Friday, May 15, 2009

Nice to meet you!

Do you think writing exercises are useful or a waste of time? I'll be honest, I used to think they were a waste. What good is streaming out endless thoughts going to do when I have a million concrete ideas to write about? The longer I write the more I disagree with the beginner writer in me. Writing exercises are a great way to get your thoughts and creativity flowing and you might just be surprised with what you come up with. You could give yourself a subject or just write down whatever comes to mind.

I decided to do a post on this today because of something that caught my attention on Twitter. A literary agent posted a link to her blog that simply invited writers to introduce themselves to her. The catch, you had to do it in the 3rd person and in 100 words. The following is my comment from her blog. I think it introduces what is important to me; family, writing, reading, and humor. What would your 100 word 3rd person introduction be?

She comes to the park everyday with her laptop or a half read book. Her children call out to her while running past, she looks up from her keyboard and smiles. Today she writes, feverishly her fingers fly over keys and I wonder what is going through her mind. It must be something good because her eyes are alive as the words stream out across the screen. I want to approach her, but just like every other day I can not bring myself to disturb the barrier of solitude she encases herself with. I often wonder what her response would be to the question burning in my every thought. Excuse me Miss, do you have any nuts?-as observed by a squirrel


  1. I love your response. Now I know what I'll suggest as our next writing exercise when I meet with my friends.

  2. I think your response was very cute and creative! And I love a good written exercise or two. :)

  3. I think writing exercises are great to get the juices flowing. Thanks for sharing your response to the literary agent's request. It's great.
    I've been reading your tweets on Twitter. Nice to get a little more of you here.

    Karen Walker

  4. Just stopping by to introduce myself.
    Loved your response.

    Thena Smith

  5. Her children call out to her while running past, she looks up from her keyboard and smiles.

    Today she writes, feverishly her fingers fly over keys and I wonder what is going through her mind.

    The old English teacher in me just can't let these go by - especially if you were going to send this to an agent. Both of those sentences above are run-ons. If you want to combine two independent thoughts without a conjunction you have to use a semicolon and not a comma.
    Whew - now I feel better. Just wish I could have employed my red pen somehow :)
    Writing exercises are fun but I'm not sure how productive they are as far as getting a novel written.

    Donald James Parker
    Author of Love Waits

  6. I love this, can see you sitting there!!

  7. Sheila- Let me know how the exercise goes.

    Janna- Thanks, I'm glad you like it. This exercise actually did help me get back into a part of my current book that I was stuck on.

    Karen- Yes they do get your brain thinking and creating.

    Thena- Thanks. It's nice to meet you.

    And of course Donald- Thanks for stopping by to learn me :) I am just glad that I caught my spelling mistake in the title before you stopped by. LOL I appreciate the English teacher in you.

    Claire- Thanks. I loved your story about your kids fighting too. That's just a normal day for us moms :)

  8. Apologies for any cheekiness, but I can't resist:

    As she sits at her computer,arranging her thoughts, typing the comment, she is still contemplating last night's finale of Supernatural, wondering how long it will take to read all her emails, if she should check her twitter updates and looking forward to hot dogs for supper.

    Great article.

  9. I am just a reader myself. It definitely was creative - what you wrote. The squirrel's point of view - I was impressed!!! Thanks for sharing. (by the way, I could not blaim the squirrel for not sitting in class and getting his lessons - ha ha!!)

  10. A.F.- Thanks for your introduction. There's nothing wrong with a little cheekiness sometimes :D Did you see cheeky quotes on the bottom of this blog?

    misterreereeder- Thanks for your nice comment. I should have blamed the squirrel. Who would hold bad grammer against a hungry squirrel? :D

  11. Hi Kristin. Stopped by from indiereaders.
    I think writing exercies can be really useful if you're blocked, but get in the way if you're in the middle of a project.
    The one about third-person introduction is kind of limiting, as it's about ourselves; I reckon I'll only use that one if I'm 100% blocked. Cheers for sharing it.