A few days ago, I was driving home from work on a cloudy but warm fall day. As I exited the parkway, rather than turn left to go home, I turned right toward a local park on a bay. Despite this park’s proximity to my house, I don’t think I had ever been there.
I wandered onto a nature trail through the woods. I took in the earthy scent of the dried leaves, the sound of them crunching beneath my feet. As I walked, I didn’t know how far this trail would take me, I considered turning back.
Curious to know what was ahead, I continued on. At each bend that obstructed my view, I wanted to know what was beyond it. Though I didn’t know where I would wind up, I wanted to know where it would end.
Writing is like that sometimes. We don’t always know where it will take us, but we keep moving the story forward, letting the characters tell their stories. I think the goal is for our readers to experience that with our stories, the unexplainable desire to know what happens next, the urge to keep going, keep reading.
When we’re feeling uninspired, sometimes the best thing to do is to walk away for a little while. Get a change of scenery, do something that will clear your mind, like taking a walk.
Eventually I came to a fork in the path; I could continue straight or I could go to the left where the path seemed narrower, less inviting. I followed the trail to the left and this took me straight to the bay.
There was a small picnic bench – a perfect spot for writing, I thought – an old boat, washed up and rotting, and a marina just a few yards away.
This is the washed up boat I found:
Use this image as a writing prompt – what is the story behind this boat, how did it get there?