Genre Scribes: Friday Fiction Writing Challenge #2 — Zoo

Welcome to Week 2 of the Friday Fiction Writing Challenge!

This week’s random word is: Zoo.

Just like last time, I took the randomly generated word and wrote about it for five minutes. This was a tough one. I stared at the cursor for almost half of the allotted time before my brain kicked in with something.

Here’s the result (unedited):

Cage after cage lined the deck of the ship. They’d come alongside under the cover of darkness, hoping to escape notice as the men unloaded their human cargo. Women and children stared blankly as the officers tried to figure out where they’d all come from. The only thing that was certain was they were bound for The Zoo.

The captain claimed ignorance of his cargo, as did the men. But one of them looked like he wanted to talk.

Once I completed the above part of the challenge, I buggered off and made some apple and sultana muffins. After the muffins were done and tested scientifically for tastiness, I came back and re-read the first part of the exercise—looking for something that grabbed my interest.

Here’s the part that caught me: The only thing that was certain was they were bound for The Zoo. And that is what I decided to write about for another five minutes.

The result (basic editing):

Eight months. That’s how long they’d spent training him, testing him, torturing him. When he said it quick it didn’t sound too long. Yeah, he was not going to dwell on that. The last thing Mal needed right now was to fall into the rabbit hole of The Zoo. He’d left that world behind him. Well, at least he’d tried to. The man strapped to the chair in his kitchen said otherwise.

Mal slid another toothpick under the man’s thumbnail. “Who sent you?”

The man shook his head, tears mingling with the blood on his face. “I’m no one, man.”

Now that I’m finished, I have to admit I’m quite interested in The Zoo training facility. It feels like the kind of place my heroes would have gone through their training. I like it so much I’m actually going to use this in one of my spy/military romantic suspense series.

Time for more muffins!


  1. Don’t think too hard on the noun; just write about it for five minutes.
  2. Once the five minutes are up, walk away for about five/ten minutes.
  3. Now, come back to the text and re-read it,
  4. Pick out something that piques your interest and write about that for five minutes.
  5. Be courageous and post your results to your blog. (Both sets of writing sessions or just the one, it’s up to you.)


  1. Complete the challenge on your blog before 1700 UTC of the following Friday.
  2. Link to the original prompt post and make sure to use the tag Genre Scribes so that we can see all the posts together in WP Reader.
  3. Your text must be fiction (preferably one you publish in (or plan to).
  4. No real-life stories.
  5. The text can be dialogue, an interior monologue, a scene, flash fiction, anything… so long as it’s fiction.

Full information is on the Genre Scribes: Friday Fiction Writing Challenge page.

Author: Susan T. Braithwaite

Royal Navy veteran from Scotland. My journey into writing started with a screenwriting certificate program at UCLA Ext. Since then, I've worked as a freelance content writer, erotica author, proofreader, professional beta reader, and content editor. I'm now working hard on my dream writing career: romantic suspense author. When I'm not writing, I can be found drinking too much coffee, obsessing over yarn, and planning world domination with my husband,, and our squirrel army.​

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