Category Archives: General Flash Fiction

A Writing Exercise – Story Through Letter

So, I’ve been in a sort of rut the last few days. I think I’m getting over it because I’m so annoyed that I’ve been neglecting NaNoWriMo related things that I will shortly be starting my outline. In the meantime, I am writing this entry about one of my most favorite writing exercises from 3 A.M. Epiphany by Brian Kiteley. I have no idea why it’s my favorite or why I love it so much, but the first time I ever used it was amazing. Basically, what I will do is give and explanation of the exercise (in green, if you would like to try it) and then write my own (in block quotes). I could just show my old one since it was my favorite, but it doesn’t pertain to my current novel and I think I would benefit from a little free write, so to speak.

Set a timer for 5-10 minutes. Write an email (or a note, letter, or something of the sort) as one of your characters to another one of your character with a list of 5 – 8 items that one either needs or will bring. A successful exercise will include implied plot and character personality. It’s an exercise to help you understand your characters and is a fun way to brainstorm.

Here’s mine:

Nea,

Bridget ran off after Kitcha went mental last night. She’s probably alright, but we really don’t have the time to track her down. I say we cut our losses. I’m sure she will turn up and Kitcha is capable of taking care of the both of them. If we are going to get to Julian by tomorrow morning we will need a few supplies.

  • Peroxide
  • Mountain Dew
  • Baking Soda
  • Canned Peaches
  • 9mm Ammo
  • Bandages
  • New Bike Chain

I’m taking care of everything but the ammo and bike chain. It only seems fair you find those since the 9mm and bike belong to you. Just saying.

Be Back in an hour,
David

I totally remember why I love this exercise so much. It’s fun and easy and you can actually say a lot about a character in such a short bit of writing. If you choose to do this exercise, I would LOVE for you to link or post the result.

Also, anyone try Write or Die? I find it quite fun! I was really excited to hear that a desktop version may be in the works. Hopefully I can use that. If not, I may just try using the online version. Who knows! But check it out anyway, because it’s pretty neat!