Weekly Writing Challenge #4: Perfect Situations
“Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”—Charles R. Swindoll
I start drawing, and eventually the characters involve themselves in a situation. Then in the end, I go back and try to cut out most of the preachments.—Dr. Seuss
Once you allow yourself to identify with the people in a story, then you might begin to see yourself in that story even if on the surface it’s far removed from your situation. This is what I try to tell my students: this is one great thing that literature can do – it can make us identify with situations and people far away.—Chinua Achebe
Fiction gives us an opportunity to explore scenarios we don’t see in real life. We can read mysteries and solve murders without putting ourselves in danger, explore the consequences of magical powers in fantasy, or delve into the past in historical fiction. In writing, we carve out situations for our characters to navigate. A mundane decision could turn out to be life-changing, or a powerful character could buckle under pressure.
This week, I’ve given you some opening scenarios. Each should be interesting enough to inspire, yet open-ended enough that you can put your own spin on it. Try out as many as you like, and please comment so I can read your submissions!
- Jack Miller and Rebecca Dawson are sitting next to each other on a plane. They know each other in some capacity but haven’t seen each other in at least a year.
- It’s New Year’s Eve, 2999. Unlike Y2K, Y3K is a serious threat. What is it, and what happens when the clock strikes midnight?
- A famous country singer is dead and his actress girlfriend is the prime suspect. What happens when they arrest her?
- Two people with the same first and last name, but little else in common, are mixed up.
- Two longtime enemies are sharing a cup of tea.