Here's how he put it:
“I want you to take one thing and describe it ten different ways. That thing can be… anything. An object. A person. A sensation. A place. An experience. But I want you to focus on it and describe it multiple ways. Ten, as noted. Each no more than a sentence of description.”
Here are my ten sentences, describing an approaching book launch:
1. A blast of excitement.
2. A coiling snake-pit of stress.
3. A mind-killing trail of minutia.
4. A warm glow of pleasure and happiness.
5. Burning eyeballs scorched by the search for typos.
6. A love affair with my beautiful book.
7. A deep soul-weariness with the project overwhelms me.
8. A smell of clean paper and fresh ink.
9. A torrent of tasks, which shatter and scatter my mind in a million directions.
10. The kind of goal that makes you forget that it's not a destination, but a step on the way.
Okay, I had a little trouble moving out of my mind (and my gut) and into all my senses. But at least the exercise did capture some of the jumble of feelings the approaching event calls up!
Here's to death by ice cream, and to Death By Ice Cream.
And I really am writing a story this week. But I'm first of all writing it for a group of students I'll be reading to on Saturday--I want to let them be the very first to hear it. So all my blog fans will have to wait!