Feeling stuck as a writer is the equivalent to having a non-stop headache: it hurts! Since finishing the manuscript for Reclaiming the Wild Soul last year, I’ve been looking for another big writing project to throw myself into. Nothing seems to have grabbed me yet, and so I find myself slightly adrift.
But I’m willing to go fishing for inspiration. And that’s what I want to share with you today: a simple technique that can produce interesting writing.
First off, take 10 index cards and write the following questions, one per card.
[what is the place?]
[what is the quality of light/weather?]
[who is present?]
[what do you taste? smell? hear? see? feel?]
[what is the emotional mood?]
[what is being said?]
[what is not being said?]
[what is the undercurrent?]
[what is in the foreground?]
[what is in the background?]
Place the cards face down, and then pick them up and write about the scene in the order that you “fish out” the cards. For example, the first card that you pick up might read, “what is not being said?” Thus, the first thing that you write needs to address the unstated, the unnamed. Or, you might pick the quality of light as your card–and so you’ll begin there.
Notice how you are nudged into a more intuitive way of writing, because you never know the sequence in which the scene will unfold. The mind opens up, finds associations that might otherwise be closed to it.
So go fishing…and then please share your “catch” with others here.