A Where’s Waldo Inspired Writing Prompt

Do you guys remember Where’s Waldo? – a book series intended for kids where you have to search the intricate images for specific objects and a strange little man (we assume) named Waldo. I have no idea what brought this to mind, but I think this could make good writing prompt for an interesting characterization exercise.

Step 1: Go to the Where’s Waldo? site, open a book, or Google image search Where’s Waldo? and pick one of the scenes (a day at the beach, the siege of Troy, etc.).

Step 2: Pick a character. The scenes are full of random people and animals. There are ones specific to the scene as well as red herrings that look somewhat (but not exactly) like Waldo. Pick one of them.

Step 3: Make up a story around that character. It can use that scene or setting, but it doesn’t have to. Simply expand the characterization that’s already been started by the cartoon artist. What caused that expression? How would someone who looks like that talk? How would he/she act?

My first thought was to use one of the look-alikes and make people constantly confusing him/her for some weirdo named Waldo part of the plot conflict, but that’s a drop in the bucket when it comes to options. I mean, think about how loaded with people those images are! And a lot of them are in the middle of some action. They’re practically begging to be used in a story!

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