Let’s Be Adventurers

One of the most difficult aspects of the writing life is learning to balance the big picture with the day-to-day. One moment I'm caught up in the dreamy vision of the finished work. I can sense the story's potential. In the next I'm distracted by the snarled plot point that won't unravel.    Both are … Continue reading Let’s Be Adventurers

Writing Prompt: Song

Some of the best songs are those that tell a story. Choose a song and listen carefully. Then write the story you hear there. Write a song of your own. Experiment with form and technique. What's your favorite (or least favorite) song? How did you first encounter it? What is the song's significance in your … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Song

Writing Prompt: Photograph

Tell us the story behind the image (below). Where did the pictures come from? What is their significance? Who is going through them? Why? Pick even one of the images in the stack and tell us about the photo. Pull out a scrapbook, album, or even your Instagram feed. Pick a photo and then write … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Photograph

Writing Prompt: Late

Yep, I am definitely late posting this week's writing prompt. I got thrown off with the long weekend here in the States. So, let's write about being late. We've all been there, right? Write about a time when you were running late. What happened? What held you up? Did it have a funny ending? A … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Late

Writing Prompt: Fear

What are you afraid of? Is it something silly you can't quite explain? Is it something entirely rational? Can you pinpoint an experience that started it? Have you ever been in a situation where what you were afraid of actually happened? Use this as a character development tool. Write about your character's greatest fear. What … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Fear

Writing Prompt: Work

Write about your first job. What did you do? How did you come to it? What did you learn? Select a character and write about what work they do. What would they like to do? Is he or she happy with their job? Does your character work with their hands? In an office? A factory? … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Work

Unexpected Adventures of the Writing Life

Recently, I've been rereading The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien and it has gotten me thinking a lot about adventures, why characters go on them, and how they get started. In the case of The Hobbit's Bilbo Baggins, his story begins when a wizard arrives on his doorstep, bringing thirteen dwarves with him, and informs Bilbo … Continue reading Unexpected Adventures of the Writing Life

Writing Prompt: Urban Adventure

Switch up the setting. Do a freewrite where you change up the setting of your story. What would change if your characters lived in a city? How might the plot play our differently? Invent a city of your own. Work out how it is arranged. What structures and traditions set it apart? Who lives there? … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Urban Adventure

Get Out of the Way

"No thinking--that comes later. You must write your first draft with your heart. You rewrite with your head. The first key to writing is...to write, not to think!" --Finding Forrester (2000) If you haven't seen the film Finding Forrester, starring Sean Connery as a reclusive writer and Rob Brown as a gifted young man from inner city … Continue reading Get Out of the Way

Writing Prompt: Childhood

Once upon a time someone said something about how anyone who has had a childhood has something to write about. I can't remember where I read this comment. I wish I could give credit where credit is due as well as present you with the actual, well-stated quotation. Alas. I cannot. (If this stirs anyone's … Continue reading Writing Prompt: Childhood