I’m fond of a show, one you might not have heard of. It’s all voice: not a thing to see. The guys who act in it do a fine job, though. I’ve got to know them through the words, like the folks in books I love – and the scripts are the best thing of all. In fact I might learn to love them more once this blog is done.
You see, in this show, the guys (who fly a plane, and get bored a lot) like to play word games. Lots of word games. Names of films, slipped in so no one hears them. Towns that rhyme. All daft, but they make me laugh till I’m out of breath. They make me want to play too.
One of their games means you can only use words of one beat. ‘One beat’ is not quite the right term, but the right term has more than one beat too – and this blog has played the game since the start. If you read back, you’ll see that every word used has just one beat – which is why you might have read it with a frown on your face. It looks and sounds strange. I’ve had to choose words that weren’t quite right. But if you think hard, and try not to tell too much, you can say a great deal with just one beat in each word.
Why not try it too? You could type your try in the box at the end of this post. I should warn you: it’s hard!
So if it’s hard, why would I tell you to try it? Well, if you hope to write books like we all do at Girls Heart Books, I think it’s a fine thing to be made to choose each word with such care. I talk fast. I type fast. This game has forced me to slow down. I have not picked the best word, at times, but this test has pushed me to think on the words I can’t use: none that end in -ly; not much chance to show style, or to paint a scene.
If I were stuck this way, I’d miss the sense that I’m free to write any old words I like – yet in this post I could still tell you my tale, of a game played by bored folks on a plane in a show that I love. We might all write quite well if we took it slow and kept it all tight, neat, down to one beat.