2020 Writing Exercise Series #5: Ekphrastic Submarine 1

The Notebooking Daily 2020 Writing Series is a daily writing exercises for both prose writers and poets to keep your creative mind stretched and ready to go—fresh for your other writing endeavors. The writing prompts take the impetus—that initial crystal of creation—out of your hands (for the most part) and changes your writing creation into creative problem solving. Instead of being preoccupied with the question "What do I write" you are instead pondering "How do I make this work?" And in the process you are producing new writing.

These exercises are not meant to be a standard writing session. They are meant to be productive and to keep your brain thinking about using language to solve simple or complex problems. The worst thing you can do is sit there inactive. It's like taking a 5 minute breather in the middle of a spin class—the point is to push, to produce something, however imperfect. If you don't overthink them, you will be able to complete all of the exercises in under 30 minutes.

Ekphrastic Submarine 1

or today, we're going to write a poem or prose piece inspired by another piece of art, or an ekphrastic piece. The piece of art in question is "Submarine" by Nishio Nanora

If nothing right off strikes you try the following exercises along with the image.
  1. Write a vignette from the perspective of the cat, mildly irritated that they're going on another undersea voyage so soon after their last one.
  2. Think of this as an H.G. Wells style submarine adventure. A sort of steampunk period piece set in the late days of the 1800s. This is your main character and she's diving to retrieve or study an ancient wreck, but why? What two problems will arise in her adventure? One of them makes her completely alter her plans, why?
  3. Write a piece in which this is the submarine captain nonchalantly ferrying a very important and very nervous person away from a dangerous situation. What happened to precipitate this underwater escape?
  4. Write a short piece in which this young woman is in the quirky submarine, but is preoccupied with the brand new type of coffee that she's brewed, while the submarine is in a precarious place, all she can think of is the new coffee—good or bad.
  5. Write a short piece from the perspective of a worker welding together this experimental submarine, absolutely sure that when your boss (the pictured lady) tries to submerge in it that she'll drown while sipping from a tea cup. 

If you'd like background writing music try Gustav Holst- The Planets, Full Suite (beginning with Venus).