Sparks

An Exercise in Barbecuing

Memorable writing that sparks imagination. Lean in. Hear the writer’s voice on the page. This Sparks page on my website, The Write Spot, is, hopefully, a place for entertaining, fun, and enlightening reading. “An Exercise in Barbecuing” by DS Briggs is one of the funnier stories in Discoveries. The Write Spot to Jumpstart Your Writing Discoveries is for sale for a limited time for $6.99 An Exercise in Barbecuing DS Briggs Very recently I leapt into the world of backyard barbecuing. For years I have secretly wanted to learn to barbecue. In my family it was always my Dad’s domain. However, I love grilled foods and got tired of waiting for Mr. WeberRight to BBQ for me. I proudly acquired a very big, shiny new Weber BBQ. It came with a grown-up sized grill width of twenty-two and a half inches. I dubbed my new friend “Big Boy.” Unfortunately, for me,…

Guest Bloggers

Choices

Guest Blogger Nancy Julien Kopp wrote about choosing a path and exploring your choice. It seems like a perfect writing prompt for the start of a new year. Nancy wrote on her blog: Life is full of choices. I think often of Robert Frost’s poem that tells us of two roads diverging in a yellow wood, and the poet said he took the one less traveled by. But don’t we always wonder if this choice would be better than that choice or another one?   For a writing exercise today, look at the four photos. Each of them is somewhere you can walk. Two have water while the others are filled with green trees. What is your choice? Where would you prefer to walk? A, B, C or D?  Choose one and write a paragraph or several paragraphs about the photo you liked best. Study the photo and ask yourself a…

Prompts

Collage in Poetry . . . Prompt #529

I would like to share collage in writing with you, some things I learned from the poet Dave Seter. His poem, “Fargo Airport, Waiting in a Bar” in The Write Spot: Writing as a Path to Healing is an example of using collage in poetry. The lines in italics in his poem are from signs on the wall and on the label on a bottle. He seamlessly incorporates “lines from others” into his poetry. Look around you . . . what writing do you see that you can use in your writing? Perhaps: A book title, a greeting card, writing on décor, writing on a tissue box, or a piece of mail. Or: A note you have written, writing on a coffee mug, a sign on a wall. A label on a jar, a can, or a bottle. You can also use song lyrics as a jumping off point for…

Book Reviews

Writing as a Path to Healing

In reference to The Write Spot:  Writing as a Path to Healing, author Elizabeth Beechwood said, “The contributing writers delve into the pain of their past, reveal their vulnerabilities, and share the lessons they’ve learned with all of us. Their courage is written on every page of this collection.”  After reading my contributor’s copy of editor, Marlene Cullen’s newest anthology, I am in full agreement with Ms. Beechwood. Especially the last sentence regarding courage written on every page. It is not easy to write about traumatic events, but twenty-one people have done so and were willing to share stories and poems with readers. The writers come from various walks of life and offer readers a look into difficult times they experienced at some point. These writers all used writing as a step on their path to healing and to offer support to others. Some who write about troubled parts of their…

Guest Bloggers

The Three Questions

Guest Blogger Shawn Langwell shares smart writing tips, focusing on three important questions. Octavia E. Butler said, “You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.” Writing and leadership have a lot in common. Both require creativity, passion, and persistence. Both are conversations. And every good author as well as effective leaders know their audience. Each requires a level of confidence and humility to listen. To listen to the suggestions of an editor. To listen to the inner voice that says you need to sit your butt down on a regular basis and write. Or, upon awakening to listen and follow the conviction of a dream so vivid and powerful that the story just unfolds and becomes a book and a short…