Friday, February 3, 2017

Creative Writing Experiments (1 - 4)

January has been a very productive month for my creative writing students. One of their ongoing projects is to try a variety of Writing Experiments. Throughout the semester I will be issuing forth at least fifteen of these strange experiments (aka writing prompts) and students are required to conduct a minimum of five experiments and include them in their portfolio for the final day of class.

Here's a run-down of the different Writing Experiments so far, along with links to the blog posts of the brave authors who dared to take them on.

Experiment #1: Write a picture book text.

Please Use Your #&?%! Blinker... An adult themed picture book about road rage.

Two Brothers' Morning... A tale of two imaginative brothers.

Where Are My Toys?  A magical answer to the age-old question.

The Dog Who Pooped Like a Cat  I think the title says it all.

Deep Within the Forest  A lovely, lyrical lullabye.

Untitled Goblin Tale   A goblin girl wants to make friends in the human world.

Penelope Jones - On the Case  Sherlock Holmes meets Junie B Jones.

Experiment #2: Write a song

"My Hands are Broken But I Can Still Sing the Blues" -- one of the musically inclined students has two songs posted on Soundcloud.

"Getting Old of the New" -- my favorite lyric: "if we had infinite money." That's what I think every time I play Monopoly.

"Mama Said" -- I don't know what the melody is like but the lyrics are powerful.

"Isolde's Song" -- Classic style, immortal themes... Dr. Sydney Sims would be proud.

"Poison Song" -- Powerful and angry.

"My First Attempt at a Song" -- and it's a good first attempt!

"Wonder Years" -- One of my favorite lyrics: "Oh they gave you hope / Then robbed your home."

"Painting the Hopeless Romantic" -- this talented lyricist partnered up with her musically inclined boyfriend.

Experiment #3: Create a map of a place that doesn't exist

Like what you see? Click on a map to visit the student's blog...

She didn't illustrate a map, but Kaye uses words to map out a realm of science fiction.

Experiment #4: in media res

I asked student to begin a story that starts off right smack dab in the middle of the action or the conflict. I'll post the title (if they provide one) along with the first sentence. 

It was as if every last drop of Calvin Klein's marketing career was spread in a thick layer across his skin. 

Lydia ran as fast as her legs would take her. 

"I think I've discovered something," Victoria declared to her boss, Dr. Klein. 

The world was silent. 

Everything was beginning to come into focus for Ben. 

The restaurant was filled with the dull din of people making conversation. 

He knew making that left turn was a mistake. 

Coming Soon: Experiment #5: 

Write a story or a poem that is in the form of instructions. 

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