"A Whack on the Side of the Head" by Roger von Oech is one of those. It is a book about creativity and every time I open it, I find a new challenge. It's not the best book I've ever seen on this subject, but it's close. It challenges the logical thinker in us to be less logical. To look at things from a new perspective. To challenge ourselves to be more creative.
For instance, answer the following question:
What do John the Baptist and Winnie the Pooh all have in common?
Answer: They both have the same middle name.
Okay, I can hear the groans now. I didn't say it was good, but it got you thinking. What other persons or characters can you come up with that have "the" as their middle name?
Let's try another one:
What's the next item in the following sequence:
Answer - turkeys (or other Thanksgiving symbol) as these are all things dealing with American holidays - Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Halloween.
Yes, creativity can also follow a linear line. The above is a puzzle in sequential logic, but at the same time, think about each symbol I wrote down. How many more symbols can you find for each of these, or for other holidays? For Valentine's Day, I could have used chocolate, or candy, or cards, or the color red, or any of several other things. Try this - take each of those holidays above and assign a color or colors to it. What would your list look like then? Possibly: Red, green, red/white/blue (for several holidays), black and orange... etc. Or assign an animate object (animal, person, etc.) to the day.
The point is, you need to stretch yourself to be creative. Writing is a creative exercise. If a writer gets bogged down while writing, the story will show it. The middle will slow down and sag. When you find yourself getting in a rut, find a new way - a creative way - of looking at the issues. Play with it. Have fun with it. Turn it upside down and look at it from a new angle.
Or pretend you're hanging from the ceiling fan. :)
Progress last night - 30 pages edited
Birthdays: Sonia Levitin, Paula Danziger, Elsa Morante
Tips and Teasers: Using the following items – check, firehouse, burp – finish the following: Once, I lost my hat…
Thought for the day: “One of the things that’s really wonderful about creating a character is that you have a place to say things that you yourself could never say without being totally offensive to other people. You have a place to be opinionated.” – Linda Hogan