Writing from my personal experience - Creative Writing

English Language > Creative Writing > Writing from my personal experience

Getting ideas

Try one of the following exercises to get some ideas for writing about yourself. Make a mind map for each one (a spider diagram where you can make further links to the original ideas):

  • What five things would you save if your house was on fire? Why those things? What do they say about you and why are they special to you? Now imagine you can only save one of them – which one do you choose and why?
  • What’s your earliest memory? Focus on the details – what can you see? What can you hear? How do you feel? How old were you – why did this memory stick around? What do you think it says about you?
  • If you were a song, which song would you be and why? Do the lyrics have special meaning for you or does the song remind you of a specific time or person? Or does the music reflect your personality - is it fun and upbeat, quiet and meaningful or dark and moody?
  • If your friends had to list ten words to summarise you, what would they be? Why does each word represent you? Do you agree with all of them? It may be that other people see you differently to how you see yourself – that’s something important to bring out in writing from personal experience.

Any of these things might be useful to add detail and colour to your particular task: adding rich details like these can help to make a more interesting piece of writing, and keep you away from simply listing facts.

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