My girl came home from nursery this week with a puzzle she had painted. As I matched up the colourful swirls, I thought the whole thing was such a lovely idea that I felt inspired to make my own – except mine would use words. It would be a poetry puzzle.
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This New Year’s Eve gave me a memory that I’ll treasure – a lovely moment with my daughter. At the same time, I rediscovered ‘The Way It Is’ by William Stafford. A poem about life and its journey, Stafford’s words caused me to ask: ‘what thread will lead me through this coming year?’ Taking his poem as my writing prompt, I began to explore.
I’m fascinated by six-word stories. Telling an entire tale in so few words… it’s magical what we can do with language. They’re fun to write and satisfying to read. So I decided to explore these mini marvels in more detail, and see if I could pick up some tips along the way.
I was delighted when Cheryl Moskowitz agreed to be the first guest in my Writers’ Insights series. I love her poetry, have had the privilege to see her in action as Poet in Residence at Highfield Primary School, and admire her philosophy when it comes to running workshops and bringing out the best in people. Here, she talks to us about that mysterious ingredient ‘inspiration’ and about her passion for pairing poetry with music.
When I first came across Ben Okri’s poem ‘The Core’, its words lifted me. They lit a spark inside me! I wanted to know more – to explore them through my own writing. So, using the poem as my writing prompt, I tried out three different approaches: stream of consciousness, the writing frame and the sentence stem. Here’s what happened…
The world is a curious and wonderful place. It can be so easy to forget this during the bustle of daily life. I was reminded recently that there’s writing inspiration in even the most mundane situations, if only we could pause and pay attention. And so I set myself a challenge: find five juicy writing ideas in one ordinary day.
As writing prompts, objects can be great sources of inspiration. They can be everyday and extraordinary all at the same time. We just need a willingness to explore. Here are three writing activities I particularly enjoy that use objects at their core.