Writing Prompt To the Darker Side

129MP_starling top of pine in october 2015I enjoy writing from prompts and creating them as “stream of consciousness” writings to work with and mold later.  I do this type of writing using many different mediums as inspiration – photographs, words, tarot cards, song titles, movie titles, etc. I then, at a later date take these “sparks” that end up being about 250 words each and flesh them out into more fully-developed outlines, and eventually into fully-realized stories, either short stories or novel-length.

Sometimes these “stream of consciousness” writings bring me a fuller understanding of a story I’m already working on, perhaps giving me some character insight or world insight. Or they could evolve into fresh story ideas.  I’ve developed this “stream of consciousness” writing into a ritual that I do each morning. I look at it as “warm-up” exercises to get my brain engaged in the creative writing mode for any given day. And if it’s going to be a busy day, perhaps it being the only writing I get done that day,  it is something more than nothing. And as we know, we can’t edit a blank page, thus at least 250 words is something to work with later.

I’ve begun to  create several of my 6-word prompts each week. I’m afraid they’re all a bit dark, but I like writing dark. Anyway, I like prompts, they spark ideas for stories, and I like designing and working with images for them. I do a lot of photography myself, so I’m starting to use less stock images, and more of my own images. But that also gives me a different eye to viewing when I’m out photographing, as I consider what images I might photograph and refine to use with these prompts.

I have enough prompts now to start thinking about creating a collection of prompts. So, I’ve started designing them with that in mind as I move forward. I thought I’d share this one. I’ll try to share one or two a week just to throw out some inspiration and something different to work with that others might enjoy as well.

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Maybe this will spark something intriguing for you, or maybe it will be another one that I post. Right-click and “save as” if you would like.

 

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Haevyn and Emotional Cost

 

Haevyn_smIn Quentopolis women have been relegated to secondary status in many cases. Women of the working class society, lead very difficult lives. The Elite are treated more as pampered dolls, cosseted and spoiled, to be seen but not heard, with some similarity to that experienced in the 19th century. Yet, as with any society, there are some who do not tow the line, who break from this suffocating sort of bondage.

There are women–some surviving by their wits and intelligence, some by courage and an adventurous spirit–these are women who strive to break free. Some, like Silver from the first book in this series, end up paying a high price, including human and personal freedom. For some, such as the courtesan madam, Violette Goldswan, they wield their power through different, more shadowy avenues. And some, like Haevyn Breina, will attempt to rise through the more public ranks, clawing their way to a position where they have a chance of gaining societal acceptance as an equal, and gaining respect in the more demanding arena of this male-dominated society. None of this is accomplished without emotional cost. None of these women face and accept the challenges of this rather brutal society in quite the same way. For Haevyn, the rewards are worth the steep price. She does not back down from doing what must be done.

In Quentopolis, sexual relations and sexuality are very open and accepted parts of this society. For some it is about pleasure, for some it is a tool to rise through the ranks. Sex is used for negotiation; it is also a shared bond between friends. And it is also an art form, highly prized by a nobility class known as the Dominatae.

Haevyn Breina is of the Moondown Water District working class. Her parents were killed in a factory fire, leaving the care of her younger brother, Bhrett, in her hands. Responsibility came to her at a young age and she accepted it, along with every hardship and payment that security demanded. She gave up her virginity to a higher purpose and though it left her bruised and battered, she has never regretted her choices. When a brand new arm of the Regulate opens up to females, she jumps at the chance, even though strictly speaking the Compsociate Branch is considered by many to be simply a finely labeled government sanctioned army of courtesans in service to the upper Regulate officers. Haevyn accepts the challenge determined to rise within the ranks, but it is not without additional damage to her psyche.

Her lover and friend, Grisha, has served as her anchor, her “calm, safe haven” throughout her life. A simple fisherman, he is far distanced from the machinations of the political arena. But Grisha, more wise than Haevyn realizes, knows there is more that his lovely, wounded lover needs than the warmth and healing of his loving embrace. He knows very well how close to the edge she really is. But so is his other lover, an expatriate Orictan warrior by the name of Entreus.

In any world an emotional cost must attach, though all creatures deal with trauma differently. Some will splinter, some will rise to meet the challenge of adversity and fashion it into their strength. Some bear an anger or rage–they try to ignore or funnel through some other channel. Entreus funnels his rage and frustration through the illegal Cockrage events. Haevyn tries to bury her anger beneath a veneer of tightly-held control. Grisha knows this about each of them and has a sense of their needs.

How these three people adapt, grow, and hopefully heal is at the emotional core of this story. The journey is complicated by a very dangerous and deadly enemy to the city-state whom they must battle.

This is the world of Humanotica. Read an excerpt from “Haevyn,” the second book in the Humanotica series…

Read an excerpt from Silver, the first book in the Humanotica series.

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Haevyn buy links:

Amazon Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078C51G5Z
Smashwords Buy Link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/816536
Books2Read Universal Link (B&N, Kobo, etc.): https://www.books2read.com/u/4DowAQ

 

 

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Silver buy links:

Amazon Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B074PB91BV
Books2Read Universal Link (B&N, Kobo, etc.): https://www.books2read.com/u/mvjP6X
Smashwords Buy Link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/772872