Category Archives: Freewriting

INKSPILL 2018 Picture Prompts

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INKSPILL WRITING 1

This morning’s picture prompts have been gathered under Creative Commons license from Wikimedia Commons.

Choose a picture and start writing – see where it takes you.

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A view of the interior of Nasir ol Molk Mosque located in Shiraz, Iran. The mosque includes extensive colored glass in its facade that makes beautiful colors when light is passed through it and is reflected on the carpets.
800px-Agence_Rol,_L_éclipse,_gare_Saint-Lazare,_1921
Three Parisian women watching the solar eclipse of 8 April 1921 on the Cour du Havre, next to the gare Saint-Lazare.

 

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“Airborne” by Christopher Klein, an art installation representing a gas molecule. Built in 2008 for The Linde Group’s headquarters, the Angerhof, in Munich.

 

Bea_Kyle_Standing_Fire_Engine_and_Pickle_1924,_edited

High diver Beatrice Kyle, standing by the wheel of fire engine, in high driving outfit, holding a pickle, between acts at the Society Circus at Fort Myer, Virginia; for the benefit of the Army Relief Fund; Apr. 25, 1924.

INKSPILL 2018 Writing Activity – Words

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Getting into the Zone

We start this morning with a writing activity.

What’s in a Word?

Use the word, do not look up the definition. Spend 3 minutes writing about what you think the word means.

  1. Choose one of these words (pick a language you don’t speak).
  2. Set a timer for 3 minutes, if you don’t have one use this link and set one in the background. https://timer.onlineclock.net/
  3. Start writing – it is important you keep your pen or keyboard moving, don’t worry if your mind takes you off the original instruction, don’t worry about the content, silence your inner editor and just keep the words coming.

castravetele

maglayag

landsby

danza

bjerge


Don’t forget to click.

 

INKSPILL Lazy Sunday Morning

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INKSPILL SUN

Writing to music is nothing new, I do it often, especially at social gatherings where the tunes turn me into creative mode! I recently spent a wonderful 6 days at Swindon Poetry Festival and took part in a workshop ‘Call & Response’ with Rishi Dastidar, so this is also a small nod to that.

This video is just audio of the track Lovely Day by Bill Withers so feel free to be in another window on your screen writing if you are not buried in a long hand notebook.

Press PLAY and write away. Spill your morning thoughts, don’t self-edit or stop that pen. Just keep it moving.

INKSPILL Taster or Teaser

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The full programme including this year’s Guest Writers will be revealed on the 27th. We have a new feature for 2017 – The INKSPILL Library where you will have instant access to selected archives from 2013 -2016 Writing Retreats.

INKSPILL Library

The Library will be open on Saturday afternoon and again on Sunday when it features additional archived material. 

We are featuring 2 Guest Writers this year.

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They will be revealed on the 27th. 

There will be short writing tasks, exercises and workshop activities, creative tests, exclusive interviews with our Guest Writers, book promotion (the INKSPILL Bookshop will be open all weekend), monologues, Inspiring Women Writers, a look at Thomas Hardy, Rupert Brooke, Wilfred Owen & Siegfried Sassoon, Goal Setting, an interview with Zadie Smith, writing advice from Novelist Jill Dawson, an interview with Lee Child, editors discussing modern writing and the Launch of Contour WPL Magazine. As well as rich pickings from the archive featuring previous guests: Charlie Jordan, William Gallagher, Heather Wastie, David Calcutt, Alison May, Deanne Gist, Daniel Sluman, Gaia Harper & Roy McFarlane and more. 

 

 

Writing Activity #1 Nature

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Welcome to the first writing activity. You will need a notebook, pen and some highlighters or coloured pens. The process of writing out by hand is an important one.

Once you have completed the activity feel free to share extracts of your work in the comment boxes below. Alternatively you can post a link if you have posted your writing elsewhere. You are under no obligation to share at all, but promise me you will not throw this writing away.

Ready?


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The idea behind this initial activity is to get your mind set to ‘retreat’. Our lives are busy and we rarely have time to stop or connect with the world around us. By the end of the activity you may have some writing you can use elsewhere or ideas that wouldn’t have otherwise surfaced. So be open to it and try not to ask ‘why?’ and ‘so what?’ For pleasure, freedom and morning heads.

 

 

In order for this activity to be delivered correctly I have left intentional gaps for you to scroll after you have completed each stage of the writing.

  1. Choose one of the following images (repeat the exercise 3x if you can’t decide).

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2. Spend some time staring at your chosen image. Allow thoughts to gather in your mind. Write down a list of words or phrases that come into your head.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Go back through the list, use highlighters if you have some – find where the senses are; What have you written that you can see, hear, taste, smell, touch?

Spend a few minutes adding to your list words and phrases that cover every sense.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Now put yourself there. Freewrite * for 5 minutes.

*Freewrite: keep your pen moving, even if your thoughts run dry write something ‘my thoughts are running dry’ or repeat a phrase from your original notes ‘the sky is yellow’… until your brain kicks in with new writing again. Time it. Set a timer. 5 minutes.

 

You are there, in the scene.

Use this link for an online timer time-430625_1280

DO NOT re-read this writing when the timer sounds. Just scroll down.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here comes the real writing…

 

5. Use what you have written to create an extended narrative or poem (the genre is up to you), at this point you may want to freewrite again. I suggest about 10 -15 mins. for this writing. You can use the timer if you wish.

This new writing can be based on a recalled experience or you can use the images from the exercise to create your world. Go wild, try going outside to complete this activity. Be one with nature.

Describe the most intimate experience you’ve ever had with nature. Try to remember a time in which you were truly affected by the natural world and it became a major part of who you are.

 

 


Feel free to post comments, questions and extracts from this writing activity in the box below.

 

 

 

NaPoWriMo Day 6 Ingredients: Actual Poems

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It is around about now (days off the end of the month) that I realise this challenge is not going to end in April for me. After 4 weeks off from my writing life, I am returning to writing for performance, performing and editing current projects. The summer is fast approaching and lots needs addressing in my life outside of poetry. My poetry life is busy preparing for festivals, events and submissions. Tag on the day job, I don’t even want to think about all the boxes I am trying to unpack my way through or the need for a DEEP Spring clean at home… the result is chaos.

I have decided not to rush the NaPoWriMo project, I want to enjoy this process and benefit from time to write – after all that’s the main point, that and to have fun.

I may dream of writing business but the nuts and bolts are art. Art needs nurturing, time, commitment, space… I am approaching it softly.

From now on I do a day a day, as it should be. Welcome to day 6.

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Our featured participant today is Kevin O’Conner, who struggled at first with our Day 5 prompt, but came up with a great poem, well-seeded with seed names.

Today’s featured poet in translation is Burma’s Ma Ei. Very little of her work is available in English, but you’ll find two poems at the link above, and two more here.

You may be interested in checking out this short film, showcasing the work of contemporary Burmese poets, including Ma Ei, as well as this interview with James Byrne, editor of a recent anthology of Burmese poetry, which includes Ma Ei’s work.

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Today’s prompt was to write about food.

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This is my friend’s microwave (7 years ago), maybe they have these models in the UK in a higher budget than the mark Mr G and I look at, I just loved the message. Usually they just ping, beep or flash. Perhaps I should have written about this microwave instead of taking half a day (and night) deliberating my food poem.

I think the writing process for Day 6 is juicier than the poem so I am sharing it first. I love food, this write should have been easy. But I remember Jo Bell’s advice; abandon your first thoughts, dig deeper. Immediately, like a naughty child, I want to write all my initial foodie thoughts.

 

Butter Fingers

I haven’t written a poem about cake.

Or biscuits.

Or fish fingers, crabsticks and spaghetti hoops.

There is no advice about what foods to avoid

on (first) dates,

or heavily veiled descriptions of tier towered

wedding cakes.

No Saturday night take-away

chicken madras, sweet and sour pork, fish

and chips,

but there is a poem about food.

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If in doubt write what you are not going to write about. Just a bit of free write fun there, in the shape of a poem. Although it does pass as a food poem. At this point I placed a title above it and moved on. It is a poem.

I started with pictures of food, trying to disguise identity in an almost riddle.

Bright circus colours

a Big Top in stream form

The mustard and ketchup on a hotdog.

Then came a mind-map. Some ideas from which I may explore in the summer when I have maximum writing time.

Films about food and drink was taken from the mind-map and became an enjoyable hour of research and created some ideas for my next writing group, in May. I have a list of 27 alternative film titles substituting food words. ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crumpet’ a particular favourite of mine. Harrison Ford, dishy – doesn’t take a writer to get to crumpet there.

I then looked at Tarantino film clips involving food (another idea to chase later). I ended up on a recipe page and then spent a futile Google search looking for US Market canned Pumpkin, previously available in Tesco & Waitrose and now seemingly not reaching our island at all. I thought of filling suitcases and then baggage allowance and security.

Then I wrote a poem about Mr G and I cooking in the kitchen together.

Tango on terracotta tiles…

cabinet perimetered dancefloor…

hands gathering busy.

From here I ended up falling asleep and I woke up (2 hrs after my alarm) with a poem spilling from my head.

 

Eggs is Eggs (A pillow head poem)

Mum poached them

Dad fried them

Paul boiled them

I scrambled

and David,

was too young to cook.

 

me hallo

 

INKSPILL Beautiful Ugly Part 3

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Earlier this morning we shared Part 1 & 2 of this exercise. The same thing again for Part 3, sharing the last of Debbie’s photographs on the theme of Beautiful Ugly.

For this writing challenge pick any number of the photographs and just write, see what comes out, work with the bits you’re happy with and don’t forget to post comments and share your work.

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

 

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

 

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

Thank you to Debbie for kind permission to use these photographs as part of the Inkspill Programme 2015.

 

INKSPILL Beautiful Ugly Part 2

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In part 1 we shared four photographs along the theme of Beautiful Ugly and you created writing (free writing) from an image or images of your choice.

I promised you more and the opportunity to do the same again.

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© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

 

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© Debbie Aldous 2015

 

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

 

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

For this writing challenge pick any number of the photographs and just write, see what comes out, work with the bits you’re happy with and don’t forget to post comments and share your work.

INKSPILL Beautiful Ugly Part 1

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10:00 Time for some INKSPILL writing.

These photographs were taken by Debbie Aldous in her bid to find beauty and ugliness in the same frame. There are 12 shots in total, I am sharing more with you later this morning.

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For this writing challenge pick any number of the photographs and just write, see what comes out, work with the bits you’re happy with and don’t forget to post comments and share your work.

ENJOY!

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

© Debbie Aldous 2015

INKSPILL Day 1 Coffee & Writing Challenge

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Coffee and a writing challenge

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Grab yourself a drink, watch this short video. Return to the video and freeze on an image that speaks to you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thuViaxRd_w

WARNING Grammatical errors – I have chosen this film for the images.

Choose a screen shot or part of the short film and just free write – or word association and then look back at your list of words and choose one as your writing focus.

This is just to open your mind to writing and get you started. It would be great if you post the whole or extracts of your free write here in the comments or send us the link to your blog to read it.

Stretch into the day writers and begin…

respond in any writing style that feels right for you.

pfl me choosing poems

  • Click LIKE so we see each other
  • Post comments – evaluations or favourite snippets of writing, it will be interesting to see who chooses what.
  • Post your writing in the comments below.
  • Or post a link to where we can find your writing if you want to share it. Either to your blog or on the Facebook Group page.