1,001 nights assignment

if you’ve seen the disney movie, aladdin, then you are already familiar with one of the many stories complied as 1,001 nights.  one story in particular serves as the framework for the entire collection, the story of Scheherazade…

long ago there was a mighty king.  when he discovered his wife’s infidelity he put her to death and lost all faith in women.  this state of disillusionment and grief led him to declare and carry out a horrendous plan:  each night the king would marry a virgin, deflower her, and kill her at dawn.  

this continues for a long time and many women lose their lives.  one young woman, Scheherazade, decides to put an end to the king’s rampage.  she develops a clever plan and volunteers herself to be the king’s bride.  during the night she begins to tell the king fantastic stories.  just before dawn, when the king is supposed to kill her, she stops her story at a critical point, full of suspense.  she tells the king she cannot continue telling him the story because it is dawn and time for him to kill her.  the king, enthralled by Scheherazade’s story and desperate to hear the end, decides to spare her life one more day so she can finish her story that night.  


the second evening Scheherazade does the same thing, weaving fabulous tales and stopping right before dawn.  the king again spares her life for the sake of the story.  this continues for many nights (perhaps 1,001?) and the king eventually softens his heart to Scheherazade and her stories and  puts an end to his brutality.


this week’s assignment is all about building suspense.  find a fellow adventure seeker or writing partner and choose one person to begin.

partner #1 begins by writing a few paragraphs of a story of his or her own design.  partner #1 stops his part of the story at a crucial point, leaving the story completely hanging in mid air…

partner #2 must pick up the story where partner #1 stopped, perhaps taking the story in a new direction. once again, at an unresolved point in the story, stop.

repeat this process until…


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