Join the Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt (and win silly prizes)

by Pamela Fernuik | 173 comments

Update: The winners have been chosen and the (silly) prizes have been awarded. Thank you everyone who participated. This was so fun!

The world needs more silly. That's why we want to invite you to please join us for The First Annual Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt. We will randomly choose three participants to win a new Moleskine notebook, a brown paper bag, or a wooden hanger.

Join the Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt

This is a Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt, as in, highly irrational, crazy and silly. The world does need more love. I agree with Jackie DeShannon, what the world needs now is not more mountains or meadows; we need more love.

But, Jackie, we also need more silly.

You don't have to have fun if you don't want to.  I don't even mind if you whine a little bit. I won't even make you brush your teeth before you start the game.

Here you go. Here is your Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt List.

On your mark. Get set. Go!

Image 8

Ten Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt Items 

1. To find the first sentence of your story: Take the third book from the left off of your book shelf. On page forty-two, third sentence from the top,  is the first sentence of your story. (If it is a blank page, keep going until you find a page with type.)

Image 62. The leftovers in your fridge, is what the main character ate for breakfast. ( If there are no leftovers, your character has to eat a fried egg.)

3. The conflict in the story is what is under your bed. If you are one of those organized minimalist people like Joshua Becker, and don't store anything under your bed, then I will give you another option because I am so nice. Not just nice, but, so nice. Here's your other option: your protagonist wants the last item you purchased.

4. Your main character, okay, okay, the protagonist, is wearing what is hanging in your closet, fourth item from the right. I will give you another option, if you hate what is hanging fourth from the right. Your character may wear whatever clothes you left on the floor last night. If there are only your white socks that you didn't put in the clothes hamper on the floor, here is a terry-cloth house coat, and a pair of pyjamas for you.

5. The protagonist's hair color is the color of your dog, or your cat, or your neighbors dog or cat. If both of your neighbors have pets, go with the neighbor on your right.

6. The protagonist will use whatever is in your pockets to win their conflict. 

7. Please, please, please, use this word at least once in your story, “bacon.” I said, please, please, please, so I didn't sound so bossy. (To be nice, I will give you a choice of three words to choose from. One of these words has to be in your story.) Did you notice the word has was in italics, and bold? That means I really mean it.

a. bacon
b. cat
c. page seventy-four in your dictionary, left-hand column, fifth word from the top. If the word is a dirty word, go to the next word. (i.e. dirty words, as in body parts, or bad words, as in you wouldn't want your children to read the word. )

8. The Antagonist, the person trying to keep the protagonist from getting what they want, has the same name as the person you had a crush on in grade two. (If you didn't have a crush on anyone in grade two use the name of your best friend in grade two.) The name of my antagonist is Dug. In the basement of a house on Avenue K, in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, on a two by four, is written in pencil, I love Dug.

9. The location is where you spent your last vacation.

10. You will get help to resolve your conflict from a brown paper bag. 

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There we go. This will be fun. After Joe, (Hi Joe) edits the Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt, I will play it as well.

Don't forget to post your challenge! Silly stories are due September 7. Then, on Tuesday, September 8, we'll choose three random participants to win a new Moleskine notebook, a brown paper bag, or a wooden hangerUpdate: The winners have been chosen and the (silly) prizes have been awarded. Thank you everyone who participated. This was so fun!

Looking for more awesome writing prompts? Find our top 100 writing prompts and writing exercises here »

Have you ever played a Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt? Also, if you have any suggestions for the Second Annual Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt, please let me know.


Follow the Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt clues.

This is a no time-limit the challenge. Take as long as you want, and, have fun. However, if you'd like to post your story in the comments section (and be entered for the silly prize), please keep it on the shorter side, less than 500 words. Otherwise not many people will have time to read your story!

Please comment on someone else's story. And have a fun silly day.

All my best,

 | Website

Pamela writes stories about art and creativity to help you become the artist you were meant to be. She would love to meet you at


    • Pamela Hodges

      Yes Katherine,
      Then everyone can read it. I look forward to reading your story.
      p.s. Who did you have a crush on in grade two?

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Great! I’m totally in on this.

      P.S. I didn’t have a crush in second grade and if I recall my best friends name was The Chronicles of Narnia (how sad right?) I decided to use my arch nemesis’s name instead. I hope that’s okay. 🙂

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis


      No crushes or best friends in second grade either and I didn’t discover the Chronicles of Narnia for years!


    • Katherine Rebekah

      How sad! Friends and crushes I could live without, but no Narnia? And even with the same last name as the author (seriously that’s kinda cool). My heart goes out to you, dear friend.

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis

      Not to worry. Life was good back then. I just don’t have that many clear-cut memories that I could clearly say were second grade. Once I got past kindergarten and first grade (I can remember those rooms), the memories mostly mash together!

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Oh, I was just messing around (too bad you can’t put vocal inflection into comments). And I know what you mean. My memories are mostly mashed up too. I think most people’s are for that age.

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis


      You have mashed memories, too! That makes me feel a lot more, well, normal!

    • 18pminus1

      ” Open our heart to him”

      Charlie muttered as she combed her black and tan hair.

      ” What do you mean?”

      ” Well Gabi; we open our hearts to him.”

      ” Who?”

      A small woof answer her question,

      followed by a scratching sound on the carpet.
      Charlie smiled put down her brush.
      She then opened the door.

      ” Aah so you had to have another.”

      ” Yes, Tommy would of been lonely”

      Gabi smiled and tickled the puppies tummy.

      ” She’s so cute!”

      ” Well that’s great we can walk them together.”

      Gabi set down her brush after brushing her golden curls
      and she watched her friend tucking into a mini brie sandwich.

      She stared at her friends face.

      ” Gabs you know that black and silver dress.”

      ” Yes the one with the silver buckle on the ribbon belt?”

      ” Yep that the one. I ‘ave a do can I borrow it?”

      ” No. Ben’s got it for his girlfriend. ”

      ” Ben!”

      Charlie sighed and returned to her empty plate placing it down

      ” You gave it to Ben?”

      She stood up and marched to the door turn and smiled

      ” You too kind Gabs. Even to a bully like him.”

      They set out and got on the bus to go to town.
      they reached the square and saw Ben glaring at them his jet black hair stood out.

      “Thanks for the table cloth your dress is perfect.”

      ” You didn’t ”

      Charlie stood back as the silver flower buckle was thrown on the floor at there feet Gabi’s face lost all colour.

      ” T-That was my brand new dress!”

      ” Lame too late it is gone…

      ” Oh by the way Charlie see you at
      the party. Oh did you want to borrow that dress.”

      ” Oi you ” The butcher shot out his shop

      ” Your dog stole bacon from my shop”

      ” I didn’t do nothing!”

      Charlie and Gabi eyed his pocket as Ben was distracted
      and Charlie whispered too little Tommy who crept up behind Ben
      and knocked the packet out on to the floor! He then pushed it towards the Butcher as Ben ran off into the distance as shoppers laughed at him.

      Out witted by a dachshund, the butcher laughed too as he washed the bacon and gave some to the girls.

      ” Give some to that brave little dog.”

      Bella looked at him with big brown eyes.

      He laughed and nodded.

      ” Give her some too!”

      It was at that time a dress maker who had saw the same things laughed.

      ” What do we do now he ruined you dress?”

      ” Yes my fa….”

      ” Gabs?”

      The dress maker stopped laughing.

      ” Look I make a dress for you two.”

      Charlie and Gabi nodded.

      ” Yes.”

      ” Non -no pay…laughter was payment.”

      The women chuckled,

      ” That boy ran like a scared cat non!”

      The dress maker disappeared and hummed

      ” Ah this is perfect, black and silver with a silver buckle
      and …ah We. the black and gold dress for madame.”

      The dresses were brought out and Charlie was aghast when she saw it and Gabi’s grin grew bigger.

      Gabi in her black and silver dress with golden sparkle
      and Charlie in her mostly black with a thing line of gold down the sides.

      ” Keep them …their yours.”

      ” Thank you so much!”

      Laughed both girls together.

      ” Non…don’t thank me ..than you little dog. I Madame Rosa Stitch
      have never seen a dog with humor!”

      The two girls rushed off to the party and all heads turned as they sashayed they way in. They made sandwiches and placed on the table the smell of them was delicious.

      ” Look over there wait until he knows what we did.”

      ” That little idiot.”

      ” Shh here he comes.”

      ” That smelled divine you frying our free gift.”

      Charlie put her fingers up to her lips and Ben strides up

      Ben look at Gabi

      ” Can I borrow that dress for my …”

      Gabi hand made a stinking noise against his cheeks.

      ” No you nasty little creep!”

      ” We put your escape on the website.”

      Ben returned to his girlfriend as people began to laugh
      as Charlie shouted after him.

      ” Thanks for the bacon!”

      The mocking laughter echoed as Ben’s face flushed red as the setting
      sun he dashed into.

      That night the two girls flopped into bed.

      In the morning they sat outside eating the Bacon sandwiches
      they had made for the party the night before.

      Keeping the spare fresh in the freezer as they saw Ben and he girlfriend lugged cases into the car and they disappeared

      never to been seen again.

    • 18pminus1

      That my story Pamela, the first line comes from a hymn
      and I picked my mum’s too knew dogs,

      In real life Tommy is a brave dog! I had a crushed on a bully called Ben in grade 2 or year 8 as it was called

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis

      I love the idea of a dog as the hero! And a Dachshund, no less!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh dear, maybe I put the grade too low. How about the name of your Teddy Bear?

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis

      I don’t actually recall having a teddy bear, either. Now, if you said the name of your pet cow, I’d be all over that, although I didn’t really have a pet cow (I grew up on a dairy farm) until I was much older.

      To be frank, I don’t have that many memories of second grade or most of my young childhood. It just wasn’t remarkable enough to make much of an impression.

      Now had I known it would all come in handy today, I may have been more diligent!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Of course, Katherine.
      I am excited to read your story. And a book as a friend is a friend to be trusted. I am not sure, Dug knew my name. Or if he ever found out I was the one that put a piece of ice in the shape of a heart in his desk. It melted before he found it.

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Yes, books never let you down.

      What a cute yet sad little story. You should use that sometime for a scene. A melted ice heart could have a some symbolic meaning behind it.

      I once had someone leave me something on my desk, but I never discovered who did it and technically it was vandalism sense they wrote on the desk in sharpie…

  1. Lino

    [I don’t really know what I was trying to do here. I just read each of the prompts and made up a line or two using it, and trying to make them match and make a story, and here’s what I got. I used all of them! Kind of funny, actually, but it doesn’t have much sense, lol. You can check, the prompts are all there. So… yeah, it was a lot of fun to do this, thank you 😀 (Though I don’t think that was what you were suggesting)]

    “We have no time to waste with people of that ilk,” said my mom, as she left for work, leaving me with just rice for breakfast. Wait, what? Wait, mom! How’s it their fault that their lives are as dizorganized as it is under my bed? As I drink my coffee, I end up spilling some of it on my shirt. Damn, now I’ll have to change it. I rush to my bedroom and grab the first shirt I find: it’s the Nightmare Before Christmas’s one. I take a look at myself in the mirror to see if it looks good. It does, though my hair doesn’t really look cool with this shirt. I don’t have many clothes that fit my godamn grey hair. It’s always messy too. Oh, bummer.

    But I wonder how I can fix this problem. I mean, it is a problem that my mom doesn’t accept my girlfriend’s family, right? People of that ilk? Seriously? I’m actually pretty pissed about how she thinks she can say these things. Yoy know what? I’m going to solve this problem right now. I grab my cell phone and dial her number. She picks up and I tell her that she’s no better than them and that I won’t accept that she talks trash behind my girlfriend’s back but acts all nice with her. I hung up. I’m so screwed. I’ll be grounded for, like, a week. But there’s not much I can do right now to fix this, so I’ll just finish my breakfast. Oh! But wait, I think there was a little bit of bacon left in the fridge! Great, now I’ll have a little something with the rice.

    I get a text on my phone. It’s mom. “We’ll talk later. Xoxo, Paula.” I never call her mom, I call her by her name, and she accepts it well. We haven’t been so close since we moved to this terrible place that is Bahia, in Brazil. But she’s still my mother, and, unfortunately, I still need her permission to date that girl from school. I’ve asked her several times, but she won’t let me! What am I supposed to do, then? Suffocate her with that brown paper bag on the kitchen table and make her give me permission?

  2. Kellie McGann

    Pamela!! This is so great, as are you! I’m gonna try to do this later! 🙂

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hi Kellie!
      Love your new photograph! Great smile. And you are great too! So fun to have met you.
      I can hardly wait to read yours.

  3. LilianGardner

    Pamela, this is what I call ‘wow creativity’. We were’nt afforded such writing fun at school. I must try this out. Belive it or not, I hope I win the brown paper bag.

    P.S. Did your cats and dog give you the idea?

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Lillian,
      I am so happy this sounds fun to you. Fun is fun.
      I believe you. Brown paper bags are so useful. And you might need them to solve your next adventure.
      I did take a nap with the cats before I wrote this, that must be why it is so out there. Or maybe it is because I wrote it from two until six this morning.

  4. Carrie Lynn Lewis

    Here’s my story.

    The antagonist’s name is the name of my second grade teacher (I think). That’s the only substitution I made.

    “And I will make with them a covenant of peace, and will cause the evil beasts to cease our to the land; and they shall dwell safely in the wilderness, and sleep in the woods.”

    ‘Sounds like fun. Breakfast couldn’t be any worse than cold Cowboy pizza and three-day old reconstituted powdered milk.’

    Sandy washed a bite of pizza down with milk and turned the page.

    ‘Just a few more paragraphs…’

    She was still sitting there, her favorite brown-and-white checked over shirt draped over the back of the chair, when her sister entered the kitchen.

    “Lost in a world of your own, again. As usual,” her sister accused. “And still eating breakfast at nearly noon! When are you going to join the rest of the world?”

    “I’m quite happy where I am, think you very much.”

    “I’m happy for you. Other people are counting on you. You were supposed to get the chips, remember?’


    Her sister’s right foot began beating an impatient rhythm on the worn linoleum.

    “Well?”she said after a moment. “Where are they? Or are you waiting for the cat to get them?”

    Sandy closed the book and laid it on the table with calm deliberation. She ate the last bite of pizza and drained the glass, then set that down in the same careful manner.
    Only then, did she lift her gaze to meet her sister’s, brushing a lock of orange-gold hair out of her eyes.

    “You’d accomplish a lot more if you were a little less urgent, Sager” she said.

    “I wouldn’t have to be so urgent if you paid more attention to what’s going on! Honestly! If everything were left to you, nothing would ever get done around here.”

    “You might be surprised.”

    “Not likely. You probably haven’t moved from that chair all day, have you?”

    Sandy smiled the smile she knew annoyed her sister. Rather than answer, she pulled the pedometer out of her pocket and turned it so Sager could see the face of it. Sager
    leaned forward just enough to read the numbers—9,876—and scowl.

    “Big deal,” she said. “You’ve walked almost 10,000 steps already today. That doesn’t answer my original question. Where. Are. The. Chips?”

    Still smiling, Sandy lifted a paper grocery sack from the floor beside her chair and plopped it on the table beside her breakfast dishes. Three bags of chips. Original,
    wavy, and sour cream and bacon.

    Sager shot her a if-looks-could-kill look, snatched the bags, and stalked out of the room. The door slammed behind her, a suitable close on the conversation.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Carrie,
      Great use of having the story center around her sitting in the chair, but there was so much going on, with the pedometer, and great save with the bag of chips.
      A fun story, and an unexpected ending.
      Thank you for playing.

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis


      Thanks! It was a fun–and, yes, silly–exercise and I enjoyed it!

    • LilianGardner

      Hello Carrie,
      I like the way in whch you show the conflict between the sisters. A good, enjoyable read.

    • Debra johnson

      Nicely done Carrie, I could see the tension between the sisters. I found myself snickering as I read it,,, because it sounded like my girlfriend and her sister at times when they were young. My girlfriend and I played both roles, being both calm and urgent at times.

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis


      Thanks! I’m glad you got some snickers out of that little story. I did, too.

  5. Sarah Purcell

    What fun! I can’t wait to try this. And, at nearly 70, I do remember my 2nd grade crush – his name was Steve and I was sure I’d marry him – until 3rd grade when I switched to Ray,

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh Sarah,
      How fun, I am so happy you will try this adventure. Now, I am so curious, did you marry Ray?
      I hope you have a wonderfully silly day.

    • Sarah Purcell

      No, but at least I remember his last name – can’t remember Steve’s.

  6. Katherine Rebekah

    A quick note: The thing under my bed just happened to be a Kyoshi Warrior cosplay outfit. It’s nothing as awesome as the one described in the story, but given the context of cosplay I decided to go all out nerdy with this. It’s meant to be weird and kinda funny. So just know the “All things Geek, Nerd, and Like Wise Emporium” is not meant to be taken seriously. I know places like that don’t exist.

    “She calls herself the Queen of Narnia, though she really has no right to be queen at all and all the Fauns and Dryads and Naiads and Dwarfs and Animals—at least all the good ones— simply hate her.”

    “Mommy?” My six year old son halted my reading.

    “What is it this time, Tomas? You need another glass of water?” I had been reading to him for about an hour, trying to get him to settle down and sleep. It had all been for naught, between the consent interruptions of bathroom and water breaks, insisting that I read in my Batman voice, and constantly inquiring about the upcoming Arizona Comic Con we were supposed to be attending.

    But he shook his head, “No, I want to know why you started reading in your Batman voice again.”

    “I didn’t.”

    “Yes you did. When you started talking about the White Witch. Your voice got all angry sounding.”

    “Oh.” I thought back for a second, wondering why. Then it occurred to me, during the lines about the White Witch I had been thinking about her. The lady at the All Things Geek, Nerd, and Like Wise Emporium. The lady who ran the cosplay department and was the only thing standing between me and the most magnificent Kyoshi Warrior cosplay outfit I had ever seen. What was her name? Amber. Her name was Amber. I tried the line from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe over agin in my head.

    “She calls herself Amber, Queen of Cosplay, though she really has no right to be called queen at all (I mean, did you see her Attack on Titan cosplay last year? I couldn’t tell if she was trying to be Mikasa or Levi with that ugly wig) and all the cosplayers— or at least the ones who can’t use a sewing machine — hate her.”

    I narrowed my eyes at the book in front of me with new resolution. I would go the The Emporium tomorrow, first thing in the morning, and face that White Witch.

    “Tomas,” I turned to my son, “If you want me to keep reading it’s going to have to be in the Batman voice. Mommy is preparing for war.”

    He quirked his head to the side and gave me this funny look, but then just smiled and nodded like it was completely normal for me to say such odd things (which maybe it was).


    I lulled out of bed in the morning just in time to watch Tomas climb aboard the school bus safely and to kiss his father (who had so kindly helped Tomas get ready and let me sleep in) goodbye before he went to work. After they were gone I went into warrior/ninja/Deadpool mode. I was preparing for battle.

    I whipped my raven black hair into a quick ponytail, threw on one of my favorite shirts (the one with a picture of the Lock Ness Monster that read “The important thing is that I believe in myself”) and scarfed down the remains of a half eaten bacon and avocado burger, the avocado having already gone brown and the bacon moist and squishy. Because I was a warrior, I didn’t need anything fancy. A half eaten, soggy burger was fine by me (though it made me rethink my Deadpool analogy sense it had been neither a taco, nor a chimichanga).

    I got in the car and blasted some Hans Zimmer to get my blood pumping for battle. And I felt pretty good, like I was about to go all Black Widow on this chic and get what I wanted from her. That is, until I pulled up to The Emporium. All the Deadpool and Black Widow went out of me and were replaced with a cowering Mr. Tumnus. How could I go up against the White Witch? How could I convince her I was worthy of the Kyoshi Warrior costume? She would surly turn me to stone. None the less, I had to do it. The costume was too magnificent to pass up.

    I slid out of the car and slinked through the sliding doors, passed by the movie section, the comic session, the anime and manga section, the “how to not get into flame wars on internet forums” section, the “nerd and geek certification card section”, the “quippy things to say to guys when they tell you you’re not a nerd section”, and finally arrived at the cosplay section.

    And there she was, sitting behind her desk sewing something, a pink wig on her head, dressed in a school girl uniform like Madoka Kaname. The Kyoshi Warrior outfit was on a mannequin right next to her table. She guarded the treasure like any good dragon would.

    As I walked up to her table she turned off her sewing machine, but didn’t lift her eyes from the orange fabric of what I recognized as a Naruto costume.

    “Didn’t think I would see you back here.” She grumbled, “Still after the Kyoshi Warrior?”

    “Yes.” My voice came out squeaker then I had meant for it too.

    “You know my rules. This is one of the highest quality costumes that I’ve ever made. I don’t just give those away to anyone.”

    “I know. I have my nerd certification, I took the test and everything. I pulled the plastic card out of my pocket and put it on the table. It listed all of the areas that I had extensive knowledge in, from super heroes, to anime, to books, and on and on.”

    “I don’t want to see your certification. These day’s anyone can get that information with a single Google search. It proves nothing. Plus, you’re a woman. That makes you even more suspicious.”

    “But you’re a woman too!”

    “That has nothing to do with you.” She finally looked up from her work, narrowing squinty gray eyes at me, “I need to make sure my costume is being warn by someone who truly loves the fandom.”

    “But I do love Avatar! Why else would I pay seven hundred dollars for a costume?”

    “Two words sister. Male. Attention.”

    I rolled my eyes.“That’s ridiculous. I’m married.”

    “That means nothing.”

    I groaned, “Fine then. Tell me what I have to do.”

    “Answer three Avatar trivia questions, that only a true fan would know. Then, do one task that I assign you.”

    “Fine. Hit me with you’re best shot.”

    “Question one. Does Avatar have anything to do with blue people?”

    “What? No. That’s the easiest question you could have asked me.”

    “Name the four nations.”

    “Water Tribe. Earth Kingdom. Fire Nation. Air Nomads. I’m starting to think you don’t know much about Avatar yourself.”

    She wrinkled her nose, “Nonsense! Now, this last question is a hard one. What did Aang use to defeat the Fire Lord?”

    “Energybending. Those questions were easy.”

    She made a noise in the back of her throat. “Fine. But you still have to do one last thing.”

    “Name it.”

    She leaned forward with a wicked smile, “I want you to use this paper bag, and whatever is in your pocket to draw the pattern of the Kyoshi Warrior makeup.”

    I snatched the paper bag from her hand, “With pleasure.”

    I withdrew a stick of cherry chapstick from my pocket. It was a struggle to get the stuff to appear on paper but luckily I had been practicing painting the pattern on my face over the last few weeks and I knew it perfectly. I handed back the bag smeared with chapstick with a triumphant smile.

    It was with much delight that I watched her take that costume of the mannequin, fold it neatly, and put it into a paper bag for me. I dished out seven hundred bucks without batting an eye.

    Just before leaving, an idea hit me.

    “You know, Amber, with you being the Queen of Cosplay and all. Would you mind answering a trivia question for me?”

    “There is no question I can’t answer.”

    “Okay then. But if you get it wrong, you have to provide me with costumes from now on. No questions asked.”

    “Try me.”

    “In what episode did Aang dress up like a Kyoshi Warrior?”

    “Easy. The Warriors of Kyoshi.”

    “Wrong! In that episode Sokka dressed up like a Kyoshi Warrior. It wasn’t until the episode Avatar Day that Aang did the same.”

    The look of defeat on Amber’s face was priceless but the pride that I had in myself was far sweeter.

    I had done what I never thought possible. I had defeated the White Witch, once and for all. And my family and I would be going to the Arizona Con in style for many years to come.

    • Pamela Hodges

      I actually snorted out loud when The White Witch handed over the paper bag.
      And great tie in to the story with your opening sentence. Reading to a child, how fun.
      And you had a Kyoshi Warrior cosplay outfit under your bed! Wow, how fun. I just peaked under my bed, I have a puppet, some dog litter bags and a c-pap machine.
      Great job defeating the witch with what was in your pocket.
      Thank you so much for writing such a fun story. Be bold and beat the witch.

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Yes! Comedy is not normally my strong suite so I’m glad it gave you a chuckle. And I got lucky with that opening line. I’ve always told myself I’m going to read Narnia to my children if I ever have any, so that’s where that scene came from.

      Yeah, that was the most interesting thing I found under there. It’s not anything amazing, I would never cosplay with it at a con because it’s so amateur, but it’s still a fun costume. The things under your bed sound like they would make a good story. I can wait to read yours!

      It was my pleasure entering. I had so much fun. Thanks for hosting this!

      Oh and are we allowed to make edits once it’s posted? Because I keep finding all these spelling errors.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Yes, Katherine,
      You can make edits. The drawing for the prizes is random, so editing your entry is allowed.

    • Anastacia

      I read your story to my husband and we were both in stitches! This was really good and hilarious! Loved it!

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Well thanks! So glad you shared it with him, that’s awesome.

  7. Christine

    First of all, Pamela, it delights me to meet someone who knows the same corner of Saskatoon that I knew as a girl! We lived at 208 Ave L S when I was in Grade 2 and 419 Ave F S from Gr 3-7. 🙂
    This prompt promises to be a challenge. I’m looking forward to letting my muse chew on it for awhile to see what she might spit out.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Christine,
      We both lived in Hudson Bay Park, a fellow Canadian. And you even know how to spell Saskatchewan.
      A challenge is fun. I am gathering the items as well. I won’t be in the running for the prizes, but I do want to play too.
      I am excited to read of your adventure.

    • Madlen

      Hello Christine and Pamela,

      I’m from 8th St E, so the opposite side of town, but it’s not often that I randomly run into a couple of gals from Saskatoon on the internet so I wanted to say HI!!!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Madlen,
      How fun to meet someone from Saskatoon. You are right it is not often we meet people from Saskatoon. What high school did you go to? I went to Mount Royal. Hi!!!

  8. Naomi Quezada

    It was a surprise to Newt, who immediately snapped awake and tried to get his cowlick to lay down. He got out of bed and headed to the restroom. Newt then headed downstairs for breakfast, all that was left to eat was Asian noodles. He stood in the kitchen eating
    his breakfast thinking about how he needed to go to the store for ant bait. The problem with the ants in the bathroom was getting out of control and needed to be dealt with before they were taken over by ants. Newt finished his breakfast then headed in to the bedroom to get dressed.

    All he had to wear was a green tank top and some jean shorts. Time to do laundry he thought, I will get some soap while at the store. He stepped back into the bathroom, taking in the trail of ants on the counter. He grabbed a paper towel wet it and wiped them up. Newt then brushed his teeth, then again tried to get his cowlick to lay down. He needed a haircut because no matter what he did the cowlick still stuck up.
    Maybe he would just shave his head bald, be much easier and he was tired
    of looking at his brown hair anyway.

    Walking out into the living room he thought about anything else he needed while he went to the store. He felt in his pockets for his wallet, nothing. How could that be possible, where did he leave it? He began to think, then he remembered that his wife had grabbed for the Chinese food last night. He found his cell phone and called his wife Dawna. “Hello” She answered on the second ring. “Love, where did you put my wallet?” Newt asked while walking around searching. “Oh, it’s in the bedroom on the nightstand. Where are you going?”

    “I’m going to the store for some ant bait. The ants are back in the bathroom.” He said finding his wallet sitting on the nightstand. “Newt just call a bug man, they will come and take care of it.” Dawna stated. He could hear her typing through the phone. She must be busy atwork today he thought. She was up and out the house before seven. “I don’t want
    to pay a bug man, I just want to get the ant bait and call it a day.”

    “You know they will come back, they always due.” She huffed “I know you’re going to go anyway, so while you’re at the store can you get me some bacon please.” She asked.

    “Of course dear, I’m going to let you go so I can get going.” Newt told her, she replied with an ok. They exchanged I loves you and hung up. Newt headed out the door into the cool South Lake Tahoe morning air and headed to the store.

    Newt returned from the store with a brown paper bag, in that paper bag the necessary things needed to combat the ant issue once and for all.

    • Anastacia

      I like how Newt was tired of Chinese food. I hope he got control of the ant problem. 🙂

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Naomi,
      My husband thought the first line was from “Lonesome Dove,” every time I go to the basement to check for the book, I forget what I was doing.
      Great play with the bacon and the brown paper bag. Were the ants under your bed?
      A fun story.
      Thank you for playing.

    • Naomi Quezada

      Hi Pamela,
      Your husband was right it is from “Lonesome Dove.” I don’t have anything under my bed so I used the second option, the last thing I bought. Great post, I love writing prompts like this. 🙂

  9. Anastacia

    “I would mark yes to items 3, 5, 6, and 9.”

    I mulled the note over in my mind while I ate my breakfast of cold oatmeal. “3, 5, 6, and 9.” What could it mean?

    I stepped outside. I needed to go to the grocery store at Tyler State Park to buy some bacon. A person can only take so much of cold oatmeal.

    At the store, I could tell people were trying not to stare at me. I don’t know what they found so strange about a woman with long orange and white hair going to the store in a karate uniform. Karate uniforms are quite comfortable and could become a new fashion trend if people would just try them.

    I was carrying my groceries to the car when something flew by my head. It was a shoe! I looked around to see where the shoe might have come from.

    A woman with bare feet stepped around the side of the store holding a white hard heel sandal. It was Autumn. How did she find me here?

    “What do you have in the bag?” she asked.

    “A pound of bacon,” I replied.

    “Give it to me or I’ll throw this other shoe at you,” she said taking a step closer, “and this time I won’t miss.”

    I didn’t have pockets so I reached into the bag and pulled out the note that said, “I would mark yes, to items 3, 5, 6, and 9.”

    I read it out loud.

    “What did you say?” Autumn asked dropping the shoe.

    “I would mark yes, to items 3, 5, 6, and 9,” I repeated.

    “That’s it!” she squealed. “The test I am taking is hard and those were the very questions I didn’t know how to answer. Thank you!”

    She picked up her shoes and left.

    I went home and cooked the bacon for lunch. Tomorrow I will have leftover bacon for breakfast. I wonder what that day will bring?

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Autumn seems like quite a character. Throwing shoes at people because they’re buying bacon. That was hilarious.

    • Lisa Capehart

      Strange, and fun! I especially like the orange and white hair, and wearing a karate uniform.

    • Madlen

      I agree, very funny. It was a pleasure to read!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Your opening sentence was so funny. And your story is so funny. Flying shoes, karate uniforms, bacon.
      You tied your opening line in to your story so well. I had no idea you were so silly.

    • Christine


    • Kenneth M. Harris

      Anastacia, I was laughing so hard, tears came out of my eyes! What a wonderful funny piece. I really, really, enjoy this story. Your characters seems so fresh and new. You rock!!! KEN

  10. Mirel

    What a neat exercise. Love it! I’m glad you didn’t specify which bookshelf, I went through a few till I found something that might work as a first sentence. Unfortunately, very few of my clothing have pockets, so that they generally contain nothing but lint. And no, that is not going to be able to help my protagonist. And who remembers the people in second grade, especially since I switched schools, neighborhoods, and boroughs the following year… Hope to get to this soon.

    • Anastacia

      I don’t have pockets either. LOL I turned my first sentence (which made absolutely no sense) into the thing that should have been in my pocket if I had a pocket to put something in. I’d be interested in how lint could save the day though. 🙂

    • Katherine Rebekah

      I could think of a few ways lint could help, given the right circumstance…

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Mirel,
      I look forward to reading your story. Have fun with this. I am curious to see what the first line of your story is.

  11. Balle Millner

    This is a great, fun idea. A+ for creativity.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Thank you Balle Millner,
      Are you going to write a story?
      You don’t have to, of course. Thank you for the A+. For that you can have an extra pound of bacon in your story.

  12. Lisa Capehart

    What Fun! Okay, here goes…

    I felt unstoppable, like I could go forever. Those chicken
    enchiladas I finished off for breakfast gave me an insane amount of energy!

    I felt so energetic, I decided it was time to make that long
    anticipated trip to retrieve my new jeans from my best friends closet. I threw
    on my old, patched jeans and grabbed the t-shirt with a lighthouse on the
    front, slipping it on over my head on the way to the door. I ran a brush
    through my black hair quickly, and was out the door.

    The real trick to all of this would be to re-purloin the purloined
    jeans without Jana knowing about it until the deed was done! We’d been playing
    this game for years, and today was my day to shine, I just knew it!

    It was a very short walk to Jana’s house. As I neared her
    driveway I pulled my cellphone from my pocket and called Jana.

    “Oh my gosh, you’ll never believe who I just saw at the
    mall!” I cried as soon as she answered. Without waiting for a guess on my
    friend’s part, I rushed on. “Jamie Ferguson is in front of the ice cream

    A sudden squeal, followed by the line going dead was the
    satisfactory response. I hid beside the house, knowing Jana would race out in a
    short time. She never passed up a chance to see Jamie, and it had been two
    weeks since the last sighting because his family had gone on vacation after
    that, leaving the fair state of Virginia for the West Coast.

    I waited for five minutes after she sped off on her bike,
    and then went to knock on the front door, my face wearing an air of innocence. A
    quickly concocted story to her mom about plans made gained my admittance into
    Jana’s inner sanctum (AKA her bedroom). Parts one and two of my dastardly plan
    complete, I pulled the paper bag from my purse that I’d brought to complete the
    re-acquirement of my newest purchase. I was just about to complete transfer of
    said jeans when the door burst open, and my worst nightmare sauntered in!

    “Hallo, Marta.” Jana’s younger brother Kirk
    smirked at me. I knew from the look in his eyes this was likely to cost me!
    Knowing time was slipping away rapidly and Jana would soon return, I skipped
    the preliminaries and cut to the chase. After all, I had been caught
    red-handed, slipping my jeans into the bag.

    “Okay, Kirk, what’ll it cost me to buy your
    silence?” The retrieval must be complete to count, after all!

    “I want a pound of bacon…the good stuff!” Kirk
    always thought with his stomach! I sighed and handed over enough money from my
    pocket to satisfy him.

    Sighing with relief, I slipped a favorite top of Jana’s in
    as well, to set up the next round. I made my way home again, secure in the
    knowledge that I had won this one!

    • juanita couch

      What a plot. Great idea.

    • Pamela Hodges

      How fun. And you got a whole pound of bacon as well. The paper bag did save the day. It let her sneak out the jeans and shirt.
      Thank you for playing.

  13. Shane Fitzpatrick

    Hi everyone! This is my Wacky Writing Prompt Scavenger Hunt effort.

    “5,387 soldiers, under Lord Mountcashel, went to France as part of the Wild Geese and later formed the nucleus of the Irish brigade.”

    The gathered crowd stood and applauded. The swaying of the seas underneath made it difficult for the few hundred in attendance, to stand and clap.

    Percy Griffiths was the toast of the ship tonight.

    The chief historian of the Irish Battlement Society, nodded in recognition with the rooms’ eyes on him. Sitting proudly with chest puffed out, he pulled a comb from the inside pocket of his blue blazer. The gold buttons on his jacket reflected brightly off the crystal chandelier hanging overhead. Live piano music played from the foyer beneath.

    Percy sleeked his salt and pepper hair back under his pink shirt collar and adjusted his cravat. A final brush of his neatly trimmed moustache reassured him. He was starving after delivering his impassioned speech.

    The inviting smells of rosemary and cooked meats wafted from the kitchen. As his reward to himself for addressing the Historical Societies, he wanted to order off the set menu. He had asked at reception for steak this morning – they didn’t say no.

    Percy fancied a peppered Angus steak, cooked rare. His mouth salivated with anticipation.

    Their top table was served first. A plate of chicken and potatoes in a bacon and cream sauce was placed in front of Percy.

    “What the hell is this? I wanted a steak!” shouted Percy at the waitress.

    “My apologies sir! Did you ask for something different off the set menu?”

    “I certainly did. Angus steak, cooked rare. Get with it quickly girl!”

    “I’ll check with the chef sir.”

    The waitress scurried back to the kitchen and delivered Percy’s request. She came back with her head down, informing Percy that he would have to eat the chicken dish.

    “Get me the chef!” ordered Percy of the waitress.

    A petite woman in pristine whites, came storming out of the kitchen’s double doors. She made a beeline for the Percy’s table.

    “I am the Head Chef Caroline. Are you the gentleman who wants to order off the set menu tonight?”

    “I was told I could order what I wanted, when I wanted. I’m on a cruise ship and I’m sitting at the top table tonight. I’m with IBS.”

    “I understand that you can order what you want sir, but tonight we are serving over one thousand people in two sittings, in five hours. We have to stick to our set menu tonight as we can’t cater to each individual’s personal requirements. No matter who you’re with or whatever medical condition you suffer from.”

    “I am ordering the steak. I am Percy Griffiths, head of IBS. I don’t suffer from IBS you idiot! I can order what I want when I want!”

    “Well I’m sorry for the misunderstanding about your acronym sir, but we can’t accommodate you tonight – and I have final say on the matter.”

    “How much will it take little girl? Here’s one hundred, two hundred, three hundred, four hundred – there’s five hundred! Will that be enough for me to get what I want?” Percy peeled off several green bills.

    Caroline picked up the money and placed it in an empty glass in the centre of the table.

    “I’m going to take your money sir. Do you want to know why?”

    “To subsidise your paltry wages onboard?” sniggered Percy.

    “I’m donating it to the first charity when we get to the next port. I’m taking the money as payment, not for the steak, which I’ll happily cook for you – but for all the birthday presents you never bought me as a child. You were always too busy to even visit me or even send a card, Godfather.”

    “Your name is Caroline? As in daughter of Maureen and Michael?”

    “Yes Uncle. It’s me, your niece, Caroline. You’re eating the chicken. And you’re still an arrogant ass.”

    Within seconds, Percy was hyperventilating with embarrassment.

    The waitress who bore the brunt of his acid tongue, passed Percy a brown paper bag and advised him to breathe slowly.


    • Katherine Rebekah

      “I don’t suffer from IBS you idiot! I can order what I want when I want!”

      “Yes Uncle. It’s me, your niece, Caroline. You’re eating the chicken. And you’re still an arrogant ass.”

      Those two parts. lol. Loved it.

    • Shane Fitzpatrick

      Thanks Katherine – by the way, your story is so richly detailed. I actually saw myself sitting reading to my own kid talking in a Batman voice. Great scene description and the face-off between your two main characters – WOW!

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Thanks! I have a thing for Batman voices. 🙂
      And you have great details too. I saw Percy just as clear as day (that is, after I got the image of Percy Jackson out of my mind. lol).

    • juanita couch

      I like the way you delivered your story. What a surprise ending.

    • Shane Fitzpatrick

      Thanks Juanita! It’s something I’ve always tried to do – surprise the reader when they least expect it.

    • Anastacia

      Great story! I like how the brown paper bag came into play. 🙂

    • Shane Fitzpatrick

      Thanks Anastasia! It’s a great competition.

    • Beth Schmelzer

      Perfect ending, Shane! You put all the “clues” together in a Wacky story which I loved.

    • Shane Fitzpatrick

      Thanks Beth! I love ideas such as this for creative writing.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Thank you for playing the game. The conflict was so intense. Loved when the chef came blasting out of the doors.
      And great save with the paper bag in the end.
      The dialog was so real. Ha, he had to eat chicken.

    • Shane Fitzpatrick

      Thanks Pamela – well done on creating something of a monster! It’s great that people are thinking out of the box. It’s what I’ve been trying to do with my own writing this year – and I’ve absolutely loved it. So thank you!

    • Pamela Hodges

      You are very welcome Shane. Silly helps make the day brighter.

  14. juanita couch

    The Wacky Writing
    Prompt Scavenger Hunt: I love it. So much fun.

    Nancy took the binoculars from Bess and trained them on the
    strange object that was floating down the river in the Grand Canyon. Even with
    the binoculars she could not see the object clear enough to make out what it

    Bess looked at her and shook her head. “You are looking in
    the wrong end of the binoculars, Silly.”

    “Oh.” Nancy said and turned the binoculars around. “That is

    “I think that is an old log floating down the river.” Nancy

    “Are you sure?” James asked.

    “I believe so.”

    The three of them sat down by an oak tree to eat their lunch
    that Bess had prepared for them.

    Nancy asked, “What are we having?”

    “Oh, just some leftovers from my breakfast.” Bess said.

    “What did you have for breakfast? James asked.

    “Some leftover homemade chicken and ham pizza, bacon, a
    frozen waffle and three eggs.”

    “Yuck.” Nancy and James blurted out in unison.

    “Did you bring a 12 pack of Pepsi?” Nancy asked James.

    “No, I forgot. I was in too big of hurry to get here. What
    did you bring, Nancy? The lint in your pocket?” James asked with a smirk on his

    “I have always furnished the food when we go on these outings,
    and you are complaining about bringing a 12 pack of Pepsi just one time.” Nancy’s
    reddish blond hair got redder by the minute as she let her temper fly. In fact
    it was almost as red as the blouse she was wearing. You know, the one with the
    elastic drawstring.

    “Come on you two, you are fighting over a 12 pack of Pepsi? See that brown paper sack. I brought some turkey sandwiches and chips plus a can of grape soda for each of us. So, Nancy saves the day again. Huh?

    • Pamela Hodges

      Very fun story. Was that really all the leftovers you had in your fridge? Very fun. I think I only have left over rice in mine.
      Good use of the lint in the pocket, and great save with the paper bag.
      Thank you for playing. I am happy you had fun.

  15. FritziGal

    Here are my Scavenger Hunt selections:

    First sentence: It was like waking up and knowing somehow snow was there before you looked, and feeling its numb white brooding presence all around.

    Leftovers: cold Chinese food

    Conflict involving something under the bed: old video tapes

    Article of clothing: black turtleneck sweater

    Protagonist’s hair color: Cinnamon brown

    Item contained in pocket: a marble

    A word to be used in the story from dictionary: bathtub

    Name of person of someone you knew in Grade 2: Kevin

    Location of last vacation: Grand Canyon AZ

    • Katherine Rebekah

      Ha cool! My place was Grand Canyon too, but I just used Arizona.

    • Beth Schmelzer

      What book was your sentence from?

    • FritziGal

      As part of the Scavenger Hunt exercise, I
      just grabbed a book from the shelf behind me, let it fall open, and
      wrote down the start of the second paragraph on the right-hand
      side of the page. At the time, I didn’t pay attention to the
      title, or the page number, as I wanted to move on through the steps and complete the exercise as quickly as I could.

      In rereading the quote, it sounds a lot
      like Thomas Wolfe. I have

      his entire works, and also two biographies
      about him. And sittin g on the same shelf is ‘Editor of Genius’,
      about Maxwell Perkins, who edited Wolfe, and also acted as his agent
      at Scribners. The quote could’ve come out of any of these. Well,
      that’s what I get for not following the instructions

      I’ve also come up with my own version of
      the Scavenger Hunt, which requires more actual scavenging. If
      anyone is interested, I’ll be happy to share.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hi FritziGal,
      You have all the elements now.
      I look forward to reading your story.

  16. Mary

    This was a lot of fun.

    She’d stopped to look at its dark bulk rising rocky and treeless from the snow covered ground, its peak temporarily hidden in one for the light, puffy clouds that occasionally let forth a shower of snow or sleet. Melissa wrapped her caramel hair into buns on each side of her head like Princess Lea from Star Wars, to warm her ears, that were as red as cardinals. Her party shoes torn, even shredded barely stayed on her feet. She sought a protective outcrop in the Mount Lassen foothills to break her morning fast with
    a medley of corn, beans, and red peppers cut into small squares. The blue
    Mickey Mouse hooded sweatshirt, though fashionable, was not proper attire for
    the cold winter morning.

    “Bacon?” said a voice behind her. Melissa turned unbelieving that Joel followed her there.

    “Bacon? Do you have some to offer me? Or, do you think, I have some to offer you?” she asked. Before he could answer, she lobbed another question. “I’ll give you a bacon bit for a pair of shoes, deal?”

    “No deal.” Joel took several steps away from her.

    “Look here. Look what’s in the palm of my hand. It’s bacon bits. You know how much you like bacon.” In her cupped hand laid two brown squares. “Bacon bits for a pair of shoes.”

    Joel opened the brown bag he had tucked up under his arm, to reveal a shoe-box. Size seven in large print put a smile across her face.

    “You, first. Give me the bacon bits. I’ll put on your shoes.” Joel knelt on one knee and opened the box. Inside laid two new winter shoes with plush lining.

    Melissa sent him a flirtatious smile, and then popped one of the bits into her mouth. She closed her eyes, in total enjoyment, as she chewed. “Mmm, mmm, that was yummy.”

    “Oh, so that’s the way you want to play.” Joel approached slowly. Melissa kicked off her
    worthless pink slippers. He untied each shoe and opened them wide for her to
    slip them on. First, the right shoe laces were tied, next the left shoe. “There you
    are, new shoes.”

    “Oh Joel, I’m not deserving.” Melissa stood on tiptoes and reciprocated with a huge bear hug. Her hair whipping in the wind, she adoringly looked into his eyes, as she took his hand. “Here’s your bacon bit you earned it.” She placed it in his hand then closed his fingers around it.

    Laughing she ran back to the trail. “Enjoy!” She said over her shoulder, “Oh, and April Fools.”

    Joel looked down at his closed fist and opened it wide. There in the middle of his palm laid her square brown hairclip.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Joel didn’t get the bacon, what a great ending. A hairclip.
      Thank you for playing the game Mary. Your story was very fun. Was it the Mickey Mouse sweatshirt that was hanging in your closet?
      Nice paper bag element.
      So happy you played.

    • Mary

      Thanks Pamela,

      Yes, the Mickey Mouse sweatshirt was hanging up. I thought it pretty funny how everything came together, from the book and finding the little brown hair clamps in my pocket. It was a great exercise in writing.

      Thanks for the fun!

    • Pamela Hodges

      You are very welcome Mary,
      Thank you for playing.

  17. Max

    Special relativity postulates that the speed of light c in free space has the same value for
    all observers, regardless of their relative motion. If you throw a ball while
    you’re in the car, it might go ten miles an hour relative to you (and to the
    undoubtedly angry driver). Relative to the road, though, it’d be ten plus
    whatever the speed of the car was. But no matter how fast that car is going,
    the light from the headlights is only ever going to travel at 186,000 miles per
    second, relative to anyone and everyone. It’s the one thing that stays the same.

    Ian and I were like that, kind of. Constant. We’d been going
    186,000 miles per second together since Kindergarten. We’d followed each other
    through college, through law school for him and a PhD for me; whatever twists
    and turns life brought, we took them together. To everyone we’ve ever met, it’s
    always been Ian-and-Katie. Together and unchanging.

    I loved him dearly, of course. Was it illogical that sometimes I wanted a break?

    I picked at my make-shift breakfast—cold meatballs, leftover
    from dinner two nights ago, and the only thing in the fridge. I could’ve sworn
    there was some bacon, but Ian must’ve polished it off in the middle of the
    night. I sighed, brushing some imaginary lint off the sleeve of my
    perfectly-tailored blazer. I’d have to find time go shopping after work, pick
    up something for dinner. My responsibility. Always. Ian was charming and
    handsome, lavishing me with flowers and affection, but underneath the kisses
    and the crinkled grey eyes was a man who always got his way.

    My mind strayed to suitcases tucked under our bed. Years
    old, but never used—the sales tags were still in place, in pristine condition. Meant
    for a trip to the beach, or an eternally-postponed visit to my parents. “We will get away,” Ian always said. “Just not this weekend.”

    Without even thinking about it, I crossed the hallway of our
    tiny single-story home, yanked out the bigger of the two suitcases, and
    mechanically started dumping armfuls of clothing into it. Time to visit my family,
    whether Ian approved or not. I pulled my honey-blond curls into a tight ponytail,
    and as an afterthought, tipped half my bookshelf into a brown paper bag. Books
    were the most constant of friends, wherever you were, whomever you were.

    Not long ago, physicists announced that they had discovered subatomic
    particles, neutrinos, which seemed to be travelling faster than that sacred,
    universal speed limit. Is there an exception to Einstein’s theory of special
    relativity? Maybe. Is there an exception to the theory of Ian-and-Katie-Must-Always-Be-Together? Maybe it was time to test it out.

    I stepped outside, momentarily blinded by the North Carolina sunshine. Taking a deep breath, I fished a key out of my pocket and locked the door. For the first time since Kindergarten, I was doing something for me, and for me only.

    Not forever, just for now. He will have to understand.

    • Max

      (I realize that a year later they figured out there were errors in the experiment and the neutrinos weren’t actually travelling faster than the speed of light. I could pretend that is actually the point, but in reality I was just trying to write a story around a line pulled from a physics textbook.)

    • dawnvslayton

      Your story pulled me in with intrigue and kept me wanting more to the end. Who knew such a creative story could be crafted from a physics textbook? And somewhat of a cliffhanger at the end.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh my. When I read the first sentence I had no idea how you were going to rescue yourself from that sentence.
      Well played Max, well played.
      The character development of Katie was strong. I could really feel her frustration and determination when she took the suitcase from under the bed.
      Thank you for playing the game.

  18. Beth Schmelzer

    I have to try this prompt because two people or maybe three people have told me in the last week that I am too serious. I was told I “have no sense of humor” and I “never laugh.” So following your prompt will help me to add humor to my writing and to lighten up, hopefully. Is this possible for me?

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hopefully the scavenger hunt will help you laugh. Reading the other stories will possible have you snorting laughter.
      Humor is always possible.
      Perhaps you are a serious thoughtful person who smiles on the inside. If “no sense of humor” means you are not sarcastic and listen with intent to your friends, then please don’t be discouraged by your friends comments.
      You don’t need permission to be yourself. And if they told you “to lighten” up, please be as light as you want to be.
      It is always possible to change and grow.
      I hope you play the scavenger hunt, a bit of silly in a day, helps us remember life is fun.

  19. Kathryn Bingham

    “This exercise is intended to help you become acquainted with comparing people to the two extremes of the gauge,” mused Richard as he rummaged one-handedly through the cooler on the backseat in the dim predawn. Taste testing a few strips of left over trip-tip for edibility, he decided breakfast was for cereal eaters—unless there was bacon involved. And not just any bacon. Super crispy, just shy of burnt, so when you pick it up the strip holds it’s shape, bacon. Sadly, none of that was in the ice chest. What he really needed was coffee. Clearly, he’d slept in one of his ubiquitous Hawaiian shirts.

    “On the one hand, there’s me,” thought Richard as he ran fingers through his spiky mop of splotchy brindle hair. Peering in the rear view mirror, he did a quick lick of his fingertips to help glue down the white patch. “Sheesh. Never stays flat.”

    “I’m just trying to get fit. You’d think she’d share the darn step aerobics set. It’s not like the hotel had an abundance of these in the fitness room,” Richard growled out loud to no one but himself as he pulled into the parking lot of a 24 hour Wal-Mart he’d spied as they drove into town the night before. Quickly navigating to the back of the sparsely populated store, he paused before the display. Choosing black, he was about to hand the device to the sleepy teen monitoring electronics, when he had another thought. Swiftly scanning another array of colorful items, he smiled wryly while making a selection. From there, he raced through the checkout, then dumped out his purchases on the passenger seat. Assembling the offering to his satisfaction, he headed back to the hotel.

    “I didn’t see you when I finished my workout,” Helen called from the steamy bathroom as he opened the door. “So I walked over to Starbucks and got us a couple of Ventis … here’s yours,” she continued, emerging, wrapped in a towel with damp tendrils framing her face.

    “And that’s why I love you,” answered Richard, trading the still-warm cup for his own gift. Helen quickly dug in the plain brown paper gift bag with the iridescent stick-on bow. “A Fitbit! I’ve been wanting a Fitbit!” Helen bubbled happily. “Ok, next time you get first dibs at the fitness room.”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Kathryn,
      Thank you for playing the game. I love the hair on Richard. Was that your dog’s hair? Fun conflict, I am so curious to know what was in your pocket.
      And a fun ending in the paper bag. 🙂

    • Kathryn Bingham

      Yes, indeedy! My Baby Bear has brindle legs with a white blaze on the chest (amongst his other mixed breed color patterns). I had nothing “in” my pocket, but the Fitbit was clipped on the pocket. Hmmm. That makes the back side of the clip in the pocket, so perhaps I didn’t take as much liberty as I thought!

  20. Madlen

    I admired the picture and then handed it back to him. Again. Cory showed me the same picture of his fiancée every morning. Although we’d only met a few days earlier in the hotel breakfast room, I was already tired of both this routine and his company.
    We continued to eat our breakfast of fried potatoes, green beans and bacon in silence.

    When I had finished eating, I stood up, tucking in my blue denim shirt and smoothing back my long black hair, which was overdue for a trim. But that would have to wait until
    I was finished with this business trip in Italy.

    “Look, Cory,” I said, returning to the same argument we’d been having for 3 days. “I’m
    exhausted. I can’t sleep without a feather pillow.”

    “It’s a shame you didn’t ask the clerk for a decent pillow when you checked in then. That’s what I did.”

    “As you well know, I did. But some jerk had taken all 5 remaining feather pillows, leaving none for anyone else,” I said, giving him a pointed look.

    “I have a bad back. I need all over support. You can’t blame me if the hotel has an inadequate supply of decent pillows.”

    “I’m just asking for one. Can’t you see that sharing is the decent thing to do?”

    “Honestly,” he sighed pompously. “Don’t talk to me about this. Your problem is with the hotel.”

    “Fine,” I grumbled as I walked away. As I was passing through the lobby I saw the bell boy holding out his hand for a tip and I had an idea.

    That night I slept like a baby, surrounded by five feather pillows. It might have cost me €50 to bribe the bell boy to take the pillows, but it was worth it. In Cory’s room, in the place where the pillows weren’t, I’d had the bell boy leave a little brown paper bag filled with dirty pigeon feathers I’d collected from park. The accompanying note said simply, “Get Stuffed!”

    • S.M. Sierra

      Brilliant ending, loved it!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh Madlen,
      I was literally laughing out loud at the end of the story. Great opening line, and how you incorporated it into the story.
      Oh, and a paper bag full of pigeon feathers.
      Thank you for playing.

  21. oyasophia

    “Will you read the letter?’ cried Harriet.

    I looked up from my corned beef hash. Before she interrupted me, I contemplated the potential highs and lows of the trip ahead. Our suitcases were laid out on the hotel bed. One was mine. One was Harriet’s. But Joanne had brought three big bags. Harriet looked disgusted.

    My hand clutched at my cheap, aqua housecoat, covered with once cheerful but now faded watermelon slices. She placed the letter in front of me. My silver and black hair, overdue for a cut, fell across my face as I bent to read. I reached up and tucked it behind my ears, already engrossed.

    The letter was from Joanne. The urgency of the situation was immediately apparent. “Please come bail me out. I tried to call, but these stupid phones don’t work.” She was right. I had tried to make calls several times. Between the time change and the spotty service here in Papeete, it was a wonder anyone got through to anyone.

    “What’s she in jail for?” I asked Harriet.

    She rolled her eyes. “Keep reading.”

    “I have until midday Tuesday,” the note went on, “at which point they’ll deport me and I’ll miss the cruise entirely. I didn’t even realize I was holding those black pearl earrings when I walked out of that shop!” Today was Tuesday. I checked my watch. We probably had less than an hour.

    I thought about the ten day cruise through French Polynesia. Joanne and I were scheduled to share a mini-suite. We had a ritual to make being together easier on these vacations. A night owl, Joanne used a book light to read late into the night. An early bird, I woke at dawn and read up on deck for several hours, returning mid-morning with a cup of coffee and a big platter of bacon. It worked, but I never got enough sleep.

    Harriet, who could afford a private cabin and didn’t much care for Joanne, remarked, “It would be a shame if she missed the cruise.” She retrieved a pack of cigarettes from the paper bag, opened them and extracted a cigarette. “Do you have a light?”

    I reached in the pocket of my housecoat and brought out the plastic lighter. I looked at it a minute, then flicked the fire into life. I slowly moved the letter from Joanne over to the flame, watching as the corner smoked, then burst into a satisfying fire. I looked at Harriet over the burning paper. She grinned.

    • S.M. Sierra

      Really good, kept me engrossed, so much so I want to know if she had a better time this year on her vacation without Joanne.

    • Pamela Hodges

      You had me at, “My hand clutched at my cheap, aqua housecoat, covered with once cheerful but now faded watermelon slices.”
      And what book did the first line come from? Very clever. And a grin at the end. Well played.
      And, thank you for playing.
      She grinned.

  22. Evan James

    “Do not congratulate me too much, Sir.”


    head lurched up, his breakfast sliding down his golden locks of hair, across his face, and splatting back onto the plate.
    He was certainly out of his head. Memories blurred and he became aware of a migraine
    gnawing at his brain as he wondered how he had thought Thai food a suitable

    “Sir! Open the door please” the chirpy,
    yet impatient voice sang again.

    Sir managed to get out a few words “Yes
    of course, just one moment. Who is it?”

    waiting for an answer for a minute, Sir decided that maybe if he got out of the
    camper he would find out to whom the voice belonged. Appearing unaware of the
    80 degree weather he put on a black raincoat and slid both feet into the furry,
    warm, cute cat slippers that he found outside the ranger station on the first
    day at the camp site. Despite the discolored spots on the fabric and the inextinguishable
    odor of rotten fruit, they were sufficient slippers.

    Out of the camper Sir stumbled. “Connor?”
    he gasped as he looked upon the previously mysterious visitor. The short, round,
    red-headed young man nodded as his lips curved into a seemingly sincere smile.
    Slung over his shoulder was a sack with a dollar sign on it and in his right
    hand he held a trophy. The trophy, labeled The #1 Quilter, was molded to
    resemble a quilt fluttering in the wind. Sir’s memory of the previous evening began to
    reveal itself to him. He felt his blood heating up as his head began to throb
    relentlessly. “Connor… Connor! CONNOR!” yelled Sir, “You took my quilt!”

    “Well you certainly are not
    congratulating me as much as I anticipated” Connor, emotionless, stared through
    Sir, “I came to give you half of the reward. I won first prize.”

    “The first prestigious quilting festival
    I attend and you take my work and display it as your own?” Sir stammered, “The
    reward money is mine, the trophy is mine!” He reached back into the camper,
    faster than lightning, and snatched up a pencil from a brown paper bag. “Mine!
    Mine! Mine! Mine! Before Connor could react, Sir had written something on both
    the bag of money and the trophy.

    Connor, bewildered, looked at the
    fine cursive penmanship on the trophy. It read “Property of Sir.” He stopped
    breathing. With hand’s shaking as though the summer air turned frigid, he lowered
    the bag of money and reluctantly read the note. “Property of Sir,” it also
    read. Connor turned and ran, falling over himself every few strides. The bag
    and trophy fell to the ground to be picked up by their rightful owner. Justice was

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh Evan James,
      Thank you for playing Sir. The paper bag really did save the day. The black rain coat and furry slippers were very fun. Great conflict over the quilt and trophy.
      Yes, justice was delivered.

  23. S.M. Sierra

    “No consideration at all!”
    I jumped, almost burning myself since I thought I was alone. Good thing I was wearing my overalls because at that moment the bacon popped splattering grease down the front of them as I asked my daughter, “Esther, what are you doing here? I thought you went to the beach?”
    “Of course you did that’s why you’re making bacon, you know I can’t eat it and you promised me you wouldn’t either…”
    “No, I promised I wouldn’t eat it in front of you,” I said, and opened the refrigerator to retrieve the leftover avocado.
    “You’re making wraps with cream cheese salsa and avocado? Dang it mother that’s my favorite, or used to be.” she said and stomped her foot.
    “Sorry love,” I teased while I placed the crispy slices on a paper towel.
    “If you truly were, you wouldn’t eat that now.”
    Then seeing a tear drip down her cheek, I laughed, pointed to the table, reached into my pocket and said, “Look in that brown paper bag.”
    “Turkey bacon… but does it taste like bacon?”
    “I don’t know, but I guess you’ll soon find out, here,” I said handing her the lighter I had pulled from pocket, “light that burner, and I’ll cook it up for you if you go get my sandals from under the bed, because I’m planning to eat mine on the beach.”
    “Okay, but please tie back that black mop of yours I don’t want hair in my food.”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello S.M. Sierra,
      Thank you for playing the Wacky Silly Word Game. Great use of a first line. And, may I please have some of the bacon as well.
      Your paper bag really did save the day.

    • S.M. Sierra

      Thanks Pamela,
      I’ve never done this before, usually working on my book, but thought I would take a break to try this because it sounded fun. I used Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire for the opening line, it just took off from there, such fun! S.M. Sierra

  24. Niina

    What a nice Scavenger Hunt! I don’t usually write these types of stories so it was a lot of fun.

    “There is no place amidst honest men for such as they.” That’s what my mother always said about the thieves crowding the markets. I usually agreed but then slipped away quickly, before she got whiff of my past-time activities. Boy, what would she say then.

    I ran along the streets of Budapest, my brown-striped white hair occasionally drawing a glance from passers-by. I could still taste my breakfast macaroni casserole in my mouth but this grocery trip wasn’t about hunger. I needed that bacon. And carrots. Nothing beats bacon nd carrots. Too bad their price had inflated like crazy, making them a real luxury meal.

    I was too distracted with my thoughts about the delicious food combo that I never saw the man coming. He bumped right into me and spilled his most expensive yet fortunately iced coffee all over me. I jumped back with a squeal. My red t-shirt at least soaked up most of the liquid, barely making it stand out, but my beige trousers… Yeah, I definitely looked like I’d wet my pants. There goes the market gig. Who wouldn’t remember a girl with wet pants, smelling like caramel and vanilla, leaving brown fingerprints everywhere?

    “Awesome,” I breathed at the man still gawking at me.

    “I’m so sorry,” he said. “Can I make it up to you?”

    I shrugged. “Bacon and carrots. I was on my way to the market but I can’t go in like this. Buy those for me?”

    “Bacon and carrots?!” he repeated with a sputter. “Wow. I mean. Expensive stuff.” He glanced down at me, barely concealing a wrinkle of his brow. I doubt he believed I was on my way to buy them. I didn’t look rich enough. But if I wanted those delicious treats before my mother returned home and ate them all herself (while trying to pry where I’d gotten them in the first place), he was my only hope.

    Then it hit me. I’d seen him before. “What’s your name?”

    “Henrik. I’m sorry for the mess but really, I can’t afford-”

    “Sure you can!” I interrupted and reached for the wallet in my pocket. It had no money what-so-ever but I wasn’t looking for change. A mischievous smile crept on my face as I pulled out a flat keychain. “Remember this? I do, and a couple of funny stories to go with it.”

    He went pale. He recognized me too. I’d kept his “token of love” for all these years out of nothing but silly sentiment, but it finally paid off. During those love-stricken times, he hadn’t been the most law-abiding of them all. Oh no, I knew his secrets.

    “Bacon and carrots?” he repeated once more, much more nervous this time. “Of course… I’ll be right back. And… that thing with the watermelons and shoes, and, well, that brown paper bag…”

    “All forgotten once I get my treats,” I promised. He hurried away while I kept smiling to myself. Successful market gig – check!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Successful scavenger hunt – check!
      What sort of stories do you usually write? This was really fun to read. And you did get the brown paper bag to help you with your conflict.
      The spilled coffee scene was funny.
      Thank you for playing.

    • Niina

      I rarely use first person and usually my short stories tend to be somehow
      wistful or melancholic. But this was such a fun experience I think I need to start doing more writing with random things slapped together. Thanks for the hunt and comment!

    • Pamela Hodges

      You are very welcome Niina. 🙂

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis

      It’s interesting how many different “voices” are appearing through such a simple (and silly) exercise.

  25. Elena Brabant

    So there’s no deadline? ))) or is it the 7th of September?

    • Joe Bunting

      Deadline is September 7! 🙂

  26. Diane

    This Wacky Writing Prompt Scavanger Hunt, is going to promote silliness so that the world can share love and laughter a little bit more.

    • Joe Bunting

      I hope you’re right Diane.

  27. Christine

    (The top shelf of my bookcase holds local history books, so here we go. My opening sentence is taken from the book Saskatchewan, © 1968 by Edward McCourt.)

    A physical phenomenon of the Coteau country is a curious cone-shaped hill rising above the bank of a small creek that cuts its way through the badlands a few miles west of Big Beaver. On this hill Lor Ramsey stood gazing toward the horizon, hoping to see a puff of dust that would indicate a wagon moving across the prairie.

    Disappointed, he walked over to where his horse was grazing in a clump of buffalo grass. Lor patted Chestnut, then took up the reins and mounted. “We got some ridin’ to do yet, old fella. But when I get my hands on that rattlesnake that calls himself Ed Porter, he’s going to wish he’d never been born.”

    It was bad enough Ed Porter stole away Lor’s fiancee, but to steal that tub of gift wrap she had stashed away to wrap his gift on their wedding day, too? How low-down can a man get?

    Lor had been riding hard all morning, thankful that Ed was driving a wagon. It shouldn’t be too hard to catch up with them. Only sixteen hours ago he’d proposed to his girl and she’d said yes. He’d barely slept all night for the joy of it: tomorrow Betty would become Mrs. Lorenzo Ramsey. But when he arrived at her home to take her to the preacher he got the shock of his life. She was gone.

    He’d never forgive Carolyn for this. Some fancy dude comes along in a horse and buggy and asks for one of her daughters to come help his wife for a week and Carolyn tells Betty — no, orders her— to go with this stranger. Carolyn never did care for Lor, that was obvious, so she’d taken this opportunity to send Betty away before she could become Lor’s wife.

    But the stranger had no wife. When Lor got to Moose Jaw and found Betty gone, he did some asking around and soon realized that it was Porter who’d taken her away. Lor gritted his teeth. He lifted his hat and rubbed a sweaty hand through his black hair. Ed wouldn’t marry Betty, either. He was a rattlesnake if ever there was one.

    That villain is going to rue the day he tried to snatch my Betty, Lorenzo vowed, urging Chestnut to speed up some.

    He was glad he’d had a good breakfast this morning, fried some bacon and eggs. That would have to tide him over until he’d dealt with Ed. The scoundrel was likely headed for his hideout on the Montana border. Lor gazed across the plain and decided the most likely course the wagon would have taken. Before long he saw traces that the wagon had passed. In a grove of trees beside the creek, he found a white handkerchief with Betty’s initials on it. He was on the right track!

    Our time is up now, but come back next week to read how Lor heroically rescues his beloved Betty, using only a Fair Winds paper bag.

    But you — yes YOU, dear Readers — can be a hero today by rescuing nature from the evil effects of plastic by using our durable Fair Winds paper bags. Why should villainous non-biodegradable plastic bags drift over the land like tumbleweeds? Choose economical, environmentally-friendly Fair Winds paper bags on all your shopping trips. You’ll be a hero and save the environment!

    • Carrie Lynn Lewis

      Wow. A western! The last western I read was Louis Lamour. Cool!

    • Pamela Hodges

      How could you! A serial? Oh, please, please come back next week and give us an update. The ending seriously had be laughing out loud. A Fair Winds paper bag. Me, yes, me, one of the dear Readers, wants more.
      Thank you for a huge dose of silly.
      Oh, I loved the book your first line came from. Growing up in Saskatchewan, I love all things prairie.

    • Christine

      What could I do?! My opening sentence needed some serious support. How could I start with that and not get long-winded? And I only had fifteen minutes, so I had to think of a quick ending. Hee-hee:)

  28. Karen K

    (But) the CPACampaign to win hearts and minds was all encompassing. The yearly critical Purse Acquisition
    Campaign was in Milan Michigan this year, though I wished it was in Milan,
    Italy! No passports or plane tickets
    needed for this trip! Just head north on
    I-75 and four and one half hours later you are there.

    I had spent hours
    on the floor in my bedroom sorting through my under-the-bed bag that was
    overstuffed with my purse collection.
    Not a name brand among them, but a collection I had acquired over the
    last 20 years. Many are outdated, but I
    could never seem to part with them, just like the clothes in my closet I haven’t
    worn in years. I selected a multi
    colored summer purse that would go with anything, and even complimented my
    brownish tan hair.

    That morning, I
    quickly packed my overnight bag, throwing in a blue sweater in case I got
    cold. I placed the purse I selected in a
    brown paper bag, with loads of tissue paper around it so it looked like a gift
    bag. Our fridge was bare, since we
    wouldn’t be around for a few days. So I
    noshed on cottage cheese and peaches, cucumbers and bacon for breakfast.

    The next day was
    the CPA. I had my trusty summer purse by
    my side. I put it down and filled out
    the paper work at the Registration Table.
    The hall was more than chilly, so I told my husband to watch my bag
    while I ran back upstairs to get my sweater.
    Much to my dismay, my sweater turned out to be a light blue zip up
    snowflake sweater! In August!

    I hurried back
    downstairs and sat down next to my husband to await my turn to show my
    purse. Then I heard a gasp and a cry “Oh
    No!” Someone was sobbing “This isn’t my
    purse!” I turned around to look, and you
    guessed it, a man with Greg on his name tag was clutching MY purse! I quickly looked in what I thought was MY bag
    and lo and behold, I pulled out a lame brown bag. YUCH!
    I quickly got up, glaring at my husband who had somehow screwed up.
    No time to be argumentative now, I quickly switched my bag for his (or
    should I say his bag for mine!). I gave Greg
    a crumpled (but clean) tissue from my pocket.
    “Here,” I said, “Wipe your eyes, and may the best purse win!”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Karen K,
      Thank you for much for writing a silly story. The paper bag and the purses under the bed made for an interesting conflict. “Loved” the blue snowflake sweater.”
      A very silly and fun story.
      Yes, may the best purse win.

  29. Evan James

    “Do not congratulate me too much, Sir.”


    head lurched up, his breakfast sliding down his golden locks of hair, across his face, and splatting back onto the plate.
    He was certainly out of his head. Memories blurred and he became aware of a migraine
    gnawing at his brain as he wondered how he had thought Thai food a suitable

    “Sir! Open the door please” the chirpy,
    yet impatient voice sang again.

    Sir managed to get out a few words “Yes
    of course, just one moment. Who is it?”

    waiting for an answer for a minute, Sir decided that maybe if he got out of the
    camper he would find out to whom the voice belonged. Appearing unaware of the
    80 degree weather he put on a black raincoat and slid both feet into the furry,
    warm, cute cat slippers that he found outside the ranger station on the first
    day at the camp site. Despite the discolored spots on the fabric and the inextinguishable
    odor of rotten fruit, they were sufficient slippers.

    Out of the camper Sir stumbled. “Connor?”
    he gasped as he looked upon the previously mysterious visitor. The short, round,
    red-headed young man nodded as his lips curved into a seemingly sincere smile.
    Slung over his shoulder was a sack with a dollar sign on it and in his right
    hand he held a trophy. The trophy, labeled The #1 Quilter, was molded to
    resemble a quilt fluttering in the wind. Sir’s memory of the previous evening began to
    reveal itself to him. He felt his blood heating up as his head began to throb
    relentlessly. “Connor… Connor! CONNOR!” yelled Sir, “You took my quilt!”

    “Well you certainly are not
    congratulating me as much as I anticipated” Connor, emotionless, stared through
    Sir, “I came to give you half of the reward. I won first prize.”

    “The first prestigious quilting festival
    I attend and you take my work and display it as your own?” Sir stammered, “The
    reward money is mine, the trophy is mine!” He reached back into the camper,
    faster than lightning, and snatched up a pencil from a brown paper bag. “Mine!
    Mine! Mine! Mine! Before Connor could react, Sir had written something on both
    the bag of money and the trophy.

    Connor, bewildered, looked at the
    fine cursive penmanship on the trophy. It read “Property of Sir.” He stopped
    breathing. With hand’s shaking as though the summer air turned frigid, he lowered
    the bag of money and reluctantly read the note. “Property of Sir,” it also
    read. Connor turned and ran, falling over himself every few strides. The bag
    and trophy fell to the ground to be picked up by their rightful owner. Justice was

  30. SJR1991

    I don’t have a pet or any neighbors with pets, so that’s why my protagonist has a shaved head.

    The Cat Marauder

    Lucas’s mother stood patiently with him, holding him as he wept for the horse. He woke up, sobbing, and for a long moment he wasn’t sure what was dream and what was memory. Was he really remembering the roan that lived across the road, the roan filly that he would help to clean out the Johnsons’ barn to get a chance to ride, the roan that had to be put down after she crashed into an obstacle during a steeplechase race? Or was it the old dream of riding her in that race, of gauging the jump and sure she could make it, urging her on, and going over her head as her foreleg tangled into the hedge and she went down?

    No, there was no horse here as he gazed at the ceiling of his bungalow in Jaipur. He was always surprised at how chilly it could be in northern India at the height of winter. He’d been living in Jaipur for a year, teaching a course on the iconography of the horse in Hindu religion at the university, based on his book, but he still wasn’t used to the early morning chill or the heavy smog at midday. He dragged himself out of bed and wrapped himself in a terry-cloth robe over his pajamas. In the bathroom, he brushed his teeth while noting that the stubble of his shaved head needed attention. Rajat, his barber, always asked him if he was becoming sanyasi, then laughed uproariously. Lucas was the last person in the world to become sanyasi.

    In the kitchen Lucas poked through the refrigerator, tired of the Muesli his secretary got in monthly packages from Switzerland. Instead he took out a piece of grilled chicken and ate standing up, looking out at his tiny garden of yellow hibiscus, rosy cosmos, and magenta calla lilies exploding their color in the early sunlight. The garden made all the hassles of teaching in Jaipur bearable, and sometimes he would fall into reverie absorbing colors and aromas, wondering how to weave his feelings into his teaching. This morning, though, he had a meeting with a student at 10, so he dressed and went to get his favorite sweater, left draped over the living room couch.

    When he noticed threads hanging from the hem, a rush of anger flushed through him.
    Florence’s cat. Of course. But how had it gotten in, again? Hadn’t he closed all the screens. Lucas glared around the room, and there it was, a loose slat in the louvred door, hanging askew. That cat had some obsession with his belongings. As soon as Lucas sealed one chink, the cat found another.

    He strode out of the house and across the short lawn to his neighbor’s. Florence was a
    math instructor from Wales; she’d been teaching at Jaipur National University since it opened, and for some reason she seemed hostile to Lucas since he taught in the arts program at Rajasthan College. Lucas had never understood this, and now he felt a reciprocal hostility.

    When Florence opened the door after he’d pounded on it for a few minutes, her eyes
    were swollen. Lucas shook the sweater in front of her face; he couldn’t even speak. Florence looked from the sweater to Lucas with puzzlement.

    “What?” she asked.

    “Your cat,” Lucas intoned, “has been feeding on my garments yet again.” He shook the
    sweater again. “This has got to stop.”

    Florence wiped her eyes.

    “It has stopped.” She held up a brown paper shopping bag. “Cilantra ate some dead
    rodent, I think, which must have been poisoned. I found her this morning on the
    kitchen floor. I’m taking her to the temple to see if they will cremate her.”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh SJR1991,
      Such a dramatic story. I was riveted to the story development. When Florence had swollen eyes I was very concerned.
      And the cat was in the paper bag.
      Your detail on the location was very real. I felt like I was there. And, I am glad I provided you with a housecoat. What book did you first line come from. It fit well.

    • SJR1991

      thank you so much. I actually googled what flowers might be in a garden in Jaipur. When I was there last winter, our tour guide took us to a maharaja’s palace but no gardens. The first line came from Michael Cunningham’s Speciman Days, which I haven’t even read yet. Maybe this is a sign.

  31. Happy Coconuts

    So I’m sitting on my bed, reading through the scavenger hunt’s 10 discussion points, have never participated in anything like this, and probably will never do it again. Naaaahhhhhhh!!! just joking. Of go the fire works I say to myself as I look around the room for a the makeshift bookshelf…ahhh Got it!

    The third book to my left – “Creative Writing for Dummies” ok, now that’s already having a laugh, so here I am praying that at least page 42 has something intellectually funny to here it is “emotional recollection in tranquility”. Now that got my bacon, cause the leftovers in the fridge left ZERO desires.

    Hmmmm, a funny response to “emotional recollection in tranquility” then I just laughed, crickets blaring outside my window, the whirling fan sounds like a mini hurricane and beside the fact, I have no bacon or eggs to take the place of left overs, i am failing pretty miserably on the first two subjects.

    So try No. 3, the most interesting thing under my bed outside of my slippers is a black plastic bag full of old bills, well I guess that’s conflict enough!!

    No. 4, ha ha ha, the someone would look great and be reeeeaaaally hot, I have three items on one hanger!! long black dress first, the african kimono over that, oh yeah, and the short beige top to bring it all together, fabulous, of course!!! .

    Then the hair, weeellllllll, if you have a really good theory of how to get colour into long black locks, I love you FOREVER!!!!!!!, but then again, be creative said my “dummy”, beside the fact that we have no animals around us except a sneaky morning visitor…imagination OUT the WINDOW.,,,

    The winning prize “what’s in your pocket” brings home the candy, which is, forgot to remove a stick of gum from my pocket in 80 odd degree weather, not so niiiccceeee i can assure you, so forget conflicting with gooey chewy. Done the bacon thing….(slam dunk that baby) and moving on. Ahhhh!!! just reflecting on the hateful boy Eddie that stabbed my arm with a penknife trying to pop a BALLOON!! thanks guys for the reminder, I forgot I had to get him back. Ummm, I think I will do something really dastardly hehehehehe, I said rubbing my hands together; that suspicious brown paper bag a little soggy on the bottom (the visitor you don’t know about who sneaks into my yard and drops his dodo in the same place outside my window every morning…., hmmmm).

    Last but not least, the 9 in the 10 slot, i haven’t had a vacation in years, cause I live in a vacation spot…”go figure” I am on vacation all the time, sooooo tiring!!! Yawn!!!

    That’s as wacky it gets from me folks, had great pleasure going through all ten points and still laughing at my new dress code.

    Blessings from a New Timer, as we say in Lucia “trying a ting”.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Happy Coconuts,
      Thank you for playing the game. Oh, and I am so curious. Where do you live that is a vacation spot?
      And blessings back at you. Maybe you can have bacon for breakfast today.

  32. sohal

    oh god, I never thought it is that simple….

  33. Ralph Hua

    Opening line from a Stock Investing Handbook.


    Support line: This is derived by joining successive bottoms.

    How many bottoms do I have to hit before support comes? I mumbled to myself.
    Cursing also requires energy.

    All I had since morning was three pieces of mini Oreo cookies with green tea cream.
    Not bad. They say green tea is a cancer fighting food.

    But my enemy now isn’t cancer. Hunger is!

    “Are these greys in my ginger head?” I heard myself whispering to myself as I caught a glimpse of my face on the glossy screen of my work laptop. Hunger causes immediate aging?

    Let’s try the pantry.

    Please god please, no more Tom Yum inspired snacks, food, ice creams. Do they only eat these here at Bangkok? I want meat, muscle tissue, BACON!!

    What’s that smell? It’s heavenly… oily and fatty…

    It seems to come from that brown paper bag sitting over there…

    Just when I’m about one arm’s length (or five?) I can’t tell, a shadow flashes in. Standing right between me and my oil and fatty heaven.

    “Eh big carrot! Want this? Over my dead body!” taunted Nicole as she waves the Meat Munchers Pizza from Pezzo.

    Although I’m wearing an Orange GAP Polo T-shirt that matches my hair color that doesn’t make me a carrot! “You Finance Bitch!! Give me my pizzzaaaaa!!”

    Nicole turns and proceeds to stroll back to her cubicle.

    I have to stop her.

    I have to rescue Pezzo.

    I fixed up a makeshift Bolas using the mobile earphones and Sheaffer pen and cap from my pocket.

    I aim and threw at Nicole’s ankles.

    “Aaaahhhhh!”, shrieked the bitch.

    Oh. my. god.

    Pezzo is about to hit the floor!

    I’m allowed only 1 second.
    I reached into the brown paper bag, fished out a napkin.

    With a single sweeping move, the napkin lands beneath Pezzo.

    Only just.

    The state champion of horseshoe pitching isn’t fake.


    • LilianGardner

      I love the way you used the scavenger hunt list in your story. Brilliant!
      Your story is full of action and you are showing and not telling, which is what I aim for in my story-telling.
      I like the bit about your orange T-shirt and hair, and oh! all the rest, too.

    • Ralph Hua

      You are so kind. Thank you. =)

    • Pamela Hodges

      Ralph Hua,
      Thank you for playing the game. You are a brave man to take a line from a Stock Investing Handbook. Your story was very fun and silly. Great save in the end.
      Well-played horseshoe champion.


    Only the previous day, Silas learned that the Pendleton’s history of bloodshed didn’t end in 1935, with Nolan Tolliver’s killing spree.

    It went on with the mysterious disappearances of the people staying in the Pendleton’s Mansion each year and it would go on for as long as Silas can not take hold of an orange cellphone charger.He vividly saw it in his dreams. It was unmistakably a charger and unmistakably orange.

    As soon as he woke up at four in the morning with only two hours of sleep, he took a shower, heated up the adobo lying in the fridge and ate it.

    He wore his black shirt with “TRUST ME I AM A CHEF” printed on the chest and a black Hurley cap to conceal his hair that is brightly white with golden round brown spots. After putting everything he need for the day’s hunting in a brown paper bag, he went on foot into the caliginous dawn.

    He was oblivious of the presence lurking in the dark following his trail.

    Adrian knew what his neighbor, Silas, has on mind for he dreamt the same thing so he stealthily followed him.

    The sun wasn’t rising yet . He was concealed in the dark and so is the oily bacon rasher on his step.

    “Aaawwwww!!!”, he yelled followed by a loud BOOM on the pavement as he slipped over.

    Silas was startled with a loud sound and was so shock to see his old enemy lying on the side of the road , pain evident on his face. He can’t even make himself come to move.

    The sun suddenly went out giving light to the world.

    He stared intensely at pitiful Adrian, deciding wether to help him or not. His eyes stopped on the thing just an inch away from Adrian’s toe. It was orange and it was a charger.

    The very same charger in his dream. He turned pale.

    Adrian saw the look on his enemy’s face and drifted his eyes to where he was looking. He cursed himself for not being able to move because he wanted very badly to snatch it and run away.

    “Silas, I know you are a fair and just man. This thing is near me so, it’s mine”.

    “Adrian, I saw it first.”, he said sternly but confused deep inside because he knows boundaries should be respected.

    “…you can’t even pick it up. See, you are stucked. I am willing to help you, if you let me have that orange cellphone charger”, Silas continued.

    ” Here, there’ s a balm to make your pain go away”, he handed him the bag. Adrian helplessly accepted the brown paper bag and watched Silas snatch the orange cellphone charger and walk away smiling.

  35. Jayne

    I have never entered anything in my life, but I made a promise to myself this summer to put myself out there so here goes:

    And so Pasquale went about his business, which seemed not like business at all but the random behavior of a lunatic.

    “What are you doing?” Reyna asked, walking into the kitchen of the guesthouse, her copper curls wrapped in his green t-shirt.

    “Looking for something to eat for breakfast,” he mumbled, not looking up, rifling through the refrigerator drawers, opening containers. “Are we out of bacon?” he asked with the tone he used when he wanted to accuse her of being responsible for something he had done.

    “How would I know?” Reyna answered. “I’m a vegetarian. Not me.”

    He turned to glare at her and stopped. “What are you wearing on your head? You look weird. And is that my favorite t-shirt? Jeez Reyna, I was going to wear that shirt today.”

    She looked adorable in her lace camisole and black-and-white striped skirt. He couldn’t help smile at the turban on her head.

    “It’s called plopping, and my t-shirt was too small. If I did it right, my curls should be perfect.”

    She tossed a t-shirt at him. “White with black accents – the dress code for this summer’s Cape photo. This one wouldn’t work anyway.”

    “Leftover chicken,” he grumbled. “I’m Paleo – I need bacon and eggs for breakfast. The only thing I can find is leftover chicken.”

    “Save it, we’re going to be late. Eat the chicken – you’ve got no time for eggs anyway. I’ll take berries and seeds with us.”

    Pasquale shoved the chicken into his mouth while Reyna packed her breakfast to go.

    “Are you sure your family will be okay with my coming along?” he asked, a sudden wave of uncertainty washing over him.

    “It’s a family photo, and as far as I am concerned, you’re family.” Reyna sounded much more certain than Pasquale felt. He wanted her more than anything, and even though he knew she wanted this as much as he did, what if she turned him down?

    He tucked the paper bag under his arm. They walked along the path from the guesthouse past the main house to the beach where the rest of them were gathering.

    “One sec,” he said, holding her close. He pulled his iPhone from his pocket, held it up and took a selfie.

    “Pasquale,” she groaned. “Really?”

    But he wanted a picture of her with the silly t-shirt on her head. He wanted to record it all.

    On the weekend, while she napped on the porch, he had “the talk” with her father and mother. Thrilled, they convinced him to do it in front of all of them, on the beach, with the professional photographer on hand.

    They laughed at the selfie, kissed, and continued down the path. Pasquale knew they would remember this selfie, this kiss, and each step along this path. All this would become part of the engagement story she would tell her friends, and their future children and grandchildren.

    “What’s in the bag,” she asked.

    “Stuff. Just stuff.”

    • annaluna

      Oh, this is really cute, I like it! They come across as really likeable.

    • Jayne

      Thanks so much Annaluna!

    • Pamela Hodges

      Way to put yourself out there. Thank you for playing the game. Your characters are so real and likeable. And I loved that you ended the story with the bag, not with the scene on the beach. The lunatic line fit so well with your story.
      How fun.

    • Jayne

      Pamela – thanks for the feedback! I had fun putting the story together with your prompts, and I’m loving reading what others have done!

  36. dawnvslayton

    My copy/paste lost format but here’s the story. Enjoy!

    “You are to avoid escalation during a disagreement seek to
    resolve issues from a couple perspective”.
    Well, there is was, as Steve had hoped to not find. Another profound note from Paul taped across
    the front of the vegetable shelf. The stress
    of the note had him reaching for the decadent brownie. “Screw the diet,” muttered Steve. He then crumbled the note and next reached for
    the vanilla coffee creamer. Not the
    ideal breakfast but breakfast all the same.

    The calendar pages were turning. He and Paul were far from finishing their
    remodel project in the expansive den.
    They both loved the color red.
    Why was Paul being so stubborn?, thought Steve as he ignored the brownie
    crumbs littering the hall. He sidled his
    way into the den. Paul stood there in
    his introspective stance ready to engage in the ongoing project. Head tilted.
    He turned as Steve tossed the final piece of the chocolate morsel. One chew then swallow.

    Paul loved the way the grey cotton shirt draped Steve’s
    shoulders. His look softened. “Good morning, darling” chimed Paul. Quickly pushing a bag off onto the corner of
    the sofa just out of sight.

    Steve flipped his long black bang to reveal his full face
    and smiled. “Okay, let’s work this out
    before it’s Christmas. I want this room
    ready before the holidays!” cried Steve.
    He popped a favorite cinnamon fire jolly rancher in his mouth ready to
    dig his heels in for a debate.

    Striding over, Paul pressed close behind Steve, nestled his
    face into his neck. He could smell the
    firey cinnamon as Steve let out a sigh. “You
    deserve more then what we can cosmetically put into this room,” Paul admitted. This was a different stance thought Steve
    from all their previous heated discussions.
    He held his breath waiting to see where this conversation was going.

    A soft crinkle sound came from behind. Paul reached into the nearby paper bag. His opposite hand reaching around running his
    fingers across Steve’s lips. He could
    feel a slight stickiness from the candy he was sucking on. Steve let out a sigh with anticipation. Then stiffened wide eyed as the rope quickly
    looped around his neck and tightened. He
    gasped struggling against the tightness, “Why?”

    deserve more but you have taken so much that I cant give in any longer,” Paul
    breathed calmly, “but with you gone I can make this the dream view we have
    planned for.” As Steve’s body fell
    lifeless to the floor, Paul leaned over and kissed the cinnamon flavor for the
    last time

    • Pamela Hodges

      Oh wow, a murder. How dramatic. A rope in the paper bag. The ending was very unexpected.
      And the ending was so final.
      Thank you for playing.


    Only the previous day, Silas learned that the Pendleton’s history of bloodshed didn’t end in 1935, with Nolan Tolliver’s killing spree.

    It went on with the mysterious disappearances of the people staying in the Pendleton’s Mansion each year and it would go on for as long as Silas can not take hold of an orange cellphone charger.

    He vividly saw it in his dreams. It was unmistakably a charger and unmistakably orange.

    As soon as he woke up at four in the morning with only two hours of sleep, he took a shower, heated up the adobo lying in the fridge and ate it.

    He wore his black shirt with “TRUST ME I AM A CHEF” printed on the chest and a black Hurley cap to conceal his hair that is brightly white with golden round brown spots. After putting everything he need for the day’s hunting in a brown paper bag, he went on foot into the caliginous dawn.

    He was oblivious of the presence lurking in the dark following his trail.

    Adrian knew what his neighbor, Silas has on mind for he dreamt the same thing so he stealthily followed him.

    The sun wasn’t rising yet . He was concealed in the dark and so is the oily bacon rasher on his step.

    “Aaawwwww!!!”, he yelled followed by a loud BOOM on the pavement as he slipped.

    Silas was startled with a loud sound and was so shock to see his old enemy lying on the side of the road , pain evident on his face. He can’t even make himself come to move.

    The sun suddenly went out giving light to the world.

    He stared intensely at pitiful Adrian, deciding wether to help him or not. His eyes stopped on the thing just an inch away from Adrian’s toe. It was orange and it was a charger.

    The very same charger in his dream. He turned pale.

    Adrian saw the look on his enemy’s face , and drifted his eyes to where he was looking. He cursed himself for not being able to move because he wanted very badly to snatch it and run away.

    “Silas, I know you are a fair and just man. This thing is near me so, its mine”.

    “Adrian, I saw it first.”, he said sternly but confused deep inside because he knows boundaries should be respected.

    “…you can’t even pick it up. See, you are stucked. I am willing to help you, if you let me have that orange cellphone charger”, Silas continued.

    ” Here, there’ s a balm to make your pain go away”, he handed him the bag. Adrian helplessly accepted the brown paper bag and watched Silas snatch the orange cellphone charger and walk away smiling.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Rose Calanes,
      For the rest of my life I will think of you and this story if I ever see an orange cell phone charger.
      Thank you for playing the game. You are very silly, in this dramatic story. The conflict was very intense. A great save and plot line with your opening sentence.



      Thank you so much Pam… I love this exercise…

  38. Jean Maples

    That “night, 20,000 people were the cargo of a mere four or five trains, each’ heading to Seattle from points south.
    We had been arrested because of books we owned. Books with Hitler subject matter were against the law to keep. Someone had turned me in. When they came for me, they knew to look under the bed for my covered box of books.
    I was told to take a wrap. I grabbed my brown wool jacket and tossed it into the nearest brown paper bag in the kitchen along with a jar of left-over black beans and bacon from the refrigerator, for my breakfast.
    I had been awakened and was given five minutes to change clothes, splash my face, and run a comb through my long black hair.
    The night police pushed me into their vehicle and drove directly to the station. With a group of other disturbed book collectors,I was forced onto the crowded train. We shared our questions and concerns, but soon tried to rest as best we could.
    Upon reaching Seattle, we were divided into groups. Our guard told us we might be released if we had enough money. I had forgotten my purse.
    When he came to me, I was frantic. “I have no money”.
    “You must have money. Look again” he said impatiently.
    I pulled out my jacket. Nothing! i turned the paper bag upside down. A single penny rolled out.
    “Ah Hah. You have money. We’ll play a little game. Heads you win. Tails I win”, he told me.
    I was allowed to toss. I said a silent prayer and rubbed the coin between my fingers for positive energy. Down it went to the floor. I looked. Heads!
    “To the right”, he said, and turned away.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Jean Maples,
      Thank you for playing the story. Your paper bag really did save you. Your opening sentence was very dramatic. Your books under the bed and your leftover food fit neatly into your story line.
      Very fun.

  39. Christina Krieger

    It looked to me like Edward was trying to avoid my questions.

    “Kielbasa and eggs for breakfast?” He said with a scrunch to his nose. “I would have preferred bacon.”

    “Well, this is what we have,” I said, not bothering to hide my annoyance. “You’re changing the subject.”

    “Hayley, you’re making a bigger deal about this than it needs to be.”

    “What’s in the box?” I glanced at the cardboard cube nestled in the corner.

    “It’s complicated.”

    I shook my head. “You show up here, like you didn’t just break up with me a week ago, and ask me to store this thing without telling me why or what it is.”


    “Don’t even say, it’s complicated.”

    The doorbell silenced our argument.

    “Another surprise?” I asked him, but received no reply.

    I straightened my white and silver teeshirt and tucked my strawberry blonde hair behind my ear before answering. The warm summer air wafted my face as I opened the door. It was a record high for Colorado.

    A man I didn’t recognize barged right past me.

    “Edward here?” He said, jaw tense.

    “Excuse me? And you are…”

    Edward was already standing by the time we reached the kitchen.

    “Butch, what are you doing here?”

    “You told her, didn’t you?”

    “Tell me what?” Though I was completely ignored.

    “Actually, I was about to,” Edward said. “Did anyone follow you here?”

    “No. And don’t. What makes you think we can trust her?”

    “Trust me with what?” I said louder.

    “She’s helping us. We owe her.” Edward’s hands balled into fists.

    “This is my call. We owe her nothing.” Butch.

    “What’s in the box!” I yelled.

    Edward, fuming by now, bounded to the box and ripped the side open. Foam popcorn spilled to the floor, exposing a clay jar with ornate engravings circling the rim.

    My hand raised to my mouth. “Where did that come from?”

    “Where do you think, Sweetheart?” Butch said sarcastically.

    “You two stole it?” I yanked my cell phone from my pocket. Butch jumped up like he might tackle me. “Chill, Mr. Paranoid. I’m not calling the cops.”

    I pulled up the news on the internet and played the first video that came up:

    ‘A touring history symposium, sponsored by Valet Corp, was robbed this morning of a rare clay jar dating back thousands of years…’

    I stopped the playback and looked at them. “How much is it worth?”

    “Six figures, easy.” Edward said, looking at his feet.

    “You should see this,” Butch tossed me a paper bag. I didn’t even realize he’d been carrying it.

    Inside were police files on both Butch and Edward.

    “I swiped these off a nearby detective. They know it was us.”

    I paused for a moment.

    “Count me in,” I said, gently setting the files on the table. “Now, who wants breakfast?”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Count me in too. Now what happens? Will I ever find out how this ends? The dialog was very natural. And it pulled me forward. I couldn’t read fast enough to find out what was in the box in the corner.
      Did she ever make him bacon?

    • Christina Krieger

      Thanks Pamela!
      I’m glad you enjoyed it. This scavenger hunt writing prompt was fun, I hope you do another one in the future. It really made me exercise my creative writing muscles to incorporate all the items. But I enjoyed it so much I might expand this it into a short story.
      Thanks again!

    • Debra johnson

      I agree with Pamela, I want to know what happens next. Well done on the prompts

    • annaluna

      Ooh, this is really good. You’ve got an actual plot going here. I enjoyed it!

  40. Debra johnson

    This was fun, and made me think of other ways to get my Creative juices flowing. Here’s my entry…

    “To ward off negative energy. That’s what the instructions say.” Jo told her friend who had just come into the kitchen.

    “What’s that smell?” Theresa asked crinkling her nose in a sniffing fashion as a dog would sniff bacon.

    “It’s my breakfast.” She said pointing to the pan. Theresa stood in one place peering into the pan.

    “Wait why would you need to ward of negative energies?”

    “Because she will never accept my proposal.”

    “Wait what proposal?”

    “The marriage proposal, I’m going to ask Stephanie to marry me.”

    “I think I need coffee.” Theresa moved to the cabinet and pulled her mug from the shelf. After taking 2 sips she cleared her throat. “So you’re saying eating that-” She pointed to the plate of spicy chicken topped with mashed potatoes and tomatoes with a slice of pizza – “is going to take away the negative energy?”

    “Yes I am.” Jo said carrying the plate and her coffee to the table.

    “Well at least you’re not dipping it in Ranch dressing.”

    “Of course not. That’s used for another spell.”

    “Oh right, how silly of me.” Theresa headed to the fridge and grabbing her breakfast.

    “And you think I eat weird.” Jo said looking at the plate. “Don’t tell me you are going to dip sushi into chocolate sauce.”

    “No that’s for the strawberries.”

    “Ahuh. So is that what you are wearing?”

    “Of course it is, what’s wrong with it?”

    “Nothing’s wrong with it, I just have the perfect blazer to go with it. It’ll make you smart and attractive.”

    “Why are you trying to change me or make me more attractive? You know Stephanie likes my style. I’m one of a kind.”

    “I can certainly agree with that. I mean who else would dye their hair white tan and dark brown, wear pink hair ribbons in order to look like their dog?”

    While the two were talking Jo’s cell phone began vibrating. “Hello…Who is this…Why are you calling, I don’t know -…” Jo said pulling the phone away from her ear looked at it and placed it against her ear again. “Hey…”

    But it was too late they had already hung up.

    “Who was that?”

    “Chris someone. He said he was going to take Steph from me.”

    “Doesn’t Chris know she doesn’t like men?”

    “That’s the funny thing Chris isn’t a man… it’s a cat.”


    “okay how is a cat going to take her away?”

    “He didn’t say, just that I should be aware.”

    “You need to stop thinking negatively.”

    “How do I do that?”

    Theresa pointed to Jo’s food.“Eat your breakfast

    I’ll be right back.” And she was gone but came back a few
    minutes later.

    “Here.” Theresa said holding a paper bag.

    “What’s that?”

    “The answer to your conflict.”

    Jo took the bag and opened it “Cleanser and catnip?”

    “Yes, first you use the cleanser on the pan you used, then send Chris the catnip, soon he will forget all about Stephanie and she will be all yours.”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Very clever use of the prompts, and great save with the catnip in the paper bag.
      Thank you for playing. The left-over food was very delicious. Well played.

    • Debra johnson

      Thanks Pamela It’s funny what you can create with various prompts.

    • annaluna

      Hee, this is hilarious. Good job with the prompts.

  41. annaluna

    “In the meantime the Western Allies’ only major weapon against Germany was airpower, and this, as subsequent research has shown, was spectacularly ineffective, except in killing civilians and destroying cities.”

    The words swam before her eyes as Karen shoveled down the last of the ratatouille. Doc had told her to eat more vegetables. She’d added some bacon this morning to make it a little more tasty. She’d decided to apply the same principle to her reading material so she’d pulled out one of her old history books. She snorted at the idea that killing civilians and destroying cities was an ineffective means of carrying on a war. Hadn’t this author ever heard of total war?

    As she teased out the implications, she saw Mary Jean wander into her backyard, trailing what looked like a tail of blue yarn. Her face was set in scrum of irritation.

    Oh dear. Karen quickly tossed her dish into the sink and checked her navy and blue Hawaiian shirt for crumbs. A quick glance in the mirror told her that her trim white hair was perfectly in place. Sadly, Mary Jean wouldn’t appreciate the Mike, Lu & Og logo on the right breast. Apparently she’d lived off the grid in Montana throughout the 90’s with no knowledge of obscure children’s TV.

    “Listen, Mary Jean,” Karen said, bustling out of her back door. “I got that yarn from Blue Hill Farms, straight from the source. It’s fantastic yarn, I swear.”

    “Really?” Mary Jean stopped short, right in the middle of Karen’s prized irises. “Then why is it coming apart in the middle of the skein?”

    Christ. “Listen, I don’t know, but there’s a simple fix.” Karen desperately searched her mind. “What are you making, anyway?”

    “A scarf.”

    “Okay, try this.” Karen pulled a gum wrapper out of her pocket and handed it to Mary Jean. “Use this to join the two ends of the yarn and wrap the yarn around it several times. It’ll create an interesting texture.”

    Mary Jean stared at the gum wrapper in her palm. “Are you kidding me? That’s ridiculous.”

    “If it doesn’t work, I’ll go swimming at Cannon Beach in October. You know I don’t want to do that.” Cannon Beach was cold at any time of the year. Beautiful, but cold.

    “Karen, you don’t have to do that.” Mary Jean looked contrite. She clutched the ball of blue yarn in one hand and handed to Karen the crumpled brown paper bag she had in the other hand. “I was going to eat this for lunch, but you can have it.”

    Karen opened the bag. “A sandwich? What is it?”

    “BLT. Tomatoes and lettuce from my garden.”

    “Oh.” Guess you could never have too much bacon. “Thanks. Hope the scarf works out.”

    Mary Jean looked down and skipped out of the irises. “Your irises! I’m so sorry.”

    “Just go knit, okay, Mary Jean?”

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Annaluna,
      Thank you for playing the game. Your opening sentence was very intense. You brought it in to the story very well. And the gum wrapper was very funny. Thank you for being silly.
      Now I am craving a BLT.

    • annaluna

      Here, thanks. It was a fun exercise. The only way to make that quote an actual part of the story was to make it war or fantasy, but given the other requirements, it could only end up kind of cracky, I think.

  42. JujuBee

    I want to thank you for the ‘Fun Wacky Scavenger Story’. What a bit of fun after writing for the contest. I wrote a silly crazy story. Just have to tighten it up and fit it into the 500 word or less requirement. More another time. Just wanted to say it is great to have some fun—often.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Juju Bee,
      Thank you for writing a story. I look forward to reading it. Don’t forget to post it by September 7th, so you may have a chance at a prize.

  43. LilianGardner

    Here’s my third attempt, Pamela.
    It was stiffer than I thoughtbut much fun. You’ll surely know from where I got my first prompt… ‘third book on the left…’.

    Langdon was not sure he wanted to hear it, but Debra continued telling him about Valerie Baxter, her former colleague and archenemy.

    “…and she has the most absurd hair do. A sleek white streak from her hairline to the nape, with charcoal black curls on either side.”

    He looked at her and smiled indulgently, patted her knee and opened the fridge. The only food he saw was a stale quarter of a pizza, dry and curled at the edges. He turned away, disappointed.

    Debra sang, “Ta-ta,” waving her hand from the doorway, “I’m off to explore our luxurious villa on this unique Albarella Island. See ya later!”

    Langdon wandered around in the kitchen, searching for food, when Debra’s shrill shrieks forced him to head for the bedroom. She was sitting on the double bed, her knees drawn up, and her arms wrapped tightly around them. He saw the look of terror in her eyes.

    “Under the bed. Under the bed,” she whispered.

    He bent to look and took a moment to focus.Two yellow eyes stared into his. He took
    his cell phone from his pocket and dialled a number, asking for help.

    “I’ll be there in a jiffy,” a female voice reassured him. Minutes later, she knocked on the open door to get their attention. “What’s the matter?” she asked, stepping into the bedroom, and looking enquiringly at the couple.

    “There’s some animal under the bed, growling and scaring my fiancè,” Langdon said in a huff.

    “Val -er-ee!” Debra exclaimed, unable to keep the surprise in her voice, “You?”

    “Yes, Debbie, it’s me,” she replied calmly, raising an eyebrow, and bent to look under the bed. Clicking her tongue she cooed, “Come here, Bacon, my darling catkins.” The outsized tom crept out and began purring immediately she picked him up. “Here’s the brown paper bag you left in reception,” she added, putting it on the bed, and before exiting said, “Have fun.” Her brightly painted lips curved into a smile, and when she winked, her eyes took on a wicked glow.

    “The witch!” Debra hissed, reaching for the bag. “She’ll never change but thank heavens we’ve got this. It contains our dinner. I’m ravenous! Here come two yummy
    hamburgers,” she said cheerily, dipping into the bag.

    Langdon watched expectantly, “I’m ravenous, too,” he said.

    Debra brought her hand out of the bag holding a large piece of stale pizza.

    “Oh no!” Langdon exclaimed. “I’ve seen that thing before. No pizza for me. Come honey. Wear something attractive and let’s go out for dinner.”

    “Splendid idea,” she agreed, and reached for the linen sheath dress lying on the bed.

    Only Langdon knew that Valerie Baxter had replaced their hamburgers with the leftover pizza. He decided he would tell Debra about it tomorrow.

    • Pamela Hodges

      Hello Lillian,
      Thank you for writing a story. You wrote three? I am not sure why you thought your story was stiff. It was very fun, the dialog and the plot line kept me reading fast so I could see what happened.
      Great save at the end with the paper bag. And a nice tie in with the ending to teh beginning line.
      What book did the opening line come from?

    • LilianGardner

      Thanks, Pamela.
      The opening was from Dan Brown’s novel ‘Angels and Demons’.

    • Debra johnson

      I always seem to take an interest when my names mentioned in a story, nice to know I have traveled to villas all from the comfort of my chair… Cool story… I too may write another just for me this time.

    • LilianGardner

      Oh yeah! Debra is not just a nice name, it seems to bring the girl to life by sheer imagination.
      Thanks for reading.

  44. Susan W A

    Dear Pamela Hodges,

    Upon reading your prompt, I thought, “I should try this prompt; it’s something new for me and would be great for training my literary muscles. Look at all the responses already; and I really like Pamela.” I went upstairs to pull a book off the shelf … and there was the gift you gave me – “Walter Chandoha’s Book of Kittens and Cats” (an incredible photography book from 1963). “Gift I gave you?” you ask. I had completely forgotten I had the book. When I opened the cover my heart was warmed, for there was an inscription from my sister, “Christmas 1993. Now we both have one! Brings back childhood memories. : ) Love you! Sheri”. As little girls, she and I spent hours gleefully looking at the delightful pictures in our original copy of that book, which she still had. My sister passed away in 2000 at the age of 41. She is the one I told you (in a previous post) is holding purring Pooh Hodges on her lap, giving him lovings.

    Thanks for “prompting” a sweet discovery.

    – Susan W A

    • Pamela Hodges

      Dear Susan W A,
      Thank you so much for sharing a special memory of your sister. I am sitting at my desk crying my eyes out.
      I hope you have a wonderful day looking at picture of kittens and cats and remembering Sheri. And I will have a wonderful day thinking of her holding Pooh on her lap.

  45. Trina

    He explained that his parents had kown about the Aborns for years. “They move to a different country every three months and leave behind a mystical piece of Alienware.”

    I listened with interest as my friend John told me about the clan of extraterrestrial beings who left behind strange devices which contained an infinite source of information.

    We were in Skiathos, Greece, where they were rumoured to be leaving the next Alienware device. I quickly brushed my short red before we left our village hut, and headed down the dirt road towards the hill we’d have to climb to find the device.

    “You got the bacon right?”, I asked John.
    “Definitely.” he replied.
    The Aborns were well known to be bacon fanatics. They often left a gift in return for three buckets full of bacon.

    About a mile and a half down the road we reached the entrance to the stairway. A bellhop in a white suit awaited us, holding open a wire gate.
    “50 Euros” the man said to us in a heavy accent.

    “Crap. I didn’t bring my wallet.” I muttered to John. I reached into my pocket and pulled pulled out a purple chub notebook with a purple pen stored in the spiral. I pulled out the pen and began writing large 50s in the middle of 50 blank pages. I ripped them out of my notebook and handed them to the man.

    The man smiled and accepted my makeshift money. He motioned for us to enter the gate.
    “Wow! Good thing you had that notebook!” Said John as we sprinted up the 143 clay steps leading up to our destination.

    Closer to the top, as our pace had slowed, John and I began to hear footsteps approaching from behind us.

    “It better not be who I think it is.”
    John and I turned and saw none other than smug 6 year old Jimmy, the Nations bacon eating champion. Jimmy was notorious for stealing people’s bacon, worldwide. He was going to eat all of our bacon in record time and stop us from finding the Alienware.

    “Not this time he doesn’t!” John reached into his pocket and pulled out a folded brown paper bag, unfolded it and marched toward Jimmy, who had a confused look on his face.

    John put the brown paper bag over Jimmys head.”NOOOOOOOOOO” cried Jimmy, as he fell to his knees like a melting candle.

    John turned and looked at me. As his gaze shifted to behind me, a look of suprise spread over his face. I turned and saw that the three buckets of bacon that we had set down were gone. And in their place was a black angle shaped device glowing in a bright red and blue light.

    It’s ours. It was finally ours. We had the acsess to all the knowledge we would ever want to know.

  46. Debra johnson

    I had so much fun writing the entry for this I decided to write another just for me and use the prompts as a starting off point, I used 6 of the ten and used the 5th book from the right this time ( this is not the entry- just the story I came up with when I wrote this morning)

    For as long as I could remember I have loved to talk. But
    today the words escaped me. Tiffany came to me for advice and the only reaction
    I had for her was a blank stare.

    I wondered if I stared at her blankly because I had nothing
    to say on the matter or because she actually had the nerve to come to me on
    this matter. In fact it was so out of line I think not having anything to say
    was a blessing. But it did leave me no longer hungry for the stuffed cabbage
    and cottage cheese I had prepared for breakfast.

    “Well?” she said standing there with her hands on her hips. “Aren’t
    you going to help me?”

    “With what?” I said choking on the milk I was drinking out of
    sheer reflex.

    “I told you the things under my bed. What do I do with them?”

    “I’m not sure what needs addressing first, the things as you call them or the fact you don’t
    know what to do with them.”

    Tiffany just stood there motionless as a statue in a museum somewhere
    By all rights she should have been in a museum, just not sure which section she
    would have fit into, maybe the premadonna section collecting dust like the rest
    of them. You know those people who think cleaning is a dirty word.

    “No I take that back the first question should be how did
    you find these things under your bed?”

    “I bumped the corner of my bed on the way to the closet, it’s
    a wonder I didn’t tear my nylons, this is my last pair and I don’t know what I’d
    do. Any way when I bumped the bed it shifted a bit and something dark appeared.”
    Tiffany said getting a bit agitated. “I just don’t know what to do.”

    “Calm down is it still there?”

    “Yes it is.”

    “Okay here’s what we are going to need…” I began as I
    scooted my chair away from the table. With my breakfast now forgotten we walked
    from the kitchen.

    “So when are you due?” She asked pointing to the food on the

    “I’m not expecting.” I said as we headed to the closet.

    “Oh I just thought with a breakfast like that you were.”

    “Funny, now here is what we’ll need. A broom or mop, or even
    a vacuum attachment, something long that will reach under the bed.”

    “Those are in there.” She said pointing to the closet door.

    When I opened the door all I saw were brown paper bags. They
    looked either like mops or brooms which had been bought but not used. Not
    saying anything I unwrapped one and headed to the bedroom.

    As I tried to pull the article from under the bed I was met
    with meows. When I bent down to look I saw the reason, a cat with her kittens
    were using the clothing as blankets.

  47. Christin Eubanks

    Had such a great time with this prompt! 800 words and a lot of them swears, I’ll just go ahead and keep my story to myself. Thank you for the inspiration to sit and write!

  48. StarBry

    This is my first time posting a story. Thanks for the prompts. It made writing pretty easy. My first line is from “The Lightning Thief.”

    I knew that was crazy. I looked down at my trembling hands, realizing just then how close I came to death. The leftover ziti I had for breakfast was churning in my stomach. The fire and debris from the explosion rained down all around me. Cinderella’s Castle was in complete ruins. Sorry, Walt. There was no time to waste. I had to catch up to the woman with the brown paper bag before she disappeared into the crowd of tourists. I forgot her name, but she had just made off with the contents of my father’s safe, which would unlock my mysterious past.

    I’m Porky. It’s an unusual name, I know. How’d I get that name? That’s one more mystery I am trying to solve. I’m making progress, though. I just discovered who my
    father was a few hours ago. Before I was born, he was a pilot stationed at Fort
    Bragg. My dad crash-landed his Blackhawk helicopter during a violent storm. Horribly
    injured, and apparently very confused, he went searching for help and got lost
    in the wilderness. Fortunately, a kind, elderly couple somewhere in rural North
    Carolina nursed him back to health. They told him a mystical tale of a golden
    idol they had found on their hog farm. Showing no gratitude for their kindness, he
    stole their precious artifact in the middle of the night.

    As I rose from the ashes, I dusted off my now singed black dress shirt. Trying to
    regain my senses, I ran my fingers through my Cruella DeVille-like black and
    white hair. Then I spotted her and dashed into the smoke. I yelled to gain her attention, and just as she turned to measure her lead, the woman tripped
    over a little boy. As the mother tended to her distraught, crying child, the father and a
    few others held back the woman whose name I had forgotten, confronting her for
    her recklessness. It was the perfect distraction. I approached swiftly, deciding
    to use my pocketknife to cut the partially burned bag instead of grabbing it. Hoping to be somewhat inconspicuous, I ripped through the bag, grabbed the cloth-covered artifact, slipped it into my pocket and disappeared into the crowd.

    I finally had it! This was the key to my mysterious past. As I finally came to rest
    on the ferry leaving the Magic Kingdom, I could inspect the artifact more
    closely. A million questions raced through my mind. What could it be? Would it tell
    me who I am and where I came from? Is this why I have been an outcast all of my
    life? Would it make things better? Would it turn my life around? Is it worth a
    fortune? Would it give me power? Would it tell me why I have such an awful
    name? Anxious to reveal my discovery, I carefully unfolded the red and white paisley
    scarf to reveal a thick, golden strip…

    …of bacon.

    Thanks for reading!

    • LilianGardner

      Whew! What an adventurous story. I really enjoyed it and like the ending of a strip of bacon wrapped up in a paisley scarf.

  49. AnnM

    I will apologize ahead of time as I couldn’t make it shorter…….

    The Reckoning.

    “Then, when he dies, she will inherit all his money and she will be a rich woman.”

    Fay gave a snort of laughter. When did that ever happen? She closed the book she had been reading. Who read Agatha Christie these days, she wondered?

    It would be nice though, Fay reflected, pushing the remains of the bacon and fried egg around her plate. I suppose it could have happened to whoever lived here, she thought as she looked around at the expensive furnishings and art that filled the house.

    Hearing a noise near the back door, she jumped up ready to run. The door didn’t open though, only a cat entered the kitchen eyeing the table where her half eaten breakfast lay. Fay let out a breath she had been holding, realizing there must be a cat door back there. The cat seemed friendly so she put out her hand a pet it.

    Before she could react, the cat had jumped onto the table and was helping itself to the bacon and egg. “Go ahead,” she said, laughing. “I was finished anyway.”

    A thought occurred to her, if there was a cat then there would be someone coming to check on it or the owner was not far away. Time to get out of Edmonton anyway.

    Fay walked to the bedroom and opened the closet door. Looking at her scruffy, worn and dirty clothing she
    said to herself, “there must be something better to wear in here.”

    She whistled appreciatively as she looked through the hangers holding expensive, designer clothes. Too small by a size or so she thought. Just as well, as they’d only make her a target on the street.

    Fay spied something under the bed, a plastic bin. She smiled; old clothes perhaps? As she pulled it out and opened the lid she saw she had been correct. Lots of neatly folded up old t-shirts lined the bin. She chose a brown one, it went well with her chestnut colored hair, and more importantly would not show the dirt too quickly. Under all the t-shirts were pairs of jeans. She picked the most worn of them and shrugging
    herself out of her old stuff she put them on. Perfect!

    She was just about to put the lid back on the bin when she saw a small box tucked in the corner. Curious, she picked it up, but when she opened it she jumped up and gasped. Her hands shook and her breathing became laboured. Quickly she stuffed the box in the paper bag where she kept her meagre belongings.

    Who lives here? She asked no one, her blood going cold. Fay whirled around and stepped into the hallway, determined to get out of this house.

    “Fay?” The woman in front of her looked so familiar. Her blonde hair with its obviously expensive cut, blue eyes and tall slim build all added up finally.

    “Hillary?” Fay said, knowing she was right. They had been friends for years.

    She needed to get out of here NOW! It was too late though. People would know where she was. Hiding out for the last two years seemed, all of a sudden, for naught.

    “Fay,” Hilary said, softer andmore relaxed now; likely knowing this person in her house was no stranger.

    “Where have you been all this time? We all looked for you after the accident but you were nowhere to be found. You just disappeared. You didn’t even come back for the funeral.”

    Fay thought for a minute. “Accident?” she said finally. “I was driving and caused Shawn’s death by my inexperience. I knew I’d be charged so I decided it was best for all that I disappear. No one ever trusted me anyway being from the orphanage. If you let me by, I will disappear again. I didn’t know this is your house.”

    Hillary moved a step closer and held out a hand. “It was an accident Fay,” she said quietly. “You swerved on an icy road. It could have happened to any of us. If you had stayed around you would have found out that Shawn didn’t die that night. He had an arterial bleed and the doctors barely saved him but it was an aneurism two days later that took him.”

    They were both silent for a minute. Hillary letting the truth sink in.

    “He…he wasn’t dead?” Fay said faintly.

    “No, and the doctors said the aneurism had likely been there for a while so it was only a matter of time…” Hillary said.

    “then…” Fay couldn’t finish it.

    “Then, you ran for nothing.” Hillary finished for her.

    Tears of relief overcame Fay now and she sobbed into her friend’s embrace.

    After a while Fay moved back a little. She picked up her paper bag and opened it, taking out the box. She showed it to Hillary. “Why do you have his class ring?”

    Hillary took the box in her hand and looked Fay in the eye as she explained.

    “Shawn’s mother died last year and she left a letter and the ring for you. She gave it to me the day she died in the hopes that one day I’d see you and give it to you. She wanted you to know she didn’t blame you.”

    Fay shook her head. It was all so hard to believe; that she had picked this house to break into for food and a change of clothes and all this time Shawn’s death had not been her fault.

    She looked up from her thoughts to see an expectant look on her friend’s face.

    “What do I do now?” She asked, as much to herself as anyone else.

    Hillary took both of Fay’s hands in hers, squeezed and then said,


  50. Kenneth M. Harris

    Pamela, I’m late. I didn’t intend to go for the contest. I had such fun trying to follow all of the rules for something that might be funny. It has been a great experience, so here is what I tried to do. The first sentence is from page 42 of AYN Rand, Atlas Shrugg, which was a very, very good book, but difficult to get through. Hope that you are okay. All of the other writers did such a great job with this. KEN
    Hattie jingled her bracelet, making it
    sparkle underneath the light. It was her
    birthday. Maurice bought her two gifts a
    bracelet and identical watch bands for
    both of them. Hattie was petite and wore her hair in a curly crop style. She had always like earth colors in the brown

    “Two gifts from him”, she thought

    Maurice was six feet, three inches
    tall. He wore jeans and tee shirts the year round.

    That evening, he cooked a breakfast
    dinner of two eggs and toast.”

    “I still can’t seem to understand why
    you have breakfast for dinner.”

    “Food is food and I don’t have to have
    meat all of the time.” She reached
    across the table and grabbed a bottle of hot sauce.

    Maurice stepped back. “Please, Please wait, don’t….Not the fork.”

    She squirted the red hot sauce in the
    middle of the orange yolk, lifted her fork.

    “No.” He cried.

    poked the yolk, “You mean this!” She
    giggled as he covered his eyes with his hand and rushed out the door.

    On her way to the bathroom, she heard
    her name. She tiptoe behind the door.

    “…..And I decided to give her a
    couple of gifts. She wanted us to have
    the same watch. I bought the male watch
    with the large brown band for us.” He
    lowered his voice. “The one that I
    wrapped for her has the fake leather.
    Mine is the expensive leather. I
    don’t believe that she can tell the difference. I have the receipt. Fields will refund me the money. I’ll make up something. I have it hidden somewhere
    here in the room…”

    She sneezed, covered her mouth, turned
    and dashed back to the kitchen.

    He stood. “Hold on, man.” He tiptoe toward the door and peeked behind
    it. She was seated at the kitchen table.

    “Rudy give me a minute.” He hung up.

    “I’m running over to Rudy’s.” He yelled from the room. “I’ll be right back.”

    “Take your time,” She cried. She heard the door lock.

    She took the watch off and looked closely at
    the brown leather. That scum bag, she
    thought aloud. She took the description
    from her purse. Why didn’t I noticed the letters PU, she thought

    “This is synthetic.” She thought .

    She rushed to his bedroom and stood in
    the middle of the floor.

    He always kept his room neat. She
    started with the closet. Clothes were neatly
    hung. Her hand went through every single
    pants pocket. The dresser drawers were next.
    She went through the shelves of his CD collection.

    She jerked all of the bed covers from the bed. She slid her hand
    underneath the mattress. She drop to her
    knees and looked underneath the bed.

    “There it is.” She thought aloud. There was a small brown shopping bag with two
    tan handles.

    She poured out the watch, description and

    She left the receipt and replaced her watch
    and the description

    She shoved the bag back underneath the bed.

    “Sir, you want to return the watch?”
    The saleslady wore thick glasses.”

    “I’m returning the expensive one.”

    The lady read the product description
    and frowned. “You don’t have the expensive one.
    This is the reasonable one with the synthetic leather.” She gave him the description.


    “Sir, are you okay.”

    He took the bag and put the
    description and the watch back in the bag and wandered out of the store.

    “She knew. I don’t know how she did it.”

  51. 18pminus1

    Just to let you know the dachshund are real that is right I have a Dachshunds called Bella and Tommy!!!



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