Hello, curious and not-so-curious ones alike!
I know it might be tempting, but for your own safety, you need to just leave it alone. What? No, I don’t know what happens, and I’m not sure I want to find out. Of course I’m curious, but— oh alright, fine. But don’t get caught and be careful, because…
This week’s Writing Group prompt is:
Do Not Touch
RULES AND GUIDELINES BELOW!
Make sure you scroll down and read them if you haven’t! You may not be eligible if you don’t!
I’m sure we’ve all been there. Walking around the grocery store, or any store, really, and we’re told by mom or dad to not touch anything. But we really really wanted those fruit snacks, and that toy looks so cool.
Of course, this doesn’t apply to just sweets and toys. You could choose to apply it to a new employee in a factory, and maybe he witnesses his coworkers messing around and playing chicken with a piece of machinery sporting a nice big “KEEP LIMBS CLEAR OF MOVING PARTS” sign. Does this person partake in said dangerous shenanigans, or do they go about their day? Perhaps you’d choose to write about an escaped convict attempting to outrun their pursuers, and in their rush to get over the fence, they don’t see the sign warning them, “DANGER: HIGH VOLTAGE”. Or perhaps they did see it, and had already managed to turn it off, surprising their pursuers when they make it over without electrocution. Maybe this prompt can simply be about a child who keeps poking their mother’s potted cactus despite being told to leave it alone.
Maybe you could choose to write about a kleptomaniac and what their world and impulses are like, how they just have to have things, even if it means punishment. Perhaps you choose the bratty child who read the “STILL WET” sign by the painted wall and decided to fingerpaint the unpainted wall opposite. What about the two siblings who sit together, but are always yelling at each other “Don’t touch me!”, yet neither one will move away? Or maybe you choose to write about the one witch or warlock who decided to ignore all warnings and touch that magic stone anyway, just to see what really happens. Or perhaps said witch or warlock don’t touch it, per se, but accidentally cough, sneeze, or even breathe on it. What then?
Go forth, and show us what it would be like to either heed or ignore these warnings. Is the world worse or better off, or did nothing change? Did everything change?
Well… there’s only one way to find out.
Remember, this is part of our weekly Writing Group stream! Submit a little piece following the rules and guidelines below, and there’s a chance your entry will be read live on stream! In addition, we’ll discuss it for a minute and give you some feedback.
The whole purpose of this is to show off the creativity of the community, while also helping each other to become better writers. Lean into that spirit, and get ready to help each other improve their confidence in their writing, as well as their skill with their craft!
Rules and Guidelines
We read at least four stories during each stream, two of which come from the public post, and two of which come from the much smaller private post. Submissions are randomly selected by a bot, but likes on your post will improve your chances of selection, so be sure to share your submission on social media!
Text and Formatting
- English only.
- Prose only, no poetry or lyrics.
- Use proper spelling, grammar, and syntax.
- Your piece must be between 250-350 words (you can use this website to see your wordcount).
- Use two paragraph breaks between each paragraph so that they have a proper space between them (press “enter” or “return” twice).
- Include a submission title and an author name (doesn’t have to be your real name). Do not include any additional symbols or flourishes in this part of your submission. Format them exactly as you see in this example, or your submission may not be eligible: Example Submission.
- No additional text styling (such as italics or bold text). Do not use asterisks, hyphens, or any other symbol to indicate whether text should be bold, italic, or styled in any other way. CAPS are okay, though.
What to Submit
- Keep submissions “safe-for-work”; be sparing with sexuality, violence, and profanity.
- Try to focus on making your submission a single meaningful moment rather than an entire story.
- Write something brand new; no re-submitting past entries or pieces written for other purposes
- No fan fiction whatsoever. Take inspiration from whatever you’d like, but be transformative and creative with it. By submitting, you also agree that your piece does not infringe on any existing copyrights or trademarks, and you have full license to use it.
- Submissions must be self-contained (everything essential to understanding the piece is contained within the context of the piece itself—no mandatory reading outside the piece required. e.g., if you want to write two different pieces in the same setting or larger narrative, you cannot rely on information from one piece to fill in for the other—they must both give that context independently).
- One submission per participant.
- Submit your entry in a comment on this post.
- Submissions close at 12:00pm CST each Friday.
- You must like and leave a review on two other submissions to be eligible. Your reviews must be at least 50 words long, and must be left directly on the submission you are reviewing, not on another comment. If you’re submitting to the private post, feel free to leave these reviews on either the private or the public post. The two submissions you like need not be the same as the submissions you review.
- Be constructive and uplifting. These submissions are not for a professional market, and shouldn’t be treated as such. We do this, first and foremost, for the joy of the craft. Help other writers to feel like their work is valuable, and be considerate and gentle with critique when you offer it. Authors who leave particularly abrasive or disheartening remarks on this post will be disqualified from selection for readings.
- Use the same e-mail for your posts, reviews, and likes, or you may be rendered ineligible (you may change your username or author name between posts without problem, however).
- You may submit to either or both the public/private groups if you have access, but if you decide to submit to both, only the private group submission will be eligible.
- Understand that by submitting here, you are giving us permission to read your submission aloud live on stream and upload public, archived recordings of said stream to our social media platforms. You will always be credited, but only by the author name you supply as per these rules. No other links or attributions are guaranteed.
Comments on this post that aren’t submissions will be deleted, except for replies/reviews left on existing submissions.