, while I take my place on stage to recite story # 9,582,130,007. I welcome you to stay awhile; I guarantee if you do, it’s going to be a real hoot!

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Ember: That was your most creative submission yet! Super, super job. As I read, I kept saying, “This could be about the CCC…this could be about the CCC,” and damn if it wasn’t.

      • Ember Bianco says:

         Okay so this was a real challenge for me because although I love Sci-fi, I am so not Sci-fi creative, so I had to bring it back to what I know and what I’ve learned from being here. And really the way this site takes off  by leaps and bounds every month I wouldn’t be too surprised if you make that number of stories within this life time. I’m glad you liked it.

    • What a submission, Ember! A galaxy of fun and imagination. It does seem like a never-ending continuation of fresh stories, new colonists paying the entry fee with an amusing story.
      And you’re right it’s been a hoot! Good job capturing the flavor of this place!

    • Chris F. says:

      Great job, Ember!  Very creative twist, working the ‘planet’ into the CCC!  I really liked it!!!
      “no politics of any sort can land here, no criticism, no snide remarks, no ill fashioned debates, and absolutely no negativity; one jot and it’s all over, immediate cause for instant vaporization” — Jeez, I wish I could implement this everywhere I spend my time!  It would sure make work a lot easier, LOL!
      Again — wonderful work!

  14. Tanja Cilia says:

    The planet was miraculously spewed out of the time warp, an infinitesimal second after the meteor had broken away from the gravitational pull of the asteroid belt between the orbits of the planets Mars and Jupiter. The Northern Lights went out, sucked in by the resultant vacuum. In the air was a barely discernible gaseous glow, an indistinct milky gleaming in the gloaming. This was an unprecedented catastrophe with cosmic ramifications. Corona, the flagship of the Korporazzjoni Spazju, now light years away from its Whirlpool Galaxy origins, had crossed the stellar void. Would the inhabitants of Earth be bipeds, like the indigenous inhabitants of Dysnomia inside the starship…? They would land, and find out.

    • Chris F. says:

      Wonderous scene-setting, Tanja!  I love how you put the words together and brought out the story questions that sucked me in and made me want to keep reading!  Great job!
      Love the use of the ‘gleaming in the gloaming’ too!

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Tanja: YES! Loved this! Reminded me of my fav show in the ’80s – Battlestar Galactica.

    • Way to go, Tanja! I love the exotic flavor of this opening chapter! I can see the setting so clearly, as you described it beautifully.

  15. Tanja Cilia says:

    Thank you. Korporazzjoni Spazju is, of course Space Corporation in Maltese.

  16. Shane Arthur says:

    Programming Note:
    I’ve never done this before, but I’d like to give you regulars that follow the comments a chance to get a jump on Monday’s challenge words over the weekend. I believe you’ll need it as this list of words is the most difficult ever. Esteemed editor, John McIntyre, of the Baltimore Sun picked the words. Super hard, but I already came up with my favorite Bobby & Billy bit yet.
    So this is both a heads up, and a weekend torment for you! But, I know you’ll rise to the challenge.

  17. Tanja Cilia says:

    What passed for a boulevard in the boondocks  was lined with a carpet of bougainvillea blooms. They’d fallen off the vines entwined in the avenue trees – pinks, purples, yellows, whites, reds.   Bo’sun  Smythe, back from his travels to Peru and Brazil, had thought it was a good idea at the time; but now the residents of Benedict were annoyed at how they had proliferated within two years. But did he care? Slurping his bouillabaisse, the self-styled, nouveau-riche Mayor had commandeered the boulangerie  and turned it into a tavern; the breads were now only a side-line. Ladies with bouffant hairdos and botulism toxin bosom enhancements made the place look like a Louis XIV boudoir. Like that of the Sun King, Bo’sun  Smythe’s  word was law.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      Tanja: that was excellent. when Monday comes be sure to copy and paste this into CCC#122. After you do, I’ll delete this comment. Awesome. I knew the CCC crew would step up to the challenge.

  18. Tanja Cilia says:

    (and you expected us to resist the temptation?)

  19. Tanja Cilia says:

    It wrote itself while I was busy sorting some papers…

  20. sefcug says:

    Due to other commitments, I have been unable to post this until now, but I couldn’t let these words go by.

    Here is my attempt in reverse order:


    The meteor struck the area with no advance warning to the indigenous population of this non-technological society.

    From the ground, they could see the milky way galaxy, as well as various gaseous planets and stars, with their extraordinary visual capabilities. Even with this innate ability to peer through the great vacuum of space to the gleaming corona of distant stars, it seems the cosmic deities thought that was enough, and did not provide these creatures with the intelligence to vie the stellar vastness from a flagship of an interstellar space going fleet of starships.

    This population had no desire to leave their planet, but rather just want to carry on living out their lives planet bound, yet content with their life of farming and hunting. Even the so called towns consisted of nothing more than fifteen families spread over an area of twenty square miles in our system of measurement.

    You don’t need technology to be happy and content, as long as you don’t even know what it is. Just live your life as you want to live it.


  21. Tiffany Hudson says:

    Marla and I were in our faverate cafe. Sitting at our faverate table. In the corner, out the way.
    The door of the cafe opened at the other side of the large room. I had a perfect view of the door so I had a perfect view of the guy that walked in. Tall and thin. Brown hair that was a little too long for a boy, so the fashion at this moment and time. His green eyes were gleaming. A light tan spread across his face and arms. Sam.
    “How was the flagship?” Marla asked him the second he sat down. It was hot gossip, so she had to know.
    “It was fun. Exsept the weather was a little bad a one point. Marla you would have loved it so much that you’d be begging a meteor to hit the ship.

    “So it was horrible?” she asked.
    “Naa, I just learnt so much your head would exsplode.” He laughed back at her.
    I nearly joined in untill he nicked me milky coffee and gulped it all down.
    “Hey, thats mine.” I hit his arm playfully.
    “Then I was doing you a faver. That stuff tasted so discusting that my mum will be vacuuming vomit of the floor later.
    “Your mum Vacuums sick? Who does that?” I asked jokeingly.
    “So, was their a girl you liked on the boat?” Marla asked. It was good question. One I wanted to know too.
    “Nope. Well one but she remined me of my nan yet she was thirteen.” He muttered the last bit basicly to him self. I laughed.
    “It could have been a cosmic reminder that you need to get a girlfriend.” She coxked her head to the side looking a little evil.
    “I’ve got one.” He growled at her.
    I placed my hand on his arm gently.
    Marla got it instently.
    “Ohmygod. You two together? Finely.”
    “Finely?” I asked.
    “Everyones been waiting for it.” She nodded. “Please say I was the first to know.”
    “Jenny was there when it happened.” Sam said quitely.
    “You two together is more beautiful  then a stellar and a corana.”
    “She actully knows what they are?” Sam asked me laughing. I nodded at him smiling happily.
    “Yeah well.” She looked at my revision sheet i was working on before Sam walked in. “What does Gaseous and Indigenous mean?” she asked bewillered.
    “Thats more like Marla. Blonde and brainless. It’s a bit sterotypeish isn’t it?” Sam laughed.  I saw in his eyes when he remembered i was blonde to.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Tiffany: Real neat what you did here. Sam put his foot in his mouth with that one. Made me feel the embarrassment.

      • Tiffany Hudson says:

        @Shane.  Thank you.
        It was easier to do a short piece of writting as I already knew the characters.

  22. Kelly says:

    My uncle died of drinking last week.
    Ah, I misspeak. Nothing so meteoric as that sounds.
    Not, you understand, of drinking last week.
    Of drinking.
    Last week.
    It is a stellar death, when it comes, but it takes quite a bit longer than a week to manage it.

    It’s not a demise that’s unfamiliar to us Irish. It’s the way his own father went, in fact.
    We Irish… we took the flagship of British emotionlessness, that “stiff upper lip” thing, and we went too far with it.
    We’ll have no talk at all unless it’s gaseous blarney, and no humour at all unless it’s black, and no singing at all unless it’s to sing of cosmic wrongs happening to somebody else… or to sing of drinking, of course.
    Indigenous to one of the most cold and sodden places on Earth, oppressed and offended and bound by blood to make the best of it all, we drink ourselves warm, we put on the milky smiles of the habitually wasted, and we hug our neighbours with all the sincerity we can muster, but it never takes away the exquisite sadness in Irish eyes.
    When Irish eyes are smiling, sure there’s always a depth you’ll never plumb.
    Only the lower lip moves when you put a pint to your lip, you know. That stiff upper lip keeps all the aches and all the truth in.

    The truth?
    My uncle died because my aunt—though she never had a kind word or a loving glance for him, he adored her liquid beauty and forgave her desiccated heart; in his mind’s eye there still remained a gleaming corona of light around her ‘til the day he died—my aunt left him.
    Twenty-three years ago.
    Just took him this long to kill himself, and leave another vacuum in the lives of those who did try to love him.
    It’s his birthday.
    He’d be 63.

    • Chris F. says:

      Wow, Kelly — I’m incredibly moved.  That was heart-breakingly poignant.  I’ve known first-hand the agonies and sadness that second-hand drinking can inflict on a family, and your piece resonated deeply within me.
      Incredibly moving.

      • Kelly says:

        Chris— Thanks. I’m glad it moved you!
        In spite of the fact that a lot of my characters claim to be “I,” I don’t really write a lot of true stories here, but… well, this one’s on my mind.
        I wanted it to have a different ending. It just didn’t.   😦    So I felt like I had to write about it.
        P.S. Curious—What are the guitars in your avatar? Are they yours?

        • Chris F. says:

          @Kelly:  Excellent story again, and more-so for having that ring of truth to me as a reader — I have lived through a lot of fall out due to alcohol around me.
          And from a writer’s perspective — while I haven’t been ‘a writer’ for that long, I’ve come to realize that even when I write in third-person from the farthest reaches of my imagination, somehow there always end up being an an element of ‘me’ in there.  😉
          And the guitars are some images I found online of Fender Stratocasters.  They’re not specifically my guitars, but I’ve played a Strat for years and years.  (My e-mail and forum site names all tend to have a ‘StratPlayer’ in them).  I mainly only have played for fun in forever — since going back to school in my late 20’s to get my EE degree.  But I guess I still  think of me as a ‘guitarist’ at some level…

          • Kelly says:

            Chris—An EE with a secret life as a guitarist. Super-cool.
            And on the “me” creeping into writing—absolutely! No fiction can be “totally” fiction. It’s informed by who the writer is, for sure… as individual as a fingerprint.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Kelly: Another fine, fine piece.

  23. […] To see the submissions of others, or to contribute your own visit: Creative Copy Challenge #121. […]

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