Practical Prompt 6-21-2021

Last week, we encouraged you to do a pre-writing exercise of visualizing a scene before you wrote it. If you had trouble, it might mean that you don’t know your protagonist as well as you think you do. Here is an exercise you can try to help you get a better sense of the central figure to your story.

Consider the following scenario: The coach for your 6th grade PE class has just appointed the two best basketball players in the school to pick teams for a class scrimmage. What would your character think, see, hear and feel if:

  • He/She missed the shot at the last game that cost them a win.
  • She/He has a massive crush on one of the captains picking the teams.
  • He’s/She’s known more for skills with a video game controller than athleticism on the court.
  • She’s/He’s been practicing all summer and knows he’s/she’s going to own the court this season.

Jot down your ideas for each character. Then, apply the same exercise for the protagonist of your story. Consider how the character’s life experiences (or lack thereof) would affect everything he or she notices and feels in the circumstances of the scene.

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