Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #200

What an amazing day today is! We celebrate our 200th writing prompt challenge. When we started this site, we were not sure we’d make it more than a month, but we’ve had over 300 submitters , 21,000 comments, and two years of fun that keeps coming.

I wanted to celebrate this great day, by having Cathy Miller choose the words. Cathy is our Welcoming Queen. Each time a new person did a submission, she’d use the challenge words and create a welcome message. They’re so cool, I created a page to collect them. Check them out, as no better way exists to demonstrate how special this place is. Thank you Cathy, and thank you CCC Family. Don’t know what I’d do without you all.

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. Celebrate
  2. Cerebral
  3. Clever
  4. Continuous
  5. Captivating
  6. Cacophony
  7. Crushing
  8. Creative
  9. Copy
  10. Challenge

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


61 Comments on “Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #200”

  1. Anne Wayman says:

    200th! Congratulations.
    Hey Cathy: A veritable cacophony of clever copy confirmed a continuous cerebral challenge for the creative. A crushing coveting to be captivating meant small cause to celebrate.

  2. Cathy Miller says:

    @Shane-my great pleasure and honor and to kick it off—
    Celebrate. Celebrate. Dance to the music – even if it’s just a cerebral experience. The clever notion that the continuous stream of responses would motivate even the worst of procrastinators is a captivating concept for the uninspired. The negative cacophony of a screaming world is a crushing blow to the creative soul. It’s not a sound I’d like to copy as I challenge the muse to do more.
    Happy 200th, CCC!!!!

  3. “Tonight we celebrate our organisation’s continuous, creative success,” said Brooklyn mob boss Vito Santoni.
    “The challenge from our competitors this past year was clever to say the least” acknowleged Ghandir McNugin, the best drug dealer in the Latin Quarter.
    “Thanks to Vito’s crushing blow they’ll never try to copy us again,” McNugin continued.
    “Well his is a captivating, cerebral cacophony that left the best cold,” said Frankie Duturi.
    “Things will never be the same again in this town again.”

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Richard: Welcome to the CCC. Great submission. I never would have expected to take this word list where you did. That’s just one reason why I love this place.
      Everyone welcome Richard to the addiction. I’ll add your name and URL to the CCC Community Links page next.

      P.S. I love Susan Doyle. Awesome that you got her first interview.

      • Cathy Miller says:

        @Richard-Welcome to CCC!

        It’s another reason to celebrate, each time we land someone new. From the cerebral to the clever twist, CCC is a continuous source of captivating entertainment. Block out the critical cacophony of those who don’t understand the crushing loss when a creative voice is silenced to copy an unfulfilled challenge of norm.

        Welcome to CCC!

    • Enjoyed the setting, nice setup.

    • Welcome to the CCC, Richard! Loved this entry, made me want to watch a violent movie. LOL

    • @shane @cathy @justin @mitchell : Thank you all for the very kind comments and the nice welcome. I like wordplay an alliteration in dialogue……and it didn’t hurt that I just recently watched a spree of Mafia movies 🙂

  4. Happy 200th CCC, here is my poem:

    Creative Copy Challenge
    Think you can do this creative copy challenge
    where the captivating clever cacophony
    of continuous cerebral literary entries
    thrive, crushing the complacency of dull
    celebrate the freedom of expression
    and the writing challenges proposed

  5. margaret says:


    Creative Copy Challenge is cerebral wordplay…..
    a cacophony  of captivating  thoughts phrased in a quite clever array!
    I celebrate continuous challenges, some in nonsensical, fun rhyme…
    because it serves for crushing boredom….makes me happy all the time!!!

  6. I need to come up with something special for this one. Cathy is, indeed, CCC’s “Welcoming Queen,” and I will never forget the kindness of this whole community in welcoming me here when I badly needed a distraction from upcoming cancer surgery (there’s a “C” we can eliminate with my blessings!!)
    Happy to say that’s no longer a factor. Hard to believe I’ve been here nearly a YEAR, though, now – you’ve helped the time to fly by, and I just want to thank you ALL.

  7. Shane Arthur says:

    “Hey Billy! Come take a look at dis here computer screen. I found me a copy challenge site dat’s copyin’ our cerebral creativity. Look here. Even da names is da same as ours. These Bobby and Billy characters is caca—phonies made to look, talk and sound just like us.”

    “Bobby, they’s even livin’ da same lives as us, down to your runt toe even. Someone should celebrate how clever they is for continuously creatin’ captivatin’ characters after us. It’s just crushin’ my ego, though, dat they ain’t mentioned my ability to multi-orgasm. I’s currently up to 200 Os & 200CCs a pop.”
    I couldn’t think of a better way to bring in the 200 than with more Bobby and Billy antics.

  8. Brad says:

    It was a clever machine before the military seized the device for their own needs. It was Gerald Bookman’s first prototype of the Cerebral Neuron Thruster; a captivating invention that changed the face of mankind. Gerald used a creative method of copying the electrical pulses and their respective receptors as they were being fired in the brain during simultaneous audio and visual stimulation procedures. The challenge was syncing up the wave lengths without crushing the peak frequencies.

    There was one problem though – the continuous cacophony of hums within one’s mind after the cortex transfer had been completed.  Test subjects went violently bezerk, lashed out and would scream in agony and pain until they bashed their skulls in from the density of emphatically intense sounds in their mind.

    Late one evening in the lab, Gerald had solved the humming issue by changing the algorithm responsible for monitoring the quantum acoustic oscillations.

    It was cause to celebrate. Gerald worked his whole life for this moment. The military had other plans though. They took everything. His notes, his back-up drives, his schematics and then burned his lab to the ground leaving no trace of what had transpired there. Gerald was assaulted and left in a dark alley in the rough part of the city and told to never speak of this to anyone if he valued his life.

    The evening news reported the incident as a gang of vandals and drug addicts looking to score.

    Gerald knew different though. He had invented a murderous weapon for the military. He only wanted to help humanity, not destroy it.

  9. Rebecca says:

    Congrats on 200!

    Celebrate every day because it could be your last,
    Stop being cerebral and get into your body.
    Be clever when it comes to exercising on a daily basis,
    Crushing it at the gym sounds boring and will cause cacophony.
    Creative activities like painting and writing can be a challenge,
    But you don’t have to copy the masters like Da Vinci and Whitman.
    Continuous effort will strengthen your skills day by day,
    Before you know it, you’ll be captivating audiences around the world.

  10. Rebecca says:

    @ Shane … Thank you … BTW: Billy & Bobby never disappoint. 🙂

  11. There were only five birds left on the line and Paulette found herself wishing that the others would come back again. They were therapeutic in a way, their continuous chatter and nonchalant manner of just being. For a split second, she wished she could be out there on the line with them; instead, there she was, sitting in a cubicle half-staring at the water cooler across the hall. Trying hard not to listen in on the cacophony of ‘what did you do Saturday?’ talk, each participant eager to deliver a more clever response than the one before.

    Paulette gave a 7 to the guy who was obviously lying about the bird house he made with his son. She knew for a fact that behind his wife’s back, he’d been seeing the new gal from book-keeping.

    The bored office worker tapped her pencil against a coffee mug, the tiny sound crushing any challenge in her to actually handle the paperwork stacked up on her desk.

    Dean poked his head into her cubicle. “Are you coming to celebrate? The new copy machine is getting unpacked!”

    Her narrowing gaze ended up in a frown. “Captivating, I am sure. But I’ll pass. I feel a cerebral ache coming on.”

    Spinning her chair toward the window again, Paulette sighed out loud. If only she could join them …

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Robyn: I saw your tweet saying you were coming over. I’m so glad you did. Such a wonderful read. Please stop by more often.

    Commander Lal had planned to celebrate 200 years in space with a cake shared with his officers. The official date, according to the ship’s log, was actually two weeks ago. But, what was time but a cerebral measure of passage through an unseen dimension. Whether on the crushing surface of a black hole or within the confines of a Faster-Than-Light spacecraft, time was arbitrary. The only absolute was the challenge of keeping 10,000 crew and colonists alive.

    And now this. A mutiny. Morgan probably thought that he was being clever, but Lal felt that any fool would have made a beeline for the evacuation bays. Lal’s own plan, to jettison the habitation hold – with him in it – now that was creative! Of course, it was also suicidal. However, he preferred to take his chances with the sleepers, rather than sit around, waiting to be shot in the back like a dog.

    He and Officer Godwinson had abandoned all hope of quelling the uprising. In fact, he hadn’t heard from her in hours. With all the cacophony from the mess hall fight flooding the comm channels, he couldn’t contact anyone. The last thing he’d heard was a captivating series of strange clicks coming from Colonel Santiago on Yang’s frequency. They obviously thought they were on a secure channel, though they must have known that the ship’s communication center had a copy of every frequency ever used between any two handhelds. The coded clicks eventually dissolved into a continuous stream of useless static. With no way to contact his officers and no idea where everyone had hunkered down, Commander Lal was effectively neutralized. He set the habitation hold’s auto-ejection timer at 200 minutes.

    Taking one last look around his deserted command center, Commander Lal removed his tunic, squeezed into a spacesuit and jogged though the hatchway.


    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Mitch: I’m such a fan of this genre, and you’ve made me want to watch this on tv. Make it happen!

      • Heh, I could always do screen shots of the game in progress…Other than that, I guess Babylon 5 reruns will have to suffice.
        Actually, Sid Meier was approached about a movie script.
        We can only hope.

  13. siggiofmaine says:

    Have been trying to figure out how to celebrate an important cerebral milestone.
    Anniversaries of continuous events are easy to think of creative, clever and
    captivating ways to create a cacophony from gathered folks.  It’s a challenge
    not to copy others and to be unique.  Cerebral milestones deserve a cheer, of
    friends and family in a crushing crowd to celebrate mastering the challenges of
    continuous education of a decade or more.

    I don’t know if I mastered captivating, creative or clever...a cacophony is easier for me.
    It’s not a cerebral event or challenge for me to think of ways to celebrate with noisemakers
    and friends with loud voices.  A continuous crushing crowd copying New Years Eve in Time’s
    Square,  Mardi Gras in New Orleans or my favorite:  Philadelphia’s New Year’s Day  Mummer’s Parade are my way to celebrate.     Cerebral milestones they aren’t.  Cacophony to the ninth degree they are.

  14. sh13151223 says:

    It’s a challenge to copy those cerebral notes in harmony with those ten words, crushing the cacophony, but it is happening continuously and most creatively captivating every clever bit of each word and how can anybody not celebrate such a wordious  moment.

  15. John F. Moynihan says:

    For me, they are always there. A cacophony of words echoing in my head. Sometimes I can’t sleep at night because something has inspired me and the words have to come out. In those late night moments I’m at my creative best. Unfortunately, those times are few and far between. For so many years, my writing has just been a cerebral exercise, never becoming actual copy. The past few months the burden of my writer’s block has weighed heavily upon me. One night, desperate for some inspiration, I began browsing writing sites on the web. When I stumbled upon the challenge offered by this blog, it was time to celebrate. After my first exercise, words began to move from my brain to my computer screen in a continuous stream. Things were a bit slow at work and I spent my idle time commenting on articles from on-line news and sports sites, or writing to politicians who piss me off. While things have slowed a bit because I’m pressed for time in this Holiday season, I’m feeling good about my writing for the first time in years. Like thousands of aspiring writers, I know that inside me there is that captivating novel which will sets the world on fire. For now, I’ll settle for an occasional clever short story and be grateful that the dream crushing block is lifted. Many thanks to you folks at CCC for the opportunity and encouragement.

  16. Shane Arthur says:

    programming note: I’m sick as a dog. I’ll catch up on comments when I feel better.

  17. Aslam Yaqoob says:

    Have you ever gone to the house of any cerebral lately? They love peace, quiet around them. They hold their chin with one hand, eyes closed, contemplating with breathless motion. They would open their eyes only when they somehow feel cacophony around them especially when their spouses are the reason. With a gaze they would tell that their creativity has been disturbed. Nothing but their slow paced ponderings seems to be captivating for them. Their continuous meditation and the feel that a solution or an exquisite idea is forthcoming dive them even further into oblivion. Most of them do not celebrate their success. They only feel it.  Never try to copy them; you may experience your failure. It is not a challenge; just a request. It is nice to be natural, isn’t it.
    I believe we all muse one time or another but not all of us would become cerebral personalities. A clever person muses and only then decides a line of action. What distinguish a cerebral from rest of us is that they live for others, most of us live for own shallow selves. Bickering is more common now than ever. If a person is seen quiet for a longer period he may be in a mental stress or fatigue. We rarely meet a person living without a family/friends feud or the influence of debilitating economy. With this state of mind it is not possible for us to cultivate ideas that could change this status quo. How can one do his creative thinking when things are crushing you from everywhere? For a healthy/creative thinking one has to have enough food in his stomach and a peaceful mind too. Majority of us are not so fortunate. Filling tummy may not be an issue but making it healthy for your body needs a peaceful and happy mind. This may be the reason we do not find many cerebrals around nowadays. But, we do find their mimics.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Aslam: loved it. You know… for some reason this reminded me of a book on Falun Dafa I once read for the fun of it. Fascinating stuff.

  18. Pam says:

    The cerebral challenge generated by attempting to copy the cacophany of sounds made by the junior string orchestra wasn’t one which most men would have enjoyed, but Claude found it captivating. He enjoyed the creative process of finding the precise mismatch of tones; the continuous buzz of an un-rosined bow being drawn too hard across out of tune strings; the unusual noise of a cellist crushing their bow into the bass notes with unparrallelled glee. He did not think of himself as especially clever, but he did celebrate when he finally completed the project, by playing his composition to the accompaniment of his young daughter’s first tentative notes on the violin.

  19. Kelly says:

    Shane and Co.–Happy, HAPPY extremely belated 200th. Y’all know how much I think this addictive place rocks, but I’ll say it again. Huge thanks for envisioning such a wonderful place to hang out and be at our creative ease, and for all the work to maintain it!!

    — — — —


    Somehow, I got this idea in my head.

    My life was not to be a copy of anything that’s come before.

    Is that a natural human impulse, or a crazy aberration in my genetic code? Either way, I sometimes think the results for me have been less than stellar. Crushing, really. Other folks follow the herd—or at the least, don’t purposefully traipse off in the opposite direction of the blasted herd—they live with challenges as we all do, but there are well-worn paths to breaking through for those folks. It can still be creative, I tell myself, without having to be such a continuous stream of unexpected difficulties… but wouldn’t you know it, the genetic aberration extends to not listening to myself, giving myself advice. Bugger all.

    Perhaps I think I’m too clever for the norms of society. Perhaps I think I’m a captivating soul, drawing admirers with my free-wheeling nature. (Where are these admirers, you may well ask. Shh, you’ll destroy my illusions.) Perhaps, somewhere in this cacophony of cerebral noodling, I really think the rest of the world will get with *my* program, and one day they’ll all celebrate my uniqueness by following me.

    What’s that you say?

    Hang on, I’ll come down off the ceiling and listen in a sec.

    As usual, I’m a bit too high on me to concentrate on your quiet complaints.

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