For this week’s creative writing prompt/exercise, I’m asking you to remember what it was like to start something new.
New school, job, friendship, love? Can you recall that tingle of anticipation, the excitement of a new experience?
I can even get that sensation from starting to write in a lovely new notebook!
Think of the thrill of something fresh: a new bike, pen, pet, plant, place, car…
Can you capture that feeling in a poem or piece of prose? You may not have to think back too far, something new might be on the horizon – so write about it! Of course, a memory might take you somewhere else, and you end up writing a piece of memoir.
Start by thinking of one or two new beginnings and try creating a list of associated words that spring to mind. This kind of free writing can take you anywhere – it doesn’t have to make sense at this point, you are just jotting down ideas. Give yourself 10 minutes and see what you can come up with.
Then go and have a cup of tea/iced coffee/gin and tonic, whatever, and try to think about something else.
Now come back to your list of words and work through the ones you’ve chosen. Some worm of an idea will likely be squirming inside your head, so get it down on paper. Or onto your screen. I have recently discovered I can write straight onto the laptop, without smudging ink across paper, although fountain pen and crisp white 100gms paper in a nice notebook are still my favourite starting points.
There is no right or wrong way to get writing – whatever suits you and your personal circumstances, whatever gets you in the creative mood. Pen, paper, keyboard, smartphone, they’re all good.
But remember, your first draft of any writing is just that – a first attempt. And ideas are ten-a-penny, the hard work is in turning them into finished pieces. The trick is to keep going!
So think about beginnings, origins, launches, debuts, buds, sparks, openings, newness, freshness, first blush, first steps, first glance and hey presto, look – you’ve started!
Talking of new, is that you? In which case, read more about what this is all about here. Otherwise, just call back next week. There’s a new creative writing prompt every Wednesday at 5pm, Dublin time.