Writing Exercise: Last Meals

random scribblings, Writing, writing inspiration

I’m not 100% familiar with Death Row. Sure, I know a few things thanks to The Green Mile etc, but as a citizen of a country that doesn’t have the death penalty, my knowledge is quite slim, I don’t know how “things” work, but I thought that this writing exercise sounded interesting.

I found it on the Writers & Artists’ Yearbook Facebook page, and I instantly knew which character I would use for this exercise:

Writing Exercise: Last Meals

If your main character was on death row, what would his/her last meal be? Describe it.

Example:

Last Meal

Image sourced from here.

My Writing:

Lucy Angelus

– 18 years old

– Murder, fraud and perverting the course of justice

Roast chicken dinner, with mashed potatoes, carrots, peas, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, two Yorkshire Puddings and lots of gravy. Followed by a Chocolate Brownie Sundae. Lucy would eat every single vegetable, even the ones that she doesn’t like – especially the ones that she doesn’t like. She would save a couple of spoonfuls of Sundae for her father, because she always let him share a little…but no brownie. Her father was never allowed any of the brownie.

It surprised me how easily this came to me, and how well I still know Lucy’s personality and temperament, despite the fact that I haven’t worked on her story for quite a long time. Perhaps now is the time to pick up where I left off with her story…

Random Scribblings: Memories

random scribblings

Okay, so today I wanted to share a piece of writing that I wrote way back in 2007. It’s not finished, but I decided to leave it that way, because to even attempt to complete it now would just strip this piece of everything that makes this what it is.

To explain: This is something that I wrote about my own personal experience, when I went to see My Chemical Romance in Manchester in March 2007.

I hope that you enjoy reading this as much as the memory has made me smile 🙂

We walk up Manchester’s Deansgate, casually discussing how busy a big city is a half past six compared to where we live. There’s a slight chill in the air, and I thank my boyfriend (silently in my head!) for having the better judgement and forcing me to put my coat on. We turn the corner and join the end of the queue. “It doesn’t seem too long,” my boyfriend beams at me, and we hug ourselves grateful when the queue appears to move ahead quite quickly. Our gratitude however, fades away as we turn a corner and realise that what we’d thought was a short queue, was in fact twisting up a long slope towards the entrance. “You have to be kidding!” A girl behind us exclaims, “Last time we just walked straight in!” “MEXICAN WAVE EVERYBODY!” A voice overhead yells, and the front of the queue begins a Mexican wave that falters out around the middle, “BOOO HISSS!!!” Everyone giggles, “COME ON PEOPLE!” The unknown voice yells again, sounding mockingly angry, “MEXICAN WAVE!” Again, the front of the queue joins in with the Mexican wave that fades away in exactly the same place as before. Everyone appears to laugh and groan at the same time. “This is gonna be an awesome crowd!” Someone says from behind, and she couldn’t have been more right!

You’d almost be forgiven for expecting a My Chemical Romance gig to be full of depressed teenagers, dressed all in black miserably watching a band that sing about death, but the reality was completely different. As we entered the main arena, an enormous cheer that we eventually discovered was brought on by a “CHEER IF YOU LOVE MCR” type of message immediately greeted us. And for the forty-five minute wait between us finding our seats and the support act, Thursday, donning the stage; we were kept amused by individual’s text messages that were aired on a huge computerised screen. By the way, to the bloke telling his girlfriend he was having a baby, congratulations, and I counted 27 guys in yellow jackets (security guards to people who don’t understand!!) The atmosphere in the arena as it slowly fills up is just electric, free of aggression and loud-mouthed idiots that I’ve experienced at previous gigs. Even my boyfriend, who is more into Depeche Mode can’t help but get excited by the buzz of the entire affair.

Before we know it, the arena is black and the crowd screams, as the air fills with the strumming of guitars, and the screeches of Thursday’s lead singer. although what he’s singing, is completely beyond me, you have to admit that guy is full of energy

 It is sad that I didn’t write more, but hey c’est la vie.

 

 

 

 

Random Scribblings #6

random scribblings, Writing

Inspiration: I won this in a Giveaway run by Jade Boylan (check out her amazing artwork), and this watch/necklace has the most beautiful tick that I just fell in love with, so this random scribblings is inspired by the thoughts that the sound of the watch conjured up for me.

Tick tock. Tick tock. Tick tock. The clock sits on the edge of the large oak desk that is virtually swamped in paperwork. Maps, atlas’, books about adventure, exploration and excitement. The walls are high, full of row after row of big books with exotic authors and incredible titles. They shelves are so high that there is a tall wooden ladder on rails to reach them. Along the far wall is the most magnificent spiral stair case that I have ever seen, leading up to another level filled with even more bookshelves.

Only a short piece today, but it got me writing, so I’m happy 🙂

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Why Failure is Good for the Soul

random scribblings, Writing

“No.” It’s a horrible word isn’t it? Crammed with its negativity that fills us with dread and it’s a word that is so often followed with a great sense of failure. What starts as “No, you can’t sleep over at your friends” was a failure to persuade your mum to let you sleep over, whilst “No, I don’t want to go out with you”, is a failure to snag yourself a boy/girlfriend.

As we grow up it seems that the world is just bursting with this excess of “No”. “No, you can’t have a mortgage with us.” “No, you were not successful with your job application.” “No, you’re not coming into this swanky A-List Night Club.” Of course some aren’t the end of the world, in fact, ultimately none of them really are, never were and most definitely never will be.

We might treat the word “No” as a failure, but the real question is: Is failure really such a bad thing?

The point is that everyone fails, because it’s not possible for everyone to succeed all of the time. Not everyone can get that one job, whilst that hunky guy can only pick one girl. And if someone tries to tell you that they have never failed at anything in their entire life, chances are that they are probably lying.

Pick Yourself Up

Failure is never easy, but the way to deal with it is to have a little cry and then pick yourself up and look at the positives.

Dealing with failure forces us to re-evaluate what we want out of life, and re-evaluation is always a great thing, because it also forces us to face areas of our lives that we’ve perhaps been neglecting. But don’t think that just because you’ve failed at something then that must mean that that obviously isn’t what you should be doing. That isn’t necessarily true. If you don’t get a job, maybe you just weren’t suitable for that specific job. Maybe the company wasn’t right for you. There are always other jobs and other opportunities.

I’m an honest believer that it is essential for a person to hit rock bottom at least once in their life, purely so that they can see, more easily, how far they have climbed and can truly appreciate what they have achieved.

Even the Best People Fail

Albert Einstein is probably one of the most well-known geniuses of the 20th Century. A German theoretical physicist, Einstein was the brain behind the theory of relativity. However, whilst his theories made him a considerably “successful” person both during and after his life, Einstein was not without his failures. Indeed, his entire career was filled with mistakes in his theories and calculations. Did he let those mistakes hold him back? Of course not, and it actually took Einsteain several attempts to get the whole E = mc2 matter correct.

Winston Churchill was the British Prime Minister throughout the majority of World War II and is considered to be a successful man, in fact, he is probably the most well-known Prime Minister due to his successes, however, it was Churchill who once said:

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”

Thomas Edison, the first man to patent devices that led to the invention of a great many of the things that we use today such as the camera and light bulb was quoted as saying:

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

It’s also important to remember that life never goes where you intend it to, because virtually nothing ever goes to plan. The secret to failure is twisting it around and turning it into a success. Okay, so you didn’t get that job, but if you had, you wouldn’t have got that even better job a few months later, or you wouldn’t have realised what an awful company it would have been to work for. 
Believe that everything happens for a reason.

Random Scribblings #5

Fiction, random scribblings

Prompt: She stared into the darkness.

She stared into the darkness. Well, what else was she going to do, at two o’clock in the morning, with a raging headache and Baby Girl playing havoc on her bladder. Lucy considered getting out of bed, and going to the bathroom, for the tenth time that night (yes, she really had been counting!), but it was so comfy here and warm, and nope, she was going to have to go.

The laminate floor in the bathroom was freezing cold, but she couldn’t remember where she’d put her slippers. She could never remember where she left them, or pretty much anything, in this ridiculous flat. It was too small, too cramped and there was nowhere near enough room for one person, let alone two and all of Baby Girl’s stuff. Goodness knows what was going to happen once Baby Girl actually landed, and started spreading out around the place, which really was not going to happen, because there was nowhere for her to spread out to. Heck, this kid was never going to learn to crawl, or walk, or perhaps even breathe, because that would take up too much space. Of course, Lucy was mostly joking. Mostly. She couldn’t deny that her due date was making her nervous, of course it was. She’d never had a baby before, she’d never had to take care of anyone before. Well, unless you count the mouse that lived in the space behind her wardrobe, at the old flat, but Lucy really didn’t. She shuddered at the memory, and flushed the loo. She stood in front of the sink, and looked at herself in the mirror. She looked dreadful. Whoever said that morning sickness was the worst part of pregnancy, was clearly deluding themselves.

I find it interesting that I went back to “Lucy” with this prompt, because it’s the first time that I’ve ever written anything for that story, in third person, and I loved how easily it flowed, whilst still allowing me to get into her head. Seriously considering writing it completely in third person.

Random Scribblings #4

random scribblings, Writing, writing inspiration

Prompt: Random Late-Night Ponderings

Midnight. The clock chimes, and the lights dim, as heads rest on softened pillows. The world is quiet. Silent. Almost. And yet, the world is so much more alive inside my head. I wish that I was an early bird that rises with the lark (as they say), and has everything in hand by lunch time. But no, I am a night owl.  I seem to be even more inspired when I know that I have to be up early in the morning. It’s almost as if my body is sitting and laughing at me. Taunting me even. And yet, this is the perfect time to write. Why? Because everyone else is so busy sleeping, that there are more ideas and inspirations floating around for me to grab hold of.

I’m afraid of the dark, and yet darkness brings my creativity, as my mind overflows with words, and images, and characterisation, and I have practically no hope of getting to sleep. Not yet, anyway.

The hum of the fridge and the rumble of the 12:13 freight train. They are the soundtrack to my night time existence.

I sometimes fret about the idea that I can’t remember a lot of the things that I learnt in English, at School. What’s a metaphor? A simile? A miasma? What does onomatopoeia mean? And is that even how you spell it? How many syllables make up each line of a Haiku? I think I know the answer to some, but I’m never really sure. But then, are we so obsessed with the English “rule book” that we’re so busy procrastinating and we forget the most important part of writing: the actual writing.

There are no rules. Who says that a story has to start at the beginning? That it has to be narrated by the main character? Where is it stated that your Chapters have to be x-pages long?

So much time is wasted trying to check these tiny boxes, but we just need to actually write.

And, who says a whole chapter can’t be entirely dialogue. If it makes a point, who cares?

Write as you want, because for now, no one else matters.

Random Scribblings #3

random scribblings, Writing

Prompt: The Colour of Hunger

The colour of hunger is green, for nausea. Green for that feeling in the pit of your stomach that feels like it’s about to ingest itself, turn itself inside out and take the rest of you with it. Brown for that strong craving to devour a huge bar of chocolate, or red for a big pile of chips oozing with Tomato Ketchup. Hunger is multicoloured for the hallucinations that drive you mad, as you dream of cakes, and biscuits and every thing that is bad for you. The colour of hunger is green for the lettuce, the cucumber and the apples that you should be pining over, but what you really want is the green icing, or the green wrapping on Christmas Tree Chocolates.

The colour of hunger is black, for the darkness that overwhelms the mind, and slowly and  meticulously drives you insane. All you can think about is food, and all you want is food. You can’t concentrate. You don’t know where you are any more. Lost in an endless abyss of nothingness.

The funny thing about this prompt, is that it feels like it is more inspired by cravings for bad food, than actual hunger. Living in Western Society, how many of us really know what it is like to go hungry? And I mean truly hungry? Hunger in the sense of not having any clue when you might eat again. It might be tomorrow, it might not be until next week. The idea of that is scary, and in that sense, the colour of hunger is more likely to be grey, for confusion, not black and not white, because they’re too clean-cut. No, grey because it’s nondescript. It’s not dark, it’s not light, it’s fear for the future. Fear for never knowing if you’ll be able to survive. I can’t even imagine how awful that would be, and in that sense hunger is blue. Blue for sadness, knowing that people are forced to live like this.