Do you ever sit down to write knowing full well how baller you are at it, but then think to yourself “Ugh, but WHAT do I write about?” Yes? No? Well for those of you that have had this experience or for those of you looking to generate more material, TRY THIS journaling experiment.
Fairy tales, fables, and folklore – were they invented just to control the behavior of children? To allow for the possibility of happy endings? To give voice to our greatest desires and fears? Pure flights of fancy? Regardless of their purpose or aims, these archetypal stories are ingrained in our cultural consciousness, and wield power over us. What happens when we seize the power, and re-imagine these stories?
I had such a wonderful time interacting with you all when I visited this summer. You’re such a talented group, and ask such probing and insightful questions.
So that’s exactly what I’d like you to do with your characters: ask them some great questions. Pretend you’re an objective interviewer, and just let them speak spontaneously without thinking beforehand about what they might say, without any planning or judging or analyzing. You’ll often be amazed and surprised at what they have to say when you’re not concentrating on putting words in their mouths!
Imagine someone’s junk drawer, that place where you accumulate weird stuff: paperclips and garden hose o-rings, dead highlighters and the fake money your junior high gave out for good behavior. To do this, you need to first imagine a scenario where one character must search through another person’s belongings, including the junk drawer.
Think about an anxiety dream you have had, especially if you have a recurring one, such as missing the bus, being late for the plane, or being unable to dial the phone in an emergency. (Not that these are mine or anything!)