Exercise 3

One Little Thing You Noticed

This is the third exercise of The Curious Creative, weekly 10-minute writing exercises for the busy person interested in exploring his creativity. For a complete rationale, click here.

My thoughts:

Sensory details are how writers “show” rather than “tell” their stories. This way, the reader can take the journey with you, arriving at her own insights and emotions, rather than being told what to think and feel about your story. Good details come from good observation and good memory.

Your turn!

This week’s exercise is simple. You just need a pen, paper, and 10 minutes.

  1. Think of one little thing you noticed this morning. 
  2. Write for seven minutes describing it in detail. Cover as many senses as you can: sight, sound, smell, taste, touch, kinesthetic (internal feeling, i.e. nausea). Use lots of adjectives and strong verbs. For this part, don’t reflect, add your opinion, or pass judgment. Simply describe what you noticed. Keep your pen moving for the full seven minutes. If you run out of what to say, write, “I don’t know what to write. I don’t know what to write,” until the next detail arises in your memory. The physicality of keeping your hand moving frees up your thoughts much more than staring at blank paper does. So keep writing!
  3. After seven minutes is up, read what you wrote, and then write for three minutes about why you think you noticed this moment.

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