As I mentioned before, I teach writing. Sometimes I like to pull out a random writing prompt and let the magic happen. Here’s one of my personal favorites and what happened when I participated. Feel free to play along on your own blog or in the comments!
The Prompt (Credit to Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina and Catherine Reid): Create a short story that is 26 sentences long, each sentence beginning with the next letter of the alphabet. (When you get to X you may use the X sound. Stop your story abruptly after the sentence beginning with Z).
“Alright everyone, let’s get started.”
“Beautiful plan,” Charles calls sarcastically, “except for the fact that we don’t know the purpose.”
“C’mon, be serious. Don’t you remember we are supposed to finish the presentation on pachyderms?” I ask.
“Elephants, you can just say elephants,” Georgia whines.
“Fine. Georgia can you get the powerpoint going?” I ask.
“Here, I’ll do it.”
I roll my eyes as Charles pulls the computer away from Georgia’s manicured fingernails. Just this once I wish he would cooperate a little. Kids like him, the ones that are perfectly happy with the barely passing score, drive me crazy during group projects.
“Ladies, I am ready to type your every word,” Charles says. Meanwhile he plants his fingers over the home-row keys, the way we learned in computer class.
“Networks of blood vessels in their ears keeps their body temperature in check,” Georgia says.
“Okay,” Charles says. Pointed clicking sounds echo as his fingers type in her information. “Quick, gimme another one.”
“Really? Shouldn’t we have some kind of order to those facts? There really shouldn’t just be random facts typed into a slide–“
“Unlike most other animals, elephants have no natural predators,” Georgia says.
“Very unlikely. Wouldn’t they be running the planet if that were the case?” Charles asks.
“Except for humans. You know we kill them, right?” she answers.
“Zoology is weird,” Charles says as he types in the next bullet point, “but I’ll type whatever you tell me to.”