Friday Writing Exercise 0 Comments

Friday Writing Exercise

Adam Reed was inspired to create Sterling Archer – a square-jawed, substance-abusing secret agent and star of the animated sitcom Archer – after striking out with a beautiful woman in Spain.

Never without a smooth line and a sharp suit, Sterling Archer was a character written to succeed where Reed failed.

“I’m getting my turtleneck. I’m not defusing a bomb in this!” ­– Sterling Archer

No doubt, most of us have wished we could be someone else, after failing as ourselves. Wistfully, we think of what might have been, had we acted more elegantly/ judiciously/ impulsively/ self-confidently. The great thing about fiction is that it gives us an opportunity to explore these possibilities.

For today’s writing exercise, think of a situation where you could of acted differently, then of a character who would have acted this way. You don’t have to make the character more successful than yourself; if you prefer, you can have the character fail in a situation where you succeeded.

The important thing is to get yourself thinking about different characters, and what makes them act as they do.

As usual, we would love to hear how you went with this exercise, so feel free to leave a reply below. Or better yet, submit your piece to our next issue ‘Thing’. Details on how to submit can be found here.

By Laura Woollett

Laura is a shiny new addition to the Voiceworks editorial committee. She is currently completing her honours in creative writing at the University of Melbourne.

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