On the Button

buttonsDid you ever hear the phrase ‘Mothers are like buttons, they hold everything together’?

No, nor me, not until recently, that is.

But here we are, a great idea for your creative writing prompt this week – buttons.

Someone can be buttoned up, something can be buttoned down. You can have brass buttons, plastic, bone, glass, wood, shell. They can be big, small, somewhere in between, and colourful or dull – or somewhere in between.

Buttons can be on clothes, accessories, furniture, phones, electrical gadgets. They can be functional or decorative, blatant or discreet. They can be lost or found.

Is an idea forming?

No? You’re still thinking about mothers then, aren’t you? Let me share a secret: As a mother myself, and as someone who once had a mother, I’m not a hundred percent in agreement with my opening remark above.

Perhaps there’s a poem to be had with such an idea? I’ve already written a shedload of poems about my mother,  and I thought when my pamphlet/chapbook ‘Under the Influence’ was accepted for publication that would be me done with that subject. But not so it seems, there’s still more to be written about her.

Don’t worry if poetry isn’t your thing. I hasten to say it isn’t my only thing, I write stories as well. (And none of them so far have been about my mother.) You can write whatever you choose, prompted by the word ‘buttons’. Perhaps a memory has been sparked for a piece of creative non-fiction? Or a short story or a piece of flash fiction is unfolding?

Me, I’m keeping with poetry this week since tomorrow is Poetry Day Ireland – check out lots of free on-line events to enjoy throughout the day here. The theme this year is ‘New Directions: Maps and Journeys.

Meanwhile, you’ve still a few days to knock a story into shape for the Francis MacManus Short Story Competition for RTÉ Radio One, details here. The deadline is May 7th. This year, you need Irish connections to be eligible to enter. Perhaps because they had more than 4,000 entries from across the world last year?

There’s a whole month to go before the deadline for the annual Bridport Prizes for Flash Fiction, Poetry and Short Stories. More info here. And the Bridport is always open to writers from anywhere.

And of course, if you have connections with County Roscommon in Ireland, you can enter the New Roscommon Writing Award with either a 2,000 word fictional story or memoir, details here  (spoiler alert – I’m this year’s judge!).

Keep writing!

This is No 94 in my series of 42 creative writing prompts, and I’m heading for the finish line now. But before that, I’ll be back next week, same time, same place. If you’re new here, you might like to check out what it is all about here. The short version is there’s a new creative writing prompt/exercise here every Wednesday at 5pm, Dublin time.