I used to… but now I…

This is so much fun for writing groups, it just has to be passed on if you’ve never come across it. It works really well in large groups (but we’ve done it in groups of six or so). And it comes to me from Chrystal Warren at the National English Literary Museum who runs open writing groups (when’s the next one, Chrystal?).

Each person writes whatever comes to top of mind in answer to two questions:

  1. I used to…………
  2. But now I………..

What will happen is that each writer will connect the two, and the answers will relate. Now the fun begins. Have each person in the group read out the question and answer but get person 1 to read 1 and person 2 to read 2, then person 3 reads 1 and person 4 reads 2, and so on and on, you can go right round the group and hear all of them. Scrambling before and after this way is hilarious and often scarily accurate. It’s one of the best ways to get a nervous group going.

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