Oct 30, 2011

Let Your Typewriter Help You Beat Writer's Block!

Tess at Willow Manor works assiduously to deliver weekly prompts to fire up our muses.  This week, a . . a . . whatever is this thing?  A typewriting machine?  How very 20th century!

   Here's a great tip I read somewhere.  Look at the layout of your Mac, typewriter or PC keyboard - the alphabet characters I mean. Never mind the "~" and "\" and "≠" and so on.  Mine begins "Q W E R T Y"   Not that it matters if yours is different. Given the choice I wouldn't have gone for that particular sequence, but applestore.co.uk had nothing else. So much for the genius of Steve Jobs. 
   Now . . you can't think what to write? O.K. Just write a passage, anything at all that strikes you as long as it makes sense - not always easy. Use 26 words, no more, no fewer, the first letter of each word to be the letters on your keyboard taken in order, left to right, top row to bottom row.  Seriously, if you can do that, you can do anything.

"Quite When Eric Realized That Yvonn'es Umbrella Imploding Presaged A Disaster Few Guessed. His Juggling Kites, Lawnmowers, Zoophiles, Xylophones Caused Various Belated Moaning Noises < > ?"

  On second thoughts I think I prefer Writer's block . . . . and anyway, the "M" and the "N" are the wrong way round.


  1. That's just what I needed to read this morning, as writer's block matches my blocked nasal passages. Do you suppose the same Q U E R T Y exercise would unblock them? LOL

  2. Does your typewriter have missing alphabets too!! SO it can be easily identified!! ;) I see 24!! A far cry for me to type all that Dr!!

  3. Dear Dr. FTSE; Brilliant doctor! I'd say! Did you forget "s" or "m" and "n"'s should be "n" then "m". Just getting techy on ya! You like it! YES!!!...I will try this NOW Quite weary egresses relative to your universe in oprah's pan alley says don't frig gentlemen have just killer longing zed xylophoned cindy vicious bananas never mind. jj Chiccoreal

  4. JJ . . . I did, I did. I forgot the "S"! Insert "sepulchral" or some such similar surprising soubriquet before "disaster" Reversal of "m" and "n" noted, as does the post.
    Nanka . . . I'm working on the missing "O." Thanks for spotting.

  5. Must try this next time I have writer's block. Oh, that would be now, then . . .

  6. Okay, I'm here because Jinksy sort of dared me to try your challenge after her Latin lesson. Here's my contribution, possibly the opening lines of a smashing new best-seller, The Adventures of Quentin and Kevin:

    Quentin, waxing eloquent, raced toward Yvonne's upstairs, inconsolable over Penelope's abominable situation despite Friday's germs hovering jauntily. Kevin, languished Zen-like, coveting Veronica's behind mightily.

  7. RWP . . . first class! (I'm beginning to be sorry I started this - they're all better than mine!) But alas, you have lost the penultimate "N" Naughty comes to mind if we're into coveting.

  8. And the X is conspicuous by its absence... You can tell I'm a nit picker, RWP.

  9. "Queer weather" expostulated Ronald. Terence yawned. "Usual incessant on-ding(*). Perfectly acceptable. Sudden downpours freshen grass, herbs, jonquils, keria, larkspur, zinnias." Xanthe, verbosely blustered "Never mind"

    (*) On-ding. Nortern Scots dialect - "downpour"

  10. Okay, sore losers, I will insert an adjective and another adverb (rarely a good thing), and we'll call it done:

    Quentin, waxing eloquent, raced toward Yvonne's upstairs, inconsolable over Penelope's abominable situation despite Friday's germs hovering jauntily. Kevin, languished Zen-like, xenophobically coveting Veronica's Norwegian behind mightily.

  11. Hey . . . all those plants is cheating, Mr.Trellissimo.

  12. Oops! Now the N and B have changed places. Oh, well.

    Here's another:

    "Quit whining," Edward reluctantly told Yakima's ubiquitous imbecile, "only people at Seattle drink filthy gin." Hoping, John kissed Loretta. Zany xylophonist Charles visited bassoonist near Manhattan.

    (from Nothing Makes Sense Any More)

  13. ...Yakima's ubiquitous imbecile, Percy, "only...

  14. Never mind Dr. Everyone is having a great time here today :D ..and thank you , you started this fun thing!! :D

  15. OK, I can't resist either:
    Quite wild enterprises require the yet uninspired ingenuity of people at seances designed for giving horrible jolts. Kant levitated zombies. Xenomorphic crystals verified breathtaking nocturnal mysteries.

    This is getting very silly, please don't stop!

  16. Quit when ever really torrid yeti's unite under inkblot oceans, paved and shimmering. Denounce feted groaning hedgerows, jagged, kept long. Zone X came vast, beneath new moons.
    hmmmm...this is getting very silly!

  17. Doctor . . . Quite why everyone responding to your unusually ingenious overture prefers a sudden diversion from gratuitous homage. "Jollity, kinky laughter? Zounds" xclaim versemongers. "Begone! No more!"

    (Sorry about the approximate "X")

  18. No "C", Mrs.T! Look folks . . . any more of this missing letter slackness and I'll call a halt to the whole thing.
    "What's that? Who said 'About Time'?"

  19. Quintessentially, when every Roman territory yielded, unruly insurgents operating politically attacked soldiers’ defences for gain holding juniper kabobs laced zestfully - xenomorphically creating very nutritious mush.

  20. ...because she found that by the time she had posted it, it no longer made sense because it was supposed to follow...oh ever mind.

    But I loved your post, and the reposnses!

  21. Frankly, I too would prefer to stay blocked a while longer. The only help it might offer is that everything after would seem easy again. My Magpie this week is Poet.

  22. I've been resisting all afternoon, but had to have a go:


    Quentin was easily rendered tipsy. Yvonne understimated Ian's orange punch. Andrea, senseless, dropped floorwards. Gavin held Jennifer, kissed, laughing zanily (xxx). Caroline's vodka blew Nathan's mind.

  23. Ha! I had already written my Magpie, but I think I will give this a try later this week. :) You are so fun!

  24. I think that would give me a gigantic writer's headache and a Berlin Wall of a block! On the other hand, it could be a really entertaining way of pretending that I'm writing when actually I'm just playing.

  25. That was one hell of a party Margaret went to...

  26. Er, Frances. I guess I had too much of Caroline's vodka.

  27. I cry to think of the years wasted trying for originality..I believe you've found the key, and damn M&N...full speed ahead!

  28. "Quit wriggling, Edward!" The youth understood illegal ownership presaged arrest. Sergeant Davies' fingers grabbed his jacket's kinky, long zips. X-rated cinematographic video banned next moves...

  29. well you pulled it off quite nicely...i might just give this a try as it feels like quite teh challenge...

  30. I have to say that Cad's does it for me so far - it works so well as a story. Bet he dreamt that one up in his garden shed. But all other efforts surpass anything I expected. Well done all of you. Seeeee . . . I said QWERTY would unblock you!

  31. Good grief! Well done but, seriously, was it a quiet day at the surgery?

  32. Clever and fun, I may just be tempted to try this.

  33. No, Brigid! That way madness lies.

    Now then folks, for your next homework . . . a 26 line poem where the first word of each line starts with the QWERTY letters . . . in reverse order if you like. HEHEHEHE!!

  34. Quite wickedly ever-so raucously typical, you.

  35. I must try this - behind the potted palm. Surely not in full view of this wordfully talented group.

  36. Frances's orgy is quite splendid! I tried and tried and pulled my hair out. Perhaps QWERTY in reverse will be easier... no promises, though. Quite the talented group here!

  37. Margaret - I relax the on the "X". Any word beginning "ex" acceptable. Or a blogkiss"X"

    Tumblewords - "Wonderfully talented group" I assume is your euphemism for "mad as a bag of rabbits"?

    Thingy. You've reached "Y". I dread to think what might be next.

  38. “Querulent”, Warren explained reasons to yawn uncontrollably in Oliver’s presence.
    “Always suffering. Dickhead.”
    “Frustrated?” Graham helpfully joked, knowing little.
    “Zero X-factor. Can veritably bedazzle no man.”

  39. Qwerty! Not now, I'm busy...assiduously busy...

  40. Okay - you asked for it. Not good, but at least I tried...

    Queenie, Hiawatha's sister,
    Wore her ballgown to the dentist
    Early she arrived, and nervous,
    Running swiftly through the rushes
    (Toothpaste breath, and Chanel-scented).
    “You look pretty,” said the dentist.
    Underneath, she wore silk knickers,
    In her breast, her heartbeats flickered.
    “Open wide,“ the dentist told her,
    Please don't move, shout if I hurt you.”
    “Aaaargh” was all that she could answer
    Stuck, recumbent, in the chair. The
    Dentist drilled and sucked and polished,
    Filling canines, cleaning molars,
    “Goodness! What have you been eating?”
    “Hiawatha's soup,” she mumbled.
    “Just the thing to rot your teeth, please
    Kindly stick to cod and muffins,
    Leeks and parma ham and gerbils
    (Zoos will often stock the latter).
    X-rays now. Yes. That looks fine. Your
    Cavities all filled. That will be
    Very nearly sixteen head of
    Buffaloes, I think you owe me.
    Next time, you may bring them with you.
    Mary at the desk will count them.”

  41. (I'm still on the first challenge, per Mr. Brague).

    Querulously washing elephants, Randolph twirled yellow underwear in obsequious passes around Sasha's dense feet. Giraffes, hippos, jackals - kids love zoos! Xerothermic children venture beside nervous mahouts.

  42. What have I started? Frances . . that's an heroic effort, laying the foundations of a whole new economic system.

    Risezilla . . . animal magic!

  43. Quit whingeing! Ever rebellious, the young universally insist on pummeling all Silly Doctors for gruesome homework. Just keep laughing! Zits, excessive cellulite, verukas - bigger nuisances mostly!

    (Thanks for the let-off on the "X", Doc. That made the whole thing much easier!)

  44. Quite willingly, Edward Richards tried yoga using “Intragral” operandi “pranayama” although swan-like Desiree favored general “hatha”. Just knowing lovely Zinnia executed cleansing “vinyasa” elicited vigorous breathing numerous mornings!

    Integral Yoga = control of breath & meditation emphasized + posture
    operandi = method;
    pranayama = (control of breath);
    Hatha Yoga = most popular- styles: Power, Bikram, Ashtanga, Kundalini;
    vinyasa = breathing and movement “principle” style

  45. Nice one, Lucy.
    Margaret - inspired use of Yoga terminology.

    Once again, hearty congratulations to all bloggers who used the QWERTY unblocker. If I was awarding prizes you'd all get one!

  46. Well, I must say, your post inspired a couple of posts of my own, Dr. FTSE. I'd be honored if you hied yourself on over to my hinterland and had a look at them! Being a bit of a neologist (who knew?), I have invented the words qwertygram, qwertoem, dvorakgram, and dvorakoem to describe the literary possibilities.

  47. Qutely written! Ever-recourceful, thank you! ;-)

  48. Interesting concept but one I will likely do or my brain will implode.

  49. Silly is GOOD! :)

    "Quite wonderful. Exactly remembering the yoked underlings in other places. Adonis said, "Don't find green hay just kicking like zealous Xerxes. Could vex berserk nuns, mostly."

  50. Hi I thought this was a great idea, so I am posting my own version with links to your lovely blog, thanks!

  51. LOL, too funny and clever :D Though it would work just as well if you switched M and N too - "noises moaning" ;)




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