Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Dipping The Quill Deeper - Spontaneous Creativity for Writers #2

by Eva Marie Everson

Last month I encouraged you to write spontaneously, using a painting for inspiration. This is an activity I enjoy quite often and use to break writers block

Let’s do it again! Here’s my take on a painting by Edoardo Tofano, titled “A Parisian Woman.” In a total of 301 words, I may have sparked an idea that will be written to completion . . . or I may simply encourage myself to further creativity on my WIP. 

Eudora wasn’t a beautiful young woman. Nor, could anyone say, she was remotely pretty. She had inherited her mother’s sharply pointed nose and her father’s angular jawline. Had she been born a male child, she may have passed for handsome, she sometimes thought as she gazed into the mirror of her vanity. Especially around the eyes and brow, the former wide and blue, the latter thick and aslant. But for all Mother Nature had not given her, God had blessed her with thick near-auburn tresses and a smooth complexion, although in the winter months peaches and cream often gave way to milky and pallid. 

Since the death of her mother, her father had insisted upon her wearing black to show a sign of respect in grieving. But it had been two years to the day now and Eudora was more than ready to shed her mourning clothes for more festive frocks. She would speak to him this evening, she decided, after they went to the church to say a prayer for Maman. For her soul, he said, because he feared for it. Eudora did not, of course. She knew her mother to be a saint. An absolute saint to have endured life with Père. 

She dressed and readied herself early enough to escape the confines of the spacious but dark house located near the rue de la Paix. To stroll along the boulevard, to perhaps indulge in a coffee at her favorite café. And, if she so dared, to stop at her preferred street-side florist, and to beg for a cutting—just a small one—to wear upon the lapel of her dress. A splash of color might brighten the otherwise somber occasion within la Sainte Chapelle. It would infuriate her father, of course, but that simply could not be helped.

Now, it’s your turn. What would you do with this painting by Edoardo Tofano (Naples, 1838 - Rome, 1920)? Share with us . . . if you dare!


Eva Marie Everson is the president of Word Weavers International, the director of Florida Christian Writers Conference, and a frequent speaker at writers retreats across the United States. Her 40th title, DUST, a novel, will release in early March 2021.


  1. Love it, Eva. I can see this becoming a full length love story. Because I just know she's going to meet a handsome man in church this morning.

  2. Really creative! It would be hard to improve on what you've written. Now I am curious to read what's going to happen next.

  3. Replies
    1. If you mean UN-edited ... yes. This is just to get the juices going. :)

  4. Another fun example...! Thanks for the reminder, often I need to hear things more than once.

    Have to be at work - remotely - in :5 mins, but my story starts:
    "Married in black, you'll wish yourself back," Ma always used to say. Well it couldn't be helped with the troop train taking Eduoard across France to where the fighting was in 48 hours. Josephine had attached the corsage, "Red for love," she encouraged her.
    Now waiting outside in the shadow of the church she wondered, "Red for love or red for blood...?" She hoped for the best as she turned to look into the blue eyes of her betrothed.

  5. I love the writing prompt idea and what you envisioned. I would definitely read the "rest of her story". Looking forward to seeing you soon!