Monthly Archives: March 2012

Word Prompt: Adjectives

As promised, here’s another writing exercise to try. I quite liked this one. It can be applied to prose or poetry, and will work in a group or alone. So here it is:

Group: Similar to other word prompts, each person writes an adjective down. Then you all pick one adjective (not the one you wrote!). Your task is to write a description using that adjective (and others, of course). It can be a description of anything and in any form you want it in, as long as it includes the adjective you chose.

Solo: The trick here is to try to find a word you wouldn’t normally come up with on your own. Try finding a list of adjectives online, or pick one from a book/dictionary. Once you have your word, follow the directions above. If you plan on doing this frequently, write adjectives on index cards and shuffle them up. Pick one at random and us that for your exercise.

Challenge: Whether you’re doing this alone or with others, try to use all five senses in your description. In other words, write out something looks, sounds, smells, feels, AND tastes!
Super challenge: Describe something using all senses EXCEPT for sight. Take out the object’s name and see if someone can guess what you’re describing without it.

We did this exercise at Write Club last week (I’m a week behind in my posts, oops). Below is what I wrote using the adjective morose.

The morose gray sky closed in on the mountaintops. The clouds would soon engulf the peaks entirely, and I would need a new compass. I took deep breath, the smell of pine trees filling my nose. The air tasted like the rain I knew would soon come. I moved to the cover of the trees, ignoring the brambles that scratched at my skin. Moments later, I heard the pit pat of rain drops on the canopy above. The occasional drop rolled down my skin, leaving a clean trail in the dirt and blood. I shivered, wishing I had a way to start a fire. Oh the tribulations of the nudist hiker…

Writing Exercise: Character Sheets as Prompts

As promised, a new writing exercise for you all to have fun with! We did this at Write Club this past Tuesday and it went rather well. It is designed to work with 2+ people, so grab a writing friend, pen-pal, or fellow blogger to give it a try. Here’s how it works:

  1. Each person writes a brief character sheet. (Check the link if you’re not sure what a character sheet is.) Include information you feel is most important to understanding the character. You can use a character you’ve already written about, but try to come up with a new one.
  2. Once you’re done with your character sheets, trade them. Read them over so you get a good idea of what this character is all about and get to writing! Feel free to embellish and add details to the character, but do not change anything. You don’t need to include every detail, either.
  3. When you’re done writing, share what you wrote about the character. Ideally, writing about someone else’s character will help you write outside of your normal comfort zone. You also get to hear what someone else thought about your character and what mischief s/he would get into. You might just learn something new about yourself, your writing, or your character!

This does lean more toward prose than poetry. I’m not much of a poet myself, but I don’t see why a poem couldn’t contain the character depicted. It might not be as natural as incorporating the character in prose. Any poets out there want to comment on that?

So you guys have examples to go off of, I’ll post the character sheet and flash fiction I wrote on Tuesday. As a reminder, the flash fiction was based off of someone else’s character sheet, not the one I wrote, so these two pieces will be completely disjoint.

Have you done this exercise or something similar? How well did it work out? How would you feel about doing inter-blog exercises like this one? Read the rest of this entry