2021 Writing Exercise Series #322 Micro 101 Episode 21

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.

Micro 101 Episode 21

For today's writing exercise you will write a few micro-poems or micro-fictions. These will be either poems under 20 lines or stories under 250 words.

For inspiration go read some micro or hint fiction in this Buzzfeed article, at Microfiction MondayAlbaMolecule50 Word Stories and Nanoism. Or also this Barnstorm blog post "How Microfiction Could Transform Social Media".

Check out all of the prompts and pick a couple to write. Once you've done that, focusing on one at a time, read the full prompt twice before you start writing because you're looking to keep it minimal, so have ideas. If your first draft is longer don't fret. Hone it down. And the piece will be what it is. I've started out with a goal of 100 words but hit on something and had to cull the end result from 1350 to 1200 for a contest because I loved the result. So each story will be its own beast, but we're ideally aiming for 20 lines or 100-250 words with these. And if they grow into something much larger, hey, you've got something longer!

Micro Exercise 1: Christmas 1. Write a short piece that details the things that go horribly wrong on Christmas Eve dinner. Include a specific argument about a past event, at least 2 food items being burned or inedible, and one person leaving in a huff.
Micro Exercise 2: Christmas 2. Write a very short piece in which a child is extremely disappointed over their Christmas presents, which the gift-giver was actually excited to give.
Micro Exercise 3: Christmas 3. Write a micro piece in which three neighbors swap stories about their Christmas decorating woes.
Micro Exercise 4:  Under the Ice 1Write a micro piece details animal/plant life existing beneath the ice of a lake or the Arctic/Antarctic. Make some sort of an observation as to how different that life is from your speaker/narrator's life.
Micro Exercise 5: Under the Ice 2. Write a very short piece about someone falling through the ice of a river and dying.
Micro Exercise 6: Under the Ice 3. Write a piece that is exactly 150 words which talks about a boat or ship that was crushed by spreading ice and sank. Give us a little bit about both what things were on the boat, and about the previous lives of at least two crewmembers (who may have escaped or may be down under that ice still).
Micro Exercise 7: Wolves 1. Write a short piece in which a pack of wolves create dread for a lost hiker.
Micro Exercise 8: Wolves 2. Write a very piece that uses the transformation of wolves into dogs as a metaphor. Also include the phrases "in time lapse" and "before sunrise".


If you'd like some background music to write to, try this "Cozy Christmas Beats" lofi mix.