The Christmas poinsettia is thinning out, the fireplace mantle is empty of snowmen, musical snow globes, and the seasonal moose, the last of the holiday chocolate has been consumed, and I’m on week 4 at Weight Watchers. It must be February.
Today horizontal snow is flying by my window and the temperature feels like -17 degrees Celsius with the wind chill. Two weeks ago it was +12 and my daffodils were poking through the red stones on my flowerbed. This is winter in southern Ontario.
Tomorrow, our provincial prognosticator of the duration of winter, Wiarton Willie, groundhog extraordinaire, will be jarred from a nice sleep and asked to step outside his warm home and look for his shadow. If he sees his shadow, there will be an early spring, if not, expect six more weeks of winter. Either way, we’re pretty much programmed here to deal with winter as long as it sticks around.
To keep the creative fires burning, whether you have snow or not, here are some writing prompts for February.
1. Write a piece using one, some or all of the following words: snow, windows, night, candle, branches, waiting.
2. Try one of these opening lines:
- Jim glared out the window as fat flakes of snow filled in the sidewalk he’d just shoveled. “Mary!” he called. “What did you say the temperature was in Las Vegas today?”
- My boss was right. Sunday was the perfect day for a murder.
- It was too damn quiet.
- Outside the diner, a black pickup rolled to a stop.
- Helen never looked good in red.
3. See if these lines of dialogue inspire a scene:
I don’t hear anything.
Oh. That’s not good.
How’d it go?
The captain was less than impressed.
But did he believe you?
Yes. We’re leaving in an hour.
What’s so interesting? You’ve been staring out that window for the past hour.
Wouldn’t he call if he were going to be late?
Yes, if he could.
Did you get what you wanted?
Then let’s get out of here.
4. Maybe one of these titles will work for you: Wet Roads and Stars, Miranda’s Memory, Black on Black, Gateway, Red Light, Washed in Dreams, Sundown and Sam, Wild Winds, Empty Pages
Have a fantastic February!