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I can hold enough ink for many weeks incessant writing. Yes, I am much fatter and longer than my descendants, the modern, fountain pens. It is so because the people in those early years of this century were more concerned about utility than about delicacy. A few days after I had arrived in Singapore from England, a Chinese youth celebrated his 21st birthday. His father, who was very fond of his promising son, bought me as a present for the occasion. After a few months, my young master left for my native land. He stayed there for a number of years and passed many examinations. He was a hard-working chap and was exceptionally successful at anything he set himself to do. But a part of his success he definitely owed to my willingness to work for him. When he had to stop to fill me during an examination. In those days people wrote with horrible steel pens.

Bright candidates lost many a precious minute of their examination time in that ‘dip-and write’ game. When my master returned from abroad, i was still by his side. We were good friends now, and my master felt there to be something missing whenever we happened to be apart. But like all precious friendships, ours came to sudden and sad end. One-day master returned home late after a long walk. My master was not at all aware of the loss when he reached home. Next morning when he found me missing, an extensive search was made but all his efforts to recover were in vain. In due course of time, some laborers came along to clear the drain of the silt that had almost choked it. One of them happened to see me as he was loading the silt into a handcart. He washed me and put me into his pocket. One day, when he was off duty, he took me to a pen-repairer cleaned me all over and sold me, at considerable profit to a clerk. Being out of pocket, one day, the clerk pawned me for a few rupees, but he never returned to claim me back. Since then I have been an occasional visitor to various Pawnshops in the country. My last master pawned me quite a long while ago. It is evident that he will not turn up to claim me. I am once more for sale, but nobody is willing to buy me. Maybe, I shall have stayed here indefinitely.

How can you work with that, or change it up a little while still giving the reader what they expect? Autobiography. If you had 15 minutes to tell someone who you are, what would you tell them? Write about a childhood family tradition. Write about your current traditions and the thoughts that you want to convey through them. Write a summary of your parents’ life thus far. Write the story of how you came by your scars. Be sure to describe the scars, including their locations. Describe the biggest and/or most important project you worked on for an employer. How long ago was that? Is the final product still in use? Write about someone discovering a key. Develop a character or create a scene in the style of a “film noire”. Create a legend, myth, or fairytale about falling stars. Write a list of “circumstances” that you can use as prompts for a storyline. Throw in a touch of fantasy (e.g. a garden where people grow small if they smell a certain plant, a person recovering from a car wreck discovers a conspiracy).

Select one and create the story. Write allowing yourself a sense of humor and relaxation. Write a character sketch exploring three aspects of the character’s life (home life, childhood, dating, hobbies, marriage, career, foibles, etc.). Create a progressive story chain that follows the trail of an object, or begins with the introduction of one character leading into the introduction of another, producing a chain of unrelated events that are linked by one momentary “shared” element. Use “symphony” or “circus” as a metaphor for a city day. Write a story about or tribute to an author, poet or musician (fictional or nonfictional). Write a story that begins with your character peering out from behind a curtain. Write a story about a person who has an obsession with shoes and claims he can predict a person’s future by the shoes they wear. Write a story about a family vacation at a beach house. Consider writing it in the form of an one-act play.

Write a children’s story about a crow who either is learning to read, or who writes words for others to read. Write a story about a person who is illiterate. Write a short story involving the sale of a car. Journals are a must for writers. Here are a few of my favorite journals that I write in each and every day. Pick one out to start this fun, creative writing project in! Want to Add Your Story? Take the inverse of “regression”, or past lives, and write a story about “progression”, or future lives. Write series of short sketches in which one character is relating stories or experiences to another. Write a list of five first and last names. Select one of the names and write about the character. Write about “hands” in three different genres. Write a personal essay based on the most memorable/ poignant purchase that you have made.

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