Updated: Dec 22, 2020
Using a photo as a starting point for Creative Writing / Thinking and a basis to start writing. Students can do as little or as much of the task as they are able to.
Works can be shared in the Comments sections for us all to discuss.
We can perform each others monologues and scenes at home or at class.
DO NOT MUTILATE OR CUT TREE
1. Where was this picture taken?
2. What kind of tree is it? How old is it?
3. What do you think of the fence in the background? Why was that type of fence chosen?
4. What events have taken place under this tree?
5. Who has hid in this tree? What were they hiding from?
6. To whom does the tree belong?
7. The sign on the tree says, “Do not mutilate or cut tree.” Who put it there and why?
8. Is there anything carved into the tree?
9. What does the tree think about having a sign nailed into its trunk?
10. Who took this picture and why?
Automatic write on this picture for two minutes. What comes into your mind when you look at the picture? Look at it from top to bottom, left to right. Look at the lettering on the sign, the wire fence behind. Keep writing for the entire time.
Write a monologue from the perspective of the tree. Give the tree a specific emotional response in the monologue. Is the tree sad? Happy to have been alive so long? Mad at the sign?
Write a monologue from the tree’s perspective where the tree shares the most momentous event that’s taken place at its base.
Write a monologue from the perspective of the person who decided to put up the sign. What prompted the action? Who does the person talk to in the monologue (e.g. a wife, a husband, a dog, a plant?) Give them someone or something specific to talk to. Perhaps they talk to the tree itself…
Write a dialogue between two teenagers in a relationship. One teen has carved (out of sight in the picture) a heart and their initials into the tree and is showing them to the second teen for the first time. What is the second teen’s reaction?
Take the scene supernatural – write a scene between someone who cuts into the tree and a ghost who appears as a consequence of the act.
What if the person who puts up the sign doesn’t own the tree? Write a scene between the land owner and the tree hugger. What if the land owner wants to chop the tree down?
Write a scene with non-human characters – how do the animals of the forest respond to the sign?
Share your work in the comments section below...