Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Writing Prompt: The Little Things

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Do you regularly free write? Do you wish you did? Several times a month, we'll post a writing prompt. Open a notebook or a blank page and keep your hand moving for 10 minutes. Don't worry about grammar or punctuation – just write. 

Then, share a link to your free write in the comments section below. We’d love to see what you did with this week's prompt! 

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JenaSchwartztypewriter

Photo by Jena Schwartz

My feet flip-flopped across the scratchy industrial carpeting. Even from 10 paces away, I glimpsed that crooked grin he wears when he's especially content. When I reached the preschool classroom doorway, I relieved him of the backpack that overpowered his little body. He gestured for me to come close and I leaned down, feeling his breath on my face.

"I found something," he whispered. "Want to see?"

Of course I did. He uncurled his sweet little fingers to reveal a small strip of green construction paper, approximately 1" x 3". Towards one end, there was a fingerprint-sized splotch that was discolored, as if blanched by the sun. Otherwise, it was an ordinary, unremarkable strip of paper.

My second son, in his secondhand clothes, carried it home and carefully stowed it in his "box of special things." Only when his older brother returned from Kindergarten did he dash over to the box, lift the green strip, and wave it proudly in front of his brother, who simply shrugged, unimpressed. Still, my son beamed.

Sometimes it's hard to know what will capture our attention. Sometimes it's the littlest things that mean the most.

Today, free write about something that's special to you and no one else. Is there something you found or own or do that has special significance to you alone? Why? What do you hold on to or hold dear?

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Do YOU have a writing prompt to share with Literary Mama readers? Send your 150- to 300-word narrative and associated writing prompt to lmblogcontact (at) literarymama (dot) com. We'd like to hear your ideas!


Dina L. Relles is a writer with work in The Atlantic, Atticus Review, River TeethSTIR JournalBrain, Child Magazine, Full Grown People, The Manifest-Station, The Washington PostThe Huffington Post, and elsewhere. You can find more of her work on her own site, Commonplaceand you can connect with her on Twitter She lives in New York with her husband and children. Dina is a former blog editor for Literary Mama.


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Thanks for the prompt! I wrote about my husband's mother's old spaghetti pot. It was a very ordinary pot and in one of our moves along the way, I lost the top but I kept the pot. I only knew her for a few years before she sadly died of cancer.She was kind and funny and loved my husband very much. She was a great contrast to my own unhappy mother and the pot connected me to her.
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