Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #201

The always cool Chris Garrett choose the words today. Show him what you’ve got.

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. Ambitious
  2. Bright
  3. Fighting
  4. Luckiest
  5. Excitable
  6. Wise
  7. Yuletide
  8. Eggnog
  9. Rooster
  10. Howitzer

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


60 Comments on “Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #201”

  1. Being the Bright and Excitable chap Shane is, his Yuletide plans were always Ambitious. Last years Eggnog-canon converted from a WWII Howitzer might not have been Wise. Especially considering the local newspaper dubbed him Luckiest man alive when the thing rocketed him 120 feet across the football field.  Reports from people in the know suggest the plans for this year’s Robotic Rooster have a Fighting chance of being his silliest idea yet.

  2. Cathy Miller says:

    So maybe it was a little ambitious to promise the capture of the killer before Christmas. Lieutenant Michael Stapleton could still feel the bright burn of rage from the killer’s arrogant slap of laughter. It would make any sane person fighting mad.
    To say the case wasn’t exactly the luckiest, when it came to breaks, was putting it mildly. The memory of the killer’s excitable glee over his latest victim had Michael throwing his half-full coffee cup at his closed door.
    It went sailing over his partner’s head. Once again, Jason Scott showed his impeccable timing by choosing that moment to open Michael’s door.
    “Holy crap. I know the coffee sucks, but don’t take it out on me.”
    “You would be very wise to turn around and shut the door behind you.”
    “I always love how you make the yuletide gay.”
    “Scott, what the hell do you want?”
    “Certainly not any Christmas cheer. You ought to lay off the caffeine and try the eggnog. Okay, okay,” he said, holding up his hands to ward off the answering scowl.
    “Before you get your tinsel in a tangle, I’ve got something for you.”
    Michael shifted his gaze from his computer and nailed his partner with a sardonic look.
    “Well, seeing the way you’re strutting around like a damn rooster, I hope it means it’s something good.”
    “Buddy, we just landed the howitzer of clues.”
    Michael raised his eyes from the paper Jason handed him.
    “Merry Christmas,” Jason smiled.


    Executive Officer Sheng-Li Yang acknowledged the beeps from Colonel Santiago. Normally, he wasn’t an excitable rooster, but the time had finally come to leave the confines of space for the open air of the new planet. He continued setting up the armaments for the now activated plan.

    The ion howitzer rolled smoothly on the frictionless engine room floor. He set the pulse strength at 50 per cent and used the laser targeting to hone in on the welded joint in the far northwest corner. The bright beam illuminated the long darkened crevice, allowing Yang to precisely aim at the load-bearing beam. Once the other seven mighty guns were emplaced and synchronized, the simultaneous firing should separate the engineering compartment from the underbelly of the rapidly descending colony pod.

    The crude plan was ambitious, if not the most wise. Hatched over eggnog and antipasto during the previous Yuletide celebration, Yang and Santiago agreed that the wasteful excess of the officers’ party foreshadowed an elitist bureaucracy that had no chance of survival on a harsh, untamed planet. If the human race were to flourish, military muscle and communal commitment had to be the undisputed rulers.

    They met casually over the ensuing days and weeks, recruiting loyal followers from their security ranks. Initiation was consummated through acts of covert smuggling. In this way, the officers were never at risk and, eventually, the engine room holds were stuffed to capacity with food, supplies and weapons. None of the other officers ever came to Yang’s domain. If they had bothered, they might have raised their eyes at the piles of tools strewn about like discarded toys.

    Yang had always assumed that this core group would land far enough away from the base camp to organize an assault, yet not so far as to exhaust the supplies during the march. His calculations were done by hand – obviously – and he was not so confident that his trajectories were accurate. Apparently, that no longer mattered. Morgan and Deirdre had commandeered the evacuation bays. If they ejected from the colony pod before the engine room was detached, the calculations would be worthless. For this reason, Santiago and her forces were fighting those civilians in an effort to disrupt their evacuation plans. If they could pin them down in the mess hall, Santiago could retreat to the engine room with time to spare.


    The hospital wing on Level 2 was quiet as a tomb. Science Officer Zakharov walked among the specially fitted stasis chambers, checking the vitals of his patients. He felt like the luckiest man in the universe. Surrounded by five hundred of the most brilliant minds from Earth, he alone was responsible for the preservation, presentation and promulgation of scientific knowledge. Heady stuff, he thought wryly. 90 per cent of scientific advances since the dawn of the Nano Age had been concentrated in the minds of these brilliant men and women. The other 10 per cent was acquired by pure dumb happenstance. Teflon science, Zakharov liked to say.

    He was blissfully unaware of the turmoil on the other levels of the colony pod. So, when the ceiling suddenly vaporized, he was unprepared for the sudden drop in pressure. The room’s nanoreplicators had much better reaction time. Within seconds, a new ceiling formed and the pressure restabilized. Unfortunately, those seconds were enough to knock the consciousness from Zakharov. As he toppled to the floor, his head struck the edge of a stasis chamber, opening up a frightful gash. The nanoreplicators were not equipped to deal with human tissue, but they were able to create a bandage and stitches. Their swift response saved his life.

    It remained to be seen if his luck would extend to the free-falling hospital.


    At six hours to planetfall, explosive charges blew the habitation hold away from the colony pod. Commander Lal, strapped into an empty stasis chamber, still felt his ears pop. Then, mercifully, he blacked out from the G-forces of the plummeting space hotel.


    At five hours to planetfall, a dismayed, yet hopeful Yang watched as his howitzers fired in unison, gently melting the connections between the engine room and the rest of the colony pod. He ordered Santiago and the rest of the assembled warriors to return from the mess hall skirmish, as delaying the civilians was now moot. They would need every minute of the two hours it would take to sever the room from the pod. Any stragglers would be left behind.


    At four hours to planetfall, Nwabudike Morgan, Deirdre Skye and several hundred dazed civilians listened to the silence from behind the evacuation bay doors. The sudden retreat of Santiago and her forces was as strange as the skirmish itself. It was more of a siege, as few of the technicians were brave enough to counter-attack. Yet, after six straight hours of suppressing fire from Santiago’s troops, there were no casualties. Morgan assumed that Santiago was making some kind of play but, for the life of him, he couldn’t figure it out.

    Just before the retreat, the shock waves of a massive explosion had rippled through the mess hall. Thinking the nutrient tanks had finally failed, Morgan began pressing toward the evacuation bays. He was still certain that Santiago would not risk igniting the escape pods.

    “She’s not going to shoot us! Just go!” Morgan ran from engineer to biologist, plumber to chemist, imploring them to run out the back doors of the mess hall. The open space they had to traverse was criss-crossed with small-arms fire. No one moved. Morgan decided that there was only one thing to do: he slowly raised himself up to his full six foot five inch height and deliberately marched across the expanse to the rear doors.

    Shots whistled past him but, of course, he was unhurt. The other civilians were galvanized. First one, then another, followed him. Then a half a dozen scrambled across. The stream of bodies became a flood, as Deirdre’s team and Morgan’s engineers ran to safety beyond the mess hall door.

    Right in the middle of this exodus, Santiago ordered the retreat. Humans moved away from the mess hall as if plague had descended upon it. The civilians continued on to the evacuation bays, while the soldiers dashed for the engine room.

    The evacuation bays explosively ejected from their moorings, each passing within a hundred feet of the free-falling hunk of titanium and synthglass formerly known as the engine room.
    T-minus zero. The first human colony pod, without many of its manufactured parts, splashed into a large fresh water body on the surface of Planet. It was the last to arrive. The lone remaining passenger emerged from the chapel, without a single scratch. With surprising strength and grace, she swarm towards shore.

    Miriam Godwinson never questioned her faith again.


    • Anne Wayman says:

      eggnog and antipasto!
      Fun read, Mitch

      • Cathy Miller says:

        @Mitch-how funny – I was just scrolling down to say the same thing as Anne 🙂 Obviously, that’s the money line. 😉 Great story, as usual – how I’ve missed your creative mind!

        • @Anne and @Cathy, it’s funny what line has the most impact. It is the ONLY line from my own history. One of my aunts was famous for her Christmas Eve parties and her brother usually created the antipasto. It was my first time ever hearing of this delightful excuse for cleaning out your fridge… 🙂
          I’m glad you enjoyed this installment…the harsh life of Planet is coming up next!

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Mitch: That was an epic write. I can see this arena so clearly in my mind. Write on.

  4. sh13151223 says:

    Rooster‘s siren echoed high
    ambitious fellows were up already
    luckiest fellows were sleeping yet
    bright yuletide star-stricken
    howitzer of celebrations ahead, so excitable
    those plump fellows had eggnog fun
    fighting the fat they too waked
    the wise folks preparing well
    snow, stars, cakes and vine
    Christmas is for all to own.

  5. sh13151223 says:

    Thanks, I really wanted to convey my x-mas spirit to all.

  6. Anne Wayman says:

    Hey Chris:

    He was over ambitious, but bright. Used to fighting for what he wanted. Some thought he was the luckiest one around, even though he was excitable. It was a wise Yuletide rooster, slightly high on eggnog (!) that convinced him not to use the howitzer.

  7. A day late due to the feed showing up on Friday’s for me:

    Holiday Party
    Brave the ambitious holiday fighting
    where the excitable share eggnog
    with the bright wise rooster

    Spirits shoot forth like a Howitzer shot
    The luckiest will remember the party
    the rest met with Yuletide hangover

  8. Rebecca says:

    Glenn had too much eggnog at his family’s Yuletide gathering; it wasn’t a wise idea. All of a sudden a fighting spirit came over him — he felt like a rooster. Tonight, Glenn would be like a howitzer and tell everyone what he really thought of them.
    Sasha noticed her brother looking a little red in the face and walked over to see if he was alright. “Glenn, you feeling okay?” asked Sasha.
    “Never better sis. I fffeel on top of the world,” said Glenn as he swayed sideways, almost knocking down a string of bright Christmas lights. Sasha new her brother was excitable when it came to family gatherings. Seeing the faces of certain relatives changed his mood in less than 2.5 seconds. Mix in lots alcohol and you’ve got the makings of an explosive reality show.
    “Let’s go outside and get some fresh air,” said Sasha. Glenn was 6ft. and weighed 200 lbs. It was an ambitious undertaking to move him outside for petite Sasha.
    “No! Tonight I’m the luckiest person here. Why? Because I’m not afraid to tell these people what they can do with their Yuletide and family b.s. once and for all,” said Glenn.
    “Glenn, shut up and move. You’re not going to do that because it won’t be you talking. If you really want to tell people what you think of them, do it while you’re sober. Don’t hide behind alcohol,” said Sasha.
    Glenn’s looked at Sasha quizzically. He fell backwards, passed out on the floor and didn’t get to tell his family what he really thought of them. There’s always next year!

  9. Rebecca says:

    @ Cathy … Thank you … I couldn’t resist using the line “There’s always next year.” Lol!

  10. The ambitious young scientist woke up on the day before Christmas.  It was a bright, sunny day, with no promise of the hoped for snow that would give everyone a white Christmas. 

    He had many plans for the day.  When he finished his breakfast, he went to his workshop and plunged into calculations and adjustments to his latest invention, a laser howitzer.  He was close to finishing the project, and even though he wasn’t an excitable guy, his adrenaline began to pump as he tightened the final nuts, bolts and screws.

    It was about four in the afternoon when his wife came into the shop with two Yuletide eggnogs.  “Come on in, honey.  It’s almost Christmas Eve.”

    “Just a little bit…help me roll this out, so I can test it.”  He was not as wise as he was talented.

    He quickly aimed it toward a fifty five gallon steel drum (or so he thought).  Unfortunately, when he flipped the switch activating the laser beam, a crashing noise and a panicked animal sound was heard. 

    Their neighbor owned a number of chickens, some of which were used in cockfights.  They raced over to the fence to find out what the damage was.  There was a large tree branch on the ground, with feathers nearby.  No dead chickens were in sight, but they could see one of the neighbor’s prized cocks cowering behind a tree.

    The young man breathed a sigh of relief.  “That has to be one of the luckiest fighting roosters in the whole world.!”

    The couple shared a long laugh, and walked to the neighbor’s house to explain what happened and wish him a Merry Christmas.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Lou. I love your style. Welcome to the CCC. What did you think of the challenge?
      Sorry for the moderation delay by the way. I’ll still recovering from a determined flu.
      Everyone welcome Lou to the addiction.

  11. Shane Arthur says:

    “Hey Billy! I don’t know howitzer, but it’s her! Look over yonder!”

    “Ain’t dat da gal you promised yoletide da knot wit, but you backed out on account of everythin’ she cooked tasted like spoilt eggnog, and she fought wit you like an excitable, fightin’ rooster, always sayin’ how you should feel like da wisest, luckiest man alive on account she had one-and-a-half glass eyes so she was okay wit’ how ugly, unambitious, and unbright you was?”

    “Yeah, dat’s da one. Let’s go. I don’t want her to 25% sees me. Wait! You know what? On second thought, I sure do miss dat third nipple of hers.”

  12. Rebecca says:

    @ Shane … I couldn’t resist since it’s the Holiday Season. I know how people become when it comes to hanging out with family. I have a lot of stories…

  13. margaret says:

    The rooster has crowed, it is time to arise….
    you know the crap about healthy, wealthy and wise?
    I feel ambitious, my eyes are bright
    I’m the luckiest girl….(sound excitable, right?)

    Yuletide is upon us, the eggnog flows,
    I’m fighting real hard so it don’t shoot out my nose.
    Don’t know how the hell to fit howitzer in,
    so I’ll just step away, have a shot of gin!

    NOTE:  please forgive me, I’m punchy after weekend work demands, haha!!

  14. Aslam Yaqoob says:

    So the yuletide has been started. There will be rooster feast. Some would have eggnogs; an excitable period for all those who long for such moments. Things are different somewhere else. How funny it is that on this very earth most of us are fighting ambitiously for their bright future and being killed by bullet wounds, be it through Howitzer or any other killing device. The luckiest ones, survived in a battle, do not actually survive for long. Battles are not meant to be stopped they are planned (by so called wise leaders) for annihilation, of those who do not have resources to defend themselves. Winners do not care. They feast; with blood all around; since they long for such moments.

  15. Jason Drexler says:

    Being an ambitious rooster isn’t the easiest gig in the world, but having a howitzer, as I did, tends to make one excitable, like a kid at yuletide who’s had too much eggnog. My dad, who was considered wise as far as fighting gamecocks go, was kind enough to never tell me I wasn’t too bright, which only confirmed what I already knew: I was the luckiest son in the world.

    • Shane Arthur says:

      @Jason Drexler: Welcome to the CCC. That was great, man! Too funny.
      What did you think of the challenge? Let us know. Hope to see you here each Monday and Thursday. I’m off to read your 202 submission.
      Everyone welcome Jason to the addiction.

      • Cathy Miller says:

        @Jason Drexler – Welcome to CCC!
        It’s an ambitious bunch here at CCC. We see the world of words as a bright place to be. When we are fighting to find just the right flow, we know our luckiest move is the week to week challenge. So, we get a bit excitable, but we are wise to the value of a supportive community that is our year-long yuletide of joy.

        CCC provides the eggnog of each celebratory challenge as we rooster-strut our way to another howitzer moment.


  16. Pam says:

    The Yuletide decorations were just starting to come down as the two excitable boys started fighting over their gifts. It may not have been wise for their parents to give them the left over eggnog, but it had sparked a howitzer of an argument over who was the luckiest. Joe claimed he was, because he’d had five presents more than Billy, but Billy thought he was, because he’d been given a real live rooster which was already driving the neighbours crazy with its crowing. In retrospect, the rooster wasn’t a wise choice, but his parents, while ambitious, weren’t very bright.

  17. Kelly says:


    The chicken makes the eggnog
    The rooster fights the wars
    Ambitious little chickies bind the wounds and count the sores
    We’ll lose the best and brightest sending howitzers to Mars
    When we colonize the moon we’ll defend borders by the stars

    We’re a fighting civilization
    We don’t know how to stop
    Just when we’re feeling luckiest we mine until we drop
    We rape the land, catch as catch can, I grab before you smash
    The wisest little chickies try to stay out of the clash

    From time immemorial
    Sages get excitable
    Try to warn of troubles coming
    While Yuletide soothes and guns are stunning

    Too bad no one listens
    Except the little chickens

    Drink hearty, and add extra brandy

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