Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
For Your Journal: Writing Prompt

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Do you keep a journal - or wish you could get one started? Literary Mama wants to help.

Three times a month, I'll post a writing prompt. Open a notebook and write for 10 minutes. Don't worry about grammar or punctuation - just write. Then let the writing simmer and your mind wander for awhile.

And who knows? Maybe you'll discover a character for your next short story or a theme for a narrative essay. Or maybe you'll use the idea to create a special holiday card or photo album for someone in your family. However you decide to use your journal entry, I know you'll enjoy re-reading it months--and years--down the road.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"The Birthday Candle" is the story of a candle that doesn't want to be a birthday candle. (He didn't like it when children blew spit on him and licked the frosting off of him.) But when the baker needs a candle for an anniversary cake--an event the candle learns is very special to humans--he walks over to the cake and sits down. ("And no one spat on him or licked the frosting off of him. The End.")

The 300-word story my three children wrote and illustrated doesn't make a lot of sense--the narrative arc is flat and the dialogue silly--but we laugh every time we read it because we remember the morning we spent creating it. At that time, the drawings were hilarious and the family jokes side-splitting.

Grandma and Grandpa thought so too.

Journal Entry: Write and illustrate a story with your child about a household object. Start with "Once upon a time" and prompt your child with "Then what happened?" and "What happened next?" Add your child's drawings and staple it together.

Karna ConverseĀ is a freelance writer who’s written everything from technical documentation and price proposals to newsletter articles, devotionals, personal profiles and essays. Her essays have been published in a variety of regional and national publications, including The Christian Science Monitor, Notre Dame Magazine, the Cup of Comfort and Chicken Soup anthologies, Our Iowa, and on Iowa Public Radio. She and her husband are parents to three young adults. Karna is a former blog editor, senior editor, managing editor, and editor-in-chief of Literary Mama.

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