On March 17, Thursdays Writing Collective hosted women from the poetry, non fiction and creative non fiction groups in SFU’s award-winning Writer’s Studio program.
We played with the idea of questions and how they interact with writing. We began with the open prompt, “what is a hammer?” Nothing like a dadaist suggestion to get things rolling! From there, Yaana, Meg, Dhana and Rua jumped into the fray with us, using these prompts to generate fascinating pieces. We allotted 6-10 minutes each, although you are welcome to try them for different amounts of time, or to continue them in your character’s voice, if you are writing a sustained narrative.
Writing Exercise: write a list of 10 questions, whatever comes into your head, big or small.
Writing Exercise: choose one of your questions, or someone else’s you heard and write a short poem or paragraph beginning or ending with that question. These can be silly, practical or heavy.
Handout: read Robert Frost’s A Question and Charles Bukowski’s Question and Answer. This was interesting because both authors were known for being masters of the vernacular of their era and both were touched by depression and/or mental illness.
Writing Exercise: think of a question you were forbidden or discouraged from asking as a child. Write about it without telling us what the question is.
Writing Exercise: Write about a question you wish someone would ask you, and answer it.
Writing Exercise: Write a short piece beginning every other line with a question.