Splashes in Ink // Inktober 2020 Week 1

As you may or may not know, there is a thing called Inktober going on, where artists draw an ink sketch based on a single word prompt. I am not that confident in my artistic ability, so I have opted for the writer’s edition, where I write a brief scene based on the prompt.

I decided to participate this year because I wanted to challenge myself to write a little bit every day. This past week, I managed to fulfill that challenge, for once, and realized how amazing the experience was. These one-word prompts allow for practically unlimited creativity of the best, most random kind. I could literally write about the first thing that popped into my head and merrily bounce it out on my keyboard without having to worry about plot and theme and research and character development and all the nitty gritty that goes into writing a novel. I could write things as random as my heart desired and, because they’re short, choose any setting or genre I want without having to worry about how realistic things are. Or worry about anything, really. Unlike when writing a novel.

I also realized that it jump-started my creativity when I was suffering from burnout. I’ve made it a habit to write an Inktober entry as a warm-up before tackling my larger project, and it always saves me that precious time I spend staring at the screen or the ceiling or my pinkie toe wondering what in the world I should say next.

These prompts have been a blast. If you’re not doing it already, it’s not too late to start. You can literally jump right in on today’s prompt and join in the fun. I couldn’t recommend it more.

In the meantime, enjoy my ink splashes from Week 1.

Note: All pictures come from Google. I changed them to black and white, because that way they look more serious and philosophical and dramatic, dun dun duuun.

Day 1: Fish

My fingers slide over the slimy scales. In the rippling light, the scales twinkle in orange and purple, an oasis of color in a grey ocean. I reach up for the soft fins flowering in the water. They slip easily out of my grip, but the fish stops swimming for a brief second before soaring on. I am now on its back, a cloud of fins blooming around me. Flying through the vast currents, a stream of bubbles escapes my mouth as I laugh.

Day 2: Wisp

A bright red awning, with faded letters etched into its stained cloth, leaned over outdoor dining chairs. Clinking glasses and silverware mixed with loud voices and ripples of laughter. He leaned back in his chair, a cigarette dangling between his fingers. Wisps of smoke curled above his head and spiraled up from a black ashtray sitting beside glasses of red wine. His companions around his table talked merrily, and at one loud comment, they threw their heads back in laughter. He chuckled, taking a draw from his cigarette and blowing out a puff of smoke. The curtain of grey particles concealed the sadness lingering in his eyes.

Day 3: Bulky

A soft purple tunic slipped smoothly onto his young frame. It was so much more comfortable than his own rough shepherd’s shirt. The coat of armor was considerably less pleasant. It sagged heavily onto his shoulders and fell down below his waist, smothering his breaths and making him gasp. This would not work. But one glance at the king and he determined to at least try.

He accepted a bronze helmet and strapped it onto his head. The armor was light as a pebble compared to the helmet. A sheep was practically sitting on his head and surely his neck would snap off under the weight. Barely able to see through the slots that were closer to his nose than his eyes, he took a sword and fastened it over his tunic.

Taking as deep a breath as possible, he tried walking. The sword smacked against his leg, the armor stuck up into his arms, and the helmet kept sliding around. No, the armor definitely would not work. But his protection would come from a source far mightier than any piece of metal.

Day 4: Radio

Every day after school I would ride by the farmhouse on my bicycle. It stood at the top of a steep hill, which meant I always passed the house gasping for breath, even though I walked my bike up. Open shutters hung precariously from their frames, looking like they’d fall at a small breeze, but they never did. The house had paint peeling off the old wood, paint which was probably once white. A swing-seat was on the front porch. It was always empty, just like the rest of the property, but the air was always filled with a distant crackling, noises from a radio. Every day, I would try to make out the words, since my family didn’t have a radio even though I really wanted one, but I never could. I always promised myself that next time, I would figure out what it was talking about. Today, except for my panting breaths and the creaking wheels of my bicycle, the air was quiet.

Day 5: Blade

Damascus blade edge on microfiber. Cloth macro up close focus bokeh depth of field royalty free stock images

He selected the blade with a practiced eye and balanced it skillfully in his hand. Gazing at the strip of exposed skin, flushed pink with life, he poised the tip of the blade. He took a deep breath. They would thank him for this. He plunged the blade into soft flesh and sliced horizontally. Blood trickled out from the puncture, staining his glove. A shiver wracked through his body. He’d done this a thousand times, and the blood from that first cut always haunted him. But they would thank him for this.

Day 6: Rodent

I gave my wife one last kiss on the cheek before I ducked through the door and stepped outside. Ice from the frozen pond crunched under my feet. I look a long sniff of the early morning air. Crisp and cold as always. I darted forward a little bit, then on impulse, looked behind longingly. Golden light faintly glimmered behind the tiny cracks in the logs of our home. I’d chopped down those logs and built the house myself, and over many long wintery years, it had become a cozy home. I followed the smoke curling up from the chimney and watched it melt into the grey morning sky. If only I could melt back into bed, where it was warm and safe, with no spies lingering about. But I had a mission. I bounded across the pond and jumped into the woods, the green pine boughs sagging with snow. Once again I looked back at my home, but my eyes drifted higher, to a pair of hills in the distance. My gaze hardened and I muttered a curse. No doubt the wife would scold me for it, but I couldn’t help myself. It was high time that usurper was overthrown, and by Jove, would I fulfill my part in it. Filled with fresh resolve, I spun around and dove into the woods.

Day 7: Fancy

Safely perched in the fly tower above the stage with my gun cocked and ready to shoot, I had a marvelous view of the performers. They were all dressed in ridiculous ruffles and frills – even the men, which I found disgraceful at best, humiliating at worst. The thumping of everyone’s high heels as they waltzed was drowned out by the high-stepping, twinkling, looking-down-the-nosing music wafting from the orchestra in the pit. Fortunately for the musicians, I couldn’t see the pit from my position, otherwise I would have been sorely tempted to swing down from my perch and shoot every single one of them – after flicking the mode of my gun from knock out to stun, of course. But I quickly dismissed the ridiculous temptation, instead comforting myself that the music would surely stop once I shot my target.

In the meantime, I dug a pair of squishy green foam cylinders out of my leather jacket and shoved them into my ears. Then, readjusting my gun, I narrowed my eyes at the performers. According to the call, my target would be easy to spot, because she wasn’t a professional like everyone else, only being there to spy on someone important in the audience. (Why anyone important would be watching such stuck-up garbage, I wouldn’t know.)

The problem was, all the people twirling beneath me were dancing equally ridiculously, with their heads held high, their fans fluttering, and their powdered wigs flouncing almost as much as the women’s poufy gowns.

I scowled and readjusted my position yet again, staring into the scope of my gun and inspected each performer one by one. I was about to give up hope and simply shoot all of them, when an out-of-place color caught my eye. Lime green, a color that did not belong in this world of lace and white and cream and rose gold. It was cleverly hidden behind a thick curl of hair, but I recognized what it was without a doubt. I had the same stuff in my own ears.

Grinning triumphantly, I aimed the gun, curled my finger around the trigger, and pulled. Instantly the woman collapsed, people screamed, and the music died away. Aah, sweet relief. Pleased as a button, I called 911, then packed my things into my backpack and made my way down. As I slipped onto backstage, I scanned the audience, ignoring the stampede of people. My eyes landed on a theatre box near the back, where a tuxedoed figure was rapidly moving about, packing away a rifle. The real assassin. I grinned and surged forward.

I just noticed that those got way longer as I went on. xD

Are you doing Inktober this year? How’s it going for you? Which of these entries was your favorite and why? Do you know who the narrator is for Day 6? Would you like to see my entries for Week 2? Tell me in the comments! 😀

10 thoughts on “Splashes in Ink // Inktober 2020 Week 1

  1. Is the narrator of day 6 Mr. Beaver from Narnia??? I’m not positive, but that’s who it makes me think of. 🙂
    “A sheep was practically sitting on his head.” Hehe…
    These are all quite good, and I love the idea of writing a short response to a one word prompt. I particularly like the responses to “wisp” and “radio,” mainly because they give a certain feeling/aesthetic in just a paragraph. It’s like painting a picture. The one for “blade” is intriguing, and somewhat concerning.
    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ding ding ding, it is indeed Mr. Beaver! 😀 It was such fun to write.
      Thank you Sponge! Yay, that aesthetic/vibe thing was exactly what I was aiming for, so I’m very happy it conjured up that feeling for you. And I’m curious, what was concerning in “blade”? 😂

      Liked by 2 people

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