Written by Emily Harstone January 23rd, 2014

Writing Prompt: Rear Window

Rear Window is a classic Alfred Hitchcock movie. It stars Jimmy Stewart as a professional photographer stuck in his tiny New York apartment because of an accident.

He has very little to do all day, which has turned him into a watcher.

The rear window of his apartment faces a courtyard where he can see lots of other people in their gardens and apartments, going about their business. It’s mostly casual entertainment until he thinks he sees a murder.

The rest of the movie is focused on proving to the police that a women was killed. There is humor as well as terror in the movie. Rear Window has influenced a whole genre of claustrophobic thrillers.

Today your prompt is to come up with your own rear window plot. The details are up to you. You get to decide who the main character is and why they are essentially trapped in their apartment or house. You also decide what city or town are they living in and who lives nearby

You also get to decide what they think they see happening (a murder, an affair . . ) and if they are in fact correct in that assumption.

I really like this exercise because it balances flexibility with structure. This is an opportunity to create something new within the comforting constructs of the pre-exisiting structure.


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