One thing that I felt was important when I moved this blog to a total focus on creativity was sharing my creative stuff. I believe that it’s important for us to see not only creative people who are better than we are, but also those still growing themselves. (You thought I was going somewhere else with that, didn’t you?) So I pledged that I would share my writing, photography, watercolor painting, whatever I was working on.
Here’s something you need to know about me: I’m one of those “Well, I’ll do that as soon as…” whatever people. Where the “whatever” is somewhere farther down the road. As the year toddled on it became “Next week”, “Next month”, and then “Well, the year is almost over, so we’ll just start in the new year”. Right, just like the diet will start on Monday.
I’m trying to call myself out on this behavior. So we begin today, with some writing.
I have been on a long-term substitute teaching assignment at a local high school. It is challenging, and exciting, and exhausting. I’m blessed with some incredible professionals around me, as well as some truly wonderful students. In the last couple of weeks, I handed them a new challenge. My ninth graders over-write. Lots of filler and repetition and off-topic stuff. So I gave them a flash fiction assignment. In fact, a MICRO-fiction assignment.
If you’re not familiar with flash fiction it is a form of short storytelling, usually defined as 1,000 words or fewer. Micro-fiction is really short flash fiction. And I wanted them to work in a style sometimes called “Hint Fiction”. In Hint Fiction, the goal is to tell the story without telling ALL the story. You hint at things. This turned out to be the hardest part for my students.
So the assignment was “25 words or fewer, a minimum of two sentences, in Hint Fiction style.”
They struggled with it for a while, then got a handle on it.
When they finished, I thought, “OK, smart guy, can YOU do it?”
So here’s my submission, and you get to grade it. Out of 50, what would you give me?
“We taught you to take responsibility for your actions.” Her eyes filled with tears. “We’ll visit you as often as we can.”22 words
Tell me what’s happening in the story, then leave me a grade in the comments below. Do you challenge yourself to create outside your normal routine? What do you do?