There's no end
to the things you might know, depending how far beyond Zebra you go! {Dr. Seuss}

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wednesday’s Writing Workout!

On the weekends, prompts keep my creativity warmed up so I don’t “pull a muscle” on Monday morning. During the week, prompts jump-start my writing routine. Often a writing prompt will turn into a story. Consider using your own characters and settings for these prompts. You might come up with exactly what you need for your WiP! All you’ll need for these exercises is paper, pencil or pen, or a computer. Remember to drink lots of water and stretch!

Start it up!
Write about “leaving” in any approach you want. Write it from both a positive and negative connotation.
Ramp it up!
Exercise 2: from Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg
Visualize a place you really love, be there, see the details. Now write about it. Readers should feel that you love it, not because you said it, but by your handling of details. Do the same thing for somewhere you hate.
Burn it up!
Exercise 3: from Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg
Take something you feel strongly about, whether it’s positive or negative, and write about it as if you love it. Then write about it as if you hate it. Then write about it as if you’re indifferent to it.
Cool it down.
Exercise 4: from Writer’s Digest Magazine
Your good friends at Merriam-Webster called and you’ve been asked to create five new words for inclusion in next year’s dictionary! What are your five words and their definitions?
Every Wednesday, I’ll post prompts and exercises for your “writing workout” so keep checking back! Happy writing!!!


Cat Woods said...

I think I'll give the cool down a work out!

I love the idea of adding new words, much like Balderdash, one of my favorite games.

Thanks for the jumpstarts~ cat

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

I'm a huge fan of Natalie Goldberg's Writing Down the Bones. It's in my personal library of books on writing. Thanks for reminding me of her awesome exercises for freeing the muse!

Kathi Oram Peterson said...

I love Natalie's book. I'll have to pull it off the shelf and look it over again. Thanks for the creative writing workout.

Rebecca @ Diary of a Virgin Novelist said...

oooh, I love number 4. Making up words has got be one of the best things in life. But then again, I am in love with Roald Dahl.

Bluestocking said...

I think leaving places, saying goodbyes, are some of the hardest scenes to get just right. Too much emotion and you get cliched, hackneyed drivel. Too little, and you lose an opportunity for character development, resonance with your readers, etc. That's a great one to practice!

Shelley Sly said...

I really need to check out "Writing Down the Bones" -- these are great! The last one especially looks fun to me.

Sandy Shin said...

I definitely do need to read WRITING DOWN THE BONES. I've heard so many great things about it, and these prompts are great.

Tahereh said...

so cool! this is genius, really -- i wish i knew all these things while i was in the middle of an MS, hehe. :D

Roxane B. Salonen said...

Laura, Natalie was greatly inspiring to me several years ago and I have pointed to her many times since. Reading your prompts reminds me why. Such great tools for getting the juices flowing.

Laura Marcella said...

Cat- That prompt is fun, and Balderdash is one of my favorite games, too!

Nicole- Me, too, I love this book. I'm constantly reading it; the chapters are short, so I just pick it up and read one whenever I have a moment. When I finish the book, I start all over!

Kathi- You're welcome! Have fun re-reading WDtB!

Rebecca- Me too!!! I just started re-reading Dahl's short story collection, The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More. So good!

Bluestocking- You're right; leaving scenes are some of the most difficult to write. Even if it's a positive leaving, there's usually bittersweet undertones. Good luck with the prompt!

Shelley- Yes, definitely read it!!!

Sandy- You certainly should. It's a must-read for writers!

Tahereh- Lol, well I hope these Wed. prompts help you in a future MS!!!

Roxane- That's awesome. Natalie has such a positive, zen-like approach to writing that's so refreshing.

AchingHope said...

Only five words ;)

Squinch is a word, right? You know, to squint and scrunch your eyes at the same time? No, huh?

Laura Marcella said...

AchingHope- I think squinch really is a word! I've never used it before, but now I'm going to, lol!