Wednesday Write-in #75

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Welcome to the Wednesday Write-in!

Welcome to the Wednesday Write-in. This event runs every week to help any and all writers take control of their productivity and imaginations. Please join in; we’d love to read your work.


parchment  ::  boiling  ::  heatwave  ::  fly  ::  beeswax


There are no rules, but here are some guidelines:

  • Use the prompts as inspiration or try to work them into your story somehow. Use as many as you want.
  • When your story is done, post it online (your blog/twitter/in a comment here), tag with #wednesdaywritein if you like, and comment with a link so we can read it.
  • Please take the time to read and comment on as many other stories as you have time for (but we won’t shout at you if you don’t).
  • If you want to write a poem, a script, or something completely different, feel free.

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Any questions? Otherwise, have fun writing!

56 thoughts on “Wednesday Write-in #75

  1. Ice Break
    The heat-wave this year was brutal. Day after day the horizon shimmered under the relentless sun. Grass like dry parchment crackled feebly as it turned to dust underfoot. There was not the faintest stirring of air to move the fly paper hanging limply in the kitchen with its cluster of small black corpses caught mid-flight on the beeswax.
    But whatever the weather there was work to be done and great pans of water were boiling on the stove for the washing and cooking. The women’s faces dripped continuously and their clothes were stained with sweat.
    ‘Is it nearly time?’ one of the younger ones asked hopefully.
    ‘I reckon another half hour; get those whites on.’
    The four children playing with sticks and pebbles in the dust under the tree near the back door heard. ‘Half an hour,’ they whispered to each other. ‘That’s not so long.’ And they went back to their waiting game.
    ‘I can hear it! He’s coming!’
    By the time Joe’s ‘Snow Cone’ cart had trundled up to the house with its magic ice and sweet syrups the entire household was ready for him.

    • Yummy. Reminds me of childhood summers – when, of course, everything was warm and sunny and all I had to worry about was playing. 🙂 I could feel your characters’ thirst and need for a rest! Great descriptions.

    • I enjoyed the build up of the heat wave. The kids whispering to each other made me smile. You can sense everyone’s relief when the snow cone cart appears. Great story!

    • Great job. Really enjoy the sensual journey you bring us on with your evocative description. I felt like I was in that kitchen! This flowed really well too and I especially loved the end!

    • I think this is a great piece overall. I particularly love the opening paragraph. It is wonderfully descriptive. The fly paper is an excellent observation. Well done.

  2. Mine is called ‘It’s looking good, Jack’. It’s only short and this is my first time posting one of these.

    It’s looking good when the sun comes out to play.
    It’s looking better, you say, when it nearly fades away…
    and our lips hesitate just before they meet.
    When we both sizzle in the heat and I will say,
    It’s looking good, Jack. Now we can play.

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  4. Hi everyone,
    Here’s mine this week.
    The scroll
    Back when parchment was more precious than gold, before Icarus thought that he could fly, I was given a message to deliver. Only the fittest, smartest, most reliable were chosen and it was decided that my muscles were strong enough to carry me the distance required. The survival of our people depended on my ability.
    The scroll was sealed with beeswax and stamped by the king. Forbidden from reading the message inside, I didn’t even consider peering inside. I was honoured to have been trusted with such responsibility. I wanted to show myself worthy. Not many were capable of my job. I had to travel vast distances and endure extremities of climate that most would never experience.
    With the crunch of snow underfoot and spiteful blizzards that stabbed my skin, I climbed the highest peaks carrying my scroll carefully. I traversed boiling desserts with sand that evaded my footprints, landscapes that morphed with my progress to disorientate and colluded with heat that shimmered as it rose from the ground. Places so hot that reality blurs and the act of perceiving itself is confusing.
    It was in the midst of one of these heatwaves that the wax melted. I resisted the whispers of my curiosity to glimpse inside. I stayed true to my word. But once the seal had sprung open, the condition of the parchment began to deteriorate. It swelled as it absorbed water in rain. Without the seal to hold its form, it was just a limp and sodden mess. When I dried it in the sunshine it became brittle and even more fragile. It was obvious that the scroll would not survive the journey. I was forced to commit the message to memory.
    When I reached my destination, I tried to give the people their message but they no longer spoke my language. Their hospitality however ensured my survival. They opened their home to me and fed my recovery. I learnt some of their words so we could share ideas. Long after the parchment had disintegrated and crumbled to dust, I still held onto my precious message in my head.
    When I could speak their language, enough to be understood, I could translate and pass on the message I carried so far.
    “The war is over. It’s safe to come home now.”

    • Wonderful story. I was captivated right away with the journey and the individual’s struggles. The last line really puts it all in context. Happy but also sad. Well done.

    • Great story, and a powerful message. I really wish the world we live in could reach a day when we’re all able to ‘come home’ – mentally and physically – because we’ve finally learned how to stop killing one another.

      Just one tiny thing spoiled my enjoyment a little. You spelled ‘deserts’ as ‘desserts’. I had images of your character scrambling up the side of a giant sherry trifle, and that threw me out of your story world. 🙂

      • Thanks. Can’t believe I made that typo: that was one of my pet peeves during my teaching days when I had to correct stacks of copies. This was rushed but maybe there’s potential for it to become something else some day! Umm maybe I could keep the extra s sherry trifle scramble or chocolate fudge cake climb sounds like fun!! Or maybe rocky-road run!

      • Haha! It’s amazing what we do when under pressure… I’m all for a rocky road run. If you’re organising that, give me a shout. 😉

    • Lovely descriptive writing as always. If only the message could reach more people. (In para 2 you have ‘inside’ twice.)

    • What a fabulous concept. So poetic too. ‘fed my recovery’ is wonderfully economic. ‘When I could speak their language…’ is another of my favourites. Well done.

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  6. This is rushed, but I wanted to get back into the habit again. I’ve missed participating the last few weeks. Look forward to reading this week’s contributions.

    Cooking Up Love

    There he was, her ex, a moving, talking picture staring out at her from the television. He was boiling rice on a dating programme. Apparently, he now had a speciality dish he would serve up to the lucky lady. From his mother’s kitchen, of course.
    Next, he lined a tin with parchment in accordance with some ancient family recipe. There was a scrapbook fattened with handwritten notes to prove its authenticity.
    The VoiceOver was asking about his ‘type’. Surprise, surprise, it wasn’t the stereotype. He was looking for personality. The busty blonde he’d had the affair with must have made him laugh.
    He was measuring now. He was looking for love and to settle down. He lowered his voice for a sincere pitch.
    The beeswax candles were his preference for the table given their purifying qualities. She wondered right there if his mother still had to pick up his underwear from the floor, before reaching for the remote control and launching it right through his teeth.

  7. Fly the bee line to a heatwave;
    don’t do water boiling,
    and waxing lyrical in a chill.
    Hold steamy necking parchments,
    in warm, inviting, inner, thighs.

    • I like the rhythm, and your word choice, but I wish I understood what some of your mind-pictures mean. 🙂 I’m particularly interested in the second and third line, because I can’t work them out at all. That’s the beauty of this type of writing, though, isn’t it; creating intrigue! 🙂

    • I don’t understand it either but do I have to? It sounds good so maybe that’s all that matters. However, I feel there shouldn’t be a comma after ‘inner’.

    • Take an airline to the heat. Don’t drink tea and complain about the chill. Lay down and read trashy novels in the sun. I’d change ‘Hold’ to ‘Take’ myself. – thanks for the comments; It’s not perfect this one but i have no time!

    • I read your own comment and it made me realise how fantastic ‘steamy necking parchments’ is. I think the piece just sounds really good, too.

    • Intriguing! I like your efficient use of the prompts and how you manage to get so many onto such a tight space. I agree with Elaine about the comma, (that is unless there’s double meaning that I have missed). Your imagery is very rich and suggestive. It’s refreshing to read something so different. Looking forward to more!

    • Fly the bee line to a heatwave;
      abandon water boiling,
      and waxing lyrical in a chill.
      Take steamy necking parchments,
      in warm, inviting, inner thighs.

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