This is the story about how a writing prompt–or more precisely, a trio of writing prompts–came alive.
One of the blogs I follow is The New, Unofficial, On-Line Writers Guild. It’s relevant to my writing blog, not this one, but anyway, this blog publishes a fictional story every week, plus three prompts. These can be responded to in the usual style of prompts of WordPress. In a post a couple of months ago, the prompts went like this:
1. outside Halifax
2. no god worth worrying about
3. selling truth
I looked at the prompts and instantly, they formed a whole sentence in my mind:
There is no god worth worrying about selling truth outside Halifax.
Okay, it looks like a sentence, you think, but it is a tiny bit nonsensical. And what about it came alive?
Well, not only was it a line in my head, it was a situation I was able to picture quite clearly, and one that I was sure I’d actually seen in real life, with my own eyes. How?
Halifax is a town in Yorkshire, or in Nova Scotia, or wherever else, but here in UK it is also a bank. As banks usually do, they have branches in most town centres. So, that is the easily imaginable “outside Halifax” part. As for the god not worth worrying about selling truth, well, street Jesus freaks of all sorts are not an unusual sight here in Manchester. Strictly speaking, they’re probably not selling anything, not in the normal sense, in exchange for money, but they must want something from you, otherwise why would they stand there, shouting their preachings?
I knew I would be able to snap a pic that would encapsulate the three prompts in an ideal form. It was only a matter of time, and luck. And time and luck it was, while out on my lunch break about two weeks ago. Here is the photo:
They’re also standing where the tram lines divide, which, I like to think, adds a dramatic effect. And, of course, in true Manchester fashion, it’s raining.
The lake of fire probably won’t last long around here.
I’m not religious myself, but I showed this to a colleague who is a Christian, and she said the writing on the banner is untrue, because Jesus spreads love, not fear. He is all about forgiveness, not punishment. It certainly seems like the wrong message, even to a heathen like me.
It’s really… not worth worrying about. And I’m pretty sure it’s not the truth. What would some dude with an umbrella standing in the middle of Manchester know about it, anyway?
So that’s it, that is the story about how a trio of writing prompts came alive. Thank you for reading.
It’s that time of the year when the city, by which I mean Manchester, gets dressed up in the theme of Halloween. There’s so much fun stuff and I took a lot of pictures; it was a though decision to pick the ones for a blog post.
“Can you believe the utter stupidity?”
“Howdya like my new tentacles?”
Welcome to our castle. Don’t worry, we don’t eat people.
Without cooking them first.
Dragons make wonderful pets, I hear. As long as you’re fireproof, you’ll be fine.
“There’s something in my eye.”
Wanted: vendor for our market stall. We’re not sure what happened to last one.
A skeleton collection: I don’t know what it is, but I really do enjoy skeletons. I think it might be that they always look like they’re laughing at something.
And this one’s in a wheelbarrow. I love wheelbarrows.
“Hello, honey, I’ve been waiting for you!”
“Oh, look, kids, daddy’s home!”
There’s nothing like seeing monsters or villains deeply in love with each other. I went to see Venom Let There Be Carnage the other day, and the romance between Cletus and Frances (played by Woody Harrelson and Naomie Harris), the villains of the film, melted my heart. They were just so tender with each other, and you know they’d destroy the civilisation to be together. They even danced in the flames!
Since I’m on this topic, how about Gomez and Morticia from Addams Family? I think they legit might be one of the best married couples in all of fiction.
Anyway, Happy Halloween, and beware of the monsters. The true scary fact is, the most dangerous ones don’t look like monsters at all.
Pride, the LGBTQ+ event, takes place in Manchester every year on the August Bank Holiday weekend. Last year it was cancelled (because, you know), but in 2021 it’s very much back on track. For this occasion, the city gets dressed up in rainbow flags.
This is the bridge in Castlefield.
The couple on the bridge remind me a bit of Joe and Jill Biden.
The sunny weather–not exactly a regular here–makes everything even better!
It lies alongside the Rochdale Canal, and is actually called Canal Street. Its origins go back to the 1980s when the first gay bars and restaurants started opening here.
Previously on Some Photoblog I have posted pictures of the Alan Turing Memorial, which is in Sackville Gardens, a small park in the same area. As you may know, Alan Turing was prosecuted for his sexuality, despite contributing enormously to the Allies’ victory in WW2 by cracking German military codes. The 2014 movie The Imitation Game tells this story, with the ever brilliant Benedict Cumberbatch in the main role.
Apparently, the street sign for Canal Street occasionally gets vandalised–they scratch off the letter C. It’s such a lame, tired joke, honestly. Like, you think a million people haven’t already tried that before you?
Anyway, pictures by smartphone, taken on my lunch break!