In conjunction with the Charles Beatley Jr. Central Library in Alexandria, VA, this was an experiment inspired by the presentations I had done in the past on writing stories. After all, these are really the main questions people have of me: where do my ideas come and from and how do I start writing my stories? Turns out it isn’t as intimidating as one might think, at least, not when you begin with a good character. Anyone can write about someone or something, BUT, what situation would be appropriate in which your character would find him/her/itself, and why? How would your character react to being in the situation? How could the reaction be funny, or unique? How could the subsequent action by your character heighten suspense? When you have a character, a story often follows. But the details that make a story a compelling one come from the details you KNOW about your character.
So I created three worksheets for the participants to start 1) getting to “know” their character, 2) writing using a guide about something happens to that character, and how the character then tries to resolve the incident, and 3) using doodling and drawing as tools to help fill in and document all the rich details of the character, the character’s environment, etc, that make it all come alive on the page.
These workshop sheets, along with others, can be downloaded here:
We had nearly a full house on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, and a very engaged group keen on writing AND drawing. I wish I had pictures to show you, but I was so busy running around with the kids that unfortunately I couldn’t take any. A couple of huge lessons I learned from these kids is that: 1) they are NOT afraid of the blank page, and 2) their creative minds are BOUNDLESS.
Something to chew on for next post!