Tag Archives: writing

Storytelling 

“‪Storytelling is a trinitarian act that unites writer, text and reader in a collage of understanding. Though distinguishable and unequal, the three participants are inseparable and interdependent”

Phyllis Trible, Texts of Terror

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Do Not Mess With The Dress – a short story

Write about a time you were in trouble with your parents, a school principal or teacher, or the law, but write it from the point of view of the person in authority.*

This is meant to be a quality establishment, for the cream of society. The best, the richest, the most fashionable – people of taste, discernment, and judgement.

Not any more. Now it’s a tourist attraction for the riffraff. Day trippers from The North, or, worse, kids on school trips to the ‘Big City’ – let out of their classrooms for “enriching activities” or some such nonsense.

I should be able to take pride in my work. I help the most glamorous of brides to find the perfect gown for the most important day of their lives, evoking jealousy in the hearts of all who behold them. Only the elite can afford these dresses, so, in my view, only the elite should be allowed to look at them.

Instead, I have to put up with a bunch of silly kids cooing over my dresses, dresses they (or their parents) coulee never in a million years afford, pawing at them with their sticky hands. Disgusting.

So I decided to scare a few today. They were taking photos – the cheek of it! So I told them I would be calling the police – after all, for all I knew they were trying to steal our designs (and who wouldn’t want to steal them?!)

Well, they looked suitably chastised, and I suppose they didn’t really mean any harm, so, begrudgingly, I let them go.

 

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When I was 14 I thought I was going to be arrested for taking a photo of a wedding dress in a famous London department store. This is from the store assistant’s perspective. This was written as part of my lent creative writing challenge.

 

*This writing prompt is from 642 Tiny Things to Write About (2014) by the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto

Taking up, not giving up…

Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Lenten season, as we wait and prepare for Easter. Traditionally, it is a season of repentence, when Christians give up luxuries and distractions to focus on God and recommit their lives to him.

I love this season, and I have given things up in the past (one year I gave up tea and chocolate – my friends will tell you, it was not pretty). I haven’t observed lent for a couple of years (mainly as I’ve been on a diet for the last three), but this year I felt I wanted to mark it somehow. But how?

Then a friend gave me the book “642 tiny things to write about” and it gave me idea.

You see, one of my life goals is to be a published writer, and if you read this blog regularly you may remember that one of my five year goals is to complete the first draft of a novel. You may also remember that this has been on the back burner while I’m studying for my masters.

I have to do a lot of writing for my masters, and I love it, but it is all so serious! I miss creative writing.

I may not have time right now to focus on novel drafting, but I realised last week at a “meet the author” event that I should still be practising imaginative writing.

So for lent, I plan to pick at random one of the 642 tiny things and write. Each one should only take up one page of an A5 notebook. I just finished today’s, and it was so much fun!

If it goes well, I will stick with it after lent. If any of them are any good, I may even type them up and post them on here. 🙂

 

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Confession: I am a selfish blogger

Last week one of my favourite bloggers, Jon Acuff, wrote about a lesson it took him 13 years to learn about blogging. It was this:

‘Your platform isn’t for you. It’s not yours. Your name might be on it. It might be your smiling headshot that folks see each day on your blog or your twitter profile, but the platform is not for you. It’s for other people. Readers, friends, family members, this is why we blog. Not to get, but to give.’

So this is why I feel I must apologise, dear Reader. I am a selfish blogger, and a selfish writer. I don’t think about who might be reading what I write. In fact, I generally assume no one is reading. It takes me by surprise when someone likes or comments on a post, or tells me they like something I wrote. I do enjoy getting new followers, but it also always makes me feel slightly guilty that I don’t post more often.

Again, I apologise, dear Reader. At the start of the summer I promised I would post more often, once I’d recovered from essay writing exertions. But the posts never quite materialised. I found that I needed more time than I thought to rest after the busy academic year, and never quite found the headspace for lots of writing.

But here’s the thing. I have to disagree with Jon Acuff (sorry! I think you’re awesome, but sorry). For some people, writing a blog is about their platform, their self-promotion, their face on other people’s computer screens or tablets.

But that’s never been my focus, that’s never been why I write. I’m not really bothered by how many followers, or page views I have. Don’t get me wrong (or stop reading!) I love that you, dear Reader, have found your way to my little corner of the internet, I’d love for you to stick around, and I hope that my words bless and inspire you.

But, if I’m honest, and I always try to be, I’m writing for me. I always have done. I think I’ve said before that writing is one of the main ways I process the world. It helps me to understand what I am living. I also love wordcraft – playing around with words and phrases, constructing sentences. My blog is where I practice writing, learning and honing my craft. Please don’t be offended, I love that you are here, but this is for me.

So for this reason, I am not going to make any more promises. I am not going to try to boost my follower count by posting more frequently, regularly, or consistently. I’m not going to let myself feel guilty if I don’t post anything for a few weeks. I’m not going to try to pre-write posts any more, so I can post on schedule even when I don’t feel like writing (because, to be honest, those posts never seem to connect with you, dear Reader, as well as the spur of the moment ones anyway). I’m not going to force myself to try to write when I don’t feel like it, because at the moment, that is not what I need from myself.

I love writing, and I want to enjoy it. I never want this blog to feel like it’s a chore, because my writing will suffer, and I know you will notice, dear Reader.

So please, stick around and bear with me, if you enjoy what I write. Because I know that when I am writing from the heart it does resonate with people. And thank-you, dear Reader, for sticking with me thus far. Writing my blog blesses me, and I hope reading it might bless you too.