Sunday, June 14, 2009

This Week's Practice Exercise

Flights of Fancy (Version 3)

Prepared by: Florence Cardinal
Revised and posted on: 14 June 2009


Exercise: In 400 words or less, describe an everyday
task you've done many times. Then stop and ask
yourself, "What if?" Take your readers on an
imaginary adventure.

-------------------------

We all sometimes imagine how things could be different
from reality. Writers can draw on these flights of
fancy to mine new ideas and move through 'dry' periods
in their writing. This is how many great stories are
born.

Start with a mundane occurrence like washing the dishes,
driving to work, or weeding your garden. Let your
imagination take over so that the ordinary leads you
into the extraordinary, into an adventure or a flight
of fantasy.

Think, "What if?" What if I were washing dishes and
looked up to see a stranger in weird clothing peering
in my window? What if, while driving to work, I traveled
through a bank of fog--into the year 3011? What if while
I was weeding I started to hear conversations among the
plants?

Begin your story with an ordinary task and let that lead
into your adventure.

-------------------------

Exercise: In 400 words or less, describe an everyday
task you've done many times. Then stop and ask
yourself, "What if?" Take your readers on an
imaginary adventure.


-------------------------

Critique by commenting on how well the writer takes off
on a flight of fantasy from a routine task. Is the logic
fantastic? Does he or she makes us believe that what is
happening is possible? Is the narrator affected by what
happens? As always,discuss the writing in general, tell
us why the piece worked or didn't work, and what
the author could do to make it better.
-------------------------

These exercises were written by IWW members and administrators to
provide structured practice opportunities for its members. You are
welcome to use them for practice as well. Please mention that you
found them at the Internet Writers Workshop
(http://www.internetwritingwor kshop.org/).


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