Hello, Dancers of all sorts!
There’s so many different forms of dance. The waltz, samba, flamenco, ballet, or even breakdancing… I never really understood that one. These are all fantastic dances… when done in the safety of a home or studio. But let’s see how well you remember the steps outside of your safe space, because…
This week’s Writing Group prompt is:
A Dance with the Devil
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!
Such a lovely and enticing prompt, isn’t it? What a wonder it would be to just spin and leap and shuffle without a care in the world. And that’s exactly what this prompt addresses.
Of course we can take this literally, or for the metaphor it is. To “dance with the Devil” is a metaphor that means to engage in risky, reckless, dangerous, and sometimes even immoral behaviour. This can be someone who is stubborn, who knows what they’re doing is dangerous but nothing is going to stop them. Perhaps a stunt driver, or someone who participates in demolition derbies. Maybe this is someone who has taken their parkour livestreaming to the next level. No longer are they just hopping low walls and fences, railings and benches. No, they need to keep chasing that thrill, that rush. So they take it higher, going from roof to roof, or even scaling skyscrapers until they’re handstanding on the ledge of the roof. Perhaps such perilous dances is their job, like a firefighter or a police officer, a detective or even just a window washer. Burning buildings, crazy criminals, high winds that swing your high rise platform, they’re all dangerous and one step out of line could be crippling… or even life-ending.
But maybe this prompt is more literal to you. Maybe your tale is about someone who takes dance classes, and they find out that the partner they’ve had for months, the partner they’ve become friends with… or perhaps even secretly fallen for… is a demon. Does this scare them away? Or do they stay, do they take their chances and continue to tango with this potentially dangerous individual? Perhaps someone is desperate for something. Whether fame, talent, success, wealth, whatever it may be, they are desperate enough to step into the crossroads at night, and perform the necessary action to call upon the Devil. They ask for their desire, and the Devil offers a simple dance to seal the deal. Do they dare to take his hand, knowing what it means for their soul?
Like the endless variations of dance, there’s so many ways this prompt can go. So put on your best, O Writers, and let the words of your tale lead you step, by step, by leap and twirl across the page.
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! Get ready not just to share what you’ve got, but to give back to the other writers here as well.
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.