Writing on the Wall….

I have started reading  a thought-provoking new book: “One Year to a Writing Life, Twelve Lessons to Deepen Every Writer’s Art and Craft,” by Susan M. Tiberghien. Now, when I first picked this book up it was for different reasons; part of me wanted to become a better writer and yet another part wanted inspiration.  What I have found, with the wisdom only an old woman devoted to a single craft can offer, is that writing can be a deep source of knowledge about yourself. And like the old eastern saying goes: Know the one thing that will allow you to know all other things…  yourself.  

Getting down to the nuts and bolts…once you get past the images that come provided with a book written by a woman in her mid to late 60’s, you can then appreciate the simplicity and creativity that she puts forth in her writing. If you have some time, try out one her  exercises :p

 The First Exercise

  • Write a journal (roughly translated in French: “a day’s journey”)  entry for 10 minutes

Pretty simple huh, I will give the gist of my entry as an example: The story I created for my journal entry revolves around the sun, whom I have infused with human qualities. The sun goes around waking people up by invading dark rooms and filling them with light. The sun is portrayed in a negative light, no pun intended,  for intruding on certain people who prefer the calming light of the moon to the visceral rays of the sun.  The entry goes surprisingly deeper to explore what significance the sun and moon have in my journal to begin with, and I draw parallels to light and dark images while I  search a universal dichotomy that leaves me wanting to explore further. 

Yeah, that entry was an unexpected adventure.    

  • Now , that you have the journal entry take an image you just wrote about that resonates with you, and what you were feeling when you were writing.  “FREE WRITE  (just write and don’t think too much)” about the image for 10 minutes.   

 Here is another example of what I produced: My image was of shimmering illuminating stones. I write that the stones are a true source of light, and by light I mean truth.  The sun and the moon are mere figments of imagination, classified as either reality or non-reality, maybe even somewhere in between that, depending on the perception of the individual. The stones, however, glow and shimmer because they have what light and darkness can never have,  an orignal idea. The stones that I speak of are in fact just that, ideas, thousands lying together smooth on a distant yet familiar shore.

When I finished writing about the image, I was really glad that I didn’t skip the exercise to go on reading. 

What was your image?


~ by Joseph Garza on January 13, 2010.

One Response to “Writing on the Wall….”

  1. The sun metaphor was very cool. I’ll have to give the “day’s journey” a try. It sounds like Tiberghien’s book is one I need to get my hands on. Thanks for the tips.

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