Fabulous and Fun Writing Exercise

February 19th, 2008 • Kate

A writer friend of mine forwarded this delectable link to Daily Monster, where artist Stefan G. Bucher creates a daily drawing of a monster, and invites his blog readers to contribute the creature’s backstory. What a great writing exercise! He’s up to Monster #152, whom I particularly love for the fabulous spats and shiny black shoes. Bucher has a book coming out with his first 100 monsters, including a DVD, but you can still contribute to his daily site.
Writers are often advised to “write, write, write,” so even if you’re blocked on your novel, why not set aside some time to write a backstory for a monster? If that’s not for you, how well do you work under word constraints? Try 100 Word Stories, which gives you a theme each day and invites you to contribute a short short of just 100 words. Or how about OneWord? This site gives you 30 60 seconds to write as much of a story as you can on a single word — use it as a theme, as a punchline, or any other way you like.
What other writing exercises do you know of out there? What are your favorites?
EDIT: Seems like OneWord isn’t working anymore, which makes me even more eager to hear your ideas for writing exercises!

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4 Responses to “Fabulous and Fun Writing Exercise”

  1. Joelle Anthony Says:

    I enter those contests that require you to write your entry creatively. For example: "tell us in fifty words why you need a makeover". I've come in second twice on ones like that and I won four trips to NYC for my friend, over $5000 for her charity, and several magazine spreads by entering the ones "nominate someone who is doing something extraordinary for others" While it's really fun to win, it's an EXCELLENT opportunity to learn to write effectively with really short word counts. Most of them are twenty-five to two hundred fifty words.

  2. Caryn Says:

    Those prompts were great. Thanks for sharing them. I always loved when my teachers wanted us to do creative writing exercises. It was like playing. Now I do them with my own group of students, and those are often some of my best writing sessions. It's amazing how often those little exercises can be worked into a story.

  3. Julia Says:

    What fun! I love the monster one! I'll have to try the 100 Words next!
    I write poetry with a friend. Completely different from noveling (is that a word?). First we make a list of different word pairs, (i.e. concrete/canary, pillow/juice, etc.)and set that aside to be used later. Then we write eight-line poems, one of us taking the odds, the other – evens. We write our lines without prompts or talking at all, and then put them together. (It is amazing how many really cool poems we've managed to write that way!) I think the human mind wants to make associations!
    After a few eight line poems, we go back to our word pairs and each write poems using the pairs in the same lines, then share what we've written. Sometimes our poems have similar usage – most often not.
    It is a great way to get the creative juices flowing and to have loads of fun with a friend!

  4. Kate Says:

    Another great one: http://sundayscribblings.blogspot.com/