Friday, November 28, 2008

Post-Holiday Feasting,Gollum's Rule # 52, & Creative Writing Exercises


The men made turkey gumbo--and cleaned the kitchen. The girls cooked rice.

A good time was had by all, even the doggies.

The holiday season is upon us--daylight isn't the only thing in short supply: Time is golden. Time is calorie-free chocolate. You need to blog, but you must cook/Christmas shop/clean house/etc. What to do? Use your secret blog to build ideas for your real blog. A creative writing exercise can unlock your right brain--plus, you are exercising your gray matter. Bodybuilders exercise--why not bloggers?

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Idea 1. Write in a viewpoint, or "voice" that is different from your natural voice:

  • a 10-year old child
  • 80 year old woman
  • a mouse
  • a French/Spanish/Russian woman--and English is your second language
  • Two people in love (any age)
  • a kitchen sink

    • Idea 2. Build a metaphor:

      A. Think of a character (or characters) and put him/her/it/them in an emotional situation--and compare it to a (literal) STORM. It could be the STORM of Christmas shopping, for example, or an argument or....?

      B. Select a photograph:








      C. Find music to inspire you (skip this one if you need silence).
      Google "songs about storms." Or listen to Ella sing "Stormy Weather":





      Maybe you're in the mood for Julie London's "Cry Me A River"





      And for those who like alternative bands, here's Coldplay singing "Rainy Day"





      D. Words starting with "L" and "D" are "tooth" words. They add an "edge" to a sentence--and help build a mood (behind the scenes).
      Pick 5--or use your own):
    • dark
    • dirty
    • diffuse
    • dagger
    • damp
    • daylight
    • daze
    • deep
    • leaden
    • leak
    • lick
    • laughter
    • listen
    • lurched
    • long
    • Idea 3. "Free Write" about "Christmas Shopping" for one minute. Set your oven timer (or use an egg timer). Do not stop--write anything that pops into your mind. This is a "limbering" exercise. Tip: try this when you first wake up. Even before your morning coffee, write for one minute about anything. Your whole day will be different.

      Have fun! If it's not fun, don't do it. And if you are too busy to exercise, drink eggnog with bourbon and then put your feet up on a coffee table and deal with it after the holidays.

      Remember Gollum's Rule #52 :
      A tired/overburdened blogger is an unhappy blogger--always be kind to yourself.

      ((Hugs))

      19 comments:

      1. Oh I love the pup begging for food.. Reminds me of Miss Scooter begging. She's been doing it all day..still smells the turkey. lol I think I might try the eggnog suggestion and see if it helps my writing skills..lol hugs ~lynne~

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      2. Gollum liked the eggnog with bourbon part I could handle that one..I love the puppy begging...I bet those YORKIE's was going wild in the kitchen with the cooking going on..mine would go nuts every time I did a chicken or turkey in the oven..well I did to post something better get out the eggnog Girl..Glad you had a great Thanksgiving..every day is a great day when Men clean the kitchen..hugs and smiles Gloria ps I love your new Christmas blog dress..

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      3. Hi Gollum...It looks like your family is still enjoying Thanksgiving! I love the photo of your little doggie. My cats have been circling the leftovers, too. Thanks so much for your kind remarks on my blog. I'm learning so much from you. I am really intrigued by the idea of the l and d words being tooth words. I have never thought of that before! I'm still working on that old IC so I can try one of your writing exercises. Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Hugs to your mom...Debbie

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      4. Hi Michael, So sorry you didn't get to spend yesterday with your oldest son and sweet Annabel...hopefully you did get to talk with them on the phone. Glad your Mom was there...sounds like she was pushing some buttons. Hee, Hee...that's what Mom's do best, sometimes. :-) Your comment yesteday was truly a bright spot in my day...I feel exactly the same way...so very glad we met! And I am just thrilled to think the little egg cup could be a "totem"...how cool is that!
        :-) Susan

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      5. Mmmm, everything sounds good - turkey gumbo, men cleaning the kitchen and eggnog. ~ Robyn

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      6. Oh my, the fellow with the pony tail making gumbo is picking his nose. DON'T EAT THE GUMBO!! I'd pass!! LOL

        Blessings,

        Sher

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      7. Well Gollum, It's quiet in our house this morning, so far. Only our nine little Finches can be heard chirping away. My husband and I are looking around the house wondering what cyclone when thru when we weren't looking. Our daughter and her family will be leaving after lunch and all that will be left of them is those things that they overlooked when packing up their belongings. A bit of sadness will come over us when they leave, as we put our house back in order. I will turn my thoughts to writing my Christmas letter and addressing our cards, in between loads of wash. Our dog will miss the attention he's been getting from the kids, for the past few days, but will sleep a lot after they are gone. I will get back to another one of Gollum's writing exercises..... and so the cycle of life will go on........

        (((((((BIG HUGS)))))))
        'D'

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      8. Good morning Professor Gollum! It's only 5:39am here and already I've had my first hour class. Many thanks! PS ... I'm honored that my poem touched you. I wrote poems about my caregiving experience during the last five years of Mother's life ... there are a few more I will share in the upcoming weeks. Seize the day!

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      9. Men cleaning up the kitchen is something to give thanks to in itself. I'm so impressed!

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      10. Good Morning Gollum... Love all your ideas for writing and I am really enjoying what our fellow bloggin' friends are doing with all the ideas... Your little dog is so cute in the picture... Turkey gumbo sounds so YUMO!

        Have a great day...
        (((HUGS)))
        Donna

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      11. Interesting....the "L" and "D" thing was something I didn't know and I find that cool...those words do speak loudly. Thanks for the exercises...I ain't doing situps but this makes me feel like somethings getting a workout lol. Have a great day!

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      12. Morning Gollum! Is the turkey gone? I love the idea of the men cooking and cleaning. I did the cooking on Thanksgiving but my BIL and my sons did clean up. I'll probably never find anything, but at least I didn't have to do it!!! Happy Christmas shopping and decorating! I'm going to get that off my list so that I can get other creative juices flowing! It's so interesting to learn how a writer's mind works. Thanks for teaching us! I keep forgetting to ask.... how did you break you leg? I'm sorry that you did, but happy that it made you venture into blogland. A day without Gollum makes me feel like one of those stormy pictures. All dark and kind of unsettled. You truly are a ray of sunshine!
        Carol

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      13. Gollum,

        Im so glad that everyone enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner and the day after! The Turkey Gumbo sounds terrific! You know your holiday is good when the Dogs enjoy it! :)

        Alrighty then! I am off on my next Gollum assignment. I will let you know when I post.

        xoxoxoxo
        Donna Marie

        ReplyDelete
      14. I'm like a few of the others...I'm fascinated by the L and D words! I wish I had known that when I used to teach 4th grade writing! Lol I REALLY like the idea of a private blog. I've always wanted to write about some of my experiences in teaching (and anything else that popped into my head), but never liked the idea of my "thoughts" being out there if something happened to me! Haha! You may just get me to try this. I like the morning "limbering" exercise idea...especially when you say it will make a difference in your day! Thanks for the lessons~~they are really interesting! :-)

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      15. Hello Gollum, glad you and the family are having such a lovely thanksgiving and the little doggies too.

        Thanks for the new assignment and the early morning brain exercises, a bit like singers warming up their vocal chords with Do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-doooooeeeeeeeeee.......

        Well now that I have warmed my throat and let my subconcious percolate I am about ready for.......... that glass of eggnog and brandy! :)

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      16. Hey girl, hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful! I don't even have the energy to write a blog post, let alone go by the rules and such. I'm on overload!!!!!!!

        Justine :o )

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      17. Evening, Dear Gollum!! I think you have the men trained correctly at your house!! You know I love the little begging fuzzy face! Mind does the same thing. Hummmm, another exercise!
        Be a sweetie,
        Shelia ;)

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      18. That's a great writing exercise. I always like the ones in Writer's Digest too.

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      19. This exercise seems fun....I have an idea and if I can get the time I will work on it;) French

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      There you are! I'm so glad you're here. Love, MLee xxoo

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