Friday, September 20, 2013

Writing Exercise: Rory's Story Cubes II

In September we used Rory's Story Cubes for our writing prompt like a previous exercise. This is the role we had to use, incorporating as many of the images on the dice as we could.

Re-enacted roll

We debated what die #1 was supposed to represent. No one spoke their theory out loud, preserving interpretation for the writing. Here is what I wrote, with underlines where I used the dice images.
It all began with a question--what did that strange symbol mean? Most people never asked the question for the simple reason that they never noticed the symbol before. If it had been in an obvious spot, like the wing of a plane, it would have an obvious meaning--a corporate logo or a hazard warning. No, this symbol was etched into a sidewalk. People walked right over it, never giving it a second glance.

I noticed it because I always look down when my walking stick strikes something unusual. I hunkered down to get a closer look. Passers-by probably thought I was looking at a bug or just making a pest of myself. No matter, with the image clearly in my head, I was ready to do some research.

At the library I looked for books on symbols and their meanings. This method would be too slow, searching in a haphazard way for just the right picture. Better to ask people than to leaf through pages. But who? Perhaps an artist would have the wider knowledge I needed.

I went to the theater district where the galleries were. Artists were often copying masterpieces on display. Maybe there would be a chatty one. The first gallery was quiet enough inside, with shuffling pockets of people moving through the collection. Around a corner I came upon a poor young man trying his best to recreate a Dali painting. He was mostly done except for the unusually large sheep springing from the man's head. I approached cautiously. I was in luck! The artist was packing up his supplies. He'd be more approachable without being lost in his work. I introduced myself, said something flattering about his work, and waited for his reply. He grunted appreciatively. I asked about the symbolism of the piece. He said he didn't know about that, he was just copying for practice. Had he studied painting at school? "No" was the entire answer. Did he have a mentor?...hmm, that's the wrong word, but master doesn't seem right either. While I pondered my next inquiry, he finished packing and moved along. Opportunity shuffled away along with the other visitors to the gallery.

What was my next move? My eyes darted around hopefully for another expert,

Then time ran out on me! Getting an arrow (from the dice) just didn't happen, though at a stretch I might argue "dart" being close enough. And "strange symbol" for die #1 might get a pass. Some people thought it might be a tape cassette or a letter. Perhaps a credit card. I'm not sure what it was supposed to be in my story.

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