Friday, September 28th, 2012

Writing Prompt – Diamante Poems

Maryland Blue CrabA diamante poem is formulaic in nature, often discusses two opposite ideas, and when finished, takes the shape of a diamond.

For teachers, it’s a wonderful method to help students learn about nouns, verbs and adjectives.

For writers, it’s a great exercise to warm up the brain and get you stretching your vocabulary: you’ll want to choose nouns, verbs and adjectives beyond the usual.

Here’s the formula for each line:

  1. A simple noun
  2. two adjectives which agree with, or describe, the noun in line 1
  3. three verbs as modifiers which also agree with the noun in line 1
  4. four nouns: two should be related in some way to the noun in line line 1, and two should be related to the noun in Line 7.
  5. three verbs as modifiers of the the noun on line 7
  6. two adjectives which agree with, or describe, the noun in line 7
  7. one simple noun which is the opposite of the noun in line 1.

Here’s my first stab at it:

calcified, clawed
scuttling, scavenging
cooperative, omnivorous — carnivorous, singular
blooming, pulsating, stinging
gelatinous, tentacled

Here’s Your Prompt:

Your turn!

Images available from Wikipedia, Creative Commons License:

Friday, August 10th, 2012

Writers Prompt – Worms and Coffee

Worms and Coffee - North Carolina - Photo by Kelly A. Harmon - 10 August 2012Today I was driving through eastern North Carolina and I came across this little gas-and-go store at a bridge intersection.

(The bridge takes you over to the coast, where apparently, a lot of fisherman go. At this little crossroads, they can get worms [for bait] and coffee [for some energy] on their way.)

I LOVE the name of this store. It’s a clever bit of naming that (unless you’re a local fisherman) makes you think twice. I adore the incongruity.


Here’s Your Prompt

  1. Write a story about “worms and coffee.” Caveat: it can’t be about fishing.
  2. If you don’t like the idea of worms and coffee, open up the dictionary to a random page, close your eyes and drop your finger down on a word. Do this twice or more, until you come up with two different nouns. You can connect them with “and” or “or.”
  3. Choose any of these random word pairs that I generated using a random noun generator found on the internet:
    1. okra and alligators
    2. pen and Zinc
    3. mountain and soda
    4. caterpillar or desert
    5. storms or fairies

  4. Find your own word pairs using the Paper Tiger Random Noun Generator.