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Thursday Pick & Mix (#11)

Hello, Dear Readers! Welcome back to An Eddying Flight and to Thursday Pick & Mix. I hope you're all doing well - nay, brilliantly - this week, and ready to seek new writing joy.

But if not? If the state of our world right now makes you feel trapped, furious, frustrated, hopeless or just empty? If your own life is full of unanswerable questions, packed diaries, fears about the future or personal grief? If it seems too much to ask for any kind of joy amidst the daily challenges you and your friends, family and loved ones are facing? Please, know that there should, there must, still be room for creativity and joy: not as a responsibility but as a right. You are human, and humanity (as Terry Pratchett tells us) is where the falling angel meets the leaping ape. We are made of stories, and we are made of stars. We can't allow ourselves to forget that. When we're at our lowest - individually and as a species - is when we most desperately need and deserve the pure light that creavity can bring to us. So please take this time for yourself, just ten minutes. Write something. Write something strange, funny, incomprehensible, profound or weird. Just write. Write anything and experience joy.

A quick rundown of the 'rules' (with the proviso that you feel free to break them if you really want to):

  • Pick a prompt, any prompt: You can react to one of these, or all of them - that's why it's called Pick & Mix.

  • Write for ten minutes. But please don't make this a source of stress. If you're an anxious clock-checker like me then set a timer and put the timer out of sight (but in earshot).

  • Don't edit while you're writing. Yes, it takes some getting used to, but do you really want to waste this small, indulgent moment of creative joy on worrying about semi-colons or pluperfects? Nope. If writing longhand, put your palm or a piece of paper over the lines as you scribble them. If writing onscreen, set the font to the same colour as the page so that it's invisible. Don't stop. Just write. Just write.

  • Once your ten minutes are up, give yourself the gift of walking away. Don't force yourself to read what you've written. Don't immediately start assessing it for value or mistakes or trying to 'fix' it. Put it aside, leave it as long as you can - long enough that you might remember it later on with a little blink of surprise and pleasure. The point of Pick & Mix is not to be 'productive' it's to experience joy. If no one ever reads your ten minute scribbles, it doesn't matter one tiny single bit.

Got it? Great! Onto the prompts:




"Forgetfulness in people might wound, their ingratitude corrode, but this voice, pouring endlessly, year in, year out, would take whatever it might be; this vow; this van; this life; this procession, would wrap them all about and carry them on, as in the rough stream of a glacier the ice holds a splinter of bone, a blue petal, some oak trees, and rolls them on."

Write like the wind, Dear Readers! I wish you joy.

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