2021 Writing Exercise Series #43: Rhymebank Rounds 2

The 2021 Writing Series is a series of daily writing exercises for both prose writers and poets to keep their creative mind stretched and ready to go—fresh for your other writing endeavors. The writing prompts take the impetus—that initial crystal of creation—out of your hands (for the most part) and changes your writing creation into creative problem solving. Instead of being preoccupied with the question "What do I write" you are instead pondering "How do I make this work?" And in the process you are producing new writing.

This is not a standard writing session. This is pure production—to keep your brain thinking about using language to solve simple or complex problems. The worst thing you can do is sit there inactive. It's like taking a 5 minute breather in the middle of a spin class—the point is to push, to produce something, however imperfect. If you don't overthink it, you will be able to complete all of the exercises in under 30 minutes. This may be pushing 40 unless you're really writing fast, but writing fast is the goal.

Rhymebank Rounds 2
Rhymbank Rounds are a new type of exercise. Kind of like the Sentence Calisthenics, but there will be more focus on fragments instead of full sentences, and you'll complete a piece, with the main focus of the exercises being on Like Sounds. Save your sentences with your Sentence Calisthenics raw writing for later harvesting. The timer settings you'll be using today are (in minutes) 3, 3, 10, 5, 5, 7. 

Before you start each timer reread the set's guidelines at least 3-5 times so you are sure what you're doing and don't have to waste time checking.

SET 1: Take three (3) minutes and jot down/type all rhymes and slant rhymes (include phrases for multi-syllabic words/feminine rhymes) you can think of just off the top of your head for the word: Bat. If you have trouble getting more than ten or so remember to rhyme with Tap and back. You want to have close to thirty (30) words even if they're only kind of rhyming.
SET 2: Now take another three (3) minutes and brainstorm rhymes for New. Be sure you get at least fifteen (15), but aim for thirty (30) again.
SET 3: Fragment time! Take ten (10) minutes and write down six (6) sentence fragments which use two words from one of your lists and at least one from the other list (so something like "The flat-packed pews hold few prayers" would work).
SET 4: Fragment time 2! Take five (5) minutes and write at least six (6) 5-word partial sentences that use at least two (2) words from only one of your lists. Don't worry about context or what might be being said, just make sure you can make some logic of the phrasing.
SET 5: Short fragment time! Write five (5) three-word partial sentences which use two (2) words from one of your rhymebank back to back. No dawdling, but try to switch it up and use words you hadn't yet if you can. An example would be "that bat flew" or "a bad vat".
SET 6: Fragment time! Take seven (7) minutes and write ten (10) 5-7 word fragments that include a number and two words from either of your lists (you can do one from each for this one).
Poem or story time!
  1. Rhymed Poem: Write a poem that is 15 lines in five tercet (3-lined stanzas) with the rhyme scheme ABA CBC ACA ACA BBB . Try to use fragments from the previous exercises and even the rhymebank itself to fill out your poem with as many 'like' sounds as you can within the lines. Use at least five of your fragments, if not more like eight to ten of them. Start your poem by picking your fragments and determining your rhymes. Don't write to the end words every time, like swinging a golf club or bat, follow through that line break with what's called enjambment and it will be more smooth/organic.
  2. Free form narrative: Pick your ten favorite fragments and find a way to fit those pieces together. What do I mean by fit them together? I mean that you're required to use ten of the fragments you'd written in a coherent piece by adding connective tissue and exposition/whatever needs to get you narratively from one line to the next. Whether you write this as a story or a poem is up to you. Think of it like a 100 piece puzzle which is missing 85 pieces, but you still want to make a picture from it. Take what you have, and create the rest by filling in the missing places.
  3. Title Mania: Write a piece that uses your favorite fragment from #4 or #5 as your title.
  4. Randomize: Pick your favorite ten fragments, and six words from the rhymebanks, either or both. Type Random Number Generator into google and randomize 3 numbers from 1-10. The corresponding lines must be used in your piece. Next, pick 6 strong words from either of your rhymebanks. Randomize 2 words from that list of 6 using 1-6, you must use both of those words in your title, no matter how strange it seems at first. Now make it work.

If you'd like some background noise today (instead of music) let's go with this "neon dreams." lofi mix.