Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! This week I’m thinking about transformation, or metamorphosis if you will. When I think about metamorphosis I associate it with two things usually: a caterpillar changing into a butterfly, and a cool art piece I did once changing myself into my pair of sunglasses (an assignment to change into some possession we used often and could bring into class). Lately, I’ve been thinking about change a lot as it seems like so many of my friends have been going through transitions of sorts whether it be dating new people and fumbling their way through that experience to having monumental writer’s blocks. Both are totally different experiences, but they both bring about a transformation in one way or the other, good or bad.
Since I post writing prompts here, we’ll focus on that aspect of it. I have posted here and elsewhere that I don’t believe in “writer’s block” but I do admit to having writing slumps. I believe that as long as you write something everyday you’re not going to have a “writer’s block,” and something can come of that writing even if it doesn’t happen that day. Recently, I’ve had several different writer friends share by phone, in person, or by email that they’ve either stopped writing everyday and it was something of a “guilty confession,” that they can’t get back into writing their novel but they’re so close to “getting done and finding an agent” – yet they’ve become like that proverbial deer with eyes in the headlights, and the most extreme (to me) shared that they’d “burned every one” of their journals because they were over their own writing.
I sympathize, and empathize, with every one of these friends. I also have been going through some strange writing phenomenon (for me), in that I have been writing – but not poems, and not with the intent of poems. Instead, I’ve been writing plays, writing art reviews for another blog, and revising a few short stories, but it’s like my poetry well has dried up. I know it’s not permanent as I’ve gone through it before…not often mind you…but it has happened where I thought the poems were gone. In fact, I once wrote a poem “Poetry Lets Voicemail Pick Up At 3 AM” where in the poem I “confess” that I’ve been cheating on poetry with fiction! Gasp! It’s a fun poem, and it was a way of getting myself back into writing poems. Here’s a stanza from that poem:
I’m not devising a way to take advantage of your imagery.
You used to lay yourself naked on my empty sheets!
We were so well versed together!
Please don’t leave me to the prosaic life, a structured suitor to bitter ends.
So, what have you got to “confess?” What is the metamorphosis that you’re going through right now? This is what we’re going to use for a prompt(s) this week. Your 47th prompt(s):
1) In your daybook write what you’re wrestling with right now. Is it something with your own writing? Are you having trouble getting words to come out on the page? Do you feel like you’re writing the same old thing over and over? What changes can you make? Is there something that can be changed in your routine? If you’ve always written in the morning, can you write before bed? If you’ve always typed your writing out first, why not try writing in a hardbound journal…or vice versa? Just start writing your worries out and you’ll find that there will be a breakthrough of some sort. Is it a relationship? What can change? Write what you really want to say…even if you (gasp!) burn it. Is it finances? What can you change? What would you be willing to change? You see the theme here….
2) Be nice to yourself. Don’t feel guilty if you’re taking time off from writing. Maybe when you come back to it, it will be there in force. Maybe you’re metamorphosing from a poet to a playwright, or from a fiction writer to an essayist, or from a playwright to a poet. It’s hard to embrace change, but it also can be exhilarating and bring new life to whatever you’re writing.
3) Give a character in a story or a play one of the issues that you’re wrestling with and let them figure it out. Write an essay or a poem on guilt or some change that needs to happen.
4) Whatever you do, just keep writing! So what if nothing comes of it, the process is the thing…and one day you’ll be writing and all of the sudden you’ll hit your stride again.
If you’re so inclined, share some of your “guilt” over not writing…or feeling like you’re not writing what/how you want…and maybe that will jump start your own metamorphosis.
Even better, share it in the comments here!
See you next Wednesday!