November 5th, 2002


Writing prompt

I think I need to do some more writing. I won't get any better if I don't practice. Sure, I've gotten plenty of practice writing journal entries in the past 358 days, but that doesn't necessarily translate into writing other things well. Probably the most important aspect is that there is no rewriting. With my article, I expect to do a significant amount of rewriting, and that's just something I haven't done before. Also, I don't have much practice writing on a specific topic for a specific audience. With my journal, I get to blather on about anything that comes to mind, not really caring if it really makes people want to keep reading past the first sentence.

So, anyway, I went over to Writer's Digest's Web site to find their daily writing prompt. It almost made me laugh out loud.

Set aside one hour today just to sit alone and be silent. When you're done, write about your thoughts.

Heh. I mean, really. Of course, maybe that says a lot about what my life is like right now that I can't imagine finding time to sit alone for an hour any time this week. Maybe Saturday morning. So, I scanned some of their past writing prompts, and they're just kind of dumb. Not really for me. Hmm, just had an idea in the middle of the sentence before the last one. I could come up with my own writing prompts, put them up on my Web site every day. I have no idea where I would find them, and I'm sure I wouldn't keeep up with it. Still, it's something that is very easy to do. Hmm. Using the Word of the Day is a really neat idea, but I don't like the idea of not feeling original. That's something to write about: my simultaneous desires to be different from everyone else and to be just like everyone else. I remember picking the French horn as an instrument in 6th grade for the sole reason that no one else in my school played it. I always try to be some sort of non-standard character in role playing games. And yet I have a need to fit in, to have people like me. Hmm, I wonder if those aren't really different things but I associate them together. Do I really want to be just like everyone else? Or is my real aim to have people like me? And, sometimes, being like other people is a good way to get other people to like you, especially when you have been the object of ridicule because of your differences from other people. Slipping into the second person.

See what I mean about blathering on about whatever I want? So, yeah, writing prompts. Need to get some more work done, and then I can feel okay about searching for some sort of regular writing prompt until my meeting at 10:30.



Clear, loud, and ringing, its ominous note
comes last, announcing ruin into our night.

Okay, that's good enough for a first one.

I struggle with the decision whether to let the reader know that this is an acrostic. I used to think that they would be obvious, but that has not been my experience. On at least two occasions, I have written acrostic poems for people and not had them realize that's what they were. Of course, doing the first letter of every word is not the usual way, so it makes sense that people wouldn't see it. So, do I come right out and say that it is an acrostic? How much does that knowledge alter the way the poem affects someone? Should careful study of the poem be rewarded?

I don't have any answers, as usual. I'm much better at questioning than answering, at criticizing than creating. So, I'm telling about this one. I might tell about others, or I might not.