Saturday, September 12, 2020

Writing Prompt: Cooking up a MacGuffin

Every quest needs an objective.  A hero has to go look for something.  However, the role that the object plays in the story, the importance of such objects, and even the existence of the objects can vary widely depending on the tale.  Contemporary writers have often called these objects MacGuffins or--in Science Fiction-- by the related term Big Dumb Objects.  I found the Wikipedia entries on these plot devices to be great reading.  However, the innocent reader in me doesn't like that these objects of value, awe, or power are just plot devices that manipulative storytelling types are using to hook us into their narratives.

For today's writing exercise, we have to think about the objectives of our character's quests.  What are they looking for?  What do they need to find it?  What history, power, and value does it have?  What do they need to do when they find the objective of their quest?  Is the object of the quest even revealed in your story?  Do they ever even find the objective?  Is it snatched away at the last minute?

For today's writing prompt, create and describe the --

MacGuffin

The Chalice of St. Remigius - photo by Buster.laroux / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)



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