In May, I was out with friends in Frederick, Md., and saw Rory’s Story Cubes in a toy store. I’d heard about them from Catwalksalone a year or so ago, but this was the first time I’d seen them. So I picked them up and have them in my writing kit. Basically, the idea is that there are nine cubes, each with an image on each side. You roll and then use the images that turn up to tell a story. Lots of variation, lots of ways to play.
The folks behind the cubes are on Twitter and I started following them after they replied to my tweet about the cubes. They passed along a tweet from a writer, Mark Bruno, offering a 54-week Story Cubes Challenge. I chatted a bit with Mark, and I’m planning to take up his challenge once I get through my sister’s wedding. Only I’m doing a slight variation. Mark’s challenge involves nanofiction – 55 words. He’s being a bit flexible and doing between 55 and 100 words. You guys know me and super-short fiction — not generally my style. So I’m going longer — at least 500 words, but higher if the muse calls for it. I’m planning to do most of them in the Exeter world I’ve created for my novel, but I’m not ruling out the odd other piece if the cubes suggest that. Some pieces might make it into the novel, some might spark related short stories, serve as backstory or gives me ideas for future novels.