Warmup Wednesday!

Directions: Write a scene or an entire story of 100 words on the nose (no more, no fewer), inspired by this photograph. No judging. All fun. (Normal Flash! Friday guidelines regarding content apply.)
Don’t forget to add your Twitter handle & link to your blog, if you please.

And a few words on how your week’s going would be so very appreciated!

 This week’s Warmup Wednesday challenge: Include a secret invention.

Abandoned Laboratory (Cornell). CC2.0 photo by vadikunc.

Abandoned Laboratory (Cornell). CC2.0 photo by vadikunc.

58 thoughts on “Warmup Wednesday!

  1. The Secret Experiment (word count 100)

    “Oh, God,” he whispered when he saw her in the filtered light. He shut his eyes then opened them again. He never expected the experiment to work. Trembling he rested his finger on the button. She stood by the door of the abandoned laboratory her eyes glistened with tears. “James—please—don’t press the button. Come with me.” Outside, the roar of the water rushing over the flat stone ledges into the water below drowned her voice.

    He pressed the button.

    The building collapsed like a controlled demolition into the water below. His secret was now safe from the aliens.

  2. Broken (100 words)

    You were leaking. All I had done to you — the yelling, cursing, and fists-through-walls fear — was escaping from your pores and puddling around your feet.

    I tried to close the holes, gasping in desperate breaths, but then new leaks sprung and it became futile. I watched as you shed your skin and your spirit shed your skeleton. Like an old-time projection of my sins right before me.

    Over time, I came to drown in what I had done to you. My own skin began to mold from being water-logged. And the smell was unbearable.

    All of it was.

  3. The Plant

    “Old Scoot lived in a shack next to the old power plant. They did funny things there as I recall. Ain’t that right, Freddie?”
    “If you say so, Bulldog. Me, I couldn’t say.”
    “Yeah, there’s a lot you couldn’t say, Freddie. Never could hold up your end of a conversation.”
    “I only talk about what I know. Scoot was goofier than a radiated frog. Yeah, he rambled on about the experiments they done at the plant. But none of us knew for sure. And they packed up and left years ago. Best not open that can of worms.”

    100 bits of old gossip

    family visited on the weekend,
    great paella cooked on the barbecue
    slow start to a meaningful flow of creative juices,

  4. @firdausp
    I hadn’t visited this room for a while. As I opened the door the putrid smell of decay hit me. The door creaked and hung a little crooked on its hinges.
    Memories of working long hours creating that secret love potion, and then the heartbreak flooded, blurring my vision.
    As water gushed into my eyes I slammed the door shut, put a lock on the rusty latch. Some rooms should be kept locked. The creative side of me was dead. I had stopped feeling a long time ago. There were other rooms to explore. My head was a large mansion.

    Visiting my Mom after quite a while. Will stay for a month. Looking forward to a lot of reading and writing. Just picked up ‘451 Fahrenheit’.

  5. @tim_kimber

    Rise (100 words)

    I awake to a clamour of glass smashing against stone. Hurried footsteps recede to silence, as rusty hinges squeal goodbyes. My head pounds as I open my eyes. Outside, an unseen torrent rumbles, amplifying the pain in my brain.

    Sitting up, slowly, the smell of decay raises visions of illness – a blood-spattered bedpan haunts my periphery.

    I survived?

    I raise a grubby, skeletal hand to my temple, and notice my clothes thick with mud. My skin is cold, like a corpse. The pain in my head squirms – I pluck a soft, wriggling creature from my ear.

    It’s alive.

  6. CAN’T SEE FOR FREE (100 words)

    The roaring flood of white water, careening off the cliff like a stampede of crazed buffalo, clearly demonstrates the power of the falls. The settlers of Tookinpaca built a primitive, yet brilliant, geared system of large wooden wheels which spun slowly but consistently. This allowed for dozens of industries to flourish.

    The ingenious method of harnessing the god-like power of water became known far and wide as an astounding man-made miracle. Soon after, a forward thinking councilman developed another marvelous invention to bring riches to the city. He finally presented it to the people. He called it, Tourism.

    Terrific week in this summer tourist town. I just finished a fiction writing workshop at the Fine Arts Work Center here in Provincetown [google it] and am signed up for another one starting this Sunday. It’s thrilling to be back in the classroom with excited students who come from all around the world to learn from some great teachers. It’s like college all over again except this time I’m paying more attention.

    • So much truth in the title, sounds as though your piece was inspired by your home town? I think of tourism as a necessary evil, so many places would die without it. Just googled the FAWC – you’re pretty lucky there, had a wander round Provincetown on google maps as well – beats gloomy Southampton any day!

      • Come visit Steph! It’s a great town filled with history. Ptown is the oldest “art colony” in the country. American theatre as we know it started here at the turn of the century. Amazing stuff. Plus, this is where the first pilgrims landed and lived for a while (not Plymouth Rock). Thanks for your interest…and seriously, come visit! I know many affordable guest houses that are right out of picture postcards. Also, I’m a great tour guide!

      • Oooh so tempting but my youngest daughter (14) has been watching the worst top 10 air disasters on youtube and is refusing to set foot on a plane, so that’s out for a while (will let you know if things change!!!). Had hoped Europe via Ferry as we finally have passports and a bit of money – holidays for 5 aren’t cheap, but don’t know if you’ve seen what’s been going on in Calais. Ho hum, it’s off to Wales to visit the mother-in-law. 🙂

    • Can I buy a ticket? Was there ever such a creature as a forward thinking politician? That I’d really pay to see…

  7. Baby Formula
    (100 words)

    “The Fountain of Youth is a waterfall,” the old hag said. “It tumbles past the crumbling laboratory, the truth about it now obscured.”

    I believed her, refining and bottling the water into an elixir that promised eternal youth. It sold like wildfire.

    The changes started immediately. Skin became smooth as a babies bottom. Hair turned downy soft. Old age ailments – diabetes, rheumatism, and dementia disappeared overnight. Over time so did height, weight and language skills.

    By the time I realized the youth the waters promised, toddlers swarmed the streets.

    Like any good scientist, I’d never drunk the formula myself.

    Experiencing a serious case of warm fuzzies, because for the first time two stories I submitted last week received honorable mention from the judges.

    Oh, and if anyone has wondered how to pronounce my name, it’s “duh-lease.” 🙂

  8. Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner?

    100 words


    The building bared its teeth, opened its shuttered eyes and snarled at the unwelcome intruders. Stalactites of angry spittle hung from its jowls.

    “It’s perfect,” said the woman as she filmed her surroundings. “It’s so … so organic.”

    The ground trembled.

    “What’s that?”

    “Just water,” said her companion, pointing to the torrent outside.

    A steady thrum reached her ears. “Is that water too?”

    Her companion nodded. “It drives an old mill wheel.”

    She laughed. “Reminds me of a heartbeat.”

    “Next, you’ll be saying the place is alive,” he said. “Come on.”

    They walked further into the darkness and were swallowed.

    Enjoying the start of the school holidays, although I’m keeping up with work by doing a couple of online courses (dyslexia and autism). Have a pile of books waiting to be read; just finished reading Margaret Locke’s A Man of Character, thoroughly enjoyed it even though it’s not the genre I normally read. She makes writing look effortless! Trying to focus a bit more on my own writing spurred on by a story acceptance the other day. Oh, and in typical British weather fashion, it’s raining. 🙂

  9. Water Gift

    We went to the abandoned factory to be brave and to look at the machines, big metal things larger than our rooms.

    The man was sitting on the floor playing with the leaking river water on the floor.

    He called himself the toy-maker.

    “Magic is here today, gentlemen.”

    He took a plastic soldier from his pocket and rolled it in the puddle of water. He told us to get closer. A few minutes later the soldier started moving. He smiled and handed me the twitching toy.

    “Just be sure to burn it when it starts talking. Burn it to ash.”

    100 words

  10. Boggled. 100 words.

    “Boggle just boggled at me.”

    “You mean George?”

    “Yeah, George. I called him Boggle because it annoyed the shit out of him. Insane. Mad as a box of frogs. Listen, can’t you take these handcuffs off?”


    “Well, he said he had a secret to show me. Meet me at the falls, he said. Something that would change everything. Clever little bastard.”

    “And then you killed him?”

    “If I killed him, where’s his body?”

    “We don’t need a body to convict.”

    “That’s what he said.”

    “He was right. You’re nicked.”


    Not inspired by your new format flash contest. Feels like being back in school somehow. Too many rules. I’ll stick with this little format instead.

  11. Incremental Changes (100 words)

    The ground trembled as he stared at the screen, his tongue poking out of his mouth. Thick fingers adjusted the dials. “Almost there.”
    The tremble steadily increased and a beam of light appeared through the rock. “Professor, maybe we should reassess stability?”
    “Almost there,” he said, making more finite adjustments.
    The tremble became a rumble, accompanied by a groan. I glanced again out the window at the widening shaft of light. “I think something’s happening!”
    “Almost there,” he replied, still staring and adjusting.
    With a crack and roar, the rock split and water cascaded through.
    “Sir, that’s not a wormhole!”

    First day back to writing since welcoming member 4 of the family! It’s been a busy week but feels great to be stretching the fingers (and brain)! 🙂

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