How to Run Your Writers’ Group: Meeting 3: Writing Scenes
1. Choose a scene
Choose a scene that comes to mind. It might be the mountains, the New York skyline, Sydney Harbour, a garden, a beach or a busy shopping centre. Describe this scene in your notebook using all your senses. Give members 5 minutes to complete this task.
2. Examples of imagery
Elicit examples of imagery from the following list by reading these sentences out loud:
- The smell of burnt toast filled the room. (smell/olfactory)
- Stars littered the sky like scattered jewels. (sight/visual)
- Leaf blowers hummed in the distance. (hearing/auditory)
- Lime danced on my tongue. (taste/gustatory)
- The cat’s fur was like silk cushions. (feeling/tactile)
3. Poetic devices
Elicit poetic devices from the following list:
- The puddle was like set jelly. (simile)
- The trees grumbled. (personification)
- The jubes were hard stones in my mouth. (metaphor)
- The large man stood next to the tiny puppy. (juxtaposition)
- The lemonade fizzed and popped. (onomatopoeia)
4. Analyse a scene
Provide members with a copy of this scene and get them to underline examples of imagery and poetic devices. Give them ten minutes and ask for volunteers to contribute ideas.
The owl swooped in a low arc, intent on the motorised rabbit whizzing along the grass. Her markings were like seashells: speckled and variegated and the colour of tiramisu. As the bird lifted her wings, I was struck by her beauty and the bond she shared with her smitten handler. Her eyes were perfect marbles, and her creamy face was rimmed with a line of coffee brown. Spectators cheered and clapped; their medieval garb adding to the charged atmosphere. Some wore long hooded capes of purple and peach while others sported plastic swords and crowns with glittering diamantes.
Excerpt from Triple Zero: Medieval Madness by Sophie Chenoweth
5. Rewrite your scene
Rewrite your scene using imagery and poetic devices. Get members to read scenes out loud and provide feedback.