Thursday, September 4, 2008

Shayna's Secret

I mentioned in this week's Stuff and Things (see two posts down), that kimmirich tagged me with a writing prompt. The idea was to start with the word or concept of secret or laughter or tears, etc., and expound upon it, in whatever way I wished. I chose secret, and here's what I came up with...

Shayna's Secret

She was sitting with her knees drawn to her chest, her arms wrapped around them. Her ear was tuned to what lay beyond her confines, but, for the moment, she could hear only the rapid beating of her heart. She took a few deep breaths, willing a calmness to envelop her. And as her pulse slowed, her eyes began to adjust to the darkness of the closet in which she sat.

She deftly reached for the penlight she’d tucked into the back pocket of her jeans. Once the beam illuminated her small surroundings she grabbed for the book, the one tucked into her husband’s hip-wader boot. She flipped through the paperback, finding the dog-eared page from her last reading. Repositioning herself to Indian-style, she laid the book over the cross of her legs, letting the thin ray of light rest upon its words.

Her free hand moving with grace, she pulled the chunky coffee mug to her lips. She tasted a sip, not even trying to suppress the small sigh that escaped her lips.

Ahhh. This is it, she thought.

She’d been looking forward to it all day. It was her moment of peace. In this little space, this secret place her family hadn’t yet realized she’d claimed…



If you feel an idea stir, write your own piece following the guidelines above. And let me know what you come up with.

16 comments:

Terri Tiffany said...

Wonderful--beautiful writing! I loved your descriptions. I was right there with her. Good work!

Joshua said...

beautiful :)

kimmirich said...

BEAUTIFUL Janna! Just lovely!

aaroncrocco said...

Good writing! I really liked this Janna.

Joanne said...

Really nice. It made me wonder what goes on in her life that drove her into the closet, so I'd want to read more! (And of course, liked the coffee part!)

WendyCinNYC said...

I hide from my chidren in the bathroom, personally. It has a lock.

Nice job, Janna.

Janna Qualman said...

Thanks, everyone, for the amazing comments. Makes a girl feel good. :)

I got to thinking how appropriate doing a writing exercise was, because here's my blog about writing, but no one had ever seen anything but posts and reviews. You can't really tell one's style with just those! I'm really glad you all liked it. And I'm open to more prompts from anyone willing to give 'em. :)

colbymarshall said...

cool prompt- and well done :-)

Lisa E said...

That was fantastic! I was sucked in before the end of the first paragraph! :)
I used to love to write...but now it's like pulling teeth to get words to come out. Any suggestions to get the creative juices flowing?

Janna Qualman said...

Lisa! *super hugs* Thank you for coming to look at my post.

Really, it all comes down to "making yourself" do it. You can stir things up by peeking at some of your favorite books, or just by sitting quietly, aware of what's happening around you. Inspiration can come from the smallest things. And, if you had enough time and wanted to check into it, you'd find a lot of encouragement and motivation at absolutewrite.com/forums. It's one of my favorite places!

*more super hugs*

Bobbie Klein said...

And where do you write your column?

lizzymahrie said...

Janna that was wonderful! I love the images you made me see...I look for my secret place often and pictured myself right with her listening to nothing but my breathing and heartbeat. Peaceful..kudos lady

Janna Qualman said...

Hi, Bobbie, thanks for stopping by. My humor column, based on motherhood, appears in a newspaper distributed by my local publisher. It's just quarterly, but it's a regular gig that adds to my resume. :)

Beth! Thanks so much! *hugs*

Melissa Marsh said...

I really like that! Very nicely done.

Janna Qualman said...

Thank you so much, Melissa! :)

Melanie Avila said...

You made me feel so relaxed. :) I really need to do more of these things to keep me writing.