1. Melanie
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    Melanie Member

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    Writing exercises

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Melanie, Oct 24, 2011.

    I'm looking for ideas for writing exercises I can use to try and hone my writing skills. These can be either creative or experiential, I enjoy both. If you have any good ideas, please share! Thanks!
     
  2. Jetshroom
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    Jetshroom Active Member

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    I'm trying to do regular writing exercises myself. I've taken to blogging "regularly" and I'm entering the short story and poetry contests each time one comes up.
     
  3. Allan Paas
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    Allan Paas Contributing Member

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    Within the next four months or so I will start writing short stories to improve my writing skills. I am going for short stories that look like they have been taken out from novels, since novels are my goal.
     
  4. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    So... I was going to suggest plotstorming.com to you, a website that gives a writing prompt every day (usually a short passage describing something). It'd suggest you write about 1000 words, using the writing prompt as stimulus.
    But apparently the site no longer exists. So yeah. That's kind of disappointing. The writing prompts I saw back in the day were cool. I'd only been on the site a couple of times, but the prompts I saw were just genius, even with the simplicity.

    Maybe someone here knows what happened to it?

    Still, googling 'daily writing prompts' as I just did seems to yield some okay results. I'd check them out to some extent, but my internet's a bit slow right this minute. Sorry.
     
  5. Melanie
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    Melanie Member

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    Wow, you have to love when you write a detailed response, then realizing an hour later that it didn't actually post! Oh well, I need writing practice anyways, right?

    Jetshroom, blogging sounds like a great idea. I've toyed with the idea a few times, I'm just not sure on the direction. Do you blog about a certain subject? Day-to-day journaling? Past experiences?

    Allan, I've never written short stories, but it seems like it would be beneficial as well. My problem is that once I start writing, it's hard for me to come to a close. Especially if I'm trying to make it seem like an exerpt from a novel. I would be tempted to just keep on writing until I have finished a novel! Haha!

    Crucifiction, the idea of that website sounds like exactly what I am looking for! If you find it or something similar, please let me know!
     
  6. WoodenPaw
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    The internet is a wonderful source of writing prompts. There are sites dedicated to providing them which a quick search will turn up. Examples include :

    CreativeWritingPrompts.com
    WritersDigest.com
    Creative-Writing-Solutions.com

    There are also numerous blogs that offer a regular writing prompt to inspire you and where you can, if you wish, post what you’ve written. Examples include :

    SundayScribblings.blogspot.com
    OneMinuteWriter.blogspot.com
    DragonWritingPrompts.blogspot.com

    There are also many other sites that can, inadvertently, provide a rich seam of material for writing prompts – for example news sites with their intriguing headlines or pictorial sites such as Flickr.com that give you access to a vast range of photographs that can prompt your writing.
    If you’re on Twitter, there are users you can follow to receive a stream of prompts, for example :

    twitter.com/writingprompt
    twitter.com/NoTelling
    twitter.com/writingink

    Another idea is just to keep an eye on all the tweets being written by people all over the world, some of which can, inadvertently, be used as writing prompts.

    How To Make Your Own Writing Prompts

    You can find ideas for writing prompts of your own from all sorts of places : snatches of overheard conversation, headlines, signs, words picked from a book and so on. Get used to keeping an eye out for words and phrases that fire your imagination, jot them down and use them as writing prompts to spark your creativity. You never know where they might take you.

    Disclaimer: The above information is copied from the below link:

    http://www.dailywritingtips.com/writing-prompts-101/
     
  7. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    I was once given a writing exercise by a teacher, and I think it's brilliant when practicing description. Describe your room from someone elses perspective (any person, fictional or not), but rather than give a picture of how the room looks like, make it so the reader will feel like they know who you are when they have read it.
     
  8. Raki
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    Raki Contributing Member

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    An exercise I try to do at least once a week (depending what I'm doing with my writing time) is to write a short scene (500-1500 words) that follows a single theme. The themes can really be anything: love, hate, fight, ghost, hell, school, love, murder, society, obsessed, responsibility, adventure, etc. I usually don't write the scenes cut and dry, meaning if I write a ghost scene, I don't just write a story with a ghost in it. I may try to write a story that changes it up a bit ... perhaps the characters don't know their friend is a ghost, or maybe they just don't know there is a ghost, or maybe something from the ghost's perspective, or maybe it's not a ghost at all but just some phenomenon the character(s) can't explain. Some of these scenes require action and some do not, but they all can and do tend to test my writing ability. And they can help with discovering new ideas and methods.
     
  9. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    The three twitter links aren't too great as far as I'm concerned. One-word prompts aren't any effort to come up with, but are too hard to actually write about. Who cares about "the briefcase" or "my backyard" or "dog"?

    CreativeWritingPrompts.com isn't too bad. The prompts aren't terrible, but some of them seem a bit generic. The PlotStorming prompts where large paragraphs that would actually give you some substance to play with.
    The Writer's Digest prompts are better (especially October 11th one). Hell, I like that October 11th one.
    Creative-Writing-Solutions.com goes the same way as CreativeWritingPrompts.com. Not so spectacular.

    SundayScribblings is the same as the twitters; one-word prompts.
    OneMinuteWriter is slightly less annoying, but still relies too much on the writer, I think.
    DragonWritingPrompts is pretty meh.


    So as far as that list of sites goes, I personally recommend Writer's Digest and, failing that, CreativeWritingPrompts.com.
     
  10. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    The three twitter links aren't too great as far as I'm concerned. One-word prompts aren't any effort to come up with, but are too hard to actually write about. Who cares about "the briefcase" or "my backyard" or "dog"?

    CreativeWritingPrompts.com isn't too bad. The prompts aren't terrible, but some of them seem a bit generic. The PlotStorming prompts where large paragraphs that would actually give you some substance to play with.
    The Writer's Digest prompts are better (especially October 11th one). Hell, I like that October 11th one.
    Creative-Writing-Solutions.com goes the same way as CreativeWritingPrompts.com. Not so spectacular.

    SundayScribblings is the same as the twitters; one-word prompts.
    OneMinuteWriter is slightly less annoying, but still relies too much on the writer, I think.
    DragonWritingPrompts is pretty meh.


    So as far as that list of sites goes, I personally recommend Writer's Digest and, failing that, CreativeWritingPrompts.com.
     
  11. WoodenPaw
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    WoodenPaw Member

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    Yeah!..A note for you sent by you from future is really very good idea to write on.
     
  12. Melanie
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    Melanie Member

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    Thanks for all the great ideas you guys! I really appreciate it, this is exactly what I was looking for!
     
  13. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm not Jetshroom, but in my case I blog about whatever I feel like writing about. I collect perfume, and I used to write about the Scent Of The Day every single day. I slacked off, but now I write a couple of times a week about perfume, gardening, blogging, writing, books, food, travel -- whatever comes to mind.

    One thing that I find valuable about blogging is that it lets you expose your writing to an audience, but in a gentler way than a formal critique. That gentle pressure pushes me to write a fairly complete piece, to take some trouble with my editing, to try to please, but without so much pressure that it takes the fun out of the exercise. Of course, you need at least a small audience before that works (but small will do - I have maybe ten fairly regular readers); for a while all you have is the knowledge that people _could_ read your stuff. But even that can be slightly inspiring.
     
  14. Melanie
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    Melanie Member

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    ChickenFreak, thanks for your input! What are some good blog sites I should check out?
     

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