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Ever wonder what it's like to be in that moment between struggling artist and published author? Read on and find out.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Writing Prod

            This week I will be headed up to the LDStoryMakers conference. Because of that there will be no posts for Wednesday and Friday. (Sorry) However, you can expect to hear about the conference next week.
            My mad push to finish my WIP has paid off and my novel End Times is days away from sending off to the publisher. Boo-yah!

            For this week’s writing prompt I am presenting what I call Mix and Mesh. There’s bound to be a better name for it and feel free to suggest one. The basic premise of this prompt is that you randomly take two stories and mix them together. You find a way to put them together in a way that blends key elements from both stories, but in a way that gives you a finished product that is unique.
            Easier said than done, I suppose.
            Keep in mind that there is a lot to work with in a story; plot, theme, character, setting, mood, conflict, etc. Not only can each of these be meshed together in varying degrees to come up with a nearly endless amount of possibilities, but you can choose to take any literal element from a story and make it figurative, and visa versa.
            Anyone familiar with my blog will probably know that I do a fair amount of these just to be funny. This sort of prompt definitely lends itself to that. However, if you’re serious about it this method of creating a story can be especially effective if you draw from powerful stories to begin with.
            In my mind, the best thing about this sort of prompt is that it can help you create a cross genre tale that could really break through. Just imagine a hero facing Nazi cowboys, or working his way through Zombie space. (Okay, it could just be a matter of me being a little tweaked in the first place that makes this sort of possibility so exciting.)

            For my example I am going to make use of two Oscar winning movies. This will allow me to post a couple of pictures (which I need to do more often) to illustrate my point. Those films are:

Ben Hur (1959)

Titanic (1997)

Sea of Fire – After encountering a powerful religious leader, a fisherman and his family are converted to a faith the preaches peace and tolerance that are at odds with the vicious laws and violent nature of the country in which they live. A long time personal rival uses his position as a judge to falsely accuse the family of treason and they are forced to work as slaves during a barbaric race across the ocean. If they win they will be set free to colonize the newly discovered land. If not, they will remain as slaves or die in one of the many sea-battles that are a normal part of the race.

            As always, if you want to participate write up a small story (100-200 words) or the elevator pitch for a novel / screenplay. Then post it, or a link to it, in the comments section below. I’ve included an example that I made up this morning.

            Okay, I couldn’t help myself. Here’s another example just for laughs.

Gladiator (2000)

Chicago (2002)

I’m Spartacus – Cross Gladiator with Chicago and you get a musical set in the violent, bloodthirsty height of the Roman Empire. Sing along with the cast through rousing numbers such as No, No, I’m Spartacus and When In Rome – Kill the Romans. Follow Spartacus and his band of gladiators as they break out of the Roman prison and fight their way to Broadway where they realize their unspoken dreams and tell the story of their lives on stage. 


  1. LOL, nice mash-ups :)
    I'm excited to see you at Storymakers!!
    AND CONGRATS on finishing your novel. I liked what I read.

    1. Thank you. I really have fun with the prompts.

      I am so excited to see the fabulous and famous Small Town Shelly Brown at the conferrece. (Hopefully your hubby too.) This will be the first year that I will know a few people when I attend. It's nice to be able to say Hi to someone you know.

      Thanks again. I am so happy to finally be finished with it. I have high hopes that it will be published. I appreciate your having read the first part of it. Beginnings are the crucial part of a book and getting good suggestions on it really helped me out.