7 December 2014 – Evergreen questions

I came across the phrase evergreen questions on Rachel Cole’s blog. Evergreen questions are those with ever changing, ever evolving answers.  Each time you ask them, you learn something new about something old.  Rachel Cole’s signature evergreen question is ‘What are you truly hungry for?’

Today, I offer you a forest of evergreen writing questions.  In the spirit of one tree bohemia, choose one to lounge under for a while.  Stare up at the branches, breathe in the scent of the pine needles, examine the geometry of a pine cone, and, of course, write.

  1. Why do you write?
  2. Who is your muse?
  3. Who is your audience?
  4. Which writers speak to you as if to a dear friend over tea?  What do they say?
  5. Who are the writers or artists you’d like to shadow for a day,a week, a month?  What do you think you could learn from them?
  6. Where do you write?
  7. Where are you when you write?
  8. What happens when you write?
How does this writing prompt advent calendar work?
This entry was posted in Writing, Writing Prompt Advent Calendar 2014 and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to 7 December 2014 – Evergreen questions

  1. Donna says:

    Thinking about number 7. Where are you when you write?

    Inside my head, my writing is always with me. It’s as if I am myself in an alternative Facebook place, where all of my friends are my characters across all of the stories I’ve written and those in progress. They post things on my wall sometimes and we have running dialogues. They talk amongst themselves as well. But there’s a time variable. I don’t want them to age unless it suits me but sometimes they do anyway and I have to cope. They respond to my world, anticipate holidays, react to things that happen to me and I also evolve as a result of getting to know more about these people and the places where they live.

    It’s not as controlling as a schizophrenia but they exert a gentle pull. We know the hierarchy. I imagined them because I wanted to explore something in my thoughts. So they serve me, although sometimes they also carry me away further than I wanted to go. I guess there’s a danger in delving so deep but that’s where the good stuff is to be found 🙂


    • Melissa says:

      I like this sense of your characters on the verge of breaking free (and sometimes doing so) in your description. The idea that they have their own world that keeps on turning and you join in whenever you drop into their space, but even if you’re not there, they are still carrying on with their lives. I sometimes wonder – how do I make characters seem real? But in your comment, it seems to me that you let them be real and then you see what they have to tell you.


  2. Melissa says:

    Number 4 – I am a big fan of Virginia Woolf. Especially her essays. When I read them, I feel like I’m sharing a pot of tea with her at the Orchard. Or if the essay is a lecture, I imagine I’m in the audience and while she would never be so obvious as to wink, a slight shift in her tone or a well-placed pause delivers her subtext expertly. One of the things that intrigues me about her is how different her novels are from her essays. The novels that I’ve read are breath-taking and make me think hard. I slow down and want to linger, like looking at a good painting. The essays, on the other hand, feel conspiratorial. There is a constant undercurrent of amusement and layered meaning and I’m in on the joke. I remember bits of the essays and I go back to them often, but there is an immediate connection I find with the essays that I have to work a little harder to make with the novels.


  3. Christmas
    Orions’ sword
    points to the pine


  4. agh those annoying apostrophes..


  5. actually an edit…

    Christmas star
    Orion’s sword
    points to the pine

    Liked by 1 person

  6. suki60 says:
    1. Where do I write? For a couple of years my job was to type all day. In bed at night I would find my fingers trying to translate my dreams into keystrokes. I still ‘write’ lots of things that never make it to the page. I do it all the time, everywhere. I comment on all sorts of things, and make all sorts of witty observations and intelligent analyses, but as I almost never have paper to hand, and even less often have the opportunity to put pen to paper (or finger to keyboard), my careful phrases don’t get rehearsed and come out, uninvited, in the wrong order, as facetious mumblings. My fingers really want to be involved in the process, not my tongue.


    • Melissa says:

      I love this line: ‘In bed at night I would find my fingers trying to translate my dreams into keystrokes.’ And this one also ‘ My careful phrases don’t get rehearsed and come out, uninvited, in the wrong order, as facetious mumblings.’ For all your well-intentioned words that don’t always get written, I sure enjoy the ones that do.


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