By Nancy Casey
Where have you been lately? Think about the places you go regularly. To work or school, perhaps, or to buy groceries or visit a friend. Maybe you like to take walks and go noplace in particular.
Pick one of those places, just one, and go over in your mind the route you take to get there. You go down one road and then another, turning left and right, crossing streets. Maybe you travel on a bike, a skateboard, or your own two feet. Maybe you ride in a car, a bus, or a taxi. It doesn’t matter how you go. Somehow or another, you get there.
What do you encounter along the way? That’s what you are going to write about today.
Get your ideas flowing by using this writing prompt: “Down the road called …[blank]…, you will find…[blank]…” Write out the sentence and fill in the blanks, telling all the things that you can see, hear, smell, touch, or taste as you travel down that road.
For instance, you might write something like, “Down the road called Hayes Street, you will find wet sidewalks, parked cars, a mustard-colored house with blue trim, squirrels, and the smell of somebody’s barbecue.” Then, imagine yourself crossing the next street or turning the corner, and write out the sentence again for the next road you go down. And the next.
Keep it up until you get to your destination. When you are finished put the date somewhere on the page and add a title. You can illustrate the page with pictures of what you encounter on your many roads. Or you could draw a map.
If you are old enough to read this, you have definitely traveled down the roads of life. Over the course of the week, you can write about those roads, too.
Certainly you have been down roads called “bad weather” and “school” and “family.” Maybe you have taken special trips down roads with names like “dandelion” or “mushroom soup” or “mosquito.” You’ve been down easy roads and hard roads, silly roads and strong roads. Some of them are roads that everybody goes down sooner or later, and some of them are roads that only you have traveled.
Throughout the week, keep returning to the prompt: : “Down the road called …[blank]…, you will find…[blank]…” and describe some of the roads you have been down. Here is an example.
No matter what road you take, a couple of things are guaranteed. You always end up somewhere. And from there you can go someplace else.
Nancy Casey is a writer and teacher who has lived in rural Latah County for many years. You can see more of her work here.
If you like the idea of writing every week, but want to do it with others in a class setting, you are welcome to attend “Writing Journeys” with Ginger Rankin on Wednesdays from 4-5 in February at the Latah Recovery Center. The class does exercises from this blog and other things as well.