Prompt: Interesting Instructions

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Prof. Sky Alton
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Joined: Sun Sep 06, 2015 2:53 pm
Location: Gryffindor

Prompt: Interesting Instructions

Post by Prof. Sky Alton »

To a pot or vessel of brass over a medium fire, add a pint of witches’ tears, two feathers fresh-pulled from a cockatrice’s tail, six pea-sized stones of three-day-old hail from a mountaintop…
-Garth Nix, Frogkisser!

Thus begins a very important recipe that sends an intrepid hero off on a quest. It’s by no means the first of its kind: a collection of items that one must collect or actions that need completing to fulfil some great purpose has been part of literature down through the centuries. As with a lot of literary tropes, it’s been reinvented time and time again.

So, it’s your turn: write a story (200 words or more) where the plot is kickstarted by a recipe, list or set of instructions. It can be as fantastical/convoluted or mundane as you like so long as it’s creative.

You’ll earn 20 beans for completing this prompt as well as it counting towards the chance to snag our shiny Quill and Ink award.

There is no deadline as such for these prompts but if you’d like it to count towards your chance of earning the award for a specific year, we’ll need it by the end of that school year. If you’re comfortable sharing, then post below. If not, email your story to us via hol.bookclub @ (without the spaces). Oh and remember it’s a good idea to check through your piece carefully for spelling and grammatical errors as they make it harder for people to properly enjoy your work.
"Some things never change, turn around and the time has flown. Some things stay the same, though the future remains unknown."
(Av/sig by S. Elf)
Iverian Gnash
Silver Arrow
Posts: 463
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2018 2:33 am

Re: Prompt: Interesting Instructions

Post by Iverian Gnash »

"I hope you can help me out," the letter started, "Annabelle's birthday is tonight and I need to bake a cake. She's very particular about the cake though and I'm not sure I can make it myself. I know you're really good at this kind of thing so can you make it instead and bring it tonight? Here is the list of ingredients:
  1. Food coloring
  2. Edible Glitter
  3. Flour
  4. Strawberries
  5. Vanilla
  6. Milk
  7. Butter
  8. Baking Powder
  9. Salt
  10. Sugar
  11. Eggs

At first I was mildly irritated. After all, I was not planning on spending the entire day baking a cake with... edible glitter. What even was that? I searched for a store nearby that had it and actually did find out it existed. Other than strawberries and the glitter, I had the rest of the ingredients, so starting the car, I went out in search. By the time I got home with glitter and strawberries in hand, I had only two hours before the party and I doubted I could bake a cake in that amount of time. Plus, I had no real instructions, so perhaps a simple look at other cake recipes would work?

I got right to work using a basic recipe. There was no mention of edible glitter in it, so I just started adding it to the batter. This was the sparkliest batter I've ever made. By the time it baked, the outside shone and I hadn't even put the icing on yet.

The food coloring was all sort of colors that I had had so I made a bowl of each colored icing. For the base layer, I put plain white icing on without any glitter. Then I started adding the different colored icing to various piping bags I had with different tips to them so the icing would come out in cool patterns.

Of course, I added tons of glitter to the icing and then began adding little flowers to the top of the cake. Glancing at the clock, I had thirty minutes left. I took my time with the glittery flowers. By the time I was finished, you couldn't see the top of the cake as it was covered in flowers of every color and looked beautiful. Then I took the remaining glitter (surprised I had any left at this point) and carefully put it around the sides of the cake.

And... ten minutes to get there I realized as I carefully took it out to the car and drove to her house. The entire cake shone and Annabelle was really excited to see such a beautiful cake. A bit short notice, but I was incredibly pleased with my work.
Thank you Scarlet for my siggy! <3
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