Men find nothing in everything.”
—Giacomo Leopardi, Italian philosopher
Think of a time when you (or a child you know) found ‘everything in nothing’—whatever you understand that to mean—and write about that experience.
What does it mean to find ‘everything in nothing’? Explore that idea in a twelve-minute free- write session.Read More
Don’t throw away writing projects that you put aside, that are not working, that you’re struggling with.
Instead, start a folder—either physical or on your computer–titled.
This is where you are going to keep all your manuscripts in process.
The ones that feel like they never get further than a mind dump, the ones that feel like you just can’t make progress, where you’re stuck, where your craft just doesn’t seem to be up to your vision.
Revisit the folder every few months. See if there’s something, a project that calls to you. Spend some time noodling around with it! With the benefit of distance you might see the potential, recognize where you were headed, see what it is that you were trying to say. . . .Read More
Children are full of passion and wanting.
And its arguable that part of the work of childhood is learning how to manage them, how to control them.
Write about a passion that a child might have. Write about what it might look like, what it might feel like, how it might put them in conflict with their environment. Write about how they might come to understand and have some agency over it.
Which picture book are you loving right now?
Make some time to hang out with it, time to really appreciate it, to give it your full attention.
Read it through once the way you usually would.
Read it out loud so you get a sense of the rhythms of the language.
Read it out loud. One sentence at a time. Pause between sentences. Really take each one in.
Pay attention to the words the author chose. Pay attention to the order in which the words were placed.
Highly Recommended: If you like, you can write notes or write a paragraph or two about what you noticed as you read.Read More
Children frequently have to wait.
And waiting is hard.
Write about a child who has to wait
in a line where the thing they’re waiting for is desirable:
entrance to a museum
an ice cream cone
for something that’s less pleasant:
in a bank
at the post office
in a supermarket checkout line
How might the experiences differ? Both in terms of the character’s internal sense and external sense?Read More