≡ Menu

Haiku: Geeky plotting exercise.

Geeks seem to love Haiku, a Japanese poetry form of a 3-line unrhymed poem with a 5-7-5 syllable pattern. Perhaps it
is the code-like challenge of having limited syllables/lines in which to
relay a message that is so attractive to propeller heads.

A while ago, Salon.com hosted a Haiku contest, entries from which was a popular social/viral email My favorite from the group:

Windows NT crashed.
I am the Blue Screen of Death.
No one hears your screams.

— Peter Rothman

Fortunately, I have a long background in technology support. Unfortunately, this does not preclude me from experiencing data loss:

With searching comes loss
and the presence of absence:
“My Novel” not found.

— Howard Korder

The funny examples are all over the internet. Read this and this to learn about a “famous” (in Geekdom) haiku that describes decrypting DVDs.

My point: Haiku can be a great break-up-the-monotony practice for fiction writers. A little
experiment: break your novel or short story into chapters or sections,
write a haiku summarizing the action for each. Re-read the section.
You may surprise yourself at the gap between what you think the section
should be about and what is really happening in it. Writing a logline
for each chapter would be a similar exercise.

They say good fiction
means writing rich characters.
A great plot sells books.

-PC

Comments on this entry are closed.

Close
Powered by ShareThis