Writing Group: When Time Came Knocking (PRIVATE)

Knock knock, Crocodiles and White Rabbits! 

Who’s there, you ask? Who do you think? The one who’s always there. Stepping in rhythm to everything you do. Every action you take. Every word you say. Always lurking. Always hurting. Always healing. Always ticking. Because…

This week’s Writing Group prompt is:

When Time Came Knocking

Make sure you scroll down and read them if you haven’t! You may not be eligible if you don’t!

I’m quite aware of who submitted this prompt, and why…because I submitted it! Time is one of my characters and I wanted to write a particular scene when he shows up at another character’s house. Of course, due to this, that is the first place my mind goes to with this prompt: the living embodiment of Time literally knocking at the door. You could explore how you yourself might give human form to time—Is your version of time Father Time, a small child, or rather the attractive lady next door? Perhaps your character has been literally running from time for a long time, and just when they think they’ve gotten away…there’s a knock at their door. Or you might choose a different embodiment. Could your Time be a dog, or cat playing with history as if it were a chew toy, or ball of yarn? Is your Time a clockwork being who ticks and clicks in addition to knocking? 

You could take this in a more symbolic way. Perhaps the neighbor dog pawing at your character’s door isn’t the literal embodiment of time, but when the newspaper it carries tells your character they need to get out of town, the symbolism is there. Maybe the attractive lady knocking on the door is perfectly ordinary, but her knock tells your character it’s finally time to ask her out. Time could mean many things. We often call death “our time.” This prompt could easily refer to death knocking. Is your character appalled, thinking they had more time on this earth? Or do they meet death with a gentle nod, understanding it is, in fact, their time? But it doesn’t have to be so sinister. Perhaps the “time” the prompt refers to is an event your character was really excited for, and the “knock” (friends knocking on the door, ready to join them, perhaps?) is met with joy. Anything your character might say “it’s time” for—they might realize “it’s time” for a change, or “it’s time” to go. 

There are other, simpler uses of time too. Perhaps a teenager is playing games, and their parent knocks on the door to tell them it’s dinnertime. Even a time limit in said video game could work as time knocking. You could write about something as ordinary as an elementary kid struggling with their times tables, or a barista looking forward to their shift ending. An appointment one is dreading certainly often feels like time is knocking if. Someone who is very busy and never feels like they have enough time might constantly feel as though time is knocking. Perhaps the message of that story would be the opposite of most: they must learn they have more time than they think. 

There are many different types of knocks as well. I’ve talked about knocks at a door, and haven’t even explored all the uses there—what about trap doors? Knocking on the walls?—but you could write about other knocks. What about knocking on wood? What might Time need luck for? Or does time send the sound of knocking throughout a character’s life as a warning—something like “the bell tolls for thee”? One might consider a simple “tick tock” a knock of sorts. Someone sitting in a quiet room, hearing the ticking clock, might believe it to be an incessant knocking. The chimes of a grandfather clock, or the cuckcoos of a cuckoo clock could function in this way too. Cinderella hearing the dings of the midnight bell, trying to leave the castle before they finish chiming certainly fits this prompt. …You could even use a nock pun as we watch time getting their bow ready, much like Eros/Cupid might. 

Time knocking could easily be interpreted as the consequences of one’s actions catching up to them. The tyrant controls the kingdom for a long time, but eventually the rebels reach his door. A thief is finally caught. A lie finally is exposed. In the movie Mirror Mirror, the Evil Queen’s mirror is constantly telling her magic comes with a price. Even though she doesn’t know what the price is, she insists she will pay it. In the end of the movie, the price is that she turns into an old lady. Age and ugliness are her greatest fears, and this is a terrible fate to her. In this case, this is time knocking in two ways: the price of magic coming back to bite her, and literal age catching up to her. 

Speaking of a character getting aged up in a moment, perhaps you could write about something like Sophie from Howl’s Moving Castle. Perhaps your character experiences time knocking in a spell cast on them that ages them up, ironically, before their time. Or perhaps an ordinary orphaned child feels they have to grow up too fast to take care of themselves? What happens when time comes knocking at, well…the wrong time? 

A sillier use of this prompt could be something inanimate that represents time—like a clock—getting up and walking to the door. Perhaps you want to write about a world of living inanimate objects, and the clock knocks on the hammer’s door to say that’s quite enough noise…only for the hammer to retort that the clock has been chiming every hour for the past week! 

My technical challenge for you this week is to use rhythm and/or onomatopoeia to help the vibes of your piece come across more clearly. If you want to create a sense of foreboding, perhaps you want to put a literal knocking onomatopeia throughout your piece—create the feeling that something is coming. If you want to create the feeling of aggravation, perhaps you want to use a ticking onomatopoeia a little too much. If you want to show excitement, perhaps you want to use a fast rhythm in your wordings to convey this. If you want to show a character waiting, maybe you want a rhythm of sentences that is long and drawn out. (My fragments + anaphora in my intro sentence above could be considered as a ticking of sorts!) 

My content challenge is to pick something other than death to write about. While a fitting use of the prompt, death seems like one of the most obvious choices. Get creative! Pick something a little more outside the box! Especially as I may be dealing with the death of a family member of my own very soon, I would certainly appreciate more wholesome and wacky takes on the prompt myself this week. 

Remember, these challenges aren’t mandatory! They are meant to be a fun bonus if you’d like to have a little extra challenge. But, if you don’t want to use them, please don’t feel obligated to!

I am sorry about this. But I won’t be relegated to the background anymore. It is your time. You must come with me. Whether you come quietly is your choice.


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.

Tune into the stream this Saturday at 3:00pm CST to see if you made the cut!

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 five stories during each stream, two of which come from the public post, and three 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!

  1. Text and Formatting

    1. English only.
    2. Prose only, no poetry or lyrics.
    3. Use proper spelling, grammar, and syntax.
    4. Your piece must be between 250-350 words (you can use this website to see your wordcount).
    5. Use two paragraph breaks between each paragraph so that they have a proper space between them (press “enter” or “return” twice).
    6. 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.
    7. 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.
  2. What to Submit

    1. Keep submissions “safe-for-work”; be sparing with sexuality, violence, and profanity.
    2. Try to focus on making your submission a single meaningful moment rather than an entire story.
    3. Write something brand new; no re-submitting past entries or pieces written for other purposes
    4. 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.
    5. 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).
  3. Submission Rules

    1. One submission per participant.
    2. Submit your entry in a comment on this post.
    3. Submissions close at 12:00pm CST each Friday.
    4. 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.
    5. 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.
    6. 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).
    7. 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.
    8. 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.

Notify of

Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
7 days ago

Weathered By Time (Chronicles of The Dragon)
By Makokam

Artemis walked by the alter, picking up a honey cake as she went. She took a bite as the worshiper who’d made the offering watched, wide eyed. She stopped and looked at them. “These are excellent. Did you add coconut?”

The girl was too stunned to answer.

Artemis licked the crumbs from her fingers. “Thank you. You can take the rest with you.”

Leaving the girl to collect her offering and return to her friends, Artemis exited the temple. She gazed across the city for a few moments, before deciding to go home.

Her old family home sat on a small island, that long ago held a temple to Artemis. She, and her family, had been followers of the previous Artemis, before she had taken on her mantle. That had been a thousand years ago. Or was it twelve hundred years? Fifteen hundred?

Time really was a thing only mortals kept track of.

She noticed a young woman in the yard, putting clothes on the line, as she entered the family home. Inside, a woman with grey hair was preparing a meal. She looked up from her work as Artemis entered and smiled. “Aris! It’s been a long time.”

Artemis smiled. “It can’t have been that long, Sophie, you look as I remember. It’s nice to hear my old name again though.”

Sophie laughed, “I don’t know if I should be sad that I’m so old you can’t see me aging, or happy I look the same at 60 as I did at 50.”

Artemis blinked. “Has it really been a decade?”

“It has. That’s Callianthus outside.”

“Little Calli? I was worried that I was losing track of time, but I hadn’t thought it was this bad.” Artemis fell into a chair. “I’m worried I might be losing myself as well.”

“You should stay for dinner then. Might help remind you who you are.”

Callianthus opened the door. “Did I see Aunt Aris?”

“You did,” Artemis said.

Callianthus ran over and hugged her.

Aris smiled, and looked over her great grand-niece. “Would you like to go hunting with me?”

7 days ago

“Hey the 70’s called”
By: Boople

‘haha, very funny buts the jackets not leaving’

Stan sent that text with a defiant huff, as if that would emphasize his point from the other side of the screen. He put his phone down on the table and resumed his dinner, but before he could delete another portion of TV microwave dinner Stan heard an unexpectedly rhythmic knock at the door.

As he walked on over he heard the bounce of a funk bass softly rattle the area around his front door. Through the cracks he saw shifting neon beams, and with curiosity defeating caution he flung open the entrance.

Artificial smoke swallowed the room followed by the smell of weed, neon light diffused through it and made its way to bounce right back off of the stranger. Chunky heels, wide tasseled pants, thick glasses, and a disco ball for a head.

“How’s it hangin’ homeslice, slap me some skin.”

Stan’s hand seemed possessed as he watched it do some incredible choreography, to which it was rewarded with a cramp.

“So I think you can guess why I’m here.”

“No, what? Who are you? Where is the music coming from?” Stan backed away from the stranger, almost falling backwards on his diner.

“To answer both those questions, The 70’s. Now where’s my jacket?”

“Your jacket!?”

“Yea, I called your pal to let you know I want it back.”

“No man, that’s MY Jacket! I got it from my dad!”

“And where do you think he got it from homie?” Somehow the glasses in front of his obscenely reflective face raised an eyebrow.

“What the hell is happening!” Stan continued fumbling backwards

“Broski I just want m-”

The 70’s was interrupted by a desperate attempt from Stan to do damage. He grabbed the nearest thing and flung it forward. As it left his fingertips, he realized his mistake.

“Aww sweet, thanks man, peace!”

After getting what he came for, the 70’s and the jacket disappeared in a burst of glitter, leaving the smell of disappointment and weed.

Norman Gray
Norman Gray
7 days ago

A Friend of Ben’s
By Norman Gray


It flows like rain trickling down a rooftop, every drop collecting into a cascade, slowly washing away all that it touches…

Perhaps even the continuum needs a bit of patchwork, once in awhile. But, I’m no roofer. I’m a historian. I take great pride in studying humanity’s tale, and understanding every step that brought us to here and ‘now.’ It was during my visit to the Palace of Westminster, when ‘now’ eluded me; the continuum had begun to erode, and time’s collective storm started seeping through…

I was in the tower, when Ben tumbled through the cracks of continuity. We’ve been falling ever since. History was forgetting itself, and I was putting down buckets, frantically trying to catch every drip:

A Kalashnikov retrieved from the hands of Agamemnon.


A petrol-powered boat, beached within Napoleon’s borders.


A strange blinking box labeled ‘TechCore Voltris’, who’s place and purpose I’ve yet to guess, though it hardly takes a historian to know that it was best not left in the possession of Genghis Khan…

Drip… Drip… Drip.

I had to set things right. What else could I do? Sit idly by as my life’s work was undone? But the ‘buckets’ were overflowing, as I crammed the halls of Westminster with anachronistic artifacts. I had to return these items to their proper place, when time allowed…

There was always time.

Yet, there was never time enough.

Where Ben would land, I never knew. He seemingly moved with purpose, volition; chasing down the missing pieces, the hands of his four faces spinning like propeller blades, pushing and pulling the tower through the spaces between time…

People whispered of the traveling clock tower, and the man residing within. I became the most important person in history… Without me, what was history?

And yet, I was insignificant.

I know my place; it is not in the past, or the distant future. I do my best to leave few traces of my presence behind, and to never forget:

Wherever I am, I never was.

Who am I, you ask?

Oh, nobody… Just a friend of Ben’s.

Last edited 7 days ago by Norman Gray
7 days ago

By MasaCur

“Isaiah, phone for you,” Tracy said.

Isaiah nodded and reached over to the phone on his desk, grabbing the handset, and clicking on the flashing button. “Hello. Isaiah Montross speaking.”

“Hello, Isaiah. This is Nadine calling from Kendricks Appliances. We are calling because you are listed on our contact sheet for a client regarding us sending out a service call on a dishwasher.”

Isaiah froze. He wasn’t sure when he would get this call. It had been fourteen years since he had been planted in this cover identity. Fourteen years of waiting, of maintaining the facade of this existence. He wasn’t even sure that this call was ever going to come after a while.

“Isaiah, are you still there?” Nadine asked.

“Yes, sorry. I am.”

“You were listed as a contact for a John Peterson. Do you know John Peterson?”

“I do.”

“We have a message for him. Someone can be by to fix his dishwasher between noon and four tomorrow afternoon. Can you pass that message on for us?”

Isaiah took a deep breath. “Yes, I understand. I will let John know as soon as possible.”

“Have a good day.”

Isaiah opened the bottom drawer of his desk, and pulled up the false bottom. Lying inside was a pistol with a suppressor attached and two magazines inside..

“Tracy, do you have an up to date list of the attendees for tomorrow’s lunch meeting?” Isaiah asked.

“It should be in the e-mail sent yesterday.”

Isaiah pulled open the e-mail and his eyes shot to one name on the list. Duty called.


“I’d like to welcome our distinguished special guest, the Minister of Commerce for the nation of Cradova, Dmitri Brimic. As you know, our government has recently signed a trade agreement with Cradova. I hope that this union will prove fruitful for both our nations.”

Everyone around the table rose to clap. Everyone except Isaiah. Isaiah instead reached into his waistband and withdrew the handgun and raised it.

There was a scream.

“Long live the Milinoc Independence Coalition!” Isaiah announced. He fired twice.

8 days ago

An Epilogue of Sorts (Students of the DiamondBridge Academy universe)
by Carrie (Glaceon373)

“And… done!” Sam collapsed onto a park bench illuminated by an old street lamp.

“I sense it’s time to file our follow-up report?” asked the voice on the other end of Sam’s earpiece.

“Yup. Something like: ‘We regret to inform you that your brand-new security system for your impulse-purchase imperial topaz has zero sensors on the roof, so…’”

There was a quiet crinkle of plastic as Sam removed the small bag from her pocket. The little topaz was the color of a perfect sunset, its splendor still unmistakable in the dimly-lit park.

“… should we add that ‘1234’ is a bad password for their entire mansion’s surveillance network?”

Roselyn’s laugh rang out through the earpiece. “I can’t believe I forgot that! Throwing that in with SO much sarcasm.”

As Roselyn clicked away on her keyboard a hundred miles away, Sam turned the topaz in her hand.

“Hey, Rose?”


“Think they’d let us keep the topaz?”

“Not if we want to get paid.”

“It’s your favorite color. Maybe we could get it in a ring, or necklace, or something?”

“Why’d you say ‘ring’ first?” Roselyn asked with an audible smile.

“It’s the perfect size for it. Why?”

The keyboard noises stopped. “Sam.”


“How old are you?”

“Oh, god, twenty-five?”

“Right. And how old were you when we started dating?”

“Fifteen—wait holy hell it’s been ten years?!”

“Two weeks from tomorrow, yes, when we’re going to Amaryllic Falls.”


“We also literally live together, do pseudo-crimes together, just bought a puppy together, and I asked you for your ring size two months ago.”

Sam turned a bright shade of red.

“What I’m saying is: I’ve got it covered.”

“But—but now I’ve gotta get a ring for you!” Sam yelled. “And plan a proposal speech! And I’ve got this topaz right here!”

“Please don’t actually steal the topaz.”

“Fine, we’ll get paid, and I’ll use my winnings to get you a kickass ring.”

“And I’ll use mine to plan the wedding.”



There was a moment of quiet before the two of them burst out laughing yet again.

Lee Strangely
Lee Strangely
9 days ago

The Complete Edition of Wachlesty V. Reedmor’s “The Hour Hand”
presented by Lee Strangely

Publisher’s note: Reedmor’s magnum opus “The Hour Hand” was largely thought to be forever left incomplete (and originally published as such), but with the help of the late author’s great, great, great grandson, thrice removed, the manuscript has finally been completed.

Looking back at my own reflection in the cold mirror, I knew I wasn’t like other people. To those who may not know, you can call me [add name here later].*

It all changed when I finally noticed it that day.

There comes a knock when you’re born. You don’t realize it’s there at the start.

I felt my chest. My door knocked loud and hard. The time drew near to soon answer that door. Opening the door, I knew that face. The hands that then suddenly grabbed me were that of Time.

I looked into his infinite eyes, and he into mine.

In this, he didn’t see the knife in my hand. I plunged it in.

I didn’t realize until it was too late.

I was killing Time.


*Editor’s note: name was originally [placeholder] in the first edition, but was changed due to copyright issues.

**Editor’s note: the original, intended ending was thought to be completely lost until the section was rediscovered in an earlier draft found in someone’s gutter. Until now, it was hotly debated whether it in fact ended with “the end” or “that’s all folks.”

Note from Reedmor’s estate: Reedmor considered this story to be autobiographical, drawing heavily from real events.

Editor’s note: Reedmor was known to take copious amounts of drugs… Which his estate will vehemently deny.

Note from Reedmor’s estate: Reedmor had never, nor would ever take drugs.

Editor’s note: Reedmor’s estate is ran by idiots.

Note from Reedmor’s estate: the editor is a hack.

Editor’s note: dimwits…

Note from Reedmor’s estate: dipstick…

Publisher’s note: the original publishing house responsible for editing and translating the story unfortunately went under before the story could be published. We apologize for releasing it in this state, as we were under the impression that the notes were a part of the story…

10 days ago

And Now That Dream Has Gone From Me
By Marx (Overly Familiar: Apocalypse #4)

He watched His dream with new eyes. He could feel the change in the air. He’d been tasked with overlooking the dream that everyone else saw as reality for as long as He could remember. And it had grown… tiring. Knowing it would come to an end was a relief He couldn’t describe.

Speaking of which…

He turned around as He felt the two approaching Him. To the left was Death, the beginning of the end. And to right was Death’s horseman, the end of the end.

They both glared at Him with the black voids that were their eyes, broken only by the blinding white of their irises.

He turned away from them, looking at His dream once more. “It… is beautiful, is it not? The worlds… the universes… all the souls that reside within them… whether they be spiritual or Earthbound…



“I know I’ve put you both in an unenviable position and you might think of me harshly, but–“

The horseman’s scythe had swung before He’d even realized it was summoned.

It was over that quickly.

The dreamer of the dream was dead.

Reality itself shuddered with that truth.

Death laughed.

Her horseman raised an eyebrow.

“Apologies, my beloved. He just… really hated being interrupted.” Death cleared her throat after she’d finished with her laughter. “Anyway, you may resume.”

With a roll of his eyes, her horseman focused on the corpse beneath him.

The final seal was broken.

An ominous mist rose from his weapon and then everything that remained of Him was drawn into the horseman like a magnet.

Death watched as her fated mate inhaled deeply, the very universe expanding and contracting with his breath. Another laugh escaped her lips. “It looks good on you.”

Her horseman opened his eyes and stared at his scythe with a frown. “I take no joy in this.”

“This isn’t about joy or sorrow, my love. Leave those to the mortals. This is about what must be done and your control over it.”

He nodded and his scythe misted once more. “Let’s get to work then.”