Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! We’re over halfway through November and in the first two weeks I’ve prompted you to write about friends of all kinds, including the furry kind. This week let’s try a different angle of being thankful – thankful for things that didn’t turn out the way we thought they should, or prayed they would.
Have you ever heard the Garth Brooks song “Unanswered Prayers?” If you haven’t you should give it a listen…the next time that you want something so bad and it doesn’t work out…it may not be apparent in the moment, but somewhere down the line it will become clear why things didn’t turn out the way we wanted. In the case of the song, it’s a high school love that didn’t last, but it’s discovered later on that how it played out was how it was meant to be – the true love was met because the first one was lost.
Relationships aren’t the only thing that don’t always go our way…but later on we see why. Often times it’s a job, a promotion, a raise, or something on our career paths that we want so bad we can taste it. When we don’t get what we want we’re left asking: Why? Or Why Not Me? (Now I’m hearing The Judds song, and realizing I have a country song theme going I didn’t plan on!) However, maybe not the next day, the next month, or even the next year do we have an answer – but eventually it becomes apparent…when we’re doing some other job we never dreamed of…and are genuinely happy. See how optimistic I’m being?
So with this new-found optimism about why things work out other than how we planned, we’ll be thankful for what we’ve got and how things turned out. So with that idea in mind, here’s the twenty-first prompt:
“Temporarily Un-thankful or Thanks for Nothing…Yet”
1) In your daybook, write down some major disappointments in your life. Then write down what happened in your life because of/in spite of those disappointments. Did you get a different job? Did you find the love of your life? Did you stumble upon a different hobby? A new career path? A sport that you actually excelled in? Were you able to make a move that you wouldn’t have if you’d gotten what you wanted? Continue on with this exercise until you have several interesting things to write about.
2) Now from that list pick one of those disappointments and write all of the things that actually happened (good and bad) because of that setback in your plans. If you want, you can continue down the list and do the same – when done see what connections you can make with your list, or if you see something that you hadn’t even thought of before…that you could be thankful for.
3) With any of the prompts above take your disappointment/optimistic happening and create a poem, an essay, a story, or a play around it. You’ll note that just by the nature of this writing you’ll have some conflict which lends itself well to a good story or a play.
4) When done with Step 3, take your work and revise it – cut anything that’s unneeded in this particular piece. By the same token, add material/images if needed. Then revise, revise, revise!
As with all writing, this “Temporarily Un-thankful…” writing should be fun! And I remind you that if you ever want to share any successes or attempts that you get from these prompts, don’t hesitate to let me know. You can contact me here.
Look for another prompt next Wednesday! Until then, keep writing!