June 17, 2019

Monday, June 17

Sometimes we writers get stuck in a rut. We’re sounding stale even to ourselves, but we don’t know how to wrest ourselves out of the blandness and launch into our best writing posture. I’m not talking about writer’s block. That’s a conversation for another Monday. 

I am talking about creativity. 

Here’s what I recommend: read a writer whose work pushes you, as a reader, into places you couldn’t imagine being otherwise. Robert Coover is a good example. Coover plays with time in a masterful way. Even if you can’t imitate him, you can try. The effort pushes you into a thought process that is both intense and wildly creative. By the time you get to the actual writing, you’ll be excited to do the work.

For this week’s prompt, I ask that you read Coover’s “Going For a Beer.” https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/03/14/going-for-a-beer

Then think about the way the story jumps physically ahead in time while moving forward more slowly in the protagonist’s brain. How would you try to pull this off? 

Figure out ways. Then write an 800-1,000-word story following his lead. 

And as always, read it aloud to yourself or if you have a standing audience, to others. If you are or have been in my workshops, send it along. You have reached outside your comfort zone; you have experimented! Congratulations!

—- Jane