The Smudged Thoughts PictoPrompter: FAQ

Are you wanting to participate in the Smudged Thoughts PictoPrompter, but have absolutely no idea what in the world it is? Well, dear bean, you have most certainly come to the right place!

Below is a slapped together neatly compiled list of frequently asked questions that absolutely nobody asked!

You’re welcome.

. . . The Questions . . .

QUESTION ONE . . . What in the world is a PictoPrompter?

Basically, this is my way of trying to reach out to the writing community in the blogosphere by combining three things all writers love.

1. dissecting strange, rather abstract images while trying to form a plot around the strangeness of it all

2. writing (duh)

3. broadcasting our writing to the world so that others can “ooh!” and “ahh!” over it

The third thing is obviously debatable.

QUESTION TWO . . . How do I participate?

Participating is super duper easy, I promise. Just follow these four easy steps, and you’re good to go!

1. Examine the picture posted. Don’t be afraid to go all squinty, here. Get a good, looooong look. Maybe you should even tilt your screen a bit. Dim it, brighten it, turn it upside down. It’s really up to you.

2. Let your imagination explode. Feel free to go with whatever your heart is telling you. Does it look like a bloated pink elephant? A squashed potato? A rotten rutabaga? What story ideas are flaring to life in your beautifully insane mind? Let your imagination run wild and. . .

3. WRITE! This is the absolute best step. Whip out a pen and some ink and get cracking. Only you can write the story floating around in your head. We all may be staring at the same picture, but the story that came to your mind is uniquely your own, so don’t be afraid to write it. Be real. Be funny. Be sarcastic. Be whatever it is you are.

PictoPrompter Button
The handy-dandy PictoPrompter button! Snag it from here, or from your preferred PictoPrompter episode, and paste it with the link into your story’s post!

4. Post it! Don’t forget to post your extraordinary story onto the blogosphere, along with either a link back to my blog, or an insert of the handy-dandy PictoPrompter button onto your post! I would LOVE to read what you come up with! If you don’t post it, a wild pack of werebears might come and eat your face while you are sleeping tonight. (Don’t worry. This hasn’t happened since the July of 1803.)

However, if sharing your work just really isn’t your thing, then feel free to shove it into the dark recesses of your writing drawer and never speak of it again. I’ve done it before. You’ve done it before. I’m betting Jane Austen and J. R. R. Tolkien both did it before. It’s a perfectly natural response to the horrors we create.

Except, you’re still going to have to fight off the werebears, so I would think long and hard before you skip this step.

QUESTION THREE . . . What’s in it for me?

You mean besides getting the chance to flex your brainy muscle and try your hand at spontaneously creating a world and cast of characters?

Pretty much nothing.

But wouldn’t it be awesome to get to share your take on an image with a bunch of other writers who are writing about the exact same thing? Wouldn’t it be wonderful to get to compare and contrast how each writer’s inner mind works? Wouldn’t you love to see how your view on a single picture can totally differentiate from the works of another fellow writer?


But if that’s still not enough motivation for you, there will be super amazingly wonderful prizes–hand-crafted by yours truly–available in the future, so why not get a head start and begin participating now, when there’s no pressure to write well?

Sounds pretty nice, doesn’t it? Ah??? Ah???????

QUESTION FOUR . . . What’s in it for you?

You mean besides getting to take weird, random pictures, post them on the internet for the entire world to see, flex my brainy muscle, and try my hand at spontaneously creating a world and characters alongside you?

Pretty much nothing.

Except I get to keep saying brainy muscle, and that’s pretty much a reward in itself.

PictoPrompter PLUS! . . . coming soon, fall of 2018