Madlibs are great fun. They are reminiscent of a childhood where you choose any random, weird words that come to mind, fill in the blanks, and you have a quick, quirky story to read and share. This prompt is from Reader’s Digest. It’s a play on the original Mad Libs game, but instead of filling in the blanks, you write your own story.
1. Write a story or scene with the following guidelines:
2. Include the phrase “What is that?”
3. Use at least five of the words below
a word you use too much: Great
the name of a city you’d like to visit: Austin, TX
an unusual color: Chartreuse
a hobby: Writing
a physical quality a person might wish for: Smaller nose
an animal: Walrus
a famous author: F Scott Fitzgerald
a verb ending in -ing: Wading
a number: 10 (ten)
an adverb: Gently
A smaller nose.
It had been her wish for at least a year, to have a smaller nose. At 13, Alice already decidedly disliked her nose. It was shaped like a boulder, she thought. It was small enough at the bridge, but from there it expanded out and dominated her other more delicate features, presenting as wide and bumpy. Like the rock Dad climbed last weekend, she thought.
Alice studied her nose in the mirror, pinching the bridge gently as if to decrease its size by sheer will and determination. She looked up from her nose, into her own chartreuse eyes, made a face and looked away from the mirror.
Alice had already illustrated at least ten alternate noses in her three-ring binder during sixth-period algebra, designing each one to fit perfectly with her face. Sitting next to her, Charlotte Fine, her oldest and most trusted friend, unconvincingly listed all the girls in their elective writing class who had bigger, bulkier noses than Alice. “You have a great nose!” Charlotte whispered. But Alice didn’t buy it. “There couldn’t be a person with a worse primary feature,” she whispered back, sighing and crumpling the sheet of illustrated noses into a tight ball.
Once again turning toward the mirror, Alice pinched her nose one last time and jumped down from the bathroom counter.
“Ew, what is that?” a tiny voice said from behind her.
Alice whipped around to find her little sister, Penelope, four, pointing at her face, finger aiming at her nose. “What’s what?” she asked the precocious preschooler.
“Is that a walrus?”
Alice cocked her head and turned toward the doorway. “Mom!” she called down the stairs. “Can you call Penny? She’s bugging me.”
Covering her nose with her hands, Alice hurried away from her sister still standing in the bathroom. Alice charged into her bedroom and closed the door behind her until she heard the click. Wading through soft floor cushions and brightly colored throw pillows, Alice dropped onto her bed and closed her eyes. I will love my nose, she told herself…to no avail.