Monday, July 30, 2007

Two Grand Traditions In Need of Defense

My son got to see real up-close-and-personal fireworks for the first time this 4th of July. It's a wonderful experience that's fading fast. One more sad victim of our Nanny-built society.

A Moment in Albany

I recently spent a week on business at a hotel in historic downtown Albany. A couple times, I went out for little bits of exploration, finding parks hidden away between buildings, a wonderful historic state capitol, and some lovely brownstones. Herman Melville lived--and, I believe, wrote Moby Dick--very near here.

Lacking Inspiration? Try a Contest

This past Saturday, had their quarterly (I think?) flash fiction contest. The contest kicks off with a prompt and a twenty-four hour window in which to respond. This particular prompt centered around a campfire ghost story that gets interrupted by a disheveled man and an infant who come creepily out of the dark woods.

It's a fun, tense challenge to be boxed in by both story and scope, and I think it's particularly good for any writer who's struggling with the burden of ideas-from-nothing.

There are many other prompted flash fiction contests, most of which don't have the tight time constraints. It's nice inspiration and good for your writing discipline.

I can't recommend the experience highly enough.