Monday, 7 April 2008

A Writing Exercise

WRITING EXERCISE FOR WRITING GROUPS

This one needs a few people… although it can work with just two, or even just you with a bit of organising…


The organiser writes out a list of random words or phrases.

Here’s one for starters.


Kingfisher
Eclectic
Concrete
Symphony
Convent
Shadowy
Kangaroo
Dark
Searching
Blue
Apostle
Character
Photographic
Silkworm
Snow
Bright
Feathered
Metallic
crypt
Volcano
Harsh
Yes
Yes, yes
Maybe


(Make it as long as you like.)

Get the group to ready themselves, paper and writing implements at the ready. Tell them there’s no right, no wrong, that they won’t even be required to share their writing if they don’t want to. This just for them.

(That’s important.This is pressure-OFF)

So. The group will write, and AS they write, the organiser drops the words into the air, one ever few minutes, and the writers have to incorporate the words into their piece. Without breaking the flow. Without speaking, asking questions…

Organiser: Ask the group to sit quietly and dream for a second, and then to write down the first line that comes into their heads, and carry on writing without thinking. Tell them if the thoughts stop, to draw a line and start again, but not to stop writing if they can avoid it.

And when they seem to be writing fairly freely, just drop the words into the air for them to catch.

I do this one a lot, and have seen it produce extraordinary pieces, extraordinary connections.

Have fun.

You can also do this one yourself… keep random words in a tin, and pull them out one by one and write. Or use the thesaurus/dictionary and a pin! Not quite so effective, for this writer, but give it a go?

2 comments:

monster paperbag said...

this is such a cool exercise :)..

Vanessa G said...

Hello monster paperbag (love the name!) glad you like the exercise.

happy writing