What's it about?

This blog has a very specific purpose: it's a place to post prompts for creative writing during the time of the lockdown. Initially it was for the use of my writing group, as we cannot for the time being meet in person - but I want to open it up to anyone who'd like to have a go at creative writing. I very strongly believe that writing is good for you: while you're writing, you're off somewhere else - you've escaped! And that can only be a good thing during lockdown.

Do sign up to be notified by email when a new prompt is posted - usually on Thursdays - and I would love to hear how you're getting on in the comments. Have fun!

Saturday, 30 May 2020

Never name the object!

Your prompt this week comes from a friend of mine, Linda Strachan, writer of a recently published and immensely useful guide to writing children's books, which you can see here. Linda says she didn't actually make this up, and has no idea who did - so if the author is out there, please get in touch and I'll credit you!

The starting point is an object - you can either do it about an object you have , or you can make the whole thing up and turn it into a story - up to you!

Important - do read the whole thing through before you start! 

The headings give you a structure, and underneath the headings are some suggestions.

Never name the object

1 Choose an object. Describe it in detail but in the first person - picture it in your mind and make it personal.
Eg I like it because it feels smooth and I like to run my fingers over it...

2 Where did you find it, or how do you came to have it?

Eg I was standing at the side of the road…

My grandmother gave it to me for my...

3 Why is it important to you?

Eg I keep it close all the time because…

4 Say something that bothers you or worries you about it.

Eg I am terrified I will lose it and..

I am scared someone will see me with it…

5 Make a decision about it

Eg I’ve made up my mind to throw it away…

I’m going to pass it on to ______ because...

I’m going to give it to a charity because…

I’m never going to be free of it but…

BUT - never name the object!

Some objects other people have used:

Toy Car
Cuddly animal
Bottle cork
Hospital Bracelet

Here's a (brief) example: 

  1. I like it because it feels smooth when I run my fingers over it and the mottled surface with streaks of colour.
  2. I was crossing the road when I found it, I'd almost stepped on it. It caught my eye so I picked it up and put it in my pocket.
  3. That was the day I almost got run over so I decided it was my lucky charm.
  4. The problem is I now never want to leave the house without it and if I find I've forgotten it I panic and have to go back for it. It rules my life, so either I have to throw it away or try to leave it behind and not go back for it. But what if I do and something happens to me or a loved one, could I bear that?
  5. Today I dropped it down a drain, so the deed is done. I went about my business all day and the sky never fell on me. I am free of it and I feel wonderful. I spotted another one on my way home and I almost picked it up but a car was coming and if I had I might have been run over, so perhaps I am lucky enough without it?

Did you guess? It was a pebble.

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