This exercise is one I picked up from “Writing Great Fiction: Storytelling Tips and Techniques” by James Hynes.
Objective #1: Think of a vivid image (from whatever source). Write about the image imparting motivations, what led to the event/person/whatever.
So, I am going to expand on what I did yesterday. Here goes.
The hand, more than anything, catches my attention. It is as if he is beseeching me. Not so much to physically reach for it, as if I would help or rescue him, but rather, metaphorically reaching for it, as if to help or rescue what he represents. He is, perhaps, an envoy for a larger group who needs assistance, or support, or maybe just comfort. Perhaps he is not even really a person, but is an avatar of some universal force, or thought, or idea. The physical manifestation of a much greater need. Something beyond what a single human could need. So much need that the desire was given form. His form. Standing in the darkness, but bringing with him light; the request for help accompanied by the promise of personal reward, of fulfillment, of gratification in the act. Perhaps in helping him, or serving his deep need, my own burden will be lightened, my own need fulfilled. Perhaps the outstretched hand is not a request, but an offering. Perhaps the extended hand is saying, “use me to fulfill yourself; use my need to serve your compassion.”
Or maybe I have his keys and he wants them back.