Saturday, March 26, 2011

Write Words Weekend

Image courtesy of graur codrin.

"I would love to write.  I just don't know what I'd write about." 

I can't tell you how many times I've heard those words.  And for a while, I couldn't understand how someone could both 'want to write' and 'not know what to write about.'

Then I started blogging, and soon I developed a following.  Suddenly, I had readers - readers with expectations that I write well and frequently - and on more than one occasion I found myself thinking those very same words!

Every writer knows what it's like to stare at a blank screen and not know where to start.  You may even know part of what you want to write - you know your subject, for example - but the words, the ideas, just won't come.
Welcome to "Write Words Weekends."

Every Saturday morning, I'll post a few 'write words' on this site.  These words are intended to get you thinking about your stories, your message, in new ways.

These are writing prompts, but without the 'writing prompt' structure.  For example, instead of saying, "Write about a time when...," I might put up a list with the words "shoes," "understanding," and "birthday."

Then, over the weekend, imagine yourself lowering one or more of the 'write words' into your memory well.  At some point, you'll likely feel a 'tug,' and when you draw the word up again, it will come filled with a story.

The goal of "Write Words" is simple:  Get writers writing.  Sometimes the 'write word' will remind you of a person or experience.  Other times, you may already have a subject in mind - you're writing about your relationship with your father, for example - and the 'write word' "birthday" brings up a memory of a special birthday spent with your dad.  Or the first time you celebrated a birthday while you were in college.  Or that first difficult birthday of his which came after he passed away.

"Write Words" bring up stories in ways that more structured writing prompts sometimes don't.  Please understand, I'm in favor of any word, sentence, conversation, billboard, or t-shirt that inspires a writer to produce a new story!  Just add "Write Words Weekends" to your resource list when the well seems to be running a litle dry.

Here's how it will work:
  1. Look over the write words list.  Write them down on something you can see, like a large sticky note.
  2. Lower the cup of write words into your memory well. That just means "think about them for a little while."
  3. Find a memory or even a fictional story through the use of any or all of the write words and pull it up out of the well.
  4. Now write and write and write.  Write while the memory is fresh and vivid and dancing through your mind.  Don't worry about grammar, spelling, chronology, or anything beyond just drawing out that story and taking a good hard look at it.
  5. When you've landed your story, then you can start revising.  If you need help from me in editing or proofreading, well, you know where to find me.
  6. As you finish your stories, you may post links to your stories along with one or two brief sentences describing your story in the 'comments' section of the corresponding Write Words post.
  7. Readers can then click over to your website to read your story and offer positive observations and critique of your work.
  8. I hereby relinquish copyright to all posts written by Write Words contributors. Remember to add the words "copyright <your name> all rights reserved" on your own work, at your own site.
This is all about you, the writer.

Ready?  Pencils up, laptops on, memory wells open!  Your first Write Words are:

Kitchen table

Sunday afternoons



All right?  Then, ALL WRITE!


  1. What a great idea ... I'll give it a shot! :)

  2. Oh My gosh DeNae...I am in the middle of moving, and all of those words drum up emotion about one story or another right now! Will have to sink it in and see what comes up. When are we supposed to have this completed?

  3. This is a great idea. I am on my way out the door to work, but was planning on writing a little tomorrow..."Stream of consciousness Sunday"...So I will give it a try. Thanks xoxo ♥

  4. I like this idea and will use it this weekend.
    I want to get better at putting stories together. Sometimes they come, sometimes not so much!

  5. Just the past week or so, I have jiggered about the idea of doing more writing. Not just the drivel I put on my blog, but deeper writing. When I do, those are the posts I tend to like the best. However, I know I suck at the actual grammer, etc part of all of it. You and your wonder talents are going to be utilized with this ignorant .....I was gonna use a phrase from SNL and decided not to. Ignorant girl. That's me

  6. great idea. I've been inspired lately by all the blog-land friends I have who are writing books. I am thinking about compiling some of my fav blog posts and maybe running with an idea leaning towards some type of parenting book. I'd love your HONEST opinion of my idea, DeNae. Point me in the right direction, if you don't mind.

  7. Love the idea, I am already thinking!!

  8. You know, I think this could really help me out! I may be sporadic in my use of the prompts (because my life is super hectic, and I never know when I'm going to get to blog again!), but I think I'd like to try this out! :)

  9. Blah. Is how I feel about my writing lately. And that is why my blog is vacant. No new posts. No time to think about it. This may do the trick.

    Thanks, my friend.

  10. My blog has become a travelogue. That is, when I bother to remember I have one. Thanks for this. Already I have some seedlings just from reading your words. You are a genius!

  11. Love this idea and think many many will benefit. Hey... a $6 dollar donation to rising star outreach will get you an introductory post and a solid month of sidebar glory on my blog, if you felt like promoting your new business venture in such a way. I'd say all sorts of lovely things about you.(Okay, really you'd just have to ask me and I'd say nice things about you. Cause you know, I love you and all that.)