Writing Prompt Pit Stop: No NaNoWriMo No More

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! It’s November 30th – the last day of the month and the last day for NaNoWriMo. I don’t know whether you participated or not, but as you know if you’ve been following along – I didn’t. Not for lack of want, but because of the busyness of teaching 10 writing classes (yes, I’m an adjunct in case that’s not clear), and this being a crunch month with a lot of student’s larger papers due it didn’t allow for a lot of “me” time. However, being a poet and a playwright I can never let any month pass by without writing. I try to everyday…even if it is for 10 minutes or less. That certainly doesn’t get me full-length plays or a manuscript of poems, but it keeps me in good writing shape…just like a little exercise is better than just sitting around wishing to be fit.

Anyway, with that being said – with several “free” days over Thanksgiving, I got some major things accomplished. I actually got a full-length poetry manuscript put together and sent out into the world! Whoo hoo! Now let’s hope it lands somewhere good. Nevertheless, that was one major goal to have done by the 30th, and I had it completed and sent on the 28th. I also got several packets of poems sent out as well, so we’ll see what happens there. That takes care of some poetry needs, but I fell short of getting the three plays written that I’d hoped to have by today. However, the deadline for those are the 31st of December – so, I bet by the 28th they’ll be submitted…at least that’s my new goal for Dec. What is yours?

Here are some writing prompts to get you started for December:

  1. In your daybook write about a time that you lost an argument that still makes you mad. What was it about? Who was it with? Perhaps your character can have such a grudge…
  2.  Make a list: 50 excuses not to write. (See? Now you’re writing!) Pick one, and write for 10 minutes…see what comes to mind.
  3. Guns are a controversial topic. No matter what side of the “argument” you land on…utilize it to get yourself writing – maybe it’ll turn into an essay…or a poem…or it seems like a good topic to involve a character, or to have for the theme of a story or play.
  4. Use these three words in what you write: Kennedy/Art/Mexico

If you get anything that you want to share, you can always share it in comments below, or contact me: lylanne[at]lylanne.com

See you in a week! Don’t forget to keep writing!

Lylanne

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: Week 4 No NaNoWriMo

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Well, we’re into week 4 of NaNoWriMo, but as we’ve established in the first three weeks – I’m not participating in it this year. However, as sad as that makes me, I’m still trying to keep my writing chops honed in during this month, even though I have so many other commitments that take up my time…mainly grading a lot of writing classes! Anyway, this week I have been able to brainstorm and get more ideas down for my three short plays that I’m bringing to life. And, although by this time in this month I’d hoped to have had at least one of the three completed, I have no doubt that after this week that I will have one done before November ends. I’ve also got a few poems ruminating around, and the end of the semester is within reach so I feel certain that I’ll have some new work then too. My only other writing challenge that I made for myself this month is – to have my full-length poetry manuscript pulled together to submit by the 30th as well. I know I can do it, I know I can do it. So, wish me luck! I hope that you’ve had some writing successes this past week!

If you’re following along with me, here are a few more writing prompts:

  1. Since this is the week of Thanksgiving, in your daybook write down the top 10 things that you’re thankful for. Once you have your list, choose one that calls your name and freewrite on that for at least 10 minutes.
  2.   Here in Michigan we’ve had our first big snow this past weekend.     Write about what you love, or hate, about snow. You could certainly write a poem about winter/snow. Heaven knows I have many on that subject, but you could also utilize it in one of your stories/plays, or it could be a trait of a character…that they love, or hate, snow.
  3.  This political season has certainly opened up potential for stories, poems, essays, plays about the absurd. Most we don’t even have to imagine. Sometimes it’s not easy to include political themes in your work, but it seems that now would be a good time to at least be writing down some of the day-to-day happenings for future use in some way. You might just sit down and vent for 10 minutes on something you hear – it might surprise you what comes of it!
  4. Use these words in something that you write:  Adele/ice/turkey

 

If you get anything that you want to share, you can always share it in comments below, or contact me: lylanne[at]lylanne.com

See you in a week! Don’t forget to keep writing!

Lylanne

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: Week 3 No NaNoWriMo

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! So, this past week has been crazy for me as far as personal busy-ness with classes and commitments, and then I got to spend a little time away from all of that enjoying some art…but it was by driving about 10 hrs. round trip, which doesn’t get a lot of my own writing done. However, with that said, I have been inspired by seeing a lot of good art (and some not so good), and that’s never a bad thing – so during the first week I mentioned Ekphrastic writing, and that’s something that I will be doing again this coming week when I can steal a few free moments away. In addition, there were the awful events of Paris, atrocities that are not easy to write about…at least right away…but the one thing we creatives do have, that others do not…is our ability to get our feelings out…whether on paper, on canvas, on laptops, on the stage, etc…, and that helps keep us all going, I believe. So, as you can imagine – I did not get any of my plays written or worked on as I’d hoped, but I do have snippets of ideas and journal writings…and I have to be happy with that for this past week. I hope to write more this week!

Here are a few writing prompts for those of you that would like to use them:

  1. I got to see an interesting art show in Columbus, OH, this weekend called “After Picasso,” and it was a grouping of 80 artists that had been inspired by Picasso’s work…from Warhol, to Johns, to Jay Z, to unknown contemporaries. So, you might want to write in your daybook about one of your favorite Picasso pieces, or maybe he’s not your favorite artist – and you can explore that.
  2.  As those 80 artists did, they used a favorite artist to inspire a similar work. Last  week I suggested that you use a favorite author‘s lesser known character in your work, but maybe this week you can write in the same style, or in the same genre as your favorite author…maybe something a bit different than what you usually write.
  3. Maybe take 10 minutes of your day (or more) and write about the importance of the arts to you. As I mentioned above, arts are important…but, unfortunately, not everyone thinks so. In this crazy world where there’s so much violence and intolerance, maybe write an essay, or incorporate the importance of art/poetry/theatre/music in your fiction, poetry, or play.
  4. Use these words in something that you write: friendship/French/fork.

If you get anything that you want to share, you can always share it in comments below, or contact me: lylanne[at]lylanne.com

See you in a week! Don’t forget to keep writing!

Lylanne

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: Week 2 of No NaNoWriMo

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! It’s been one week since I posted my plans for attempting to get some good writing done this month even though I know I have too much going on to participate in NaNoWriMo this year. I feel good that I have actually kept up with writing this week in my daybook, and that I have revised several poems that I’d written and now officially have five new ones to send out somewhere in the world…when I have a chance to peruse some good fits to submit. I feel bad that I haven’t had a chance to write one word of any of the three short plays that I’ve committed to writing by Dec. 31st; however, I do have had some ideas rumbling around…so that means that somethings going to happen soon, right? This week is another full week of commitments in & out of the classroom, grading, an evening meeting, and another visit with a friend out of town – but I’m adamant that I will get writing done each day, at least a couple of those poems submitted somewhere, and at least one of those three plays started, if not finished, by the time I check back in here a week from today. What writing will you get done? Not sure what to write about? Here are a few more writing prompts this week:

  1. Choose a song from your childhood – if possible play it as you write – and allow the memories to flow. In your daybook, write down everything you can remember in a stream of consciousness. Don’t worry about grammar at this point. Stop writing when the memories begin to feel forced. After you’ve drained the memories dry, take 10 minutes (or longer if you need) and write on the best imagery, feelings, etc. If you’re ever at a loss for something to write about, come back to this exercise – but utilize a different time in your life, and repeat the drill.
  2. My favorite author, Kurt Vonnegut, once said “find your tribe.” Write for 10 minutes about “your tribe.” Who are they? How did you come together? What keeps you with this “tribe?” Have you ever left, or been left, by those whom you thought were your tribe?
  3. Speaking of favorite authors (or poets or playwrights) – take an obscure character from one of their stories/poems/plays and make them your own. Of course, if you get anything published using this character, give your favorite original writer a nod.
  4. Use these three words in what you write: Bomb/Petunia/Preacher

Remember, it’s better to steal a few minutes here or there to write a little than not to write at all!

If you get anything that you want to share, you can always share it in comments below, or contact me: lylanne[at]lylanne.com

See you in a week! Don’t forget to keep writing!

Lylanne

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: No NaNoWriMo

It’s been way too long since I’ve blogged on my own site, but since it’s November and officially NaNoWriMo I thought the least I could do is post something even if I’m not an official participant this year. I have been a winner in the past, but I’ve got too many irons in the fire to attempt to write a novel and to worry about the word count that I’d have to commit to to keep up with all that writing madness. However, as someone that loves challenges it’s hard not to attempt something. So, I’m posting here on my blog to keep at least a smaller commitment than a novel. In April, I do write a poem a day, but I’m not sure that I can even do that this month with 10 writing classes to teach and grade…so what I’m going to shoot for is this: at least 16 poems that can be revised into a chapbook when I’m done, or add to some other manuscripts that I’m working towards. And, I’ve committed to write three short plays before Dec. 31st, and if I can get one or two of those knocked out by the end of this month, I’d be happy. If nothing else, I’m at least planning to get on here and at least write a post a week…and hey…that’s more than I’ve done here since last spring! If anyone wants to at least write more than they’re writing now, I encourage you to follow along.

Here are a few prompts to get some writing going:

  1. In your daybook write about not having enough time. Maybe it’s not having enough time during the day, maybe it’s not having enough time to relax, or maybe it’s trying to squeeze too many tasks into one hour. What if you’re a procrastinator? What’s your excuse(s)?
  2. Write about your favorite painting. If you don’t have one, go to a museum, find a painting that draws you to it and write about it. If you write a poem check out Ekphrastic Poems.
  3. Write about a food that you hate. Describe it in all of it’s distaste.
  4. Use these three words in what you write: Green/poetry/Egg

As I’ve stated here on Writing Prompt Pit Stop before (and need to remember myself) all you need to do is sit down and write for 10 minutes and you’ll have at least something to work with later on. Get something on the page – and that’s a start. Just like this blog is a start for me on this 1st day of November.

If you get anything that you want to share, you can always share it in comments below, or contact me: lylanne[at]lylanne.com

See you in a week! Don’t forget to keep writing!

Lylanne