Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.
“I want you to write a one-page original story on any topic you wish. You know what the rules are as far as content. Don’t use bad language, and so forth. If you have a question, you may come to my desk.”
Tired, Miss Trumbull sat down at her desk, knowing there would be students who would come, knowing who they would be, knowing what their questions would be. The same routine took place every time she gave a writing assignment. They were only into the third week of the school year, though, and some of them just took a bit longer than others to know what she expected.
Sure enough, here came Missy. “Mrs. Trumbull, is that handwritten or typed? Because-“
“Typed, Missy. Just like last week and the week before. Every assignment I give you will be in terms of typed, not handwritten. If you must write by hand, then make it two pages.”
“Well, because, see—–“
“Missy. Asked and answered. Go sit down and do the assignment. “
Bryan was next. He at least had something interesting, most of the time. He was a sharp kid, intelligent and well-mannered but definitely full of beans. “Mrs. Trumbull, I have a question.”
She waited, holding his gaze with her own.
“Well, the thing is, in the Bible it says that there’s nothing new under the sun, right?”
The kid would be a great lawyer someday. He always set the trap before he went in for the kill. “So, like, it’s impossible for us to write anything original then, right?”
“Okay, Bryan. If want to take a biblical direction, how about this? Take one of your favorite Bible stories and give it a new setting, a new conflict, different characters, and a different ending. And no, you’re not going to be guilty of changing the words in the Bible, because you’re not presenting it as if it were true. If you’re not comfortable with that, take a different direction. Rewrite the story of Jack and the Beanstalk, for example.”
She counted in her head, knowing he wasn’t done. He never would be. When she reached five seconds and he hadn’t said anything yet, she smiled and told him to go sit down and get started. “But—-“
“Don’t ‘but’ me, Bryan. You know better. This is non-negotiable.” They had another stare-down, and finally he turned and walked back to his desk.
“One thing for sure,” she thought. “The nature of kids will never change. It’s going to be fun when Bryan hits his junior or senior year. He won’t be so easy to deflect.” And she smiled as Jared approached her desk.