Writing Prompt Story Starter: Sapling


story starter

What does Fiction Ed Shirley have in her sights as the writing prompt story starter image this week?

Look at this sapling, growing right up between the two concrete slabs atop a roadside wall. I don’t know what kind of tree it hopes to become. Is it ash?

It’s the writing prompt story starter image for this week, and makes me think of a number of themes. Determination. Cussedness. Strength. Fighting against the odds. And that fresh bright green speaks of youthful optimism.

There’s also something right time, wrong place about it. And in a funny coincidence, I’d been thinking about a cuckoo in the nest as a theme for a while, and this is along the same lines, isn’t it?

I did also briefly wonder if it could be Japanese knotweed, but I think it’s something far more benign.

But maybe if it had been that sinister, encroaching plant that takes over where it’s not wanted, and is a devil to expel . . . well there’s a story and a half!

Let’s see, what else springs to mind? Native woodland. The contrast between the fresh, bright, young growth and the darker mature woodland behind. There’s a theme there, too, isn’t there?

About the story starter

If you’re new to these story starters, let me recap on their purpose.

The point of the picture is to prompt a story. It’s that simple.

It might be a story that turns out to be absolutely perfect for “The People’s Friend” readers, and that’s always satisfying.

But inspiration isn’t often quite as cooperative as that, is it? So you might find that you’ve written a cracking story, that in your heart you know isn’t a “Friend” story, because it doesn’t fit within out guidelines.

Doesn’t matter. At least you’ve had the pleasure of creating the story for your own satisfaction and enjoyment.

You might find that the story that ultimately finds its way on to your computer screen or notebook doesn’t have anything at all to do with the image. And that doesn’t matter a jot, either.

What I hope is simply to inspire you to write.

You can find a wealth of other story starters here.

We also provide a steady stream of hints and tips for our aspiring writers. Click here to dive in!

Shirley Blair

Fiction Ed Shirley’s been with the “Friend” since 2007 and calls it her dream job because she gets to read fiction all day every day. Hobbies? Well, that would be reading! She also enjoys writing fiction when she has time, long walks, travel, and watching Scandi thrillers on TV.

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