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If Time Stood Still (Writing Prompts)

Writing Challenges Writing Prompts

If Time Stood Still (Writing Challenge)

As noted previously, some weeks there are story themes and this week's writing prompt, though its dance card was not full (weeps delicately), it tended toward science fictional fills. Contemporary fantasy maybe?

Whatever it is, I love these sorts of stories, and I love that you come and share yours here. What a delicious gift, to get something fresh-baked to read each week. Thank you for that.

Speaking of 'each week' I thought maybe two weeks between prompts would garner more responses but I think I'll go back to once a week. I enjoy these too and two weeks seems, I don't know, like we're living through March again. Which is to say too fecking long.

Shall we?

Hippos, Green Asses, Sweet Jellyfish: Mostly Sci-Fi Stories This Week

And here are the things you were inspired to write when challenged with The Burning Sea:

His boyfriend leaned close. “What?”
Asher nodded, “Okay lovey, you stay here and stay awake.” He was nearly to the door when Gunter grunted. “With three jellyfish please!”
The bread would have been there because I could both afford and remember it.
The carrier clinks more than I’d like as I set it on the kitchen counter.
“I’m trying, flower,” I say, pulling out the bottles.
“I know, Mam.”
He turns away.
She had watched hippopotamuses – hippopotami? – rising up from rivers in Kenya, their comical roundness hiding the danger that lurked in their jealously territorial hearts. The shape from the sea had made her think of hippos. Grey. Wet. Soft. Tentacled.
No wait.
Hang on.
The sea breathes.
In. Out.
The sky flames.
I breathe.
In. Out.
Grab the knob, turn, crack the door open. Oh! My! Gods! The sunlight is so loud it’s going to melt my poor brains. “Hey, Arko. Yeah, just give me a minute. Please?” It felt as if a baby krayt dragon had used my mouth as a potty chair. “And caf. Get me the biggest caf you can find. Take it outta my pay.”
“You bet your pretty green ass I will."

I hope this writing prompt inspires you, I thank you again and always for sharing your short stories here and I hope that sometimes you think………"Hmm. That could be something more." I know I've tucked away a few that I want to expand in future.

More Writing Challenges
The Burning Sea
Take Courage
A Trick of the Eye
Pssst! Our three latest books are below. Sherlockian tales, supernatural tales, ghost stories…what's your pleasure?

The Watches of the Night by Darcy Lindbergh          The Stag God: a black background with green man's silhouette, atop his head are stag horns           Ghost Story by G.V. Pearce

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  • Anarion on

    It’s early dusk when Papilio comes tumbling into my sleeping place. She’s never been the most graceful.

    “Come on,” she pipes, “come on, comeoncomeoncomeon!”

    “What?” I grumble.

    “You promised to go exploring past the river with Tineo and me today!”

    “I’m not even warm yet!”

    “You’re getting as slow as grandmother Pyraloidea!”

    “Please, I uncooned only two days before you.”

    I grumble some more, but I did promise, and I am curious to see what lies on the other side of the river. So I flap my wings to warm my body and then we take off into the night.

    Tineo meets us near Twotree where she lives and we play catch on our way through the forest towards the river.

    The first thing we notice once we’ve crossed the river is a faint glow that seems to draw us in whether we want to or not. Well, to be honest, I’m sure Papilio wants to and I don’t.

    “What is that?” Tineo whispers, swaying like she can’t decide if she wants to dart into the clearing or run away.

    “What are those?” Never have I seen animals like that before.

    “I’m gonna have a look!” And with that Papilio hops out from behind the shrubbery and towards the glowy thing. Someone squeals (yes, okay, me. It was me.) and Tineo looks like she might faint.

    Papilio spreads her wings and starts to curiously make her way around the glowy thing and the sleeping animals. Tineo and I relax a bit because she doesn’t seem to be in any danger.

    Of course one of the things chooses that exact moment, when I think we might get to go home with all limbs and wings attached, to extend its foreleg and almost hits Papilio straight in the face.

    For a second time stands still, then she catches herself and with a surprisingly elegant sway she sails on, just to crash into the foliage moments later. I gracefully let go of Tineo, who only looks a tiny bit ruffled now, and take a deep breath.

    We decide to go the long way round the clearing and by the time we arrive, Papilio is sitting on a low branch, grinning like mad.

    “Did you see that?”

    “Did we see…? Yeah, we did! I almost threw up in panic!” Look how I totally manage to keep my cool here.

    “I think it was super awesome!” Tineo adds, feisty again now that she knows everyone is safe.

    “I think I am the bravest of us all!” Papilio puffs her chest.

    “_I think_ it clearly showed that it’s time to return home!” I turn towards the river.

    I hear Papilio mumble ‘grandmother Pyraloidea’ but both she and Tineo follow me without further resistance.


    Not one of the three people sleeping next to the fire would ever know that they provided adventure and excitement for three little moths that would last them a lifetime.

  • Scaredy Cat on

    If time stood still, I would find you.
    I would finally have the chance to get close to you, to see if you smell as much like home as I have always imagined. I could find out if your fingernails are manicured or bitten; and whether your face has laugh lines or tiny scars. I would finally know all of the tiny details I’ve been dying for.
    And I would still miss you.


    If time stood still, I would go to the library, and the next, and then the next. Nothing will be left out of my literary odyssey: public stacks, private collections, and those notes you keep in the bottom, back of your drawer. No, the OTHER ones. No need to blush, they are nothing to be ashamed of. I’ve read worse, or, I will. I will read my way through the world, synapses blazing with networks of new thoughts, new tales, new connections. They say that all the stories have been told already. They never reached far enough. They never walked deep enough into the inferno, words and words and words lapping like white hot rolling waves, until the consuming and the consumption are indistinguishable from one another.

  • altocello on

    eternity exists
    between one breath
    and the next
    asymptotic approach
    the fire burns low
    and then goes out
    the leaf is attached
    and then it falls
    how do we bridge the gap
    from one moment to the next
    when they never touch

  • Atlin Merrick on

    Swear, complain, call me names – I’m used to all of it.

    You say you hate me but at the same time you crook a finger at your friend, so good, the best! and you say, “C’mere, listen to this.”

    And you know. You know what you’re doing to them and you do it without regret because you don’t actually hate me, no, you just…wish that it was you controling how long I stay but that’s not how this goes. This was never how this goes.

    So you can say what you will, you can tell everyone you hate me, but you introduce me to your friend – so good, the best! – and you’re thrilled when we meet, you crow and cheer and say it, every time you say it…

    “GOOD! Now someone else has the ear worm too.”

    Worm. Worm. Really. I’m an auricle minhoca thankyouverymuch.

    (This has absolutely nothing to do with any part of this prompt. I have no idea why.)

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