April Challenge - Submitted by Richard Earl Rice
Exercise: Creating a Short Piece Based on a Photograph
A keening, hungry hawk high above woke me. I rolled over, feeling the prickle of alfalfa stems on my face. The cut hay still carried the new-mown scent. My head throbbed and the whiskey and vomit combination filled my mouth. Another day was dawning.
Waves lapped timidly against the shore, unlike the roaring tide of last night. The sand beneath me was wet, unforgiving. My hand ran over the last of her footprints leading into the ocean. A surge of grief tightened in my chest and I spat out the salt water residue.that lingered in my mouth. I had arrived too late to save her.
Submitted by Richard Earl Rice
April Challenge - Submitted by Charm O'Ryan
Exercise: Skimping on Adjectives
Describe something in detail without using adjectives … the use of color is permitted.
(First three paragraphs are written as instructed above; second to last sentence contains four adjectives, that are all the same, used for emphasis; a peek into Sandy’s eager emotions—her feelings—her excitement; to discover why she wanted … why she needed everything perfect)
A Picnic by a River
What more could Sandy ask for? The afternoon was perfect: seventy-five degrees beneath a bright-blue sky, no wind, a blanket spread atop grass so thick and soft she could sleep on it all night should she choose to do so. A lullaby, created by a robin, singing, harmonizing with the nearby river’s current, played lazily in her ear; butterflies of all shapes, sizes, and colors flitted softly on the pedals of various wildflowers planted on the knoll next to the riverbank—an occasional bee interrupted them now and then, but for the most part, it seemed the two shared the nectar naturally. With a quack, a couple of mallards took flight from the cattails aligning the river’s edge; a drake, obviously determined, gave chase behind them.
The basket setting beside her captured her gaze. She could hardly wait to eat the picnic she’d prepared. The foods nestled inside smelled more than delicious—even with the lid still closed. Her mouth watered with anticipation of her teeth sinking deep inside the sandwich loaded with egg, mayonnaise, pickles, and a pinch of pepper. Her stomach joined in the eager want to be satisfied, grumbling aloud as her thoughts feasted on the pie, still warm from the oven; a pie she’d stuffed with the three different types of berries she’d picked from her garden just this morning: blackberry, strawberry, and blueberry.
A fly appreciated the basket’s oozing fragrance, too, buzzing around it as he desperately sought entrance somewhere beneath the lid. She shooed him away with the back of a hand, and glanced at the watch dangling from her wrist. He would arrive any minute and the prospect of his kiss weakened her knees. His presence would complement the tranquility she and nature had created.
Oh, yes. It was a perfect afternoon, for a perfect picnic, by a perfect river, to accept his perfect proposal of marriage. Perfect.