Hello all, and merry Friday evening, for those of you who read this.
1)Make a list of seven places you've visited in the last seven years. Rank them, with #1 as your favorite, and #7 as your least favorite. (If you have to go back 8 years, that's fine, but no more than 8 or 9).
2) Take place #7 from the above list, and write down 7 things you remember about that place. (These will naturally come out in order of most vivid to least).
3) Pick something about that last to write about. If it can be broken down into multiple parts, pick the one that you think will be most difficult to write about.
4) Write a one-page exploratory essay on that topic.
Making certain that you are working with themes and images that don't pop straight into your head (the point of picking the 7th items on the list) means that you actually have to work at pulling themes, images and words from your head. Don't cheat on the listing just to make it easier, since that negates the power of the entire exercise. I found this experience very interesting and useful, as I returned to a place I barely visited the first time. This is an exercise that, if you let it, takes you places you hadn't expected to go, which is most productive for a writer. My essay is available for any interested; I may consider posting it later. I think it's pretty interesting. *grin*