Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Writing Prompt - Modeling Shel Silverstein

For the last two weeks I did a writing prompt based on a recommendation from the book So, You Want to Be A Writer by Vicki Hambleton and Cathleen Greenwood (the review is on its way!).  The suggestion/prompt was to "Use an Author as a Model" (p.67). It's pretty simple: "Try looking at the first few paragraphs of a favorite book. Choose three sentences and copy them, substituting new names and mostly new verbs, nouns, adjectives, and adverbs. Keep the basic sentence structure the same."

 So far I used J.K. Rowling (via Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone) and  JRR Tolkien (via The Hobbit) as my models. This week I am going to dig back further into my experience as a reader and use Shel Silverstein as my model via one of my favorite books of all time The Giving Tree. Here are the first three sentences:
Once, there was a tree…
And she loved a little boy.
And every day the boy would come
And he would gather her leaves
And make them into crowns and play king of the forest.
He would climb up her trunk
And swing from her branches
And eat apples
And they would play hide-and-go-seek.
This is going to be something completely new and different from previous weeks, but I'm going to go for it. (Little voice in my head is screaming: WHY DID YOU PICK THIS BOOK, NICOLE?!?!). OK, here it goes. Here is my new version, with the changes in italics: 
Once, there was a sea
And she loved the giant moon.
And every night the moon would come
And he would give her tides
And make them into waves and watch her waters rock.
He would reflect upon her surface
And light up her horizon
And sit still
And they would play until the sun came up.
I love the moon and the sea. I think I like what happened here. Shel Silverstein is awesome.

What do you think? Make up your own and add it in the comments below!

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