Midweek Writing Prompt: The Story of a Name (10/22/14)

In my classrooms and workshops, I strive to create safe, welcoming writing communities where individuals feel free to explore ideas, stories, and concepts without judgment. After all, we need those spaces to get started. The judgment – of editors, professors, critical friends – will come later. But in the beginning, we need that soft, friendly embrace where anything is possible and everyone loves you. Let’s go there together.

When my schedule allows, I will post writing prompts for you to play with. I encourage you to write something and to share those initial efforts in the comment section, or even your response to the prompt – tell us what happened when you sat down to write. After all, some of these prompts will lead you down a path toward publication – I’ve seen that happen often enough to be confident in that statement.

Give it a try! 🙂


Writing Prompt: The Story of a Name

This is my version of a prompt that was given at a writing conference I attended last year. Write down your name. Look at your name. Study it. Where did your name come from? What stories has your family told you about how you were named? Think about how your name has defined you over the years. Was your name ever used in a negative way through teasing or mocking? Have you heard admiring compliments? Have you been confused for someone else in your family who has the same name? How have those behaviors from others who encounter your name affect your self-esteem? Your confidence? Your sense of self? Write the story of your name – starting at any point.

See what happens. 🙂

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