“If they give you ruled paper, write the other way.” Juan Ramon Jimenez
In kindergarten, my son’s teacher gave each student a construction paper Christmas stocking along with decorations. Their assignment? Cut them out and glue them too look like her example.
A couple other mother-volunteers and I entered the room while teacher and class were on the playground for recess.
“Look at all their stockings,” said one mom.
Each stocking was hung, identically in a row along the wall. They could have been mimeographed in their sameness.
“Wow,” said the other mom, observing one stocking decorated with magic marker Christmas figures on the tiny white edge of the stockings’ perimeter.
“Who did that one?” said the first mom.
They peered closely at the small signature.
It was Tofer.
I write this anecdote not to brag, but to show how one five-year-old figured a way to be creative even with a cut and paste assignment.
How will you show your individuality with your writing or art?
1. Select one of your scenes you’ve already written. How can you make it yours and only yours?
2. Make one of your characters quirky. What distinguishes this character from every other one in your book? A particular secret, trait, or passion may allow her to be amusing or annoying or lovable!
3. Create a setting that shows its character. Being specific creates identifiable reactions and emotions within your readers. Can you show nostalgia? A comfort setting? A suspenseful place? Remember sounds, smells and even tastes will allow your readers to feel like they are there.