Although I have a lot of work to do on my WIP, I usually take some time out each week to participate in the bi-weekly prompts from The Red Dress Club. I believe it was AB Keuser who first introduced me to the group.

Every Friday a prompt is posted for RememberRed, the memoire meme. On Tuesdays, everyone who participated posts a link, and then we read and comment on each other’s posts. Then on Tuesday, a prompt is posted in the Little Red Writing Hood meme, and we get together to share those on Fridays. It is very encouraging, and loads of fun to do just a short little piece that doesn’t have to be completely polished or perfect.

Today, I’m reading about things we still know by heart.

This week’s memoir prompt asked you to dig deep to find what, from your childhood, you still know from heart.

I still remember all those rhymes you did while slapping hands with a friend, like Miss Mary Mack Mack Mack all dressed in black black black.

What do YOU remember?

Please link up – but ONLY if you’ve done the prompt. And try to visit as many as you can so we can keep this wonderful, supportive community going – and growing.

Sometimes many of the posts are very similar, as  our collective brains all turned in the same direction after reading the prompt. Sometimes they are wildly different. With this prompt, about something we still know by heart, my brain automatically turned to childhood dance lessons, reinforced by the fact that I became a dance teacher myself. This piece is not my best work. It’s a nice little memory, but it has little sensory imagery and feels weak. I don’t mind; I can choose to polish it more, or relegate it to the virtual stack of forever first drafts that never go anywhere. Every writer needs a stack like that.

The first couple of posts I read recollected something from the writer’s religious experience. Geri remembered the rituals of her Catholic upbringing, and how the ritual freed her mind to reach the focus she sought for worship. Frume Sarah recalled her Bat Mitzvah.

After reading these two posts, I skipped back to read what Galit shared this week. I skipped to her for a couple of reasons. First of all, everyone skips to Galit because her writing is so beautiful, it is a treat to read what she shares every week. I always look forward to reading her posts, and she usually has a ton of comments agreeing with this sentiment. The second reason I skipped to Galit was that the theme of her blog is Parenting Spiritually Without Religion. Today, she has a sweet story about the simple act of pushing her small daughter on the swing, while remembering how her own mother once did that for her.

Perhaps religion will not be a theme…

I read on, seeing what others chose to share. Frelle remembered Goonies and the summer of 1985. Andrea remembers Miss Susie Had a Steamboat.

Continuing through the links, I decide to skim a few just to get a feel for what the group as a whole did with this prompt. I feel guilty about not leaving comments on every single post, but if something moves me, I make sure the writer knows. I waver about whether to call someone out when I feel their post doesn’t really fit the meme; I hope that people would tell me if I posted something that didn’t fit. I hope my friends would give me constructive criticism on the posts I share with TRDC, as that is one of the points of sharing. I decide to keep most of the little points I notice to myself; I hate being the only person offering a critique.

Academic facts and lists. A sad memory. Odd things that stick in our minds for no discernible reason. Bon Jovi. Tiny rituals. Shakespeare. It seems TRDC is taking today’s memoir in all directions.

John Greenleaf Whittier wrote Beauty seen is never lost, God’s colors all are fast. (Read more: on Quotations Book) Although I believe he was referring to the transient nature of the beauty found on God’s Green Earth, the idea that beauty, once seen, is never lost applies to the written word as well. Even though most of the posts we shared today will eventually fade off into the blogosphere, the fact that we wrote them, and we shared them, and commiserated over the directions we each took this prompt will never be lost.

The shortlink for this post is

About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
This entry was posted in Commentary & Musing, Writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Prompts

  1. Galit Breen says:

    Amy, this is really generous and kind of you. Thank you. Truly.

  2. I give you 100%, no strings attached permission to leave brutally honest feedback on my blog. 100%. And I will love you for it. Even if you rip it to shreds and leave me nothing but a squashed up ego. Especially if you do:)

    I also love Galit’s blog. I never leave there without a warm fuzzy or a lingering thought.

  3. Ooooh…. an invitation!
    Well, don’t mind if I do….

  4. Frume Sarah says:

    Yes, I’m with Wild Child Mama. I need the critique!!! And I too am fascinated the many directions one prompt can inspire.

  5. LOVED your feedback!! I had some of the same concerns but couldn’t quite put my finger on it. So, I made the changes, well most of them. You were right that the Math thing would be tough to translate. I changed the spacing a little. But the rest was gold. Gold, I tellz ya. Thank you!! You rock:)

  6. Awwww! I’m glad I could be helpful!

  7. I like your reflection on our weekly woes, and I have been wondering where all the feedback is. When I first started not that long ago, there seemed to be so much more of it. I am here to grow. I will tell you, this last prompt did not grab me to write anything that I am too terribly proud of, however, feedback is always welcomed and needed. I joined this group and began posting because I want to grow as a writer. So, maybe if you start some feedback, others will follow.

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