My drug of choice is writing––writing, art, reading, inspiration, books, creativity, process, craft, blogging, grammar, linguistics, and did I mention writing?

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Writing As a Child

One small change: only one prompt per post instead of three.  It's all part of my ongoing quest to eventually move this blog towards short, controlled bursts instead of the posting equivalent of full auto spray.

Don't forget to have fun.

Writing in voices that are not our own is practically essential if we want to write anything beyond autobiographical creative non-fiction--no offense to David Sederis.  Not only is writing in other voices good practice for creativity, but it also it is important for being a genuine artist to be able to see the world genuinely from another person's perspective.  The simple act (which is not so simple) of viewing an event through  You can't underscore this enough when you start tackling ideas like stereotypes and appropriation.

So write up a page or two description of an event that happened when you were a little kid (under ten) from the perspective of you today, looking back on it.

Now read this very cute article about what little kids say love means.  Awww.  Isn't that just adorable?  I love the one where the kid says it's about the best piece of chicken.

Think about how small children see the world very differently.  Now rewrite your scene from the perspective of you as a small child.  You can watch your vocabulary, and maybe even your grammar, but don't get too "gimmicky" with it.  The real job here is to think about how differently a child would think about the event you described.

Notice the difference in how you render these two scenes.  This is an exaggerated example for the purpose of an exercise, but you should consider how narrative time affects your narrator's voice with everything from word choice to an event's significance.  You will tell a very different story looking back on an event than you will as someone who just experienced the same event even though both might be considered "past tense" from a purely technical perspective.


  1. Alas, the link embedded in your article doesn't work. :(

    1. Thanks. I was able to find it at another site, so give me a minute.......