Story Writing Exercises 339: Friday 18th April

Here are your four story exercises for today. Time yourself for 15 minutes for each one, then either have a break or move on to the next one.

339 light 741617You can do them in any order.

1. Keywords: time, mine, bell, celebrate, fun
2. Random: a marriage that’s run its course
3. Picture: what does this inspire?
4. One-word prompt: trying

Have fun, and if you would like to, do paste your writing in the comment boxes below so we can see how you got on! Remember though that it counts as being published so don’t post anything that you would want to submit elsewhere (where they require unpublished).

See below for explanations of the prompts, they do vary…

  • Sentence starts = what they say on the tin. You can start the beginning of the story with them or a later sentence but they’re a great way of kicking off.
  • Keywords = the words have to appear in the story but can be in any order and can be lengthened (e.g. clap to clapping).
  • One-word prompt = sometimes all it takes is one word to spawn an idea. Sometimes it easy, sometimes hard but invariably fun.
  • Mixed bag = two characters, an object, a location, a dilemma, a trait. Mix them all together and you have a plot… hopefully.
  • First person piece or monologue (a one-sided conversation).
  • Dialogue only = this is where you literally just write a conversation between two people. No ‘he said’, ‘she said’ or description, just speech and the reader has to be able to keep up. 🙂
  • Second-person = some of you will know that I champion. The prompt can be in any style but has to be written in second-person viewpoint… oh, what a hardship. 🙂
  • Title: This is the title of your story.
  • Picture prompts = nothing other than a picture. What does it conjure up?
  • Random = whatever takes my fancy!

Tips

  • Don’t forget your five senses: sight, sound, touch, taste, smell
  • Show don’t tell: if your character is angry, don’t tell us he is, have him thumping his fist on the table.
  • Colours: Include at least one colour in your story. It does add depth.
  • Use strong verbs and avoid adverbs: Have a character striding instead of walking confidently.
  • Only use repetition to emphasise.
  • When you’ve finished the first draft, read the story out loud. It’s surprising how many ‘mistakes’ leap out at you when you read out loud… assuming you have any of course!

Picture above courtesy of morguefile.com

I love to talk about writing so feel free to email me. I’ll be pasting these in this blog’s Facebook Group so you may find some other comments there. If you’d like to submit a story for critique on this site, see Submissions. The other critique writing groups are:

Morgen’s Online Non-Fiction Writing Group

Morgen’s Online Novel Writing Group

Morgen’s Online Poetry Writing Group

Morgen’s Online Script Writing Group

Thank you for reading this and we look forward to your comments.

g

Advertisements

Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2 thoughts on “Story Writing Exercises 339: Friday 18th April

  1. David April 21, 2014 at 10:25 pm Reply

    1. Keywords: time, mine, bell, celebrate, fun
    Laughs and the smells of the feast all danced about her on the warm winds. ‘It comes so easy to them’ she thought, feeling envious and alone. ‘Why is it I must mine for something that comes so effortlessly to those around me?’ Fabric rode the westerly breeze, like licks of a flame, fighting the invisible current. The light ding on brass drew her gaze up the clock tower. ‘Even the bells are mingling.’ she thought.

    Should writing posted have a beginning, middle and end? If so, any tips on how to do that in fifteen minutes? 🙂

    • morgenbailey May 10, 2014 at 7:38 am Reply

      This is beautiful. Thank you for sharing it, David, and for using my prompts. And no, they don’t have to have a beginning, middle and end. It’s very rare that they would unless you can write / type an extraordinary word count in that time. 15 minutes will usually just be a spark for continuation later.

We'd love to have your feedback - thank you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: