Friday Fun-Day Writing Prompt: All Summer in a Day

Happy Friday, everyone! This week started out pretty stressful for me but now I can kick back and relax for a little while (until boredom seeps in and I go through the “I want to do something but I’m too tired” struggle). With the summer solstice just around the corner–and my birthday!–I’ve decided to base today’s writing prompt on Ray Bradbury’s “All Summer in a Day”.

This classic piece by the ingenious Ray Bradbury is one of my favorite science fiction short stories. It’s good, old-school science fiction which we’d now see as an amusing–albeit a bit depressing–fantasy, considering what we’ve learned about our galaxy. I won’t tell you much since I don’t want to give anything away but I’ll focus on the element of the story which is important to this prompt.

Image retrieved from NASA

“All Summer in a Day” takes place in a colony on Venus (like I said, more fantasy than science fiction nowadays considering what we know about Venus). In this story, Venus is bombarded by constant rainstorms and the sun only shows for one hour once every seven years. You can read the story in its entirety here.

Today’s prompt is based on this concept. As usual, the prompt is pretty straightforward:

Imagine that, as in “All Summer in Day”, you only got to see the sun for one hour once every seven years. What would you do? How would your disposition change? Would you be scared of the sun, even understand what it is? What would you do if someone deprived you of that hour of sun?

The reason for the sun’s cycle can be due to the planet you’re on, a curse put on you or your society or the world, some new form of incarceration, etc. Be as creative as you want. The important thing is to focus on how it would affect you as a human.

Jot down whatever comes into your head as you contemplate this scenario. Spend about five minutes on this. When you’re done, turn your notes into a short story or poem. (Try to not come too close to Bradbury’s story!) You can make it science fiction, fantasy, horror, mystery, whatever you feel fits your notes.

I know that this idea may seem like a stretch of the imagination but that’s the point. This exercise will make you think about yourself and your relationship with your surroundings in new ways. You may also walk away with a new appreciation for the simpler things in life (although I personally still hate the sun when it’s 100+ degrees outside).

Have a fun and productive writing weekend!


Designed by Stephanie Hoogstad circa 2011

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