Sunday, June 21, 2009

This Week's Practice Exercise

2009 © Savannah Newsome


Nature Writing (Version 3)

Prepared by: Pam Hauck
Revised and posted on: 21 June 2009

__________________
Exercise: In 400 words or less, create a scene in
which nature plays an important part. Use descriptive
detail and sensory imagery to show us how it affects
you or your character.
_______________________

Writing about nature's influence on human experience
requires sensitive observation of the world around us.
We will need to put all of our senses into play to
describe that world and to express its influence on
us and the characters that we create.

A walk in the woods might lead to a profound insight;
watching pigeons pecking on a city windowsill may
illuminate an idea; or a starry night with storm clouds
gathering can open your character to a new understanding
of life or his place in it.

To see more details about nature writing, and some
examples to prime your pen, click here. This site
demands an "upbeat" ending for the work it publishes,
but in this exercise nature's impact may turn out to
be negative as well as positive.
_______________________

Exercise: In 400 words or less, create a scene in
which nature plays an important part. Use descriptive
detail and sensory imagery to show us how it affects
you or your character.
_______________________

Critiques: Has the writer used description of nature
and natural phenomena to expand our understanding of
his or his protagonist's life, soul, situation? How
has he done this? Has contact with our observation of
nature changed the author or his character in any way?
Can you "see" what the writer describes? Could this
piece, this character, this situation have been written
without using nature as a reference? What, if anything,
would you have done differently?
___________________

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.internetwritingworkshop.org/).


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