When I was in the seventh grade . . . Fill in the rest . . . what happened when you were in seventh grade?
What have you been thinking about lately? I’ve been thinking about hair. The following is an excerpt from My Generation magazine, Sept-Oct 2001. “You can’t say hair without muttering a bitter, Ha! Hair is the Achilles’ heel atop our skulls: the curse of baldness, the pathos of the comb-over, the futility of the hairpiece. The double cross of auburn, chestnut, raven locks—your crowning glory—suddenly blanching the color of steel wool. Curly hair that won’t straighten, straight hair that won’t curl. The heartbreak of the impermanent wave, the bungled dye jobs, split ends, dandruff. Every head of hair in the civilized world is shackled to a monthly treadmill of maintenance, overhaul and gardening, hostage to the grooming industry and its literal clip joints. You could buy a new Ferrari with the money you shell out over a lifetime for the upkeep of that mat of third-rate fur.” Prompt: Hair Or: What…
Be the kid you once were. What did you like to do when you were 4 or 5 years old? Or 12 years old? Remember that time of joy or angst. Scroll back in your memory bank . . . . write about a memorable time from your childhood. Or write about something you liked to do over and over again. Prompt: I liked to . . . Or: I remember . . .
Stories are about characters desiring something and the things that prevent them from getting what they want. This is true for both fiction and memoir. Another word for desire is yearning, suggesting the deepest level of desire. Characters have problems and yearnings. Do they overcome them? What obstacles get in the way? Answering these questions results in story-telling. Writing Prompts as a guide, or a map, leading the way to telling the narrator’s story: Interview yourself or your fictional character, by answering these questions: How did you get started in your line of work? How did you become interested in your hobby? What did you desire at age 18? What did you desire at age 25? What do you desire now?
Write about the farthest you have traveled. Or Write about the time you were farthest from home. Or Tell about a time you missed your plane, train, bus, gondola, cab ride.
Write about a house you no longer go to. Or a house you would like to visit. Write about a house.
Now that you are of a “certain age,” you know a thing or two. What do you know now that you didn’t used to know?
Writing prompt: The last piece of the puzzle. You know what to do . . . Just write!
We know what we know. What’s more interesting: ~ What don’t you know? ~ What are you confused about?
“At the time it seemed very important. That’s the funny thing about arguments. Now, I can’t even remember what it was all about.” Quote by Dr. Chilton in the movie, Pollyanna. Writing prompt: Write about an argument or a disagreement. After you have written all you want on this subject, put on your screenplay hat. Write this same scene from the point of view of the other person involved in the argument or disagreement.