We blog for a million reasons, but in the end we’re all storytellers. Creative Writing Challenges help you push your writing boundaries and explore new ideas, subjects, and writing styles.  


This week, write a post based on this image:


Photo by Michelle Weber.

 The challenge is called “1,000 Words” after the famous phrase, but don’t feel that you need to write that much (or that little) — however many words your story requires is the right number of words.


Emma sits and waits outside the Kwik-Mart for her Mom to catch up.  When she turned the corner a second ago and saw the Merry-Go-Round outside the store, she ran ahead to claim her favorite “ride” – Jiminy Cricket.  (Everyone knows that crickets don’t have noses or beaks, and that the angle of the picture makes the saddle on the rabbit’s back look like it’s part of the cricket’s face, but that’s just silly-talk).

Emma knows Jiminy very well. When she sits on Jiminy’s back, he doffs his top-hat and winks at her.  She asked him once what it was like to be part of a Merry-Go-Round, and he told her he liked to go around with the other “rides”.  He never gets dizzy, and he likes to give the little kids a fun twirl-around. Emma has tried the other “rides”, but she doesn’t like Winnie the Pooh much. He talks to himself all the time.  The giraffe is nice, but it’s too hard to see around his neck.  Tigger is funny, but all his bouncing around makes it hard to stay on.

woman-with-black-hair-hiEmma glances down the street and smiles as her Mom comes into view.

“Emma, honey,” her Mom says, “You need to stay with me. It’s not safe to run on ahead like that.”

“I’m okay, Mommy.  Jiminy was watching out for me.”

“Who?  Oh.  Well, let me see if I have some quarters so you can ride.”  Her Mom starts to dig through her pockets.

“Jiminy says he’s the guide along the straight and narrow path.  He won’t let me get hurt.”

“Oh, honey,” her Mom says, “You know that bug isn’t real, right?  He’s just a kiddie ride.”

Emma gasps and stamps her foot.  “He is so real, Mom!”

“Okay,” her Mom sighs and digs out the change she needs. “Hop on and hang on tight.”

Her Mom puts the money in and walks over by the front of the store to lean against the wall and wait while Emma rides round and round.

“Jiminy?” Emma whispers.

“Yes, Emma?”  Jiminy asks.

“Can you help my Mom?”

“What does she need, Emma?” the cricket asks as he eyeballs Emma’s Mother from the corner of his eye.

“She forgotted what it’s like to be little like me,” Emma says.  “She needs to have fun now and then.  She is so busy working all the time. She misses my Dad since he died, but she won’t find anyone if all she does is work.”

“Hmmmmm,” Jiminy says, considering the options. “Hang on real tight, Em. I have an idea.”

As soon as he stops speaking, the speed of the ride increases.  Emma giggles at first.  Her Mom realizing the ride is “malfunctioning”, panics.

“Help, someone! Please!” She runs towards the door of the store.

blackmanWithin a few seconds, a very nice man comes out.  He rushes over to the ride and pulls the plug out where it’s plugged into the side of the store.

“Are you okay?” he asks, scooping Emma off of the ride.

“I’m good,” she says, “Thank you for saving my life.”

“Well, I don’t know about that,” he chuckles. “Is this your Mom?” He turns and hands Emma to her Mother.  “Here she is, Ma’am.”

“Oh, thank you!” her Mom cries.  “I don’t know what happened. Emma’s been riding this old ride for months now.  It’s never done that before! It scared me half to death.”

“She seems to be just fine.  No harm done.” The man smiles at Emma’s Mom.  “Hello, my name is Darryl.”

“Hi, I’m Carleen,” her Mom smiles.  “Do you work here now?”

“Yes, I just started as Assistant Manager here yesterday,” Darryl says.  “I’m glad I was able to help.  I couldn’t have our best ride customer getting hurt now, could I?  I’ll go inside and call the ride company now and ask them to send out a service rep to take a look at the ride. It’s probably something minor. I’m sure I’ll be seeing you around, Carleen. It was nice to meet you, Emma.” He bends down to shake hands with Emma.

“Bye!” Emma calls as he goes back inside.  “Are we going home now, Mom?”

“Sure, honey,” Mom says, smiling after Darryl.  “What a nice man.”

Emma looks at Jiminy who winks and gives her a big grin.

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10 thoughts on “Weekly Writing Challenge: 1,000 Words

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