Even when you enjoy something, you gotta spice it up every now and then to keep it interesting.
(Maybe not. Statements like that–with an “even when” and “you” to sound direct–can be wholly illogical but still sound wise. Gotta be a name for that technique. The “words of wisdom” cliche or something of the like.)
Digressions aside, adding spice did invigorate my passion for something–writing! For the longest I’ve yearned to try out these writing exercises I made up for myself. One of them is manipulating constructions.
Constructions: phrases that have core components like nouns that can be swapped for context. (e.g. “When it comes to turkey…” “When it comes to vacuum replacement…” etc.) There’s constructions we hear on a daily basis and put little thought into, but then there are configurations that catch our ears. We don’t know why. We just say, “that’s a cool line.” I want to be the writer that makes those lines.
(Example of a cool line: “When it comes to obliterating textbooks with a 4 ft tall blade sharpened by the teeth of vampire bats from caverns in South American jungles…”)
So I’ve set to practicing: I modify constructions–which have preset patterns–and create variations. You can see examples of this in the first construction variations exercise I’ve posted.
Aside from construction modifying, I also freewrite 250 words most days, and work on a piece of fiction and a blog post.
I’m not sure if all the exercises I practice will make it into my stories. I’ve created phrases and lines I’m proud of (from “I don’t see anything,” I made “Look at all the anything I don’t see”) but it’s tough to find a use for it. I mean, the line I just exampled is cool, but where could I fit it in my serious, thriller/crime story? Maybe there’s a way and I haven’t discovered it yet.
But I’m not doing these exercises just to find material to fit into my stories. It’s genuinely fun. I mean, even if I don’t share all of them, they are pieces of writing. Fragments of a puzzle unknown. And besides that, it feels good to be a writer who’s writing!
Some Thursday night thoughts. It’s 12:25 AM, so it’s technically Friday, but I didn’t sleep yet, so to my mind it’s Thursday… 🙃😁