Pre-Podcast Live Writing Sprints – June, 2021

All Writing Sprints Written Prior to The Christian Indie Writers’ Podcast and authored by J. R. Nichols. Click Here To Read A Random Post!

Author’s Note: If you watched me writing LIVE on my facebook page, you can click on the corresponding date to see the text in full. I am not going to edit these, just copy/paste from my working document onto this page. -J.R. Nichols

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6.25.21 Today’s Prompt: Use the following Five Words In Your Story :  Script, handle, cliff-diving, quit, cruise

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“I can’t accept this role. The script is awful.”
Mira threw down the piece of dry toast and scowled at the hard boiled egg.
“Somebody get me a piece of cheesecake.” She cursed and flipped the breakfast tray from her lap, standing to pace the bedroom.
“Your robe,” Samantha offered, holding out the satin garment, but Mira flicked it away. “No. I’m too hot already. You trying to melt me, or something? Don’t bother, because you’re not in the will. Not after a breakfast like that.”
“The doctor says you have to watch your-”
“I’m seventy three years old, I’ll eat what I durn well choose.” the language was milder than Mira liked to use but Samantha didn’t respond well to profanity, and MIra hoped to keep her around longer than the previous three assistants she’d burned through.
If only she could have brought herself low enough to be kinder to Sebastion, Mira mused, examining her eyebrow arches in the mirror over her double vanity. She huffed, sending a wayward strand of hair flying up out of her line of vision, so she could better examine her lash line.
Still no new growth. She picked up the tube of serum she’d been talked into buying and flung it into the trash bin.
“That was 275$ lash regrow miracle from Zelle!” Samanth’s shocked response was just the fuel Mira needed.
“Well it’s $275 I’ll never get back, just like my eyelashes, apparently – and my girlish figure.” She looked at the lumpy mishapen form that had once been a swimsuit model’s physique in the full length mirror mounted to the linen cabinet wall. She minced from side to side as Samantha ran over a list of appointments and expectations for the week.
“Do we have any fried chicken?”
“Excuse me?” Again, the surprised face.
“What? You don’t ever get a hankering for fried chicken?”
“Not at four thirty in the morning, no,” Samanth admitted. There was a knock on the door and Gino came in. “Oh, excuse me,” he said, flinging a hand to cover his eyes and turning his back to the room.
“Get over yourself, Gino,” Mira said with a wave, but she did slip into the cotton robe she’d dropped to the floor the day before. Belting it, she asked the young man, “What’s the word, bird?”
“Well, I’m leaving, now, and thought you’d want to say goodbye.”
“You mean in case you don’t come back from your cliffdiving adventure?”
“It’s hardly cliff-diving. I’m just going to see the grand canyon.”
“Did you get the extra insurance?” Mira asked, padding down the hallway with her two assistants in tow. “You want to add the accidental injury indemnity if you’re going to be cliff diving.”
“For pete’s sake, I’m not going cliff diving.”
“Don’t let her get to you,” Samantha rolled her eyes as she poured each of them a hot cup of java from the freshly brewed pot. “She knows you’re not going cliff diving.”

“Do I?” Mira grinned, sipping from her coffee. “I think I have a pretty good handle on what it is you young people like to do.”
“You’re lucky I don’t quit,” Gino said, perching clenched fists on hips.
“Luck, schmuck. You love it here at Chez Mira. Admit it.”
“I certainly do not. The endless teasing is enough to get me medicated for anxiety.”
“Sure that’s the reason your medicated, MIra said,” flicking through a magazine. She stopped on an ad for Princess Cruise Lines.
“Now, there’s a vacation,” she said, moonily gazing at the picture of Belize on the postcard stuck to her refrigerator.
“Just a chilled out couple of weeks, floating out to sea – not an ounce of adrenaline in sight.”
“Sounds dull,” Samantha said.
“Agreed.” Mira did not think she had ever heard Gino more emphatic.
“Well, the first adventure we’re going to have is to my agent’s office,” Mira decided, folding the magazine closed. “We need to get to the bottom of why I keep getting offered so many terrible roles.”
“No, We need to get to the bottom of your to do list,” Samantha shot back. “Your deadlines are coming up and the things we need to have in place are just piling up.”
Mira sighed. “All right then. Make me a coffee to go, and we’ll swing by Hot Stacks before Morty’s to bring in sandwiches for breakfast. It’ll save us time. Then, on to your “to do’s,” I promise.”

Today’s prompt: I Survived Writing Camp

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Though it was raining the entire time, Kara had an amazing time at writing camp. The reason was because she’d really needed the getaway. The weather was irrelevant. Three days. Three blissful days of not a soul expecting a single thing out of her. 72 hours. 72 hours of doing what she wanted, when she wanted. She pooped alone. She sang in the shower. She let her coffee go cold and nobody came along to dump it in the sink.

She ate crackers in bed, smeared with butter. She left the stick and the plastic knife on the comforter next to her. She ordered room service – and didn’t look at the prices.

She ate it on the balcony, because eating it in the tub didn’t sound hygienic, but she ignored germs enough to at least make use of the whirlpool jets – and nobody got after her for splashing the floor.

She rented a pay per view movie, and shut it off in the middle because it was idiotic. She relished the idea that she would sign the tab later with a flourish, with nary a care that she had “wasted $3.99.”

When reflecting later upon her time at Writing Camp, There wasn’t a “butt,” or an “if only,” in sight – she had gotten from Writing Camp exactly what she’d needed.

On the last morning, she went to the lobby and sat down with a cup of the complimentary cocoa. Twirling her wheeled suitcase, she smiled at a friendly looking woman wearing a lanyard that had been handed out in the beginning. 

“Some weather we’re having?” The woman said, and Kara thought, “oh no.” Had she invited engagement? She played back the scenario and realized her mistake – eye contact.
The woman came over and slid into the seat across from her. “I can’t believe we were actually rained out,” she said. “I spent the entire time in my room. There was nothing to do.”

“Interesting,” Kara said, sipping from her cocoa. What else was there to say?

A trio of chatting writers approached – one short man and two even shorter women, all sporting the event lanyards.  They clustered around Kara and started to discuss all the cancellations and drama the poor weather had caused for the camp.
“Will you excuse me?” Kara said, and she slipped out onto the patio, to enjoy her cocoa in the rain.

Today’s Prompt: “Where did I put my glasses?”

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“Where did I put my glasses?”

Timmy glared at Mr. Fitz as he rummaged blindly through his attache and silently added this to the growing list of expressions he promised himself he would never say as an old person. So far the list included, “don’t talk with your mouth full,” and “children should be seen and not heard.” This would be the third but not final addition to this list, he realized, and his mind got carried away by thoughts of the number three and its inherent perfection.

“Hi there.” Bonnie Millington slid into the seat across from him. She had the hot lunch. She always bought the hot lunch. Timmy wondered why she would come to the reject table to have her lunch. That’s what the other kids called it, he knew, only they used a much meaner word that started with an r. Timmy knew Mr. Fitz knew the other kids used that word, but Mr. Fitz never did anything to stop it. Tommy thought it was because grown ups with perfect little angel children like Bonnie Millington didn’t want to hear that their precious angels would use such a word. Or, more likely, it was because most of them would use that very word themselves, if they thought they could get away with it.

“Mr. Fitz, that’s a really nice tie.” Bonnie said.

Fitz turned into a flubbering mess. If timmy wasn’t already put off his sandwich by having the mere form and presence of a Bonnie Millington at his table, he was after witnessing her typical verbal bologna vomit.

 “I was wondering if you could help me with something,” Bonnie said. She smiled and her teeth were perfect. White and straight. Her makeup was expertly applied. She rested professionally manicured nails against his jacket sleeve as she spoke.

“I’m sure whatever you need can be managed,” Fitz said, the picture of sympathetic understanding.

Bonnie needed a recommendation. A letter from Mr. Fitz, stating she was “perfectly suited” for some position, or such. Timmy wondered what was so special about old Fitzy that anyone would give credence to a recommendation from him. He further wondered how willing Fitz would be to help with Timmuy’s current problem – figuring out how to manage Tara with Mom back at her old ways. 

Timmy wondered what Mr. Fitz would have to say to recommend him. There wasn’t much. He’d been obedient enough, but old Fitzy never really asked much of him. He was a “special case,” after all – a delicate flower, who mustn’t be challenged to try too hard.

Maybe He could give him a win, though, Timmy thought, and actually start talking this year.  

There was jostling behind him and then Timmy felt cold liquid on his head, running down his neck and soaking the back of his shirt. He shreiked. There was laughter and an apologetic voice. Timmy understood what had happened – of course, something had been spilled by those walking behind. Nothing to panic about. So why couldn’t he stop the screaming? Why couldn’t he stop?

He looked at Bonnie. Her hand was clamped to her mouth, her eyes were wide and telegraphed sympathetic amazement, barely concealing humor. His eyes swung around the room to take in the pointing and jeering.

Finally, he locked eyes with Mr. Fitz.

Mr. Fitz Frowned. “There is no reason to act that way, Timmy, it was an accident.”

At that moment, Timmy decided to give the school another couple of years to figure it out, and the door on the ark slammed shut.

06.04.21 Today’s prompt: Use the following five words in your story: Laboratory Wheel Policy Edition Appearance

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I wasn’t sure why my wheel had to be kept out in the laboratory. I could understand the kiln – being as it needed to be heated up to something like a thousand degrees in order to turn what I had on the spinner into somethin someone could eventually put a flower and a bunch of water into.

Had to get the glaze on before it was fired though.


Another step to take. 

One at a time.

Each in its time.

I didn’t like my technique with the glaze. I knew it would be streaky. I decided it would become a statement piece in that moment, the streaks reminiscent of the tears that fell onto my pillow and hte water that slid down the panes of windows in all those sad sad songs, only this was my pain, this running of glaze down the side of a pot, in all its jagged rivulets and runs.

Later, my mother would wonder why i decided i’d never sell that pot.

The light flipped on and michael slipped in behind me. “How can you see in the dark?”

“Turn it off,” I muttered, my eyes slammed shut against the intrusion. He persisted with his hands but I elbowed him away. Lights off! I demanded. 

Of course, my wish was my commands but the hands did not return. Of course they did not return. I had chosen the work over him at a sensitive moment. We both knew.

“You want to talk about it?” he said, as I cleaned and tidied. Again wondering why I was forced to share the lab I slammed th zipper to hard and it snagged on my case.

“Not really.” I said. I eyed the pot. Couldn’t he look at the pot and see how I was feeling? I had made that pot over the course of our relationship. It listed to one side and would barely stay aright. Now it was smeared and crying.
I wasn’t crying anymore, though.

“Look,” I said, slinging my satchel over my shoulder. “I’m having my wheel moved out to the barn, next to beauty, where it should have been put in the first place.”

“Pottery and hay don’t mx-”

“Cut it with that crap,” I said. “It’s the kiln that’s the issue and we both know it.”

He crossed his arms – ever the petulant child. 

“Tell me there’s a reason I can’t have my way?” I dared him.

He could not answer.

“Very well then. I said. Talk to you soon.”

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