The book has exercises geared for improving your writing craft. I started working through it yesterday. I plan to do a chapter a day until I’ve finished the book. So far it’s interesting. Definitely not like any craft book I’ve read before. The first exercise was based on the ‘sound’ of your writing. It gives several examples of ways authors have played with the sound of words, then asks you to come up with something of your own. I have to admit I was intimidated by this exercise because although I understood what the author was asking for, I didn’t quite get what I needed to do. (I’m a very literal learner. It takes me a while to understand most questions.)
Anyway, this is what I finally ended up with:
Jack on his back. Lazy child. Lazy child. Wandering down the path to nowhere. Jumping bean. Jumping bean. The magic is somehow lost. Whispers in silence. Cutting dreams. Slashing ideas. So we cound clouds instead. Fluffy white. Fluffy white. Drifting paintings in the sky. Ever changing with the wind.
Grass tickling our backs. Pushing us off to prepare for autumn. Soon leaves will fall. Orange and yellow. Orange and yellow. Red tears lie dormant on the ground. Cycles never end. School days. School days. Bells ring, sending everyone scampering to the bricks. Recess is over.
The whole point of the exercise is to create sounds in your writing. I could’ve gone the easy route with words like buzz, hiss, plop, etc. , but I wanted to do something different. Besides, ‘Jack on his back. Lazy child. Lazy child.’ jumped into my mind immediately.
I like the idea of working on craft through ‘structured’ exercises. It helps me understand what the instructor is trying to teach. Are any of the writers out there working on their craft? If so, how?