Hello, Ghosts and Overthinkers!
What’s bothering you? Are you thinking about that time you— or maybe it’s that one time… Well, whatever it is, I think it’s about time you let it go and move on, because…
This week’s Writing Group prompt is:
Don’t Let It Haunt You
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!
Ghosts. Things of the past. But the thing about “ghosts of the past” is that we don’t always mean ghosts as in apparitions of the dead. Ghosts of the past can also be memories, times gone by, residual energies.
But this prompt is addressing more than just things of the past. Rather, it’s addressing how we shouldn’t let moments and choices weigh us down, how we should let some things go. Sure, it’ll stick with us, but we don’t have to let it torment us. You could choose to write about someone who keeps reflecting on the past. For example, a cop who shot the leg of an escaping criminal, only to end up making that leg nearly unusable for life. He did what he had to do, and the criminal paid the price for it. But if he hadn’t, the criminal could have escaped, and that price would be paid by whichever innocent they went after. He can either let this weigh him down, or learn to aim better. What about someone who keeps thinking back to when they said something mean, or made a selfish choice rather than a selfless one? Perhaps you choose to explore the mind of someone who can’t help but break down over the smallest mistakes, those mistakes leading them to fret over making another and another, convinced they’ll always mess up.
Perhaps you go the literal route and choose someone who is absolutely fed up with their lack of sleep, kept awake by the moans and cries of the deceased, so they get a house cleansing done. Maybe you decide on the elf who saved an imp from death, and is now stuck with said imp who has proven to be far more annoying than the elf bargained for. Do they end the imp themselves? Leave the imp behind somewhere and run? Or perhaps your fancy lies with the “cursed” chain letter emails that only the superstitious believe in. Maybe this letter fell into the hands of someone who didn’t believe in such nonsense and so they deleted it to stop the chain of ridiculousness… and are now trying to restart it to get rid of this entity they’ve inherited.
So many choices, so many paths… which story will you choose? What ideas have been nagging at you lately? Go ahead and give them some attention rather than… letting them haunt you?
… I won’t live that one down. I’ll see myself 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.