The Ink Well Prompt #72 - Plus Weekly Challenge and Prize Announcement

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Image source: Ikut on Pixabay

Hello and welcome to the The Ink Well weekly fiction prompt and prize announcement! The Ink Well is a Hive blockchain-based social media community of creative writers. If you love to write short stories, we invite you to join us. Or peruse the work of our community members.

Note: We always launch our prompt posts with important information. So be sure to check it out first! Then we invite you to read on and see what we have in store for this week's prompt.

Important FAQs about The Ink Well!

Here are answers to some Frequently Asked Questions about The Ink Well.

What Is The Ink Well All About?

The Ink Well is a short story community. This means we only accept short fiction. (Fiction means stories that came from your imagination, not from real life.)

It also means:

  • No novels, chapter stories or multi-part stories
  • No poems
  • No introduction posts
  • No essays or other non-fiction
  • No memes

Just fictional short stories!

The Ink Well is all about creativity, quality, community, and engagement. As such, we ask the following:

  • Please take the time to get to know the community and read other writers' work. Everyone who posts in The Ink Well is expected to read and comment on at least two other stories for each piece you post.
  • See our catalog of fiction writing tips and make use of our resources. (Many of our writers are developing awesome skills, and you can too!)
  • Put effort into your posts. Review and edit your content for errors before publishing.

What are the community rules?

You can find our community rules at the top of The Ink Well community (right side of the page).

Please read the rules before posting in The Ink Well, as we outline the "do's and don'ts." If you can't find them, you can read them here.

Our community rules are designed to make our community a safe, welcoming, plagiarism-free space for self-publishing original short stories. We do not allow stories depicting violence, brutality, or abuse of women, children or animals. If you have questions, please read this article explaining our stance on violence.

What does it take to get rewards in The Ink Well??

We refer you to the above description of what The Ink Well is about. If you are not getting great rewards, it is likely for one of the following reasons:

  • Your story has many grammatical errors. (This is easily fixed with the tips in our post, Help for the Grammatically Challenged.)
  • Your story lacks some important elements of good fiction, such as character development, dialog, scene details or a story arc. (See our catalog of fiction writing tips for information on these important aspects of short stories.)
  • Your story lacks originality or does not follow our community rules.

Weekly Challenge and Prize Announcement

Time for the prize announcement and new challenge!

Last week's prompt was proud and the skill targeted was to work on describing vivid characters.

Great work, everyone! There were some amazing character descriptions that focused on the prompt, proud. Our selections of this week's winner and honorable mentions reflect how well writers dealt with this prompt and character description challenge in their stories.

Selecting honorable mentions and the winner is never an easy choice. A significant factor that influences the decision is quality of engagement with others in the community.

Here are this week's honorable mentions, all of which provided strong character descriptions in their stories.

“Never in my life had I seen someone so self centered, selfish, sardonic, stern, egocentric and proud as him. He couldn’t even make it to my Graduation, he never made it to any of them right from my high school graduation to my university graduation and now I just bagged my masters degree and he isn’t even here. He isn’t here to congratulate me.”

Since childhood, Anton has been shy, easily worried, easily nervous, and awkward when interacting with other people, especially with strangers. With this personality, it was not uncommon for Anton at school to be bullied by his classmates. Especially when it comes to math, Anton is often teased to the point of crying because his grades are bad.

He thinks about how his capable assistant has everything he has always wanted in a woman, especially the emotional and sentimental qualities that have him smitten. Every time he looks at her, he is in awe of the beautiful look in her radiant blue eyes. Such a perfect and unique blue. Her face, which reminds him of his wife's face, is adorned with almost perfectly arched eyebrows that serve as a frame for almond-shaped eyes the color of the bluest sky, a small, well-profiled nose, which is centered in a harmonious, heart-shaped facial set, culminating in a very slightly pronounced chin as a base for lips in an almost exact proportion between thick and thin.

He turned to find a young woman staring daggers at him and he knew the situation was fast getting out of hand by the second. Many people whom he assumed were staff were already rushing out of the building to check what was happening.
The woman ran towards him as she grabbed her son from his hand. The shock of her scream had almost made him forget he was carrying an unconscious boy.

I wiped my tears, determined to get my place in the priesthood back. It was rightfully mine regardless of my father's instructions to the priest-makers. I pinned my rhinestone headband into my hair, the sparkling stone rested on the centre of my forehead like a drop of water. It was the symbol of my priesthood. I smoothened my orange chiffon gown belted around the waist and stomped out of the house.

And the winner of the proud, character description challenge is... @itsostylish with the story Thorns of Pride.

Jervis lived for his garden and he was renowned town-wide for the quality of his salad leaves and the beauty of his roses. Jervis believed in hard work and living, what he called, a “clean life”. He kept his little cottage spic-and-span, and was often spotted by one or other of the village dames, carefully selecting the best cleaning necessities from the aisles of the local supermarket.

Congratulations to @itsostylish, who will receive 5 Hive as the winner!

Okay, let's review fiction entries from last week's prompt and launch a new one.

Stories From the Previous Week

@diebitch
@farahikram
@kemmyb
@raymondpeter
@buezor
@madamnaomi
@mypathtofire
@hazmat
@dwixer
@daniella619
@abigail04
@assegai
@bettyhandayani
@fragozar01
@nurudeen081
@restcity
@katleya
@zyzymena
@iyimoga
@lightpen
@kelseyimoh
@kingobonnaya
@cool08
@fantom22
@samdove
@mrenglish
@lordtimoty
@merit.ahama

Thank you to everyone who posted a story for last week's prompt!

This Week’s Prompt

The inkwell is fortunate to have many members who are eager to write. However, the curation team does not have infinite resources. In order to be fair to all writers, we have decided to ask our members to publish only one story per week. If members choose to publish more than that, they may. However, only one story will be curated.

It would be wise to use talent on the best story you can write so you can receive the optimal curation. Remember, Quality over Quantity. Moving forward the Ink Well Team believes this will provide a better experience for writers and curators.

At last, the prompt of the week!
This week's prompt is guide. With the skill challenge this week we return to one of the most powerful aspects of a story: the hook. The first line, the one that draws a reader in and holds the reader's attention, is called the hook. You can read about this in @jayna's article, Hook Your Readers in the Inkwell's Catalog of Fiction Writing Tips.

What should you do with the prompt, guide? And how do you handle the skill challenge? Here are some additional details:

Guide: This is a powerful word with many implications. Lighthouses guide. So do counselors in school. So do parents. So does conscience. We can guide, or we can offer guidance. There are so very many things you can do with this prompt. Applying the skill challenge, creating a hook, for this word should be a productive exercise.

Establishing a 'hook': You can write a gem of a story, the most engrossing and enthralling tale, but if you lose your reader in the first paragraph, no one will ever enjoy your creative masterpiece. Hooking the reader, persuading the reader to stay with your story, is the most basic challenge a writer faces. Once again, please refer to @jayna's essay, Hook Your Readers, for help in developing 'hooking' strategies.

Some examples of how you might create a 'hook' with the prompt in mind:

Flames shot out from its engine as the plane attempted a landing without radio guidance.

She tapped her cane on the ground and called frantically for her guide dog.

The hikers gasped as their guide plummeted from the cliff and dangled from his rope.

A week from now, we will select a winning story that demonstrates this skill and utilizes the prompt. Of course we will also be looking for overall quality in the winning story. Good luck!

Note: As always, please avoid violent, gory, bloody, brutal, sexist or racist themes and language, erotica and other NSFW (not safe for work) content, and stories featuring abuse of women, children or animals. (We have a complete article about The Ink Well stance on violence and brutality for more information.)

If you don't feel inspired by this prompt or the featured image, feel free to peruse any of our past prompts or our collection of idea-generators:

Weekly Prompt Rules:

  1. Deadline: You have a week to write for the prompt, until the next one is posted. (Note: You can write for any of the prompts anytime. This is just a guideline to be included in the weekly round-up in the next prompt post.)
  2. Story link: Post your story in The Ink Well community, and post a link to your story in a comment on this post.
  3. Hashtags: Please use these hashtags: #fiction #writing #inkwellprompt #theinkwell and #dreemport, if you are also posting your story to the DreemPort site.
  4. COMMUNITY SUPPORT: Visit the work of at least two other community members and comment on their work.
  5. Title: The title is up to you. You can come up with any title you wish. You do not need to name it after the prompt or include the prompt word.
  6. Images: Please only use images from license free and creative commons sites, like Pixabay, Unsplash and Pexels. Images you find on the Internet are copyright protected and cannot be used. Be sure to provide the source link.
  7. Length: We request that story word counts are a maximum of 1,500 words maximum length (preferably 750-1000 words). This is just a guideline. Longer stories are okay too, but they tend to get fewer readers. Additionally, The Ink Well admins appreciate keeping to that maximum story length for our time management. Thank you!

Reminder: Be sure to also read our community rules. The reason for the repeat reminder is that we see many stories describing brutality of women, children, or animals, or that have excessive gore or violence, and we must mute them. Please do not post these stories in The Ink Well. We want our community to be a safe and comfortable place for all readers.

Here are the past prompts if you would like to use them or refer back to them:

Thank you for being a part of The Ink Well!
@jayna, @agmoore, @gracielaacevedo, and @yaziris

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We would like to invite lovers of creative writing to visit The Ink Well, a Hive community started by @raj808 and @stormlight24 and run by @jayna, @agmoore, @gracielaacevedo and @yaziris.

We also invite you to follow The Ink Well curation trail on the Hive blockchain, at https://hive.vote/. Simply navigate to the curation trail section and search for theinkwell (all one word with no @ symbol) and our trail will pop up as an option.

Similarly delegations are possible on Hive using the fantastic https://peakd.com/ Hive Blockchain front end. If you wish to delegate to @theinkwell, you can do this from the wallet section of https://peakd.com/

A big thank you to all of our delegators:
@zeurich, @jayna, @felt.buzz, @marcybetancourt, @marlyncabrera, @stormcharmer, @generikat, @agmoore, @iamraincrystal, @preparedwombat, @gracielaacevedo, @chocolatescorpi, @kirlos, @josemalavem, @morey-lezama, @sayury, @evagavilan2 and @deraaa.

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