Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Writing Blog Review II

Continuing the review of various writing blogs, here are two more that we thought you might find interesting:

How many times have you sat down to write, but not had a clear idea of what you wanted to write about? Just the act of writing, regardless of the topic, can be simultaneously cathartic and generative. The Prompt Writer's slogan, "Always have something to write about," can feel like an impossibility; however, as I explored the website, with its massive archive of ideas, having something to write about seemed a little easier. Currently the website has a slew of Valentines Day related writing prompts that may not be all that useful for teachers, but in general there are enough to choose from (or refashion) that inappropriate or problematic prompts don't stand in the way of this website being a useful resource for both writers and teachers of writing. For example, the Silo activity asks that we decide on a subject, an item, a location and an objective before we begin to write. While possibly too restrictive for creative writers, this activity might be a great way to get students to think about these elements of story telling in a free write exercise prior to beginning work on a personal narrative or interview essay. So what are you waiting for? Stop reading and get writing.

While the previous review focused more on teachers the Creative Writing Corner is all about writers. In addition to providing young writers with great reasons to consider getting an MFA the website also works as a forum to discuss issues that are important to writers. Blair Hurley, the websites host, recently cleared a space for readers to reflection the death of J.D. Salinger and in late January opened up what has become a lively discussion about the future of the novel. As a student herself, Hurley makes references to her own experiences, to books that she is reading, and frequently posts pictures and other writing suggestions and prompts. It's a fun site with lots to explore. The discussions are interesting and online submissions create a space for virtual peer review. I would recommend the website to any writer, but especially those whose nostalgia for The Algonquin Round Table and The Beat Generation leave them looking for similar communities in digital spaces.

1 comment:

sapheyerblu said...

Hey Ben,

I just had to stop by and say thank you. That has to be one of the nicest things I've heard someone say about my site. Though it's true that not all of the prompts on this site work for teachers and students, part of what I offer is just a spark that might help someone come up with other ideas.
Even if some of the ideas here need to be rearranged, repaired, or just readjusted---you'll always have something to write about.

Christine Senter
Owner of The Prompt Writer