A Way to Beat Writer’s Block

Ever heard of plinky.com?

Every day plinky sends out a prompt or challenge. Today’s is “What’s guaranteed to make your roll your eyes?

It’s an interesting idea. Some of them are more writerly compared to the personal one above. “Fictionalize a real argument you’ve had. Write only in dialogue.

Some verge on the silly: “Write a haiku about the last meal you ate.

For someone struggling with ideas to write about, it might help. (I know someone’s going to point me in that direction for my lack of entries this month, but I’ve been busy.)

What do all these prompts give you? If someone answers them all, it’s going to give a lot of information about that person. I’m not sure I agree with their use of the word memoir, simply because a memoir is about a specific time in a person’s life. An autobiography tells all, while the memoir is focused around a specific event. Example: A memoir could cover lessons learned during the college years or a difficult pregnancy or surviving a specific round of office politics.

But a prompt by itself isn’t going to get you too far. You can write a one-sentence answer if you choose, like for today’s: “Bad jokes are guaranteed to make me roll my eyes.” It takes a little effort to make it work for an entire blog post. A fictionalized story, a chapter of a memoir (or an autobiography), a detailed description – any of these will take more than a sentence to do well.

And there’s nothing to say you can’t pick and choose, and blog about other things in the middle. It all depends on the purpose of the blog. Don’t have a purpose to the blog? Now that’s trouble!

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