2021 Writing Exercise Series #161 Micro 101 Episode 13

The 2021 Writing Series is a series of daily writing exercises for both prose writers and poets to keep their 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.

This is not a standard writing session. This is pure production—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 it, you will be able to complete all of the exercises in under 30 minutes.

Micro 101 Episode 13

For today's writing exercise you will write a few micro-poems or micro-fictions. These will be either poems under 20 lines or stories under 200 words.

For inspiration go read some micro or hint fiction in this Buzzfeed article, at Microfiction MondayAlbaMolecule50 Word Stories and Nanoism. Or also this Barnstorm blog post "How Microfiction Could Transform Social Media".

Read the full prompt twice before you start writing, because you're looking to keep it minimal, so have ideas. If your first draft is longer don't fret. Hone it down. And the piece will be what it is. I've started out with a goal of 100 words but hit on something and had to cull the end result from 1350 to 1200 for a contest because I loved the result. So each story will be its own beast, but we're ideally aiming for 20 lines or 100-200 words with these.

Micro Exercise 1: Promotion 1. Tell the story of a young person on a single-minded mission to move up from dishwasher to chef.
Micro Exercise 2: Promotion 2. Write a short piece in which two friends work together at a summer job and one of them becomes the boss's favorite. They should share a hobby/activity outside of work in which they talk about the job and life in very terse, telling detail.
Micro Exercise 3: Promotion 3. Write a micro piece in which a hiring manager contemplates the positive and negatives of hiring one person over another. Get extreme/surreal, if you want.
Micro Exercise 4: Fruit Fight. Write a micro piece in which rival neighborhood gangs of kids have a fight throwing crab apples at each other. This can either start out somewhat lighthearted and get serious, be entirely lighthearted, be miniature warfare—whatever you'd like.
Micro Exercise 5: Land Mine. Write a piece in which a small town sheriff with no training is trying to find a landmine that someone he just arrested told him he buried somewhere dangerous.


If you'd like some background music to write to, try this "Rooftop Dreams" lofi mix.