A few years ago my wife, daughter and I travelled through magical Morocco for two wonderful weeks. One of the places we visited was the village of Sefrou which is about 30km from the city of Fes. It was one highlight in 14 days filled with many highlights. You can read more about my journeys on another site I write for: Trevor’s Travels (click here).
On our visit to Sefrou we wandered through the local farmers’ markets, featured in today’s photo above. Farmers from the surrounding districts had brought in their produce for sale, set up on stalls in the streets, squares and lanes of the town. The locals crowded into the cramped spaces buying up delicious looking vegetables and fruits. We bought some yummy bananas and mandarins as a treat. Other fruits included oranges, apples, dates and many more. The vegetable range was even more diverse, with tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, silver beet, cauliflower, capsicum, beans, cucumber and much more.
The displays, like that shown in today’s photo above, were colourful and inviting.
Here are some ideas for writing. Use these prompts as an exercise in warming up your writing at the start of the day, or perhaps even as the start of a short story or poem.
- Describe the scene shown in the photo above.
- Imagine being one of the vendors shown in the photo. Describe what you are feeling.
- Write a short story from the point of view of a young child lost in the marketplace.
- Tell the story of the journey from the farm to the home of the buyer. Try it from the point of view of the farmer – or perhaps even a vegetable.
- Write a poem describing the sounds, colours and smells of the market.
- Write about how you would feel if you had no money and was starving and you saw the above scene.
One of the lecturers I have this year often starts her lecture with a writing exercise. It is a creative writing class in prose fiction after all, so this is entirely appropriate. Rosanne uses a variety of approaches, each writing exercise is stimulating. It is also very good writing practice under pressure. I love these exercises, and I have become keen at sharing my writing later during the workshop session after the lecture.
Last week Rosanne wrote a sentence on the whiteboard. She then challenged us to write for about five minutes – ending our piece with that sentence. Here are some interesting (I hope) and challenging (I hope) story endings. Use them in whatever way you like. Try them as warm up activities for your current writing project.
- Which one will I poison first?
- That is how the school burnt down.
- I will never go there again.
- That is the last time I ever saw her.
- It still amazes me that I lived to tell this tale
- I never expected to hear from him again.
- The precious key slipped from her hand, bounced once and disappeared over the edge of the jetty.
- Just when I’d given up all hope, the phone rang.
- Sometimes life is stranger than fiction.
- I was left staring at the solid door that had just been slammed in my face.
It was the first one we were challenged with. Here is what I wrote. Remember that we only had five minutes. This left little time for story or character development and none for rewriting.
Tuesday started like any other day: shower, breakfast, cuppa, paper, crossword and then don’t forget the teeth. All was going well, on schedule, according to plan, just like any other Tuesday.
Until my brother-in-law came to stay with his tribe of brats. All seven. Four boys and three girls plus two over active Jack Russells who always decided to wait until getting here to relieve themselves – on the new carpet.
‘I’ve left Susanna,’ he announced matter-of-factly. ‘Nowhere else to go. So I’ll have to move in with you. I’ll use the spare room shall I?’
I stared in disbelief. This was the fifth time it had happened. I couldn’t stand my brother-in-law. The Brat Pack was uncontrollable. The Jack Russells beyond control.
‘Which one will I poison first?’ was my immediate thought.
Have a go – let me know in the comments how it went.