Friday, January 18, 2013

Instant Vacation

Go to

Open an account if you don’t have one.

Add the station called Hawaiian Roots Radio.

Crank it up.

Fire up a 100-watt light bulb.

Put on some shades.

Kick back.

Close your eyes.


PROMPT: Writers have GREAT imaginations, so use yours well. Write about your ideal vacation spot. Where would you go? What would you do? Well, whatever you do, remember this – poi tastes NOTHING like chocolate pudding.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Results Are In

(This one’s not doing you any favors, trust me.)

If you've stopped by the Good Ship Elbow today, you've probably got questions.

In fact, I've found that most writers and artists are haunted by the same two questions –

     1. How can I be more creative and productive in my art of choice?


     2. How can I maximize the enjoyment of my hot cocoa experience?

Well, fear not because The Mind’s Elbow has got you covered… for question number two.

Use an orange mug.

Yes, researchers hard at work sipping cocoa at the University of Oxford have discovered that people perceive more chocolaty goodness from orange-colored cups than from those of any other segment of the rainbow.


It’s not just for fruit anymore.

Now, about that first question…

Hmmm… you might have to stick around awhile for an answer to that one.

PROMPT: It’s all about mad scientists today! Write about a group of investigators working tirelessly on matters of the utmost importance – like the sweater vest preference of pigeons, the prevalence of colorblindness in maple trees, or how temperature affects the ultrasonic velocity of cheddar cheese (wait a minute… that one’s real – Polytechnic University of Valencia, 2006).

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Here be Dragons!

Colors and Fire
© Grace Pyles

January 16th is officially Appreciate a Dragon Day!

This fantastic fest of fiery fun was created by author Donita K. Paul as a way to promote children’s literacy (and quite possibly her book, Dragonspell).

Regardless of how it began – take note that if you happen to have a dragon, it’s time to show the love.

And what the heck, you can go ahead and appreciate those dragon fans as well. That’s my plan, anyway.

My daughter came into this world with a 100-decibel roar and lungs full of fire. In fact, I’m pretty sure that her second word (after Daddy, of course) was “Dragon.”

At that time her enthusiasm was so dang cute that the entire family hopped right on board the old dragon wagon…

It was decidedly less cute when she was a six-year-old riffling through the classifieds for great deals on Komodos.

And Honey, if you’re reading this – yes, they are wicked-cool, but the answer is still no.

PROMPT: It’s time to celebrate those fierce and feisty marshmallow roasters of the fantasy world! Write a fairy tale today and, for Pete’s (Dragon) sake, let the beastie win.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Go! Fight! Win!

I may have mentioned before that my daughter plays high school basketball.

Well, as part of her personal fan club, I've experienced every single gymnasium in Northwest Washington –

where invariably every single high school paints their Fight Song on the wall…

to show the world their passion….

their pride….

and their obvious lack of an English Department.

Believe me, I have witnessed more heartbreaking meter and cringe-worthy rhyme than I care to mention.

But last Friday night took the proverbial Fight Song cake.

It was already looking grim. The fact that this particular song only rhymed “fame” and “game” over and over and over again was bad enough.

I could only hang my head and bemoan all of those missed word opportunities.

But then, line #2 hit me right between the eyes –

“Always cheering, never fearing that we’ll win this game.”

My head was immediately filled with the voice of Inigo Montoya of The Princess Bride

“I do not think it means what you think it means.”

Then I considered that perhaps they were battling a school epidemic of that New Age psychological affliction known as “the fear of success.”

And God help me, I wanted to hunt down a can of spray paint and do a little editorial graffiti –

“Always Cheering! Never fearing! We will win this game!”

But alas, they did win.

So I thought that “Always sneering, it’s appearing that this song is lame!” might be a better option.


You can dress them up, but you can’t take them anywhere.

PROMPT: Your local high school likely needs an intervention, so get out to their gym today! Together we can save the country from this largely unrecognized celebration of mediocrity. Or you can simply write your own personal Fight Song – everybody needs one, you know. GO! WRITE! WIN!