by Nancy Casey
Begin by setting up your page. Draw a line at the top of the page where your title will go. Then write all the letters of the alphabet, A-Z, down the left-hand side of the page.
Next to each letter, write a word that begins with that letter. Any word. You can choose from your surroundings or memory. You can write down whatever pops into your mind. Often it’s easier or skip around the alphabet rather than plod from A-Z.
When your word list is complete, look it over and pick a word to begin with. Whatever that word is, compare it to something else. Anything else. You can be silly or serious, or both.
One way to make comparisons is to think about the qualities of things. Qualities are ideas you can use to describe something—size, weight, reliability, difficulty, color, sweetness, speed… Comparisons based on qualities might use words like bigger, easier, more nutritious, slower, taller, rounder, harder to remember…
You can also put together a comparison by choosing one of the words from your list and naming something else—anything!—that you will compare it to. In that case, you hold the two words in your mind and think about the qualities that they do and don’t share.
No matter what two things you think of, there is always a way to compare them. This is obviously true if you are comparing two different pairs of shoes, and equally true if you are comparing a rattlesnake to a thunderstorm.
When you have written a comparison using each of your 26 words, look back over your work. If you like, add some illustration or decoration while you think about it.
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 just one 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.