Tip & Prompt: A Writer's Best Friends

What better way to kick a week off than with two of a writer’s best friends: a tip and a prompt?

Here, in continuation of Zac’s countdown of his favorite tips from WD in 2009, is #14:

“Know the adage ‘There’s no such thing as bad publicity’ isn’t necessarily true. You can go too far. It’s really popular–especially online–to strive for controversy in the hopes that attention of any kind will guarantee sales. Sometimes it works. But sometimes we just ain’t that pretty when we’re up on stage naked with the house lights on.” –Marketing guru M.J. Rose, in the March/April 2009 issue of WD.

And now, onto the prompt! But first, speaking of prompts, did you know you can get a free e-book of 1,000 of them, The Writer’s Book of Matches, via @WDoffers on Twitter? Simply follow @WDoffers for more info.

In honor of this great giveaway, today’s prompt comes directly from The Writer’s Book of Matches. (If you like it, you’re in luck: there are 999 more where this came from!)

A man in a business suit, briefcase handcuffed to his wrist, stands on a quiet beach watching the sunrise.

I’d love it if you’d share your response in the comments field below!

Happy Writing,

On Twitter: @jessicastrawser / @writersdigest

You’re invited: Join the new WD community at http://writersdigest.ning.com

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3 thoughts on “Tip & Prompt: A Writer's Best Friends

  1. Baron

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  2. Mark James

    Brad never watched the sun rise. He thought it uncivilized to rise before the sun was high in the sky. But life was different now.

    “You okay Ambassador Stephens?”

    The man beside Brad wasn’t exactly a giant, but he didn’t quite have a neck, and his shoulders were broad enough to make most doorways seem a bit too small.

    “I’m well, Zeb. Are they on the way?”

    Zeb looked up at the sky. “About ten minutes. Your chain okay?”

    Brad shook his left wrist. The thick chain that ran between his handcuff and the briefcase made a satisfying clink. “Fine.”

    “You might not want to stand so close to the water, Sir.”

    Zeb’s voice was low, but Brad knew if he didn’t back up, if he even looked like he was thinking about diving into the surf, his ten ton friend would do very ugly things, things that would make him scream, probably in a high tormented voice.

    Brad took a prudent step backward, then another. “You enjoy beaches, Zeb?”


    “Why ever not?”

    “Too much water.”

    Such a thought would never have occurred to Brad. How could there be too much ocean? He took a deep breath, wished for a moment they’d done a better job enhancing his gills; he hated the feel of air rushing through them. It felt too light, no substance; for him, the land beyond the sea was a brutal, airless nightmare.

    “You been seeing the sights on land?”

    “Going around is too tiring,” Brad said. “I’ve been reading your internet.”

    “It’s got words, too? I mostly look at the pictures.”

    “Yes. Quite interesting words – about a man who robbed a bank then stole a car to get away.”

    “Dumb ass,” Zeb said.

    “Robbing the bank?”

    “Stealing the car afterward. You do that before the job, not after. Where you gonna put all the cash you grabbed? Down your pants?”

    “Yes, I see. Not quite good thinking, is it?”

    “No. Like this isn’t good thinking – dealing with you fish.”

    Brad sank to the sand. The briefcase weighed him down terribly, made his bones ache. He didn’t care that the wet sand soaked through his suit jacket and pants. “We are sea going mammals, Zeb. Fish are quite different.”

    “Get up. You’re too close to the water.”

    “Let me sit a while, Zebediah. Your world is tiring for me. And this case – it’s so heavy.”

    “Don’t make me get my gun out, Sir,” Zeb said. “I got orders.”

    Sinking his webbed fingers into the cool, wet sand, Brad pushed himself to his aching feet, pulling the case with him. “Happy?”

    “I ain’t gonna be happy ‘til you ain’t my fish no more.”

    “How much longer do you think?”

    Zeb checked the morning sky, now pink with sunrise. “Not too much longer. Then you can get in your tank.”

    Brad didn’t make a face. Even the fresh water in his tank was better than breathing all this air.

    The world’s first Merman Ambassador stood patiently in the sand, chained to a briefcase crammed full of every pirate map to undersea treasure ever drawn. The MerPeople Sea Council had unanimously decided it was a small price to pay to stop the oil spills that were killing their people.