Some Assembly Required

by Nancy Casey

When you put something together, you end up with a new thing, one that wasn’t there before the putting-together occurred. Take a moment to think about all the different ways that putting-together can happen.

People put together everything from bicycles to dishwashers by following (or not following!) the directions.

You can put ideas together in your mind and make new ones.

You can put together things like meals and videos.

What happens when you put certain people or pets together? What does a person put together to make a life?

Putting-together always starts with pieces and parts. It finishes with some kind of result.

Set your mind loose with putting-together thoughts while you put together your writing situation. If you haven’t already, get out your stuff. Arrange the things in front of you in a way that looks pleasing to you. Take a breath or two. Wiggle your feet, hips and shoulders.

Draw a line at the top of the page where your title will go. Set aside some space for illustration if you like. Start drawing or doodling in it if it helps get your mind together.

As soon as an idea comes to you, start writing it down.

You could start with some pieces and parts and explain what can be put together from them.

Or you could decide to start with the results and explain what pieces and parts must be put together to achieve them.

Another possibility is to consider a typical day and write about all the various types of putting-together it contains.

When you get to the bottom of the page, look back over your work. Pause to add illustration or decoration if you like.

Do your ideas form any kind of a pattern? Do they seem to be about a bigger idea that you hadn’t really planned on writing about? If they do, maybe you can use that insight to think up a title. If they don’t, make up some kind of a title anyway and write it at the top of the page.

Put your initials or a signature on the page, too. And write the date on it. 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.

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