First Line Friday: “Ivan sat down at his desk for the fifth time that morning and willed the blank document on his laptop to do something other than laugh at him.”

In our quest to encourage creativity, we post a writing prompt every other Friday. Write a story with the prompt as the first line. Share your story below or on social media using the tag #FirstLineFriday. We can’t wait to see your stories!

“Ivan sat down at his desk for the fifth time that morning and willed the blank document on his laptop to do something other than laugh at him.”

Ivan sat down at his desk for the fifth time that morning and willed the blank document on his laptop to do something other than laugh at him. Nothing happened. He wanted to throw something. His agent kept asking him for his newest novel, but he had nothing. Since his mother passed, it was like the words had left him. He looked out the apartment window. The sky was blue. The grass was green. His mind refused to move beyond simple facts these days. What could he do? He closed his computer, pulled out a journal, and tried again.

Ariana Adams

Ivan sat down at his desk for the fifth time that morning and willed the blank document on his laptop to do something other than laugh at him. Its stark whiteness mocked him and his supposed creativity. A thousand words a day was easy during NaNoWriMo. Why couldn’t he do it now?

Maybe it wasn’t the best idea to write surround by his unpublished manuscripts, towering around him in stacks, permanent reminders of his many rejections. Ivan has always believed that a writer had to be reminded of their struggles, otherwise they could never progress forward. As he continued starting at the blank page, he began to doubt his progress for the first time in his life.

Jillian Murphy

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About Jillian Murphy

Jillian Murphy is the Assistant Managing Editor of the UNG Press. She is a UNG alumna, class of 2016.

View all posts by Jillian Murphy →

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