Wednesday was my first creative writing class. I was already nervous, feeling intimidated and unsure. The rain and the stupid people 'driving' in it, did not help my nerves at all. I got turned around, righted, and turned around again before I found the house. I sat in the car, calmed myself and walked up to the door.
Most of us arrived at the same time. Pamela Des Barres was very warm, welcoming us into her home. We sat, chatting, waiting for other (10 were due, only 8 showed). Each of us introduced ourselves to the group, then we each read a paragraph, or more, written by someone we admire (I chose 2 paragraphs from a Dorothy Parker short story). The choices were interesting - Joan Didion to Jack Kerouac to a book currently on the New York Times best seller list. It was about this time my anxiety waned, a bit. Well, until she said 'write...' EEK!
We had to write about a friend in great detail. She gave us ten minutes, telling us to not stop writing, don't think, keep moving the pen. Somehow, I did. Then we each read what we wrote. I wrote about her in detail, but forgot to include her physical description. Some of us wrote in a list format, others wrote a descriptive story. It was fascinating to hear all the amazing details the others had written - vivid descriptions, clever phrases. It was easy to write about someone you know. Then, she gave us the second writing assignment.
"She looked out the window and what she saw blew her mind." Everyone started writing immediately. I sat there. Pen poised above the paper. Thinking. Which is exactly what we are NOT supposed to do. So, I just started writing. :::shoulder shrug::: I scribbled, scribbled, scribbled. Then started thinking again. Ai yi yi! I couldn't wait for the ten minutes to be up. Of course, Pamela asked me to read first. Sidebar: one of the rules is to not qualify before you read. I didn't, sorta. I said I didn't need to qualify it because you'd do it afterwards. So, I read. She said it started off great; and could tell when I started thinking. It's only the first class. One gal was so descriptive about leaving her house as the neighborhood burned. She captured all the random thoughts that go through one's head - what do I grab, where it this, where is that, etc. I really enjoyed it. She wrote a lot in ten minutes...
We ended class with a homework assignment. I've been thinking about it, which I probably should not be doing as our goal is to just write, let the words come. I've rolled it around in my mind...and I hope the words come to me when I sit down to write.
My goal is to write a short story by the beginning of summer...