1. Lily

    Lily Member

    Dec 17, 2006
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    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Lily, Jan 10, 2007.

    Ok, this may sound a little juvenile, but I thought it would be interesting.
    I'm sure you've all heard of a 'free-write' but I'll explain in case anybody hasn't.
    A 'free-write' is when somebody sits down for a set amount of time and writes whatever comes to their mind, without re-reading any previous sentences that they've put down and stopping at all. You just write what comes to mind without fixing, correcting, spell checking, or anything. Even if it's just 'blah blah blah', blah is still a word. Ok. So my assignment is this. Everyone sit down for three minutes and start freewriting. Even if it's just random thoughts, write 'em down. It's good for stimulating your mind, and may help with those of you experiencing writers block.
  2. Lily

    Lily Member

    Dec 17, 2006
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    I'll begin, I guess, since I've had no responses.
    I'm frustrated right now because I'm trying to buy a parking permit for the college I'm attending but the website I'm supposed to be buying it from isn't working and so I'm a bit annoyed. I bet that last sentence was a run on sentence, oh well. My husband is playing a computer game that is really loud and obnoxious. My brother and his wife are moving across the country and my mom is going through severe empty nest syndrom. Sometimes I wish she'd just have another kid. That would be hilarious.
    Ok...so now that I sound like an idiot I'll just keep on going because I still have another two minutes. My teacher in english used to make us do this and sometimes it was really good for us because it forced us to write down our thoughts and it showed us how random we could be. Sometimes what we'd write down would be really funny, and I wish I still had some of the old freewrites I'd done.
    I need to start reading more books. I get about half way through a biography and then get bored with it and start something else. My husband is a very disciplined reader and always gets through everything he starts. I wish I were more like that, it would probably help me with being more disciplined in writing everyday.
    The End.
  3. Flexbile Garphite

    Flexbile Garphite New Member

    Jan 8, 2007
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    I tried doing this exercise but I came up with something very dark and, frankly, it would be embarrassing for me to post it. Good idea though.

  4. Spherical Time

    Spherical Time Contributing Member

    Aug 13, 2006
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    Everywhere, Always
    You might want to start this again in the Word Games Forum. You'd probably get more responses there.
  5. Mr Baatard

    Mr Baatard Member

    Jan 10, 2007
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    Where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
    Okay here goes.

    I get out of my car and hesitate as I look at the building where I work. I'm already in a crappy mood. Yelling at my soldiers is so exhausting! My second day as platoon sergeant and I already have to explain to the first sergeant that two of my soldiers are missing.

    I begin the walk up to the door. Glad we didn't have to give up anyone to mow grass. They weren't missing, they were asleep. Isn't that nice? If I have to get up and be at formation at 0600, so do they! One was repentant, which is good enough for me. The other one gave me attitude, so I gave him anger.

    It's not my real problem, and I know it. The weight dangling in my right breast pocket is what's really bothering me. The coin. It's rare, they don't make coins for that unit anymore. That unit is gone, which adds immeasurably to its value. It was given to me for political reasons, so politics demanded that I smile, shake hands, and take it graciously. But I didn't earn it. It was given to me under false pretenses. I resolve today to give it to the guy who did earn it.

    Every time I walk in the door it's the same thing. I'm bombarded with I.T. requests. What can I say? I'm the computer guy.

    "Sergeant Baatard, can you take a look at my computer?"
    "Sure, give me a minute."
    "Sergeant Baatard, I can't print!"
    "I'll send a guy down to take a look."
    "Sergeant Baatard, how do I check government email from home?"
    "You don't. New policy"
    "Sergeant Baatard, can I complement my co-worker on her hair?"
    "Sergeant Baatard, should I start Windows normally, or use last known good configuration."
    "Neither. Don't touch it."

    After negotiating the maze of users, I enter my office like I'm sliding into home plate. Lock the door, check the email. More requests.

    "I need to access this website." :rolleyes:
    "I'm having trouble with my email." :confused:
    "Can I still buy tickets to the next luncheon?" :mad:

    The coin bumps up against me. It's weight drags down my conscience. The phone rings. I walk back out the door.

    There he is. Specialist Guy, formerly of my platoon. I recommended him for promotion last month. Last week he made a spectacular appearance at the promotion board. The Sergeant Major gave me a coin for it, congratulating me on my stunning mentorship skills.

    The problem is I didn't mentor him. I'm a firm believer that if you want it, you'll do the work yourself. I recommended him because I see his potential. I gave him his shot, the rest was up to him. He didn't disappoint. Problem is the Army doesn't see it that way. I'm supposed to hand carry him all the way. Nobody carried me to any board or competition I won. I wanted it, and that was all I needed. I studied by myself, I practiced by myself, I got promoted by myself.

    So did Specialist Guy. It was all him, and it is high time I told him so.

    "GUY!" I bellow. I'm not mad, I'm loud. He sees me and knows that I'm not saying hello. I expect him to come over to talk to me. He doesn't disappoint again.

    "Yes Sergeant?" he gets at parade rest, knowing I don't require the courtesy. Above and beyond, that's Specialist Guy.

    "Sergeant Major gave me a coin for mentoring you" I begin bluntly. Candor is my favorite leadership attribute. "You and I both know I did nothing of the sort."

    "I don't know about that," he says, trying to defend me.

    I wave him off. "I'm talking now. I recommended you because I knew you could do it. If you needed my help just to appear, than you didn't deserve it. You killed 'em in there, and it was all you, brother. Here."

    I pull the coin and hand it to him. "You earned it."

    "You did mentor me" he insists.

    "Look, I don't know how you feel about me not studying with you," I begin.

    "You mentored my by example" he cuts me off.

    I shake his hand. My heart swells with affection for him, and I wish dearly that he was still my soldier.

    "Congratulations, Sergeant Guy."
  6. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Nov 21, 2006
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    Coquille, Oregon
    that's called 'stream-of-consciousness' writing, by those of us who've been around a while... and it almost always results in gibberish that no one but the writer would want to bother reading...

    not that it's not a good idea for those who want to spend time doing it... i see no point to it and have other more pressing things to do, so i'll pass, thanks...

    love and hugs, maia
  7. HeinleinFan

    HeinleinFan Banned

    Jan 6, 2007
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    Hmm. It is the sort of mental exercise that can clarify ideas, but only if done a bit differently -- my teachers taught "free-writing" in the sense that you had to write something, but it had to have some overall theme or subject. Writing sentences incoherently would not earn high marks.

    Having said that . . .

    Ingrid stepped off the train. The platform was nearly empty, and the few passengers who had exited before her found their companions quickly and left. She waited, shifting her rucksack uncomfortably up and down her shoulder. The weather was cold, although she had layered up for the trip, and it occurred to her after a tense moment of searching that the Wessons might have ducked out of the wind and into the combination store and train station by the side of the tracks.

    She moved away from the train even as it whistled, departing. The train station storefront looked artificially cheerful, its windows lined with posters announcing New Construction somewhere down the line. They were pale and dull-looking. As she entered the store, she saw that the most recent one was more than a year old.

    No one was there to greet her. There was the stationmaster / clerk behind the counter, eyeing Ingrid with the curious, shy expression that she now found so familiar. Well, she could ignore it - or, better yet, get her to look away. So Ingrid turned to smile at the staring woman, who smiled back reflexively and busied herself with a newspaper.

    The rest of the store was empty save for a young boy. He had no luggage with him, but a short pile of books lay at his feet. He hadn't noticed her entrance, but just sat on a bench, reading. There was a knobbly stick leaning against the wooden bench, and his foot tapped silently against it as he read.

    A minute passed. No one else appeared. After another minute - the clerk had started to look at Ingrid again out of the corner of her eyes - Ingrid sat down on the bench across from the boy. She felt, with a deep and despairing certainty, that she was alone.

    For uncounted minutes she sat there, fingering the ticket stub in her pocket and hoping for one of the Wessons to arrive late. She tried to keep her mind away from the bitterness that waited for her in the background, increasingly so now that she had been uprooted, sent overseas, and then - what? Forgotten, the way all her friends had forgotten to write, to send 'wellness' cards, to call?

    To call -

    She reached into her jacket and pulled out a sheet of torn notebook paper and some coins. The big ones were quarters, the smaller ones either dimes or nickels; she hadn't had time to study everything beforehand. There was a payphone by the public lavatories, and she went there, unfolding the paper as she went.

    She put in quarters until the phone ceased accepting them, and dialed the number. Ring, ring, ring . . .

    "Oh!" Ingrid turned, startled, to see the boy suddenly clutch at his side. He fumbled at a hidden something in his pocket, then drew out his hand with a cellular phone in it and flipped up the lid. "H'lo?"

    Ingrid nearly dropped the phone handset. The boy's words had come at her from both his lips and the handset. Still staring at the boy, she said into the phone, "You are from the Wessons?"

    "Yes, I'm David. Wait - "

    He looked up at last, saw her. He looked embarassed. "You're that girl in the corner?"

    She thought a moment, nodded. He flipped his phone shut. She saw a red tinge moving across his face. Putting the phone back in its cradle, she shifted her rucksack and stepped toward him. He half-rose to greet her, but his movements were awkward, and he gripped the arm of the bench hard as he stood.

    It occurred to her, then, that his leg looked odd - almost as though it hadn't been fitted on right. But if he noticed that she had seen his deformity, it didn't show on his face, which had opened wide with a smile. The hand that wasn't holding the bench's arm with a death grip was reaching out toward her. A hand shake.

    ******** Well, that was about twenty minutes worth. I just made the situation up on the spot. Yay for my writing addiction . . .
  8. Avrilkiller

    Avrilkiller Member

    Dec 24, 2006
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    Taegu, South Korea
    Fine. Three minutes? It's 6:21. I can do that. I've got minutes to spare.
    I'm starting to hate writing. I'm thinking the reason none of my writing really comes to fruition is because I'm scared of spending so much time writing and thinking and plotting and working, and then turning out a big 900 page load of crap that sits in a box, my years of hard work rotting in cardboard until I die. Afterwhich, it will no doubt turn in the Next Great American Novel, because doesn't that just always happen? I wonder how pissed Picasso would be if he's in a position to see what happened to his life's work. I hope he's haunting people.

    Come to mention it, that's what I want to do when I die. Haunt people. Especially small children. I will be that little black slit at the edge of your closet door that keeps you up and on the verge of tears allll night. w00t.

    6:24. Later.

    P.S. I can't type for shit. So I'm editing to fix the typos.

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