I’ve been participating in Camp NaNoWriMo this month (April), which is an extension of the Mothership NaNoWriMo (in November), it’s sort of another chance in the year (there’s a third, another Camp NaNo in July) to put your heart and soul into a writing project. The only difference with Camp NaNo is that you can set your own goal and break as many rules as you like.
I set myself a goal of 20,000 words. Unfortunately the short story I planned to write doesn’t stretch that far. So instead I opted for writing shorter short stories (around 1k) with the help of a book called The Five-Minute Writer (Margret Geraghty). It has many writing exercises that can be done in roughly five minutes (duh!) which makes it a great starting point for short stories. I’ve not been sticking entirely to the brief of each exercise, but it’s been a great springboard.
One exercise wasn’t really the kind of exercise that could be turned into a story – which is why I’m blogging about it. It involved creating metaphors which, in this circumstance, are about life. An exercise that has made me realise just how cynical I can be – anything lacking in cynicism was an accident.
Here are the ten metaphors (I do realise that actually these are similes, but the book told me to write them like this) I created:
1. Life is like a brand new book, filled with potential; sometimes it goes well, other times you realise it’s a piece of crap.
2. Life is like a lamp; one minute everything is perfect and glowing, the next it’s like something has popped and you’re plunged into darkness.
3. Life is like a keyboard; some keys get used more than others and no matter how hard you try to coordinate both hands, the music still comes out terribly.
4. Life is like a doorknob; you can turn and turn it but if the door’s locked, you’re never going to get far.
5. Life is like breakfast; it’s really important to experience it regularly, but people so often give it a miss.
6. Life is like a pair of curtains; when you’re born you don’t really care if they’re open, when you’re a teenager you’d rather close them and when you’re elderly you wish you could open and close them at will, but are too frail to do so.
7. Life is like a sewing machine; in the beginning you don’t really know what you’re doing and make a lot of mistakes. When you’re older you think you know better but really you just got better at ignoring the errors.
8. Life is like a backpack; it’s meant to carry the most important things, but somehow always gets filled with useless rubbish.
9. Life is like a window; it starts out squeaky clean until one day it gets so dirty that you can’t even remember a time when it was once clean.
10. Life is like a pair of glasses; they make you see things clearly, but half the time you can’t even remember where you left them.
If anyone fancies trying out a similar metaphor/simile challenge, just let me know and I’ll give you more details on the exact exercise.