Thursday Writing Prompt No. 40

Lilacs in bloom at the National Arboretum in Washington, D.C.

It’s been spring for nearly a month now, but the weather has been so volatile that I’m not sure if we’re still in winter or if we went straight through to summer this year. But there have been a few nice days, and even with allergies, I’ve managed to get outside in the greenery and get some nice photographs of spring plants. So what I thought would be a good Thursday Writing Prompt would be describing a spring setting. Use the photograph above as an idea, but don’t stop there.

Describe a landscape and how it looks, smells, and feels during the spring. Don’t forget that not every flower or bush blooms at the same time, and if you’re seeing crocuses then probably nothing else has bloomed yet. And the ground might still be hard or even frozen in some places. Spring is a transition month and it can be cold or hot, still or windy, dry or wet. Don’t go for the usual descriptions of flowers; try showing your readers just how hard the ground still is even with a few crocuses in bloom. Let your words work to make the texture of that ground come alive. The more sensory experience that you can put into your writing, the more the readers will feel like your setting is a real place. Try to include sounds, smells, and touch as well as visual description.

Your goal should be to write several paragraphs describing a setting of your choice, and what it is like in the spring. Early or late spring is your choice, but do try to capture the essence of change that is happening during this season. Go for a walk and experience the spring, even if it’s a short stroll around the block or just stepping outside onto an apartment balcony. What does the air smell like? Is the wind warm or still cold? Is the humidity high or low? Put these into your narrative for a better description and to pull readers in.

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