Weekly Writing Challenge: Bradley’s Sample noun list

Bradbury’s sample noun list. Write a new piece using at least five of the nouns from Bradbury’s sample list, above: The lake. The night. The crickets. The ravine. The attic. The basement. The trapdoor. The baby. The crowd. The night train. The fog horn. The scythe. The carnival. The carousel. The dwarf. The mirror maze. The skeleton.

The night was alive with the sounds of the carnival. ‘The fog horn heralded the arrival of the night train. The dwarf knew that the crowd would soon descend, scurrying and consuming like a plague of crickets. The attractions which drew the initial numbers were the carousel and the mirror maze but by the end of the night it was the ghostly trip down the ravine and around the lake to the haunted house. The first scary event to confront the crowds was the man chasing them in the mist, brandishing his scythe above his head, letting out blood-curdling cries. The frightened crowd would run to the apparent safety of the house where they had no choice but to proceed upstairs to the attic. Here in darkness they would grope their way along the walls terrified by the intermittent frights, such as skeletons suddenly appearing and groping blubbery hands, given along the way. Once they had negotiated the attic suddenly a trapdoor opened and they slid down giant slides all the way to the basement. Their screams were loud and shrill. Once there they had to find a way out through obstacles which turned and blew air and vibrated. The sound of a baby crying in the distance was the goal they knew they had to aim for. The first person to find the baby each night had a free second visit to the haunted house and they all strove to achieve this goal, although, getting through the challenge of the basement was not easy. The dwarf normally enjoyed his work in the house but tonight he just wanted the crowd gone. He had his own work to do. Tonight he would replace the real skeleton with a plastic one. 


About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. I followed this by doing a Master of Arts by research graduating in 2017. Now I live to write and write to live.
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8 Responses to Weekly Writing Challenge: Bradley’s Sample noun list

  1. Great write, Irene. And scaareey. This is not a carnival I would want to attend! I liked the twist at the end with the replacement of the skeleton. This could easily be expanded both earlier and later in time to be a book! Have you ever read The Night Circus? I think you might like it.


  2. Lisa Reiter says:

    Fantastic piece Irene and rather scary with that brilliant twist at the end 🙂

    What a great writing challenge too – how do you make time? A post on how you manage your days would fascinate me as I’m clawing back life on my ‘little break’!!

    Lisa xx


    • That sounds painful Lisa – clawing back life.. Glad you liked it. It was a great challenge and they gave various noun groups which I thought if I had nothing else to do (haha) I might do one lot each day.
      I’ll do a post on how I manage my days sometime soon for you but you have to remember Lisa I’m not an integral part of a young family who needs taxi services and meals and everything else which comes with having a family. Just enjoy your break. Cheers 🙂


  3. M-R says:

    Vell done dullink ! 😀


  4. Charli Mills says:

    The pacing is almost frantic, it felt like being swept along with the crowd. I was hoping for the relief at the end until it arrived with the chilling twist! Great writing!


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