Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #341

This is a writing prompt. Bet you can’t do it! Take the 10 random words below and crush writer’s block by creating a cohesive, creative short story! And remember: after (if) you finish entering your submission into the comment field, 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.) NOTE: Our bolding plugin is gone, so you’ll have to put and around each of your words if you want them to stand out, but NOT REQUIRED THOUGH.

  1. Cocktail
  2. Short
  3. Paralympian
  4. Banana
  5. Memory
  6. Dogged
  7. Lift
  8. Inflection
  9. Veto
  10. Generate

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.

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85 Comments on “Writing Prompts – Creative Copy Challenge #341”

  1. Kelly says:

    SHORT AND SWEET

    “It’s pretty simple, Kate. Admit it or deny it.”

    Barry had a way of putting things that irritated her no end. “Short and sweet, is it, Barry?” The edgy inflection in her voice should have told him to tread softly.

    It didn’t.

    “You got yourself into it, Sis. You worked doggedly all through uni, and you thought you got stiffed by the higher-ups. I believed you then. I fought for you even when it made me look like I was bananas, but honest to God, you’ve had a chip on your shoulder since you were born, always looking out for conspiracies against you. Nothing in your life did that to you.

    “It’s just a limp, Katie—a memory of an injury you can’t even remember—but you decided to inflate it on your c.v. into a disability that you had to overcome, and even claim you were a medalist paralympian so you could get a lift in the job app. Now you’re up for tenure and you’ve been sniffed out. I want to see you succeed, but I don’t seem to be able to generate a lot of sympathy for you.”

    He took another sip from his cocktail, with a look nearly as cold as his drink. When her big brother no longer appeared to be on her side, Kate knew she’d screwed up big-time.

    Part of her wanted to step back, to take a minute—or a week!—to assess her life deeply. To understand what Barry was trying to say to her deep within her heart, in places so rigidly stifled that it made Barry look warm and fuzzy.

    But that old injury wasn’t only to her leg, it was to her soul. If she ever had one. Kate vetoed that idea as bogus pop-psychology, and composed herself for her first solo fight. Internal struggle would make her look weak in the days ahead.

    “Short and sweet, then,” she said, without a trace of irony. “It’s time to put that damned assistant prof in his place. He’s been a thorn in my side long enough.”

  2. Anklebuster says:

    The Perimeter was an abstraction. The sophists never dreamed of erecting physical barriers in or around Swamp Logos. To do so would generate unnecessary ill-will between the able-bodied and paralympian residents. No, the Perimeter merely represented the boundary between known and unknown, reality and possibility.

    Swan Vee heeded the strident inflection of her inner voice. She realized that the teachings had served to fuse memory and musing into a practical toolkit that included the physical sensations of caution that dogged her stomach, skin and nose. This must be the Perimeter! She spun around, sipped the muggy swamp cocktail breeze and felt another tingle lift the hair from her neck.

    Emboldened by the moonless evening, Swoop Caliente vetoed common sense in favor of measured action. After burying the remains of his Spartan meal—a couple of banana peels—he rose from his cramped squat. Taking short, shuffling steps, he closed the distance to his quarry.

  3. The paralympian had a short memory it seems. He forgot that he had just completed a round of chemo cocktails, probably because of also having a banana smoothie to generate a lift in his spirits.

    The inflection in his voice gave the coach an idea of his dogged determination to compete. So, the coach did not veto the decision to carry on.

    Moral:

    Competition sometimes is better than medication in overcoming adversity.

    • Kelly says:

      And *that* is why the CCC makes us all bring our A-game. 🙂 Now you’ve got me thirsty, Steve, I’ve got to go get a banana smoothie!!

    • Anklebuster says:

      Steve, you always manage to tell a good story with the challenge words. Well done!

      Cheers,

      Mitch

    • bbanne says:

      How on earth did you manage to put all those words into such a short story and still make sense? That’s some great craftsmanship, there, Steve.

    • Thank you Anne, Kelly and Mitch.
      I don’t know how I end up doing these, but I really missed CCC giving me the inspiration and am glad it is back.
      Sometimes the moral comes first, like this time.

    • Nice work steve. My family is in a group that is for kids with Chronic diseases, and it is amazing to watch these kids fight cancer, renal failure and the like. They really do like to compete with each other and that drive pushes them to survive makes them succeed. Nice work!

    • Cathy Miller says:

      Steve- I find myself smiling before I even get to your moral because I know it’s going to be good. You always deliver. ☺

    • kathleenMK says:

      Steve ~~ I love this ditty! BRAVO!

      Write On,
      Kathleen

  4. […] This is my submission for Creative Copy Challenge #341. […]

  5. Eric Bolton says:

    “HURRY THE HELL UP YOU PARALYMPIAN!!!!”

    Even with the world falling apart, Dwayne still dogged his little brother.

    Samuel climbed over the highway pylon and jumped in the ditch with Dwayne. Short on breath, Samuel tried hard to control his bearings. Samuel knew his brother really wouldn’t think twice about leaving him defenseless.

    “Get ready to run again, chubbo!!”

    Samuel didn’t say anything. He wanted to stay on his brother’s good side. He was lucky to get out of the car alive. The crash knocked out their cousin Sarah and when those, whatever they were, started peeling her skin off like a banana, Dwayne didn’t think twice about saving his own skin.

    So Samuel had to prove he was an asset, instead of a liability.

    Samuel was able to lift himself up to see Dwayne tear off one of his own sleeves.

    “What are you doing?” Samuel asked.

    “Do you want me to explain, or do you want me to save your fat bulbous ass??!”

    Samuel didn’t say anything.

    “Good!! Now keep your trap shut and let me do what I do.”

    Dwayne opened a bottle of Jack Daniels and stuffed the torn cloth down the bottleneck.

    “You saved the Jack but not Sarah?” Samuel blurted without thinking.

    Pulling a lighter from his pocket, Dwayne walked up to Samuel, stood over and looked down on his little brother.

    “I don’t know what the hell is happening right now. But I did what I did when those demon possessed assholes started attacking our car. It’s unfortunate about what happened to Sarah. Now we can take a trip down memory lane and discuss all the fun we had in the trailer park, or I can do what I need to do so I can survive.” He turned away from Samuel, “You can do what you want. I don’t give a crap.”

    Samuel let his brother do what needed to be done. Dwayne lit the cloth and it started to burn. Samuel couldn’t believe it, in all this mess his brother was resourceful. Dwayne heaved the Molotov Cocktail onto what was left of their Plymouth. Flames engulfed the car, the possessed assholes and what was left of Sarah.

    “Get to running, Stay Puft!!!”

    Dwayne’s inflection never changes. It’s the same sarcastic, uncaring, remorseless tone no matter what is happening.

    The flames managed to generate enough of a distraction for the two to slip into the tree line unnoticed.

    They ran for a few minutes when they came across a gravel road and a mailbox.

    “There’s a house this way. We can stay there for the night.”

    Samuel wasn’t about to veto the idea.

    “Daniels” Samuel said as he passed the mailbox, “Do you think they’re home?”

    “We’ll find out soon enough, retard.”

  6. K says:

    Based on a dream, some of the events may not make any sense.

    Despite possessing no memory of her short temper, you braced yourself against her words. Her words, shrill and virulent, lashed out at you in a dogged manner, her inflection rising with every word. You, unable lie under the restraint of authority, retaliated with some words of your own, but as anger controlled you, your clumsy words in her native tongue transformed into vulgar phrases in your language. This cacophony of vulgarity and hatred ended when she lifted her hand and aimed it at your cheek.
    The sound reverberated in your ears as you covered a hand over your throbbing cheek.

    Shooting her a look, your eyes then drifted to the children seated around the table. The youngest- a boy of no more than eight- trained his eyes at his sister seated next to him. He, though his lips were clamped on the straw, refused to drink the soda cocktail he’d concocted. The reaction generated after the heated argument was more or less the same around the table: The girl hushed her brother while swallowing her own fear and confusion, your brother stared at you, a void expression plastered on his face, and your father squirmed in his seat.

    This left your mother who stood before you. She barked an order at your father, but your father took your side and opted to leave. But before anyone could protest, the waiter bustled out of the door, carrying a tray of piping hot noodles. Smelling the savory, spicy aroma wafting in the air, you sat down and thanked the waiter as he set one bowl in front of you. Your mom, though, seized the opportunity and rallied the children downstairs. She called for your father, and he followed. You objected, but before your words reached her, your mom turned her back and descended down the steps. You caught up to her and insisted on staying since leaving would waste food. Glaring at you, she nevertheless ascended the steps, unable to veto the idea. She plopped into a chair and started slurping up the noodles as fast as she could. Your father, however, held a discussion with the waiter and disappeared down the stairs with him.

    Halfway through your bowl, you spotted a black van pulling up on the side of the road. You rose to your feet when it stopped near your brother and the two siblings. The waiter slunk out of an entrance below, walking towards the children. You, on the other hand, ran and jumped down the flight of stairs. By then, it was too late. The waiter chased them, tackled them down, buffeted the flail of their limbs and the sound of their screams, and bound their legs and arms in ropes. With a trail of rope from each of their feet, the waiter took the three ropes in hand and dragged them toward the back of the van. He tossed the children into the van before hopping in. As he shut the back doors and the car sped off, you sprinted down the road after the van. You do not make it far before you collapse on the ground in exhaustion. Panting, you staggered to your feet and hobbled back to the restaurant. Instead of relaying this event to your mother, you headed towards the back where you witnessed the waiter exit.

    In that moment, you regretted your actions.

    A bitter scent wreaked havoc on your nose, and nestled in the edge of the room lied the origin of the smell: a grimy bathtub. An effervescent purple liquid sloshed around in the tub, displaced by your father’s limp figure. Blobs of the liquid dripped from the shower head, hitting your father’s forehead. As you entered the threshold of the room and took a closer look at him, his eyes darted around until it found your face. His arm, dangling from the side of the bathtub, twitched. Registering his lack of mobility, tears welled up in your eyes. This damage, irreparable, qualified him to a be paralympian if he chose to do so. You kneeled besides him and squeezed his hand.

    “Not medicine. It’s a trap. Get…help,” your father croaked. Closing his eyes, he slipped into unconsciousness. You released his hand then stood up. You wandered this field without a sense of direction and halted before a large tree. Stripped of its leaves, the bent tree towered above you. A shower of shreds and balls of paper, plastic, and miscellaneous trash floated in the air, polluting your vision yet also painting a beautiful backdrop. Trash such as bags, carcasses, and rotten banana peels littered the ground at the foot of the tree. Upon looking at this tree, you willed your tears not to fall. Like this tree, no pity will be given to you unless you acted. You dried your eyes and walked toward the street. You glanced at the top of restaurant, finding no presence there. With that much information, your resolve strengthened. Thick curls of fog rolled in and shrouded you in their arms as you took to the streets. Some jobs just required you to get your own hands dirty.

  7. I blame Ann for waking these two up! 🙂 Great posts all, by the way. Mitch, Kelly, K, Eric, Steve, etc.

    “Hey Billy! My hearing is kinda short-sighted, and my memory is goin’ deaf, so dat’s generatin’ a bit of confusion. Did you just tell me to get dat old lady in da hammock some flip flops, give her a cocktail, and compliment her on her dog’s style?” If so, I’s gonna have to veto dat. Dat’s bananas! And when I’s confused, my hairy Paira go Lymp like I’s havin’ trouble Peein’.”

    “Bobby, luckily I’s got dogged determination to finish dis here film despite yous being a intellectual paralympian. I told you to lift up dat old lady in da hammock’s fat flaps, put your cock in her tail, and go to town on her doggy style.”

    “Ain’t dat dangerous, Billy? I’m no Jean-yes, but can’t I gets an inflection doin dat?”

  8. bbanne says:

    Hahaha. Oh heavens, that’s one film I don’t want to see!

    You leave me sitting here in sheer wonderment that you could wring such a story out of those words. I feel like an “intellectual paralympian”.after reading this.

  9. bbanne says:

    I never want to remember.

    I know there is something buried deep down that I want to cover up forever, but on nights like this, part of me wants to lift that thing into the light and see what it is. It generates the primitive fear that one day I will do just that, and my life will never be the same.

    I’ve been dogged by a feeling of dread recently. It has turned my mind into a paralympian construct of genius on one side and mushy banana on the other. I sail along brilliantly at work but when I come home, my mind runs aground on the mess of my past.

    But when I’m spiked by alcohol and a cocktail of emotions, I can’t help but prod and poke my memory until it bites me like a bulldog with a short fuse.

    Today is one of those days. I’ve had more red than is good for me and I’m taunting myself for the hell of it. I’m a soak and a coward – bad combination.

    What if I did remember? How bad could it be, right? Do I want to be a coward all my life?

    But the creeping coldness of fear that slides up my spine makes me hesitate. I can hear the inflection in my mind’s voice and it turns me back.

    It looks like it’s yet another night with a veto on sleep. I huddle with my fear, crouching down in front of the open fire to wait.

  10. Ok, Finally got things calm enough to write last night and the internet went out! Here goes…

    The thunder came again, louder, more insistent. Chandroc knew it was not natural. He was fairly sure he knew what was causing it. In a moment, a panoply of thoughts flodded his brain. His life shown to him as though he were going to die right then and there. Panic was threatening to take over reason, fear of something uncontrollable threatening to veto the practical catch of fish tugging at the boat. His memory of what had happened before stared to surface, but somehow he fought it down and with dogged determination reached again for his net. The wet hemp felt right in his hands, His powerful shoulders pulled the catch in, just like old times, just like the imes he had back then. He knew that these fish would be important, especially if SHE was back.

    Breathing hard, he pulled the final few feet of rope into his craft, and began to lift the catch. With strength he had not summoned in years he lifted, bringing the filled net aboard, and, when he felt he could lift no more, his muscles generated a final heave and the deck was awash in shining silver bodies, flipping in the cold air, on his deck. His family would be alright. They would eat. They would not be short of food for at least a little while. Chandroc himself craved one of the prized bananas that the traders brought from the south. He could almost taste the sweetness that was a treat all too seldom enjoyed. He began to drop his catch down the small hatch to the hold of the boat so that he would have enough room to cast his net again, when he felt the telltale tug on the other side of the boat. His other net was full as well.

    The thunder forgotten, Chandroc laughed like a child, so happy in his new fortune that he could have been accused of having one too many cocktails, if he drank, and if there was anyone there to see. He did not wait to stow the rest of the catch before he rushed to the larboard net and gripped the rope. He could feel the weight of fish in this net as well, and nearly cursed himself for allowing so much time to pass before he retreived it. The inflection of the rope was nearly great enough to sever it, and a lost net would be a blow even the fish he had on board could not soften. He began to pull again. The work felt right, the work felt….and then the thunder came again. This time Chandroc didn’t hesitate. He pulled for all he was worth, he had to get the catch in, this thunder was closer, yet the sky was still clear. The metallic ringing followed another crash of the thunder. As the net reached the boat and Chandroc began to heave it on board, his memory took him back in time.

    Fire. Smoke. Screaming. That was the first thing that young Chandroc heard when he regained consciousness. The thunder was right on top of them, the clear sky mocking the village as destruction rained all around them. “CHANDROC!” His mother screamed as she saw him struggling to stand. She reached him in an instant and drew him to his feet. “Can you walk?” She asked. He nodded. “Can you run?” she asked. He nodded again and she took his hand and began to run. The thunder came again and both he and his mother screamed in pain as they were thrown to the ground. He shook his head to clear it and shakily took his feet. His mother struggled to rise, but coudn’t.

    He looked down and saw her legs, twisted unnaturally, broken and shriveled like a paralympian. She trembled as she grasped his hand. “Run Chandroc. Run my son, and survive.” was all she could gasp out before she laid back to the ground and was still. Chandroc wailed and tried to pull her along as another clap of thunder came from the other side of the village. He looked back to see if there was anyone who could help him to get his mothers body to safety. That was when he saw HER.

    She was a tall woman, with pale hair, beyond white, dressed in a long coat, trousers and a dark shirt. She raised one of her hands and the thunder boomed again. He saw power move from her hand as the thunder leveled old Tom’s shack. “I’m sorry Mother.” he whispered, and began to run. He ran. And ran. And ran some more until exhaustion overtook him and he collapsed. By now he was deep in the forest, and he hoped that he was safe.

    He slept for a long time, huddled in the hollow at the base of an ancient pine tree. Finally he awoke to the songs of birds and a gentle rustling of deciduous leaves in the slight breeze. He started walking back to his village, thinking about his mother, the screaming, and the strange woman who wielded thunder from her hands.

    • bbanne says:

      You draw such a vivid picture, Justin. I am so hooked on this story. I could clearly see Chandroc hauling up his nets, alert to the thunder. Very, very well done.

    • Anklebuster says:

      Justin,

      Not to be cliché but, this is epic! I just know an exciting story awaits, each week. I love how you fit the words right into your style.

      Cheers,

      Mitch

    • Cathy Miller says:

      Love, love this story, Justin. This just grabbed me – “Run Chandroc. Run my son, and survive.” Simple but powerful.

  11. Cathy Miller says:

    Okay – way late to the party. I was out of town on business with not much CCC play time. I’ll come back to read all the great entries, but first, my shot at the words. 🙂

    =====
    Jennifer watched the moisture run down the cocktail glass like a silent tear against the cheek of her soul. Depression was a physical weight she could not move, not that she really tried.

    How had she come to this place? And in such a short time? Was it only last week she reveled in the joy of starting a new life? A glorious day kissed with sunshine trumpeted her morning with promise. By day’s end the light would go out forever.

    Racing towards their future, her new husband glanced her way. Just for a moment. His beautiful smile snatched from this earth with the horrific crash of metal and glass. Her mind played the scene over and over, a cruel needle stuck in the groove of all she could not bear.

    With paralympian strength she had not known she possessed, Jennifer pulled Michael from the wreck that had become her life.

    “Michael, no, Michael, please be all right. Oh God,” she screamed.

    A woman in a banana-colored convertible raced to her side.

    “I’ve called 911. It’s going to be okay, sweetie.”

    Rocking Michael in arms gone numb, Jennifer cried in memory of all they shared.

    “Please, Michael. Don’t leave me. We’re not done yet,” she whispered.

    With dogged determination, Jennifer would not let go, fearing those memories would be replaced by the detour on their future.

    Sirens wailed as strong arms urged her from Michael’s side. She watched paramedics lift Michael into the ambulance. She knew he was gone. No inner inflection of encouragement would veto life’s cruelest judgement.

    Here she sat. Alone. Nothing to generate a new ending. Nothing to stop the mirrored track of her tears.

  12. Cathy Miller says:

    Oops, blew my bold HTML. 😦

  13. kathleenMK says:

    A little late to the page, but here we go:

    “Hey Veto,” Veto could tell by the inflection in Shannon’s voice that something was wrong. “Hey Veto.”

    He did not lift even an eyebrow as her dogged repeating of his name brought back a memory of his ex-wife doing the same thing … once. It was a short lived memory as the fifth or was it the sixth cocktail caused many painful memories to slip out of his mind like a child on a slip-n-slide.

    “How can one person generate so much love and hate at the same time?” the paralympian said to himself as he rotated his wedding band mindlessly around his finger. I wish she’d not done that… made me so mad. She should have understood I needed that win,” he said shaking his head.

    “Barkeep … give me another.”


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