Writing Prompt: Problematic Goal

This is just the basic 2-Card Writing Prompt today, using a starting situation for Card 1 and a problem, which is Card 2.

If you’re here for the first time, I usually do what is called the First Operation to determine the context or theme of the story prompt. There are 4 realms that it can fall under, each corresponding with one of the elements/suits in tarot. I do a bit of explanation of what the cards mean, but if you’d like to just skip to the writing prompt, it’s down at the bottom.

For today’s prompt, I chose the Ace of Swords as the signifier. The Ace of Swords is a spark of an idea, the fleeting moment of inspiration. I hoped to channel that for you, dear writer.

First Operation

When I do the First Operation, I shuffle the and divide them into four piles. I then look through each pile to determine where my signifier is. In this case, I found Ace of Swords in the third pile, the pile of Air which has to do with thought, communication, community, higher education and law. This will be the theme or realm in which the Writing Prompt takes place.

The Spread

After finding the signifier, I put all the cards back together, shuffle them, then divide into four piles again, taking two cards from the pile of Air.

  • Card 1(Situation): 4 of Cups
  • Card 2 (Problem): The Star

Card 1 – Situation: 4 of Cups

The 4 of Cups shows someone sitting in front of three cups, while a hand offers them a fourth cup. The figure is bored with what they see in front of them, and so fixated on the boredom that they don’t see another option is being offered.

However, just because there is another option, doesn’t mean it is a better one. The reminder here is to be alert to the opportunities around you. Not all opportunities are created equal, but if you don’t like what’s in front of you, see what else is on offer. If you don’t like that either, keep looking. Be vigilant.

Card 2 – Problem: The Star

The Star is a goal, and thus offers hope. It is the optimism to lift one’s head to the sky, notice the abundance that there is and aim for it. When there is something that we are striving for, then we become hopeful, and that hope, in turn, drives us to the goal. It is symbiotic. This isn’t just any goal, it is something that inspires passion within you, something that at one point could only be a wish, but now you have the power to work toward making it a reality.

Each star out there is a sun, and the Sun is success and fulfilment. Don’t shoot for the moon, shoot for the stars


4 of Cups = 4
Star =  17/8

4: The Emperor


The 4’s are like building blocks. They are sturdy, and like bricks going into a building, represent the steady incline of growth. There is a patience that is associated with the number 4.


The number 4 corresponds to the Emperor, who represents father figures, strength and stability. The Emperor can also represent authority. The card is a fiery nature, fueled by passion and activity.

17/8: Star/Strength

Since I’ve already defined the Star, I’ll skip the definition and move on. The number corresponding to the Star is 17, which doesn’t have a meaning of its own, but can be reduced to the number 8, which corresponds to Strength.


The number eight has to do with infinity, with a loop, as indicated by its shape. In the tarot, it corresponds to progression and transformation. This number shows the movement from the past to the future, the application of lessons learned to the preparation to move on to the next step. There is a message of success within the meaning of the number in Tarot, and can also represent abundance.


The number 8 corresponds to Strength in the Major Arcana, which also features a figure eight-like shape above her head, which is actually the infinity symbol. She is depicted with a lion in most decks, which she calms not with force, but with compassion and empathy, bringing forth a different type of strength. It is the card which indicates inner motivation and peace that can bring fierceness to its knees. ‘Kill ‘em with kindness’ might be an applicable phrase here.

Further Numbers: 21/3 (17 + 4 = 21; 2 + 1 = 3)

The World

The World is a card of completion. This is the time that we celebrate the accomplishments and lessons we have learned and prepare to go on to the next step. Like the 10’s, it is a graduation. You have passed the test, you are ready to move forward. Take this moment to rest and enjoy the sense of your success, but likewise, gather yourself to begin the journey again with your newly acquired wisdom.


The Threes represent the first shape of stability. When we consider the 1 as the point of origin, the 2 as a connection or harmony between two points, when a third point comes along, there is the first shape. And thus, 3 is equivalent to creation, fertility, and any of the surrounding meanings.

The number 3 is the number of creation. While the number 2 and 1 have many different definitions that are all tied together, 3 is simply creativity/creation. It is the fist number with which a shape can be formed.

When we consider that 1 is a point, and two 1’s (2) create two points between which a line can be drawn, then three 1’s (3) then create a shape. This is the first shape created, and with it, building can commence.

With creation is expansion. 3 is the result of 1 and 2 added together, expanding beyond themselves. When there is one person, and another joins, they have the potential to create something together. That something is neither of them as it is separate of them, yet it is both of them, since it was created of them. Thus, the number 3 is an expansion.

The Empress

The Empress is the first card of creation in the Major Arcana. She is the emblem of fertility and creation, and what’s more, she is the nurturing aspect that helps things to grow. She is associated with mothers, and thus, mothering qualities. She is feminine energy applied to creation.

Writing Prompt

Kelvin is a secretary at the bus depot. After watching a homeless couple being harassed by two bicycle police, he decides he wants to do something about it.

  • What is the situation he witnesses?
  • What does he decide to do about it?
  • How can this goal of his become a problem?

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