I had so much fun yesterday exploring how creativity functions in our lives and in our writing. And we officially began our ANTHOLOGY PROJECT! Here is the link to the project overview in case you need it online...
Today, we are going to be meeting in the library to do an online scavenger hunt. And, since it is now today, we are here, meeting in the library. Right now. If you look up from your computers, you'll see me smiling that goofy, silly, overly happy Mr. Reynolds smile.
Ah! I see you looking up at me! Yup, hello! I am right here, looking back at you. Yes! Alright, now that we've looked at one another, shall we begin?
What's that? You really wish you had a huge loaf of garlic bread to eat right now, before we begin our scavenger hunt? I hear you. I empathize with you. I wish that very same thing, in fact. (And imagine if, next to that loaf of garlic bread, we had a massive glass of orange juice, and next to that glass of orange juice, we had a big stack of the latest middle grade novels published, and next to that stack of novels we had--okay, let's not get carried away.)
So, for TODAY, it is First Line Scavenger Hunt time!
As we think about the twenty ideas we created yesterday for our possible anthology pieces, let's see how other authors translate ideas into action. In other words, how do authors begin their pieces--whether poetry, essays, or short stories? Today, we'll explore a fabulous website called TEEN INK and read a variety of stories, essays, and poetry. Or, you can explore another very cool website called Stone Soup to read short fiction pieces. (Or, you can use both of these websites to find some very powerful lines.)
If you go with Teen Ink, at the top of the page, you'll see drop down menus to choose your genre (type of writing) and subject, such as Nonfiction--Love, or Poetry--Bullying, or Fiction--Sci-Fi, etc. Explore through the various genres and subjects, and find pieces that excite you.
As you read, keep a Word document (or a Google Doc) open in another window on your computer. Each time that you find a first line that absolutely floors you, or knocks your socks off, or makes your eyebrows climb to the ceiling (come back down, Eyebrows! We need you!) write that first line down on your document, then include the author and title.
Before we finish our class session today, aim for seven lines that move, shock, inspire, or touch you in some way. What we are looking for here is: possibility, modeling, motivation, and power. By finding lines that excite and wow us, we will be better able to craft our own as we begin work on the anthology.
Before leaving the library, e-mail me your document (or if it's a Google doc, share it with me) at: LReynolds@psharvard.org. OR, if e-mailing or sharing terrifies you like a terribly terrifying nightmare, then copy and paste your lines and publish them right in the "Comments" section below on this post.
In other words: be sure to share your lines with me in some way so that I can be moved and excited and wowed and so that my eyebrows can also climb to the--get back here Eyebrows!
Alright? Let's do it!