Writing Sprint Wednesdays & link up

It’s time to practice our craft with a Writing Exercise. As always the Writing Sprint prompt appears at the end of this post and offers an opportunity for you to freewrite for 15 to 45 minutes without the so-called help of your inner critic. No overthinking. No stopping. No editing. No worries. Daily writing exercises help writers grow, improve and free their writing. The only rule is that you must leave a comment for at least one other writer who’s included their link. That’s it. Other than, free yourself from your doubts, your fears and your inner critic and have some writing fun with us!

{oh, and a quick p.s. If you’re joining the link up, please grab the Writing Sprint logo below and include it on your blog post, along with a link back to this page. Thanks!}

laptopWriting Sprint Prompt: Who’s That Guy?

  1. Use this line to begin your story: There’s a guy sitting on a park bench reading a newspaper… (you can use it as the first line or just let it inspire the story by including the man sitting on a park bench reading a newspaper and see where it takes you).

{Before I get started, I will say that in order to keep my writing within the 15 to 45 minute time, I have created a playlist on Spotify that allows me to put together songs that come close to 45 minutes. When the final note plays on the last song…I stop writing}


When It’s Time

Clare noticed him for the fourth time that day, this time sitting on the park bench reading a newspaper. Just like every other time she couldn’t see his face, but she knew it was the same guy. She paused and bent down to retie her sneakers, taking in the particulars of his clothing. Obviously he was watching her, so she did her best not to be obvious, but she wanted to memorize as much detail as she could. After another moment she righted herself and continued with her run until she was far enough out of his line of sight that she could stop, get out her phone and jot down the details she’d made mental notes of:

  • well-polished brown casual slip on work shoes
  • dark blue denim jeans
  • silver watch band on right wrist
  • white button-down shirt with thin stripes (looked reddish, may have been two different colors, red and blue?)
  • shirt sleeves were cuffed twice
  • tapping left foot in a steady rhythm (listening to music?)
  • well-manicured hands/nails

She took in the list for a moment. I wish I could get a look at his face, she thought. And then, without thinking it through, she turned around and headed back into the park. She slowed as she approached the turn that would lead to the bench where she’d seen him. What if he’s a serial killer? Or a stalker? He could be a secret admirer, she argued with herself. Which is pretty much a stalker, she told herself.

Slowing her stride only slightly, she rounded the bend and saw he was gone. She was relieved and disappointed as she scanned the path ahead of her and the surrounding grassy areas. The buzzing of her phone caused her to jump. A new text message flashed on the screen:

When it’s time for you to know, you’ll know.

Clare looked up, her eyes darting around quickly. He knows I’m here. For a moment she debated whether to flee or to stand her ground. She decided she would show no fear and sat down on the bench where the stranger had been only a few minutes ago. As she stared at her phone, it buzzed again. Immediately she looked up and around. She saw a couple of moms pushing strollers and talking animatedly on the path leading to the duck pond area and a couple of runners on the path she’d just come back on. The phone buzzed again and she looked at it, shaking her head at her instant paranoia. It was a text from her best friend, Maren, asking whether they were still meeting for lunch.

Of course, she texted and then headed home to shower and head over to Rosa’s to meet Maren.


Rosa’s was busy but Clare quickly spotted her best friend at a table by the window.

“It’s been too long,” Maren said, standing up and embracing Clare in a tight hug.

“A week is definitely too long to go without seeing my best friend,” Clare replied.

The two sat and Maren slid a glass of red wine across the table to her. “Took the liberty,” Maren said.

“Thankful for that,” Clare said, lifting her glass. “To best friends and long afternoons.”

“And red wine,” Maren added.

Clare laughed. “And red wine.”

They touched glasses and sipped their wine. Clare savored the tannins as they teased her tongue with the hint of berry and chocolate. As she took another sip, she spotted the stranger across the street, causing her to choke on the smooth tasting wine and slosh the red liquid from the glass onto the white tablecloth. The spot spread like an ink blot from one of her favorite nib-tipped calligraphy pens.

“Whoa, you okay?” Maren put her own glass down.

“Oh, yeah.” Clare waved her hand. “Went down the wrong way.” Clare smiled at Maren and wiped the rim of her glass with her index finger. “So, are you getting your usual?”

Clare dropped her eyes to her menu but looked up slightly and out the window. He was gone again, but her phone buzzed and she knew even before she looked at it that it would be another strange, cryptic text message. She forced herself to smile at Maren as she checked her phone:

The time is coming sooner than you think. Enjoy a glass for me.


This Week’s Writing Sprint: Who’s That Guy?

Use this line to begin your story: There’s a guy sitting on a park bench reading a newspaper… (you can use it as the first line or just let it inspire the story by including the man sitting on a park bench reading a newspaper and see where it takes you).

Give us what you’ve got with as much detail and dialog as you can muster in 15 to 45 minutes. Most of all, have fun. Free your writer from your inner critic. When you’re done, come back and link up what you’ve got! And remember to give some encouragement to at least one other person in the link up community. You can post to the link up party until next Tuesday night. Hope to read you there!


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