My first writing class and the Sample Story Idea

I attended my first writing class last week filled with nervous anxiety, excitement and wonder. I had so much fun! Now I’ve got a homework assignment that I’m working on and still wondering what to focus my writing energies on. I’m attending ‘The Writer’s Workshop’ at the Good Shepherd Center in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle. The class is taught by Nicholas O’Connell, a local writer and author. Our assignment for this first week is something called a Sample Story Idea. It’s purpose and intent is to help the writer articulate, in less than 150 words, their story idea: setting, scene, audience. etc. I’ve got 2 story ideas written and am not exactly sure  which one I’m going to follow up on as they are very different in context, setting, tone and audience. One idea is to write an article for a travel or food and wine type of magazine about my recent adventures in Paris. The other is the longer concept that I have for a novel or a series of short stories based on my own life experiences but told through the eyes of my characters: Tilly, Tucker and Jessie Campbell.

I’ve decided to post both writings here and see where it leads. Let me know if you have any tips/feedback/ thoughts/preferences. Perhaps at some point I’ll write both. For now though, for this class, I need to choose one to follow up with and pursue as the final goal of the class is to look toward publishing what we’ve worked on and written.

A Giddy Day in Paris (Sample Story Idea)

Do you remember a time in your life when you actually woke up giddy inside? I hadn’t, in a long time, until my recent trip to Paris this past spring. I first stood atop the Eiffel Tower when I was 21 and remember saying aloud to the wind, ‘I am going to come back here someday’. Since that day, this wish has unfolded into as many as 15 travel adventures to this incredible city. On this trip I was meeting up with a girlfriend for 2 days followed by my husband’s arrival for the remainder of the week. I encountered a few travel glitches upon my arrival but eventually made it to my rental apartment in the St. Germains des Pres neighborhood on Rue de Seine. My hope for this adventure was to discover new neighborhoods, visit familiar and new restaurants, practice my French, walk, wander and get lost.

The Adventures of Tilly, Tucker and Jessie Campbell (Sample Story Idea)

Tilly Battle was the only grandparent I met as a child. My grandfather, George Jones, died suddenly when my mom was 10 and my dad’s parents, David and Jessie (Campbell) Heaney both passed away before I was born. Tucker Battle married my grandmother Tilly when she was in her late 50’s and ‘Gramps’, as he was affectionately known, became my step grandfather. When I was 12 they both passed away suddenly, within weeks of each other. Then, between the ages of 12 through 16 my family experienced more family deaths and illnesses. This story is about my journey: my childhood experiences growing up in Vancouver, British Columbia, my relationships with my brother and parents, and my wonderings about life and death. Tilly, Tucker and Jessie Campbell are my characters through whom my readers will hear my story.

That’s it. I’d appreciate comments, thoughts and feedback and I’ll see how this unfolds.

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Anita Mac says:

    I like the giddy day in Paris best. Perhaps due to the fact that I love a good travel story, or your opening line “Do you remember….” – it really draws me in.
    The part about the two days with your girlfriend while waiting for your husband starts to lose me a little – maybe expressed in fewer words before getting to your hopes for the trip. I am looking for more giddy!
    Hope that wasn’t too critical, and helpful. Just my thoughts – either way – I want to hear more about the giddness of your day in Paris. Not sure if it is with your friend or husband!
    Good luck with your course! Happy writing.

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