Writers/Artists Wanted for Upcoming Brave and Reckless Prompt Themes – Christine E. Ray

I am quite enamored with the response my daily writing prompts for Brave and Reckless have generated.  I am getting to know new writers, reading great writing, and being creatively inspired myself.

In a burst of inspiration, I have put together the prompts for the next two months.  August’s theme will be Feminist Book Titles and September will be Lesbian Book Titles.  I realize that these may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but know that I very carefully chose titles that I thought could be creatively inspiring to anyone.  You certainly don’t need to be a feminist or a lesbian to participate, but if you don’t believe that women are human beings who deserve basic human right I doubt you would be following Whisper and the Roar.

In any case, I would like to take things up a notch for August and September.  I am hoping that some of you might be willing to take on one of these future prompts and submit a prompt-inspired piece for publishing on Brave and Reckless (and quite likely Whisper and the Roar) when the prompt goes live to inspire other writers.

The only rules are: 1) that you use the book title as your piece title OR that you integrate all the words in the title into your piece somehow. Poetry, prose, short fiction, and art are all welcome; 2) you send your piece to me (her.red.pen.wordsmithing@gmail.com) in advance; and, 3) your piece gets published on Brave and Reckless before you share it anywhere else.

If you are intrigued, see the prompt lists below and let me know whether you are interested. I am hoping that every prompt will be covered by at least one writer- if one speaks to you, please let me know:

Feminist Book Title Challenge – August 2019

1. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
2. When God Was a Woman – Merlin Stone
3. A Room of One’s Own – Virginia Wolf
4. Bad Feminist – Roxane Gay
5. Men Explain Things to Me – Rebecca Solnit
6. Sister Outsider – Audre Lorde
7. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
8. This Bridge Called My Back – Cherrie Moraga (Editor) & Gloria Anzaldua (Editor)
9. In Search of Our Mother’s Gardens – Alice Walker
10. The Feminine Mystique – Betty Friedan
11. The Second Sex – Simone de Beauvoir
12. The Body Is Not an Apology – Sonya Renee Taylor
13. The Golden Notebook – Doris Lessing
14. The Yellow Wallpaper – Charlotte Gilman
15. We Should All Be Feminists – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
16. The Awakening – Kate Chopin
17. The Bluest Eye – Toni Morrison
18. The Beauty Myth – Naomi Wolf
19. Ain’t I a Woman? – Bell Hooks
20. Women Who Run With Wolves – Clarissa Pinkola Estés
21. Backlash – Susan Faludi
22. Against Our Will – Susan Brownmiller
23. The witch doesn’t burn in this one – amanda lovelace
24. The Woman Warrior – Maxine Hong Kingston
25. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou
26. How To Be A Woman – Caitlin Moran
27. Girl Interrupted – Susanna Kaysen
28. Shrill: Notes From A Loud Woman – Lindy West
29. What We’re Told Not To Talk About – Nimiko Ali
30. Feminists Don’t Wear Pink and other lies – Scarlett Curtis
31. she must be mad – Charly Cox

Lesbian Book Title Challenge- September 2019

1. Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit – Jeanette Winterson
2. Rubyfruit Jungle – Rita Mae Brown
3. Desert of the Heart – Jane Rule
4. Happy Endings Are All Alike – Sandra Scoppettone
5. Tipping the Velvet – Sarah Waters
6. The Price of Salt – Patricia Highsmith
7. The Well of Loneliness – Radclyffe Hall
8. The Miseducation of Cameron Post – Emily M. Danforth
9. Stone Butch Blues – Leslie Feinberg
10. The Gravity Between Us – Georgia Beers
11. Curious Wine – Katherine V. Forrest
12. Her Name in the Sky – Kelly Quindlen
13. Crush – Jane Futcher
14. SKIM – Mariko Tamiki/Jillian Tamiki
15. The Girls in 3B – Valerie Taylor
16. Orlando – Virginia Wolf
17. Fun Home – Allison Bechdel
18. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
19. BODYMAP – Leah Piepzna-Samarasinha
20. Kissing the Witch – Emma Donoghue
21. The One Hundred Nights of Hero – Isabel Greenberg
22. Under the Udala Trees – Chinelo Okparanta
23. Keeping You a Secret – Julie Anne Peters
24. Ash – Melinda Lo
25. The Wanderground by Sally Miller Gearhart
26. The Space Between – Michelle L. Teichman
27. Here Comes the Sun – Nicole Dennis-Benn
28. The Truth That Never Hurts – Barbara Smith
29. Juliet Takes a Breath – Gabby Rivera
30. If You Could Be Mine – Sara Farizan

Witch – Christine Ray

the god-fearing men
who wish to tie us
to stakes
sew lions on their standards
to give them courage
play at soldier
like little boys
carrying pointy sticks
and bibles
in their self-righteous hands
who lust for the maiden
revere the mother
deathly fear the crone
we are all faces
of the triple goddess
we worship her
by the light of the moon
we are the witches
the keepers of wisdom
who pass down the lore
of our foremothers
we remember
and honor
the magic in the earth
the power in our blood
of the women
your grandfathers
could not burn

© 2019 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All Rights Reserved

Inspired by Tish Thawer’s Quote: ‘We are the granddaughters of the witches they weren’t able to burn.’

There Is Strength in Our Stories: checklist – Arianne True


Arianne True is a queer indigenous poet, folk artist, and teacher from Seattle, and a graduate of the MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts. Arianne has taught with Writers in the Schools and the Richard Hugo House, is a Hedgebrook alum, and has been published by the Boston Review and LitHub.


not everyone is allowed to SPEAK
or maybe it’s just that not everyone
is allowed to be heard
either way
and being heard
seems to be for men only
women can speak to each other
but their voices fall on deaf
male ears
when women SPEAK UP
or speak OUT
when they are SCREAMING
for an end to the violence against them
when they SHOUT
for the right
to own their own BODIES
it’s as if no sound
can be heard

women living
in a patriarchal culture
have no voice

men have stolen
their words

I’m an artist, a writer, a vegetarian, an animal rights activist and quite a few other things as well. I love books, cats, philosophy, good conversation, Chicago and the arts. So my blog is full of bits and pieces but it’s the bits and pieces that make life interesting to me. You can read more of my writing at Rethinking Life

Writing Prompt: Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Throughout the month of July, Christine has been providing daily writing prompts based on the title of a beloved Children’s book on Brave and Reckless. They are designed to inspire readers to write a poem, prose piece, or a piece of flash fiction in 30 minutes or less.

Speak is an important and groundbreaking young adult book about the after-effects of sexual trauma. We hope you will consider writing or creating art in response to the prompt.

The only rule is that you use the book title as your piece title OR integrate the title into your piece.

If you would like to have your piece considered for publication on Brave and Reckless, email your prompt inspired pieces to Christine at her.red.pen.wordsmithing@gmail.com.

You can also participate on Facebook by tagging your writing with:
• # the title of the daily theme
• #kidsbookchallenge
• @braveandreckless66

or on Instagram by tagging your writing with:
• #kidsbookchallenge
• @indiebluwritersnetwork

You can also share your response pieces in the comments below.



There Is Strength in Our Stories: Red – Nikki Marrone

Sometimes I leave the blood on my skin,
To remember that red is not the colour of violence.
And that I am not a victim waiting to happen.
This space between my legs is not a crime scene.
Red is not a blood stained sidewalk,
It is not the cut of a prostitute’s gown,
Sometimes I leave the blood on my skin;
For the ones who have no choice,
To remember those who wear it like war paint,
And to support those who it wear it with shame.
This is no tear stained apology.
Nor a problem to be solved.
This is a not something to be taken lightly,
Nor a burden heavily carried.
Sometimes I leave the blood on my skin;
To remind myself that being a woman,
Isn’t something easily washed away.
To remind myself that being a woman,
Isn’t unclean.

Nikki Marrone is a poet, photographer, artist and traveller. When she’s not wandering around the world documenting her adventures, she splits her time between performing, running events and workshop leading. She is the winner of multiple Poetry Slams and has featured at various spoken word nights and festivals around the world.  Her work has taken her to some amazing places and she has been involved in some great projects.

There Is Strength in Our Stories: I have been broken many times before – Tianna G. Hansen

I am not fragile, but I have been
broken many times before. I have
shattered in a million pieces
yet still risen from
the debris, rubble pile of
disgrace and shame, silenced
to keep the truth from bubbling
out of my lips like acid, spat in faces
of my attackers, those who have instilled
this shame, my rapist who never saw the
truth, neglected tears streaming
down my face. neglected my
body, my soul, my self;
made me feel I am

Tianna G. Hansen has been writing her whole life. She founded and is Editor-in-Chief of Rhythm & Bones Press, a small press focused on the idea of healing through writing. She believes there is always something beautiful to be found in the darkest moments. Her work has been published widely in many forms; find it at CreativeTianna.com, follow her on Facebook @tiannaghansen / Twitter @tiannag92 / Instagram @tgghansen24. “Undone, Still Whole” is her debut collection.