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I read an article in a writing magazine that talked about "word weaving" as an exercise for writers. As a writer, I'm always looking for ways to keep writer's block from stopping my artistic flow.

In this exercise, the article stated, you let the dictionary fall open at random. You then close your eyes (or look away) and let your finger pick a word. Do this eleven times, then write a story or poem using ten of the eleven words.

I decided to take the challenge, knowing that there was a good chance of ending up with a lot of totally unrelated words.

In my first attempt at this my words were: intelligence, knock, convenient, free, lead, percolate, reedy, sheath, tang, camisole, and scruple. I shuddered at the list. What in the world would I do with such an olio of words?

Here is the result, and I claim no streak of brilliance for it:

Write anything and everything
Is what the experts say.
So I let my mind run wild and free
And write something every day.

Sometimes it's not convenient
With so much going on,
But I try to knock some words around
Before I have to run.

A lead word or a sentence,
Even one I hate,
Is often all I really need to
Start to percolate.

I like to have a thought
That maybe makes a bang,
A scruple or idea I have
And add a little tang.

So 'fore I sheath my pen
And give up for the day
I give intelligence a rest
And say what I have to say.

Word weaving is a task
That sometimes may be needy,
But tell me where in the world
I'll use a word like reedy?

Give this exercise a try. If nothing else, it can be a lot of fun.




------
www.associatedcontent.com/user/1314/rebecca_foster.html




Comments

The following comments are for "A Writing Exercise"
by PSFoster

A test...
...to be honest, all tests like these prove is that reading, not writing should be your main activity as a writer.

( Posted by: londongrey [Member] On: July 4, 2005 )

Testing, Testing, 1 2 3
Ok, yep, I'm going to disagree with Alex. What tests like this do is reveal the shape of our tendencies, as writers, when we come into contant with certain words.

What is lead? Why'd you automatically interpret it as heavy? Cheap? Connnecting?

The more intereting exercise would be to write 3 poems from the same list, writing each as differently from the other two as humanly possible. This can work really, really well in establishing in your writerly brain that you are not only not your familiar style, you are also not your most identifiable angle, mood, je ne cest quai, whatever, what have you. As a writer, you are not the sum of what you have to say or have experienced, you are more than what you know and can say.

As a writer, you are the voice which witesses and ascribes -- that's a nearly unfathomable force if you can wrap your brain around it. So, work on wrapping your brain around it.

( Posted by: hazelfaern [Member] On: July 14, 2005 )

Hazelfaern, on a "writing exercise" by PSFoster
I think Hazelfaern's critique of your piece here, took the words right out of my brain: a brain that could not have articulated it one tenth as well as Hazelfaern critique. BTW, I noticed you on Penelope's rant "Stand Up & Repent", where you left here a rating of 6...and so, I became curious about your work. I notice this was written in 2005. I haven't gone to the writingforums.com yet to check out the rest of your work...but one of these days I will. Blessings!

( Posted by: TheRealKarmaTseringLhamo [Member] On: September 14, 2007 )

PSFoster another mystery fly by....
PSfoster....just like "Righting It" who comes and goes over the years...here all of a sudden after all these years you pop up again at the same time as "Righting it" and his/her masterpiece blog about having gas? Odd, that you pop in and out as you do, write nothing, and seem to pick certain people to comment on nicely for no rhyme or reason, but just like "Righting It" you too are guilty of some nasty behavior, especially towards Penelope in the past...giving her a 6 for her poetry? Despite our differences between me an Penelope, one thing I know is that Penelope has never written anything worth that low a rating so it seems to me you have a personal vendetta against her and me a couple of others, and you make no sense. 57 years old you are? come on now? That would be Claire's real age, and who knows "Righting It" also seemed to have a thing against Penelope as well? You know what I think? I think you and "Righting it" and a few others that have suddenly popped up again recently are multiples that do not do it for the good or the for the art, you do it for the play and game. Must be fun, eh? I know it was people like you and "Righting it" and a few others, such as "JEWlicious" (who mocked my son's posting at a most coincidental time way back when--came out of the blue too then went away again)...I think you are all multiples who never came clean, who continue to post under various names and like to continue to play games...atleast here on the lit.Org you do. who knows who you are on the forums or elsewhere, I mean we could get into the "Claire and her fake sister conspiracy theory" but we won't, because I don't think you are the Claire/or Clarie's fake sister personna, nope, I think I know who a couple of you are...especially since you have played games against me too. When a certain former moderator competed against himself in a controversial right off contest a couple of years back, you suddenly popped in there at the last minute again with a 5 or 6 rating towards the moderators writing, both of his personnas writings were great and again did not deserve such low a rating...undeserved and it caused a problem between me and that moderator for more reasons than one. So whomever you are, you suddenly being nice to Tammy makes me wonder WHY? Also makes me wonder what behind the scenes PM bullshit you are telling newcomers who don't know of your history, eh?

I've been around Lit.Org way too long and have seen and watched who comes and goes and says or does. I have an excellent memory.

Fess up come clean....truth is good for the cleansing of your soul or souls, whomever, you or yous are?

Yeah, some will say, who cares, don't get them going again, but you know what I say to that? "They", never stopped, and I noticed that lately all these archaic names from the past have popped up again out of nowhere, lots of them, why is that?

Blessings to you all and whomever you all really are, may you one day come clean and stop with the games. "Creative method writing" is one thing, but I notice that neither you nor "Righting it" nor a few others do much writing, and those that you do choose to be kind to and comment makes you even more suspect as to why you choose who you choose, I don't think it is about the writing, and I suspect it is all about the game just like you have always done?

Enjoy, and may you one day evolve.

( Posted by: TheRealKarmaTseringLhamo [Member] On: August 2, 2008 )

Personal attack
Lena, I have no freaking idea what that rant was all about! I don't even know who these other people are, because I was gone for a while (I'd explain, but you don't want to know). I just started coming back on Lit.org recently. But what I post to others or what I rate someone else is none of your business. Just above where I am writing this is a box that says "All comments must be about the writing." So, I'll comment on your writing in your comment: It sucks! You ramble on making no sense at all.
Rebecca

( Posted by: PSFoster [Member] On: August 3, 2008 )

Oh, contraire my dear....
I have very much indeed commented on your writing and I gave you a fair review of your ONE post here on Litre since 2005. What I just wrote recently has to do with you passive-aggressive attacks against others already explained above. Personal attack is something you are quite guilty of Foster, and you know exactly what I am talking about. Maybe some will close their eyes, but I choose not to. As they say " you can fool some people some of the time...." So like you to say my writing which amounts to hundreds of writes over the many years I have been here ALL SUCKS! Thank you for your review. That says so much about you and the kind of person that you truly are, or should I say persons that your are? Who knows, who cares, keep on playing PSFoster, is that your main personality...got anymore rating 6 reviews for Penelope or the few others you've somehow managed to pop in long enough to leave your shitty cowardly low number reviews numbers to lately?

Personal, you bet, you know all about getting personal. If you can't take it back then don't dish it out.

( Posted by: TheRealKarmaTseringLhamo [Member] On: August 3, 2008 )





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