Earlier today I had my first seminar for my Creative Writing course. The professor requested that us students engage in a creative writing exercise in which we visualize ourselves as a character who is stranded on a desolate beach, and how we came to be present on such beach.
At first I found the exercise to seem rather pointless, likely because I initially struggled with the task at hand. However, after committing myself and my attention to the exercise and fully immersing myself in it, I surprised myself with the material I was able to compose in a time frame of ten minutes.
What I wrote for the exercise is as follows:
“I awake to the sensation of cool, gritty water submerging my feet, and immediately groan. Each and every morning is a reminder of the hell in which I live. I sit up, pull my sand-covered feet towards my chest, and think. I think about how I would give anything to be anywhere but here, on this desolate beach. I think about my farm back home, clenching my teeth to prevent a sob from escaping my lips. Had I known what would have come from my choosing to rebel against my father, I would have kept my mouth shut. A blood-red sun begins to creep up into the sky, and as beautiful as it is, I curse it because it is the same sun that awakes my family back home. I rise to my feet, stretch, and amble over to the fragments of my possessions that litter the shore of this beach. I rummage for whatever food remains from my sodden backpack, settling for a soggy granola bar. I am starving and I am thirsty. I imagine my family waking up to check the animals and returning to the house to have breakfast. My stomach roars at the thought of my mother’s pancakes. I am yanked from my thoughts when I hear a whirring noise from above. I crane my neck backwards and spot an airplane flying above me, not showing any indication of slowing down to relieve me from my punishment. No, I have not yet been here long enough. I expect I will remain here for at least several more months. The salt from the ocean water burns my eyes and nose as the tide begins to swell, and I welcome it. I welcome it because it gives me an opportunity to let my eyes bleed, to cry, without having to experience a pang of sadness when I fathom my life back home. I visualize myself apologizing to my father, for saying sorry for my rebellion, and in doing so I allow actual tears to fall from my eyes. As the sun continues to rise in the sky, I think, I wait, and I lay back down in the sand, welcoming the incoming tide to wash my woes away.”
Although my story fails to have a particularly distinguishable plot or structure, I was pleased with what I was able to develop in a mere ten minutes without much plot of guidance to prompt me. I strongly encourage any and all persons to attempt to practice some creative writing, and it is probable that you will surprise yourself with what you compose.