A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words // Sample

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. As any writer will know, random phases like that can make your mind go spinning into thought… And that’s what happened to me. A random blog post and a random quote came together to inspire me with an idea that I am seriously excited about. (Not a ‘I’m serious that I’m excited’ but a ‘This is serious excitement!’ seriousness. Do you get the difference?) Anyway, I wanted to post this yesterday, like a lot.  But, there were too many other things going on at Noveltea for that to happen, so, I had to wait patiently for today.


{Quick random question: You do realize that Noveltea is supposed to be pounced like novelty, right? Not ‘novel-t-a’? The ‘a’ is silent. Just wanted to make sure y’all knew!}

Rats! This post is going to be too long. I’ll tell you what, don’t let the length scare you. You can just read the intro here that I’m writing, and come back and read the story later if you want. (For some reason, I’m just having so much fun with my blog and it’s actually really hard to choose what to say, because there are so many posts I want to do, and of course over-loaded blogs aren’t fun.)

So here’s my idea:
1. Pick a picture, just a random one
2. Write a thousand-word story inspired by it

I know, brilliant, right?
I timed myself from the time I picked the picture out until I was done writing the story, including a quick job of editing, etc… to make sure I had the exact word count, (people never say ‘a story is worth 999 words’ now do they?) and it took me just under 40 minutes. That isnt’ long, y’all, and I’m one of those people who has never been good at/liked writing short stories.

Anyway, I would love to start a link up thingy where a group of bloggers could choose a picture and write a story about it. Wouldn’t it be amazing to see how many different angles we could write about for one picture? Especially if we use our imaginations. If you read my story below, you’ll see that I pretty much saw the girls facial expressions and took off from there.

So, would any of you be interested in doing something like that^? If so, why don’t you leave a comment or drop me an email and let me know. Or, if you wanted to get started right away, you could write a 1,000 word story about that picture up there ^, and then leave me a link to it, so I can read it. Oh goodness! This is fun. Anyway, even if y’all don’t do it, I’m going to!

Alright. If you want to, you can act like the blog post is done and go merrily along your way now. Or… If you’re curiosity is twinged even in the slightest, you can stay and read the story I wrote yesterday. Thanks!

The Story:


They say that time stood still the day I was born. That they knew even before I was able to turn over that I was a special one. That I would one day do something great. Something to make my village proud.

I wanted to grow up like everyone else. I wanted to be just another child. Playing with the dogs on the streets. Working alongside mother. Toiling in the fields. They said it wouldn’t do though. I was born for more than that. I was taught early on what it was like to have responsibility; what it meant to take care of my younger siblings.

Mother died when Emook was born. I was only eight summers old, but they said that was old enough to take care of him. So he became mine. Wrapping him in a shawl, I often did my tasks with him tied in a sling around my neck.

The people persisted that I exert myself. Often times I was confused. Why was it chosen of me to be great? Why not Lila? She was born at the same time as me and in the hut next to ours. Couldn’t she be the one who everyone expected to do great things? Where were the differences between us? I thought we looked very much alike.

It wasn’t until Emook was old enough to crawl around that I was told the story of my grandmother, who’s name and birth month I shared. She had been a little babe, just as I had been. No one thought she would amount to much. She had been spared all but the lightest toil. Given preference at the dinner table, hoping to help her strength grow.

And then one summer the fields were drying out. The stock was thirsting. All of the villagers had cut back on their water rations, yet still they feared the well would run dry. Rain was needed soon. If they weren’t able to water the plants, their crop would fail, and if the crops failed, what would they do during the winter months?

There was a rumor that water was up in the hills. If only they would somehow be able to find a way to bring it to the village, then the crops, animals and people could drink their fill. Children would no longer cry from empty stomachs, mothers would again be able to make meals fit for their hard working families, and father’s wouldn’t lay awake at night worrying about what they would do during the winter.

My grandma had listened to the whispers of worries around the well, and that’s when she decided to do something. Tired of being a burden to her family, and realizing her sparse amount of labor wouldn’t be missed, she packed herself a small flask of water and a miniature loaf of bread, she then set out for the hills with her bow and arrows. And an empty waterskin.

The hills were a place to be feared because of the wild animals that roamed the region. The scream of the wild cats were heard many evenings, making the villager’s hair raise on the back of their necks and send tingles up and down their spine. Yet my grandma knew that it was worth it. She wouldn’t let fear stop her. She would search the hills until she found the water which was so dreamed about. Or she would die trying.

Her family didn’t think much about her absence until late that night. When they inquired of their neighbors, they didn’t hear much until a small boy volunteered the information that she had gone into the hills and had asked him to let her family know not to worry.

For five long days the villagers went about their work in a somber mood, wondering, wondering, wondering what my grandmother would find. Would she come back bearing the wonderful news they were all hoping for? Or had she perished up there in the unfriendly hills? Each night, the cry of the cats seemed to be louder than ever before. The children would cover their ears with their fingers as they lay sleeping at night, hoping to block out the sounds and images that swirled around in their minds.

Her mother, my great-grandmother would walk outside of their hut and shade her eyes as she strained to see into the hills. Waiting, hoping, watching for the lithe figure of a girl coming back from the hills. Everyone knew the truth, yet no one spoke it. Either my grandma had found water by now, or she had died, if not in the unmerciful claws of a wild cat, then of thirst. There were no other options.

Then as the sun was setting on the sixth day, a shout went up from the group walking home from the fields. They saw a silhouette coming toward them from the direction of the hills. Could it really be? Was she really returning?

Tears of joy were turned into shouts of laughter as family and friends embraced her. And the shouts of laughter were turned into songs of thanksgiving when they saw the waterskin my grandma had brought back with her. A waterskin holding fresh, clean, clear water.

No, my grandmother assured them, the water wasn’t too hard to reach. Not more than a day’s travel. And yes, there was plenty for everyone.

I hugged Emook’s sleeping body closer to me as I realized for the first time why I’d been chosen to do something great. Why everyone expected it of me. I was Melee. I was my grandmother’s granddaughter. I would follow in her footsteps and make my village and my family proud of me.

Looking up toward the hills, my eyes following the ditch that had been dug to bring the water to our village, I slowly nodded my head. Yes, I was Melee. The great Melee’s first granddaughter. One day, one day I would be a legend too. It was the way things were.

14 thoughts on “A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words // Sample

  1. Anonymous says:

    Wow, Aidyl! That was a great story! The only suggestion I would have is to remove the last line, “It was the way things were.” It kinda ends it a little more blunt than would, “one day I' would be a legend too.”:) Hate criticizing, so either way it is great – I enjoyed reading it.
    I love this idea, and have used it on poems. I should try with stories, though, as I've spent all morning searching for something to write. This was perfect timing. 🙂 So although I don't have a blog, I will be working on this.



  2. Aidyl Ewoh says:

    Thank you for your suggestion, Rebecca! I'm glad you enjoyed most of it. =)
    It would be great if you wrote a story… And as always, if you want to share it, I'd have fun reading.


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