Before I jump into the Wednesday Prompts and Inspirations, I’d like to share a little background story first.
My mother, prior to married life, studied in Germany as a scientific illustrator. Her talent brought her to America where she worked at the Field Museum in Chicago. Her appreciation and love of scientific/realistic illustration extended to artwork created with a loving hand, such as the highly detailed artwork illustrating certain picture books. Among the many books in her cherished collection, one caught my eye. I lived in the fantasy world of this book, often imagining myself wandering through the intricately illustrated pages, exploring with the characters, and rejoicing with them, too. The children’s book I’m referring to is The Secret Staircase, written and illustrated by Jill Barklem.
Two mice, Primrose and Wilfred, look in the attic of Primrose’s home, (a lovely mansion within the trunk of a large tree) hoping to find costumes to wear to the Midwinter Festival. What they first find is a key. Then they find a door hidden behind heavy drapes. Through the keyhole they see a long stairwell leading…? The key fits, and the two mice discover a world of grandeur far more splendid than their imaginations could conjure.
This leads me to my own life. Okay, my unconscious, dreaming life… Since reading this book thirty years ago, I have had numerous dreams of purchasing a home in which, after I move in with my family, I discover a door I hadn’t noticed before. When I open the door, another world appears. No, not like in the book, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis where Lucy backs through the fur coats in the wardrobe and out into the snowy world of Narnia. In my dream, another house awaits me, fully furnished, closets brimming with clothing in my size and style, festive dishes line the cupboards, and windows overlook spectacular views.
So, here is the Wednesday Prompt and Inspiration you’ve been waiting for…
You have purchased and moved into your new home. While in the process of stacking sweaters in your enormous walk-in closet, you discover a latch under one of the shelves. You click the latch, and slowly the back wall of the closet slides to one side.
Keep an open mind for this exercise. Creative, out-of-the-box thinking is what will separate your piece of writing from others. Since this location could find its way into your future writing projects, paint it (write it) rich with details.
1. Could the place behind the closet lead to a dungeon, another dimension, the backstage of a comedy club?
2. What feeling comes over you when the wall moves?
3. Which of your senses are heightened when you get your first look?
4. What is the first thing you notice behind the secret wall?
5. What can you smell in this place?
6. What sounds surround you?
7. Are you comfortable exploring alone?
8. Do you first pack a small bag with a camera, a notepad, a pencil, a snack, a sweater?
As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the Wednesday Prompts and Inspirations.