- When she’s ten she ___; then she’s 16 and ____; after that she ____.
- Write about the first time you (your narrator) got lost, without using the words “lost” or “scared” or “heart” or “stomach.”
- Write an ending to your novel for five minutes, 5 times.
- Do something with this: Somewhere someone has found or lost something someone has accused someone else of doing something someone feels like something embarrassing.
- Four big things to help you write:
ONE: Everything takes place somewhere, at some time, to someone.
TWO: Ask yourself at all times: what does your narrator want?
THREE: Attitude: everyone has one. There is no such thing as neutral perception.
FOUR: You can’t think about writing and write at the same time
FIVE: How to write: first, write anything; second, edit it until it’s what you want to say.
- Write a paragraph that includes the following information:
1 what time is it?
2 day of the week
3 the sky is
4 she wears
5 she is doing (a small action)
6 she wants (one big thing, one little thing)
7 she (put an action here, ie, jumps from the tree)
- Complete the following:
1 Within the next hour I could be _____
2 Soon she would _____
3 Don’t look for me in _____
4 So this is how it will end: _____
5 I am choosing not to _____
6 In this version she _____
7 In this moment I want _____
1 read a poem you like, copy the last line, and keep writing from that
2 write in near darkness for seven minutes without reading what you wrote
3 cut a page into strips and rearrange all the sentences, see what you’ve got
4 describe a photograph
5 make a list of lists, then complete one of the lists
- Fill in
You are too ____ and ____ and ____. In the ____ you can ____. It is ____ outside. For three days you’ve been ____ and ____. You never told this: How when you were ____, you ____. Now you ____. Your body is ____ with ____. You say: “Let me ____, let me ____.” Outside the ____, ____ are ____. In this version you ____ to the ____. Here in the ____ where you ____, the ____ is ____ and ____ and ____. Because this is ____ you are ____. If you were ___, you would not ____.
- A POEM A DAY BY DAISY FRIED
1. Write a ten-line poem in which each line is a lie.
2. Write a poem that tells a story in 18 lines or less, and includes at least four proper nouns.
3. Write a poem that uses any of the senses EXCEPT SIGHT as its predominant imagery.
4. Write a poem inspired by a newspaper article you read this week.
5. Write a poem without adjectives.
6. Ask your roommate/neighbor/lover/friend/mother/anyone for a subject (as wild as they want to make it) for a ten-minute poem. Now write a poem about that subject in ten minutes; make it have a beginning, a middle and an end.
7. Write the worst poem you possibly can. Now edit it and make it even worse.
8. Poem subject: A wind blows something down. Or else it doesn’t. Write it in ten minutes.
9. Write a poem with each line, or at least many of the lines, filling in the blanks of “I used to________, but now I_________.”
11. Write a poem consisting entirely of things you’d like to say, but never would, to a parent, lover, sibling, child, teacher, roommate, best friend, mayor, president, corporate CEO, etc.
12. Write a poem that uses as a starting point a conversation you overheard.
13. First line of today’s poem: “This is not a poem, but…”
14. Write a poem in the form of either a letter or a speech which uses at least six of the following words: horses, “no, duh,” adolescent, autumn leaves, necklace, lamb chop, Tikrit, country rock, mother, scamper, zap, bankrupt. Take no more than 13 minutes to write it.
15. Write a poem which includes a list or lists-shopping list, things to do, lists of flowers or rocks, lists of colors, inventory lists, lists of events, lists of names…
16. Poem subject: A person runs where no running is allowed. Write it in ten minutes.
17. Write a poem in the form of a personal ad.
18. Write a poem made up entirely of questions. Or write a poem made up entirely of directions.
19. Write a poem about the first time you did something.
20. Write a poem about falling out of love.
21. Make up a secret. Then write a poem about it. Or ask someone to give you a made-up or real secret, and write a poem about it.
22. Write a poem about a bird you don’t know the name of.
23. Write a hate poem.
24. Free-write for, say, 15 minutes, but start with the phrase “In the kitchen” and every time you get stuck, repeat the phrase “In the kitchen.” Alternatively, use any part of a house you have lots of associations with- “In the garage,” “In the basement,” “In the bathroom,” “In the yard.”
25. Write down 5-10 words that sound ugly to you. Use them in a poem.
26. Write a poem in which a motorcycle and a ballerina appear.
27. Write a poem out of the worst part of your character.
28. Write a poem that involves modern technology-voice mail, or instant messaging, or video games, or… 29. Write a seduction poem in which somebody seduces you.
30. Radically revise a poem you wrote earlier this month.
- make lists
A list of unrequited friendship
A list of muzzles and leashes
A list of over-caffeinated arguments
A list of blushes
A list of half-read novels
A list of Boston ferns that have perished under my care
A list of toasts to other people’s happiness
A list of unfettered embraces
A list of spontaneous leaps
A list of broken wicker furniture
A list of alcoholics
A list of lingering debt
A list of New Year’s resolutions
A list of circles formed with folding chairs
A list of threats to national security
A list of beautiful graffiti
A list of forgotten umbrellas
A list of gas station meals
A list of chaotic lusts
A list of no-fly lists
A list of weather forecasts
A list of overwritten college essays
A list of pay stubs
A list of housing projects
A list of feral cats
A list of unnecessary apologies
A list of strange fascinations
A list of discarded self-help books
A list of important meetings
A list of escape routes
A list that dreams absently of Paris
A list of cancelled credit cards
A list of slipped-away people
A list of thwarted ambitions
A list of grudges
A list of polite small talk
A list of crushes
A list of rain
A list of tattered flags on wheelchairs
A list of fingers and toes
A list of self-pity
A list of landlords
A list of exaggerated regret
A list of projects taken up and abandoned
A list of coins found beneath couch cushions