Genre Scribes: Friday Fiction Writing Challenge #4 — Map

Week 4: Map

Welcome to Week 4 of the Friday Fiction Writing Challenge! Here’s a complete list of all the posts so far if you’d like to join in.

This week’s random word is: Map.

Before starting the timer this week, I found it challenging to just get myself to focus on the task at hand. I ended up resorting to an old favorite: the Pomodoro technique.

The Pomodoro technique, if you don’t already know, is a way of working in short intervals. Usually in twenty-five-minute segments with a five-minute break.

For this challenge, I set a five-minute timer with a ten-minute break in between. So, five for the first sprint, a break, then another five for the second sprint.

Here’s the (unedited) result of the first sprint:

On the far wall of the abandoned ranger station was an old map from the 80s. Simon pulled it from the wall and studied the sun damaged document. The details were barely visible without squinting. He traced a line from their location to the woman’s cabin. Damn, there were twelve miles of rough terrain between them and some semblance of safety.

Dalton packed more wadded material atop the already blood-soaked gauze at his hip. Simon twisted his lips. Could the old man even make it that distance with a round in his hip? He doubted it, especially with Avery on their tail.

After my ten minute break, I came back and read the above sprint. I was looking for a section that intrigued me, but I couldn’t pick one out. The whole thing intrigued me.

It was getting late, so I went against the rules and let it breathe overnight (last night). When I came back to it this afternoon (after a hospital visit for Jez‘s broken ankle), I still found that the whole text sparked something in me.

The little snippet raises so many questions that my story mind demands answers. For now, I know there are at least four main characters, a location, a fuzzy goal, and some conflict. The main thing I know is that there’s a story there, one I’m itching to explore.

I hadn’t expected this to be the outcome, not after having to force myself to do the challenge. But that’s the beauty of doing these exercises, they force you to be creative, especially when you’re just not feeling it.

Thanks for reading!


  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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