So I was on holiday for the past couple of days and was feeling a little overcome by writer's block so I returned to an old but reliable creative stimulator: word games.
I can't remember if I've already told you how my favourite word game usually works so I'll just risk telling you it again:
1. Grab a book.
2. Write out the alphabet. Next to each letter write the chronological number (i.e. A-Z = 1-26)
3. Take the title or subject of the book and separate it into its constituent letters. Use your alphabet to specify the number allocated to each letter.
4. Turn to the page number that matches the first number.
5. Search for the first word containing the first letter of the title. Write out this word and all other words that follow it, up to the end of the line.
6. Repeat for every other letter in the title.
With any luck you'll have a semi-coherent short poem. It's entirely up to you how you choose to structure it. I tend to throw in a few extra conjunctions and prepositions to help each line fit the next grammatically.
The two books I chose were my own daybook (yes, I am that conceited) and a book about self-publishing. The final products were as follows:
THAT BAD AFTERNOON
a little red
but you remember
that bad afternoon
Your parent and knee.
Prepare your script for
'The Unjustifiable Right'.
Book a practical step
in a local newspaper.
say to everyone
'Handle the book sales.'
Believe me, this word game is a very handy way to get back into writing stuff. Even if you don't usually write, it's a nice foothold; especially for poetry. Just try to not get too dependent on it. There's borrowing from other texts and then there's just nicking.
Thanks for reading,