In my world, research is an adventure. It ignites new connections and gives me a wealth of new possibilities. Sometimes on a Sunday afternoon I go on Google adventures, travelling the world, and breaking down the confines of time and space. We are lucky to live in a time when have access to people, places, perspectives, and arts around the world. It begins with curiosity.
Curiosity is a gift. Over the years I’ve learned that when I’m faced with a problem big or small, at home or at work, and in any creative project, curiosity is the key that opens doors to adventure and to answers. Curiosity also helps to shift my perspective, to see something familiar in a new way. This can be helpful during the start of a new project or during the revision process.
This is a simple activity that can have a profound impact. I’ve used this in schools, in writing workshops, with family and friends, and on my own. Pass around the jar, pick a question, and then answer it! It’s a great way to get to know people or yourself (and fun for around the campfire or on long car trips).
Create your own questions or use some of the ones listed here.
Begin with: A dragon, a vampire, an alien, and a secretary all worked in an office down the hall…
Find a buddy. In thirty seconds try to list as many action words as possible. Then on a separate sheet, list as many different types of places as you can in thirty seconds. Compare lists, crossing off any words that are the same. Then switch lists. Choose a couple of words from your buddy’s sheet to start a new writing project and your buddy chooses a couple of words from yours.
Stand on a kitchen chair in the middle of your house and sing the first page of your novel. (Sometimes adventure is about being ridiculous–but be safe!)
Print a fresh copy of your manuscript for a short story. Using a purple pen, try to fill all the available white space with questions.