Writing Prompt: Imaginary Worlds

By Amy Robinson and Thaisa Frank

Thaisa Frank, award-winning author of the critically acclaimed novel Heidegger’s Glasses, will be teaching at our upcoming Ojai retreat. This week, she’s agreed to share a writing prompt with all of you! But before we get to her prompt, don’t forget to check out our February classes. Call 323-333-2954 to sign up before they’re full!

One Day Classes Coming Up Soon:

Multi Week Classes:

Writing Retreats:

  • Writing Pad Ojai Retreat (Mar. 25 – 27 at a gorgeous ecosanctuary with award-winning author Thaisa Frank, NPR’s Alex Cohen, and Writing Pad’s Marilyn Friedman)

Thaisa’s Writing Prompt:
To write is not just to tell a story, but also to create a world–a context in which your characters live their lives in spite of the plot and not because of it. These worlds can be fantastic (like the world of The Castle, by Kafka), ordinary (the world of Remains of the Day, by Ishiguro) or be a blurred landscape in between (Remainder by Tom McCarthy). All good writers allow his or her readers to travel in a different country. A well developed world includes qualities of weather and sky, cityscapes, landscapes, and sensate objects, ranging from furniture to fruit to velvet.

Think about a story that you are trying to write. Make a list of five things that are distinct about your character’s world. Where does he or she live? What does he or she eat and wear? What is the weather like and how do people speak? If you do not have a fictional world to write about, write about your current neighborhood or the place that you grew up and list five things that are distinct about that world. Write for 10 minutes, including at least 2 of the items from your list, then post the results in the comments of this blog!

Comment on this blog. Write for 10 minutes about the world you or your character inhabits. Post your 10 minute write in the comments, and you could win a free class!