Prompt #20

When writing is going well, almost nothing is important enough to stop you: the sink full of dishes, your cat yeowling to be fed, that pile of work you’ve been putting off all day. When writing is not going so well, the world becomes rich with distractions: those dishes should be done, you should really check twitter, look at all this stuff in your Netflix queue! This prompt is designed to make your distractions work for you and your writing.

Take a line of dialogue from something that you are reading or watching instead of writing, and use it as either a title, or a line in a story. Headline of a Gawker think piece? Great. Something weird Maury Povich said to one of his guests? Use it. Something that Spock just said to Captain Kirk? Make it your own.

Choose your sentence wisely. Specific is better than vague, but you don’t want it so specific that it can’t be taken out of its original context. To go with the Star Trek example: “Dammit, Jim, I’m a doctor, not a machine” wouldn’t work for this prompt. It’s too specific to Star Trek. On the other hand, a perfect Star Trek sentence would be, “It could be some form of space madness.” It is evocative enough that, out of context, it could lead to new ideas.

The challenge with this piece is to take your found sentence and divorce it from its original context. Make it a part of something that has no relationship to its source, while keeping the sentence intact. Make it completely new.

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