Thursday, August 21, 2008

Ordinary Tasks Writing Prompt

The way your character performs a seemingly ordinary task can speak volumes about his motivation. It can help to root him into the world you've created, or show his emotional state in a critical moment. This prompt is designed to help develop your "show, don't tell" skills.

For this exercise, select a task from the list below and write a short description of how one of your WIP characters might perform this task. (If you don't have a WIP character, select one from the characters list.) Try to imagine how your character might act at a point of high emotional conflict in your story arc. What impact does the character's emotional state have? For example, if Fancy Nancy were to clean her room on the day before going out to a fancy meal with her family, would she perform the task differently that if she had to clean her room immediately upon coming home from the restaurant (after she has had her meltdown?)

Ordinary Tasks:
Make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich
Do math homework
Clean room
Clean the cat's litter box
Set the table
Walk down the block to mail a letter

Character List:
Fancy Nancy
Millicent Min
Splat the Cat
David (from the David Shannon books)

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