If the forums are any indication, you people like your games. Some of the most active, lively, humorous, and well-attended forum threads I’ve seen since joining Scribophile have consisted of word games, open-ended statements (“The good/bad thing about. . .), “Who wrote that story?” contests (Congratulations, Chrissy), and stupid jokes (a personal favorite). To that end, I’m going to propose that we play a writing game I created when I was a more active member of a website created by that uber-rich, former Harvard student.
Early on, I noticed that a lot of my new Facebook “friends” were writers or people who claimed to want to write, so I decided to give them a chance. I dubbed my new brainchild “The Facebook Writing Experiment Game” or FBWEG, for short. Every so often I posted a writing prompt as my status update and anyone able to view my “wall” was invited to add their contribution as a comment in the comments section. They might write a completely original scene, create a character, express a philosophy, or share a memory. It might be fiction, non-fiction, all tell, all show, all narration, all dialogue, or some combination. The only objective was to get people writing and the only rule was to limit the entry to three sentences (a rule immediately and universally ignored by everyone involved).
So I invite you now to participate in a similar experiment here at The Scrib. I’m calling it “The Scrib Gym,” because I see it as a place for you to get a bit of a workout. And the good news is that in this gym you don’t have to worry about the guy who smells like garlic leaving his sweaty rump print on the seat of the machine.
Here’s how it works: once a month, my blog post will include a prompt and, should inspiration strike, you may use the comments section to add your contribution—story, scene, character, memory, or philosophical thought. You can shoot from the hip in the editing field or revise until your face turns blue and then cut and paste. It’s entirely up to you. This won’t be about crits, karma, or competition. Our only goals are working out with words and having fun. Think of it as an opportunity to jumpstart your muse which, if I’m not mistaken, is a misdemeanor in many states.
Since merely posting a prompt would make for an extraordinarily short blog post, I will (usually) share my own contribution on the prompt and then spend some time exploring some other, atypically brief thoughts about writing.
For our purposes, I recommend we stay somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 words, probably less. This will force us to write tight. In closing, I want you to know that I have no interest in boring you, so when interest wanes, I will swiftly and mercifully put our experiment out of its misery and instead of boring you with a game, I will immediately return to boring you with my thoughts on writing.
I say we get started.
Today’s prompt is: Hotels and Motels.
Okay, who’s first? No pushing and shoving, please. Plenty of room for everyone.