Thursday, 25 August 2011

Take a walk - Write on Wednesday


Joining up with ink paper pen for
Write On Wednesdays

Can you believe we are back already for another week of Write On Wednesday? This week we have an exercise taken from Mark Tredinnick's "Little Red Writing Book" as suggested by Karen at The Rhythm Method. I'll jump straight to it...

Read the excerpt from Tredinnick's book below:
"To write well is to make your sentences well. Whatever you want to write, it's sentences you're going to need to master. Your task is to get to the end of each sentence, one after the other. But not just any old how. You have to get somewhere and take your reader with you: and you want to get there well - elegantly, economically, gracefully, reasonably. You don't want to trip, and you don't want your reader to stumble. .. a sentence is just like a gravel path through a forest. It's a track, not a road; it's a trail, not a footpath. You want it to feel finished, but not mass-produced. You don't want it to be anonymous. You want it to have a bit of personality, preferably its own, which will resemble yours. You want it ... to rise and fall. And you want it to take a sensible, and reasonably straight, path to wherever it's meant to be going. So, if you have something to write, concentrate on your sentences and take them one at a time. Put down the burden of the whole huge book, the suite of poems, the letter, the report or the essay. Don't carry that monster on your back. When walking, as the Buddhists say, just walk. When writing, just write. Specifically, write that sentence. And then write this one. Walk it elegantly, and let it suggest, let it even express, everything you mean to say, in the way it tells its own short story - for every sentence is a short story. The way it takes the bends."
The Write On Wednesday Rules: Feel free to get creative with the writing exercises - there isn't a right or wrong. Please do try to visit the other members of Write On Wednesdays and leave a comment. You can grab the button for Write On Wednesdays from my sidebar.

Write On Wednesdays Exercise 11 - Take a Walk: "Come back home and write what you encountered. Try to write so that your sentences feel the way the walking felt." Let's toss the 5 minute sprint aside this week and instead take a lingering stroll through our exercise. Participants are encouraged to write a first draft (the point being to get it out on the page), then to go through and edit their piece before posting. We're aiming to get from one place to another, taking the reader with us - economically, gracefully, elegantly.

Perhaps start with the usual stream of consciousness exercise if you are having trouble getting started. But then stop and take a look. Edit your sentences and try to get them "feeling" the way your walk felt.

This may seem challenging. But remember, as always, try to enjoy the exercise. Post what you can and rise to the challenge. After all, that's what we have to do if we want to write and write well. Don't forget to thank Karen for the writing exercise. I think I am going to have to buy a copy of The Little Red Writing Book!

As I set out at a brisk pace I inhale and shake off the day.
My route takes me past houses where families are doing their end of day chores. I can hear children's feet, voices, televisions, the clatter of cutlery, the yell of a disgruntled parent, a dog barking.
The breeze is gentle and cool but not cold, so it feels quite refreshing. Having been cooped up in the office all day, I feel as though this is the first chance I've had to inhale. As I walk into another street I feel the freedom in movement and being outside.
My minds becomes wistful as I ponder whether I will get an early night. Surely it's a possibility, I just meed to make it happen. I am getting rhythm as I listen to my music and walk.
The sun is dipping behind the hill and the Earth seems to sigh at the feel of it. Another day done and dusted. The sun is bowing to the moon as it rises for it's shift.
The breeze is picking up the smells and swirling them around. Smells of cooked dinners, wood fires, pine trees and flowers opening with the onset of Spring.
I stop at the curb and wait for a car to pass. People on their way home or on the way out? Is their day ending or just starting? People zipping this way and that. It encourages me to stay still for a moment longer as I don't need to rush anywhere at this moment.

I have missed a couple of weeks of W.O.W so jumped at this exercise which was a comfortable one for me. It felt good to be "back on the horse". I'm not sure if this writing was as smooth or as elegant as it should be.