Warm, Warmer, Hot

by Nancy Casey

What warms things up? What makes you warm? What is the difference between warm enough and too warm? What line is crossed when warm becomes hot?

Think about the answers to those questions and the ideas they lead to as you set up your page.

To set up the page, draw a line across the top where your title will go. You can also draw a box or blob that you’ll use for illustration. Or make a frame along the edges that you can decorate. Set up your page with the intent of calming and focusing your mind and turning its attention to the writing task ahead.

You could write about the things that you do, consciously or unconsciously, to prepare yourself to keep warm on a winter day: the clothes and accessories you choose, where you position yourself, what you do or refrain from doing, plans that you make.

Perhaps you have a responsibility for the warmth of people or things outside of yourself: plants, pets, a family member, a car… How do you warm them? Do you have a job or other daily activity that involves warmth somehow?

As you write, you can expand your thoughts beyond physical warmth. What has warmed your heart? What can warm a relationship that’s turned cold? What is the purpose of the warm-up part of activities like sports, music, groups and classes?

Sometimes things, people, or situations go beyond getting warm and become hot. What happens when you are physically hot? What about hot tempers or the form of hot that makes you get every answer right on a test—and fast? It can mean all kinds of different things when one person calls another one hot—what is your experience of that?

Keep your mind under the umbrella of warm and hot as you fill up the page. Don’t plan too much, simply begin writing at the top and keep putting down ideas until you get to the bottom. Perhaps you will write a string of almost-random thoughts. Maybe you will tell one story—or just a part of one.

If you add illustration to your page, you could use warm colors like red, orange and yellow and see if that warms up your ideas more.

When the page is full, look it over carefully and make small changes if you like. When a title idea floats to the surface of your mind, write it at the top of the page.

Write the date on the page too, along with a signature or your initials.

Here is an example of what someone could write.

You can share your work by posting it as a comment below. You can type it in, or take a photo of it and upload the image.


Nancy Casey has lived in Latah County for many years. You can find more of her work here. If you would like some help with your writing, contact Nancy or the Latah Recovery Center. In-person Write-for You classes have been suspended for now, but when Covid recedes, they will return.

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