While reviewing other writing blogs and trying to find something to help me better my craft for free, I came across an interesting exercise. I read through several exercises on Holly Lisle’s blog and decided to try this one.
The direction was simple. Describe the room you’re currently sitting in, in as much detail as possible. But Holly’s instruction was to “describe it as if you’re talking to a blind painter and your life depended on the description.
The following is what came from my attempt to follow her direction. After reading it I realize how sad how my bedroom seems..
I sit typing on my wireless keyboard that rests atop a red corner desk painted blood red. It doesn’t match any other furniture in the room. My attention is divided between my computer and an enthusiastic kitten who continues to jump on my lap and then back down to the floor over and over.
I am wearing a sweater with sequins woven into the fabric and tight jeans that narrow at the ankles enough to allow them to be tucked inside my favorite pair of studded boots. My bedroom floor is covered with a fine layer of dust, and stray hair, some from myself and some from the cat. At night the floor doesn’t appear to be this dirty but at 3:00 PM the sun shines through my bedroom window revealing my unclean secrets. I’m usually not home at this time of day to see this, but today is Saturday. The hamper beside my desk mocks me, as does the nearly empty bowl of kitty food. I think of all the chores I should be dealing with instead of completing my writing exercise.
The walls of my room are painted lilac and mostly bare apart from the whiteboard above my desk. It is there to remind of me of important things like the timeline of events for my new novel. There are also some reminders about upcoming writing conferences that I could never afford to attend. The whiteboard has a picture of myself at a friends wedding arm in arm with my boyfriend. I am deliriously happy in the photo and by looking at it you wouldn’t realize I’d had a massive hangover earlier in the day and spent most of my time hugging the hotel toilet.
There is a cheerful framed show poster occupying space on the floor while it waits to be re-hung. A pink sparkly hoola hoop rests beside it waiting to be used. The most interesting part of my room is that one complete wall is nothing but built in shelving. I use three shelves for books, and the rest for various folded items of clothing. You have to get creative when there is no closet. What the shelves can’t contain, I’ve thrown onto a plastic makeshift clothes rack I purchased at Target for less than twenty dollars.
The only furniture I have aside from my hand painted desk is a white chest of drawers that also doesn’t match. My borrowed twin bed sits under a window covered with a goose feather comforter that periodically rains feathers from small holes beginning to form in the material. It’s dingy because washing tends to make the holes worse. My small inadequate pillow is stuffed with beans to supposedly offer more support. It’s something I saw on an infomercial once and later purchased from a drug store. It doesn’t work. I wake up every morning with a terrible neck pain.
My blinds are closed blocking out the cheerful sunlight as well as nosey neighbors across the street. The sun is stubborn and forces it’s way through my blinds making slated patterns on the floor and pretending to be warmer than it really is.
This and other exercises can be found at : http://hollylisle.com/