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One Scribbly Snapshot (Creative Writing Exercise)

The lovely Kelley, writing at a coffee shop

Creative Writing Exercise

Your assignment today is to write 200-300 words of gibberish. Think you can handle that?

Excellent! Oh, but first you’ve got to do a little bit of prep work. Follow through on yesterday’s article and get yourself a scribblebook to improve your writing! If you’ve already got a scribblebook, all the better. Next, find a camera (-phone will do), and an inkpen. Next, open your shiny new scribblebook up to the first, perfect blank page. Admire its loveliness. Cleanliness is next to godliness, right? Ah, it’s beautiful….

Now mess it up. 200-300 words of gibberish, margin to margin, top to toe. If you misspell a word, cross it out (one line of strike-through will do, no need to waste ink redacting it) and go on. If you say something out of order, throw brackets around it and draw arrows. If you need to add words to a sentence, scrawl them in the tiny bit of white space between two rows. Spoil that sucker.

Then take a photo, commit your great atrocity to the unblinking eyes of history, and let us all see your handiwork. Post it up on your blog, and tell the world why you’ve done this thing.

I’ve set myself free from the need for perfection. First drafts aren’t supposed to be pretty. I’m determined to be a writer, anywhere and everywhere.

And give us a link. We’ll all swing by to cheer you up (and comment on your penmanship).

Photo credit Julie V. Photography.

2 Responses to “One Scribbly Snapshot (Creative Writing Exercise)”

  1. Heather says:

    My scribble book has been documented! You can see it at:

    I keep a whole stack of them, some of which I photographed as proof, and use a new notebook for each project. I prefer to use spiral bound notebooks because they are cheap and generally go unnoticed in a crowd. 🙂

    • Aaron Pogue says:

      That’s awesome, Heather! It’s exactly the sort of thing I was hoping to see.

      Thanks for taking the time to write it up and share with us. You sent considerable traffic our way, and managed to finally get me to come visit your site all at the same time.

      (Which, it turns out, is something I should’ve done long ago. I really enjoyed reading through your experiences for the last year, especially Grayson’s Viking Rune book. How cool is that?)