Here is a writing prompt inspired by TC Boyle’s great novel, The Road to Wellville.
Start a description of a setting you want to use with the opening line, ‘It was a ______.’
It could be a desert, a shopping mall, a bathroom, a Boeing 747, wherever you want. Here’s how Boyle uses it.
It was a basement. Fieldstone and mortar, earthen floor, a smell like the cork in a bottle of wine gone bad on the shelf. There was a clutter of the usual junk – a sagging perambulator, rusted garden tools, a coal scuttle with a broken handle. The dirt was pulverized, grainy, ancient – dust – and the mummified corpse of a mouse lay in a drift of it in the center of the room, a pathetic wrinkle of naked hands and feet.
Flex those descriptive muscles.