Spring semester has sprung! Creative Writing will be a unique experience to exercise my writing muscles. One of the things I have enjoyed so far is beginning each class with a writing prompt. It allows us to get in the head space of writing, and a couple of the prompts have developed into fun tidbits of prose. I wanted to share a few here, and hopefully inspire you to engage in your own writing exercises.
Prompt #1: What was the first thing you remember writing?
It wasn’t the first thing I wrote, but it was the first thing I wrote rebelliously. An assignment in third (or was it fourth?) grade. The assignment was a writing on American presidents. I didn’t use a single period–no punctuation at all. I abandoned the rules and I wrote. It was easier, faster. I thought two things: I would either slip through the cracks, or thrill my teacher with my superior abilities. I did neither.
My classmates were lining up single file, handing my teacher their papers and waiting for her approval. I shuffled into line and waited my turn.
I held my breath after handing my teacher the paper. After reviewing, she looked up and said, “There’s no punctuation, Gordon.”
My response was silence, and perhaps a deep blush in the face.
“Go back and add the periods,” she said with a slight smile.
Imagine my young face, my thrill of rebellion dashed.
I swallowed my rallying cry.
I walked back to my desk, surrendering to the tyranny of punctuation. Each little dot of period was a white flag waving. I don’t recall exactly, but I look back and wonder–did I leave out one or two just to see?
Never surrender entirely.
Artist, Writer, Wayshower
Gordon Hays Artwork
The Good Life with Gordon