Weekly Writing Prompt — Nov. 20, 2013 Edition

Dear Writers:

I feel slightly hypocritical about prompting you to write when I’m apparently in my own little slump. Every time I sit down to write it just doesn’t want to seem to come out. It happens. The creative cycle is a cruel beast during its natural course. I’m in the “thinking” phase, where I have to think so deeply about what I’m writing that it somewhat paralyzes me. Don’t misunderstand, I’m writing. Just more slowly than what is normal for me. But the important part is that I AM writing. Even if it’s only 500 words here or 1,000 words here (unlike my normal 2k a day I prefer to do —  or 4 solid hours of editing).
My point in sharing my current state is to let you know it happens, and you need to just keep plugging along.
However, if you’re on deadline for a project (ala NaNoWriMo), you can’t necessarily let the creative cycle take it’s dear sweet time. You may have to give it a nice swift boot and kick it along to the next “write like crazy” phase.
This is where playing games with yourself (plot bunny jars anyone?) help.
Here’s a little game to help you perhaps move things along:
Find a board game. Can be any board game.  Scrabble is a great one. But it can be Sorry, Clue, Connect Four, Checkers, or whatever. Do not use video game. You want the tactile experience to make it more real for you.Set up the game and either a) play with other people, or b) play by yourself, but pretend to be your characters playing it.
Yes, I know this sounds bizarre. Humor me for a moment. Whatever scenario you’re able to create — by yourself or with others — make notes on how people play (it can just be a mental note, but having a notebook to capture things you might forget later is strongly encouraged). If you’re doing this alone to play out character traits, you certainly want your notebook. How do your characters play? Does your protagonist maybe cheat to win? Ah-Ha! You found a flaw in your hero! Does your antagonist follow the rules because he battles with honor? Ah-Ha! Your antagonist does have some redeeming qualities.
Regardless, you’re creative types, you get the idea. It’s a nice respite from when you’re struggling to get the words down.
Please do email me back or comment on our blog post on our website if you did this and how it worked out.
And now your moment of Writing Zen:

“ It is not abstinence from pleasures that is best, but mastery over them without being worsted. ”

— Aristippus

What did you Write today?

Casondra Brewster
Sno Valley Writes!
Helping Writers Reach New Literary Peaks Since 2008
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“But words are things, and a small drop of ink,
Falling, like dew upon a thought, produces
That which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think.” ~ Lord Byron