Sunday, 12 September 2010
I Thought of This One!
Here's a group writing exercise I fashioned from an exercise in a creative writing book and administered at a recent meeting.
Everyone at the table has two small pieces of paper. On one, write an object. A thing. On the other, write a place. A location. Pass your thing to the person on the left. Pass your place to the person on the right. You should now have a new place and a new object.
Here's the task: Imagine that object has a voice of it's own. It has found itself in the place written on the other slip of paper. Write a short first-person vignette- a scene- from the perspective of that object in that place. How it got there, and what it is doing, is completely up to you.
I received “bicycle wheel” and “York”. I produced this bizarre piece:
Some people are plain clumsy. If you're going to spend money on something, you make sure you know how to use it. I'm in a pretty useless situation here- I'm tied to a lamppost. Not only that- I've been dismembered and abandoned in a strange city- York, to be exact. It's not too bad, though. I'm used to being tied up like this: I am a bicycle wheel. Just a few moments ago, I was part of a full mountain bike. I was rotating at high speeds, my owner cruising me through the modernised Viking streets and back-alleys, dodging ignorant car drivers and death-wish pedestrians. He wheeled me right up to a giant building, a public place full of schoolkids and teachers, a structure with the word “Yorvick” sprawled elegantly across the length of the facade.
My owner took out a thick, heavy padlock from his rucksack and keyed it open. He leaned to the front of me.
No, I thought. I wish I had a voice to stop him.
He slipped the padlock through the front wheel's spokes and onto the nearby lampost.
Big mistake, Sunny Jim.
I was there about two and a half minutes before a very inconspicuous guy came along- just an average-looking lad- and undid the fastenings on the front wheel. He took the rest of me away; wheeled it off. I feel like a dethroned king.
My owner's gonna be pretty pissed off when he gets back- but mostly with himself.