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Archive for May 26th, 2011

Word Association Writing Exercise

writing coachMany of my students ask me about writing prompts and writing exercises.  I love writing prompts for those times when you feel a bit stuck.  Last night in my class we talked about writing with your non-dominant hand and seeing what comes out of you.  Have  you tried that?  I have also heard that this exercise gets you in touch with your inner child as well!  One exercise that I do on a fairly consistent basis is one that I call word association.  This is something that you can do anywhere and at any time.  Just take out your notebook or journal and begin writing words.  It is interesting to see what words just magically pop up in your head. These may be words that you associate with your childhood or how you are in the present.   Here is an example of a word assocation exercise that I did in the past:

  • promise, bagel, read, snuggle, hike, explore, blue, meditate, relax, angel, care, adore, laugh, tomatoes, farmers markets, Peet’s, share, father, regret, sadness, loss, dining, heartbeat, death, beautiful, dream, struggle, tears, reunion, massage, champagne, cafe, imagine, completion, one, toes, skin, Irish Coffee, oysters, joy, celebrate, cheese, taste, create, visualize, begin, fresh, new, packers, hedgehog, silly

As you can see from my exercise that you can just write whatever word pops into your subconsciousness!  This is a fun exercise that really only takes minutes, but it is a good way to start your day off with writing! 

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Reading helps writing…

One of the things I always teach in my workshops is the fact that reading other memoirs helps you to see how others have shared their story.   Sometimes you may read a memoir and have it resonate with your soul other times you may read a memoir and decide that is not the way you would like to write your story.  What memoirs do you like to read?  Here is a link to Carol Brown’s article that was recently published called “30 Moving Memoirs Every Student Should Read.”  Check them out and let me know which memoirs you especially like!

http://www.onlinecollege.org/2011/05/24/30-moving-memoirs-every-student-should-read/

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"Because of Tammy I have found confidence in my writing and feel blessed to be honored in such a way. I have found my voice. I have found freedom! I recommend anyone for whatever reason to expand their life and sign up for her writing workshops or classes. You'll be amazed at how good you are and how everyone has a story worth telling. Sign up and set your voice free!"
Wendy Price, Palm Desert, CA

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Amherst Writers & Artists

Tammy L. Coia is an AWA Affiliate, certified to lead workshops in the AWA method as described in Writing Alone & With Others by Pat Schneider, Oxford University Press.


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