As part of a series on journaling workshops I presented over winter, one of the activities centred around using a sentence to help start writing. Members in the group wrote down the first sentence to the beginning of a story then passed it around the group where all members continued the story with their own sentence.
Each story took unexpected twists and turns than the creator had. This is part of the magic that happens when creating, there are influences you don’t always have control over but it can be worth going with the flow and seeing where you end up.
This was true for the four sentences that were added to mine.
My first sentence was:
Fish swimming all in one direction without thought.
The sentence was inspired by the art work of fish on a canvas in the café where we met.
The photo shows where the others in my group took my story.
The story went in a completely different place to what I was going to write about. I’m not sure exactly where I was going to take the story of swimming fish, it was going to be something about conformity.
I like how the other four group members influenced the direction of the story and how it changed with each direction taking me to a completely different place. Inspired by their words and influence on the story I decided to change what they had written into a poem (shown in the photo).
This is the first draft, raw and messy, and in need of a few rounds of edits. But at least I have something to edit. By allowing myself to flow with this process I managed to write a poem without indenting to and tell a story I’d not otherwise thought of. Also by going though this process, and by going with the flow my logical mind was pushed into the background with all its should and should nots, allowing the process of creativity to unfold naturally.
Of course this process might not have worked. It’s always a risk when creating. By surrendering to the process and outside influences, I as the creator became absorbed in the journey instead of attempting to control every step as an observer. My writing benefits when I’m swimming in the journey and not sitting on the sidelines.
Thank you Carol, Lauren, Jeremy and Nikki for your sentences and influence on this poem. The final poem is in the image.
Please share below your unexpected influences on your creative projects.