Write Something Bad

I recently stumbled across a hilarious list of “lame analogies” submitted for a Washington Post contest.

A few samples:

The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while. (Malcolm Fleschner, Arlington)

The door had been forced, as forced as the dialogue during the interview portion of “Jeopardy!” (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

“Oh, Jason, take me!” she panted, her breasts heaving like a college freshman on $1-a-beer night. (Bonnie Speary Devore, Gaithersburg)

She walked into my office like a centipede with 98 missing legs. (Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park)

He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant and she was the East River. (Brian Broadus, Charlottesville)

Even in his last years, grandpappy had a mind like a steel trap, only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut. (Sandra Hull, Arlington)

fish display

When I finished laughing, I realized I love these analogies. They have a fresh quality, in spite of their lack of literary merit.

So I came up with another creative exercise: take 15 minutes to write some of these terrible similes and metaphors. Yes, they’re silly. But writing “bad” can be freeing, and it tends to encourage your inner critic to take a break. With no pressure to create a masterpiece, you can simply play with words. And the exercise just might get your creative juices flowing.

You can read the entire Washington Post list here.

Copyright @ Sandy Ackers, Strangling My Muse: Struggling to Live a Creative Life in a Stressful World, http://www.stranglingmymuse.com


12 Responses to “Write Something Bad”

  1. 1 horrorible August 3, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    Fantastic! Here’s one off the fly….

    The scorching rash Darryl endured sizzled like worms frying in a lard laden iron skillet.

    I’m originally from red neck country–I think I might have actually seen this.

  2. 2 Keith August 3, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    I will never forget the reaction I got in 7th grade English when we were writing essays about “Great Expectations.” I wrote that Pip treated his parents like a case of hemorrhoids- he wanted to keep them a secret and get rid of them as quickly as possible. Mr. Blauvelt read the line aloud to the class without naming me as the author and I was actually somewhat disappointed that everyone thought it was so hilarious. I thought I was just being very precise.

  3. 3 K a b l o o e y August 3, 2009 at 4:39 pm

    “I’m as used up as a box of tissues at the house of a group of premenstrual women watching a marathon of those really sad disease-of-the-week movies on a station that specializes in those kind of movies.”

    Larraby smiled ruefully as he walked from the courtroom, thinking “that summation stunk up the joint like a hunk of gruyere that had fallen behind a radiator in Autumn, but it was now mid-January and the heat had been on for a long, long time.”

    Darcie’s gravity-defying orbs stood at attention like a private hoping for a weekend pass.

  4. 4 stranglingmymuse August 3, 2009 at 11:19 pm

    Thanks for these great lame analogies!

    horrorible, that is really bad! And by bad, I mean good, because I could feel those sizzling worms.

    Keith, that’s a great story. Your early creative genius was clearly unappreciated. Then again, it’s hard to imagine 7th graders not giggling at the mention of hemorrhoids.

    Kablooey, wonderful bad writing — I laughed out loud. Thanks, as always for your inspired contributions.

    I’d love to see some more of these, if anyone’s game!


  5. 5 Courtney Vail August 6, 2009 at 10:25 am

    Haha. Very funny. I’m getting my manuscript ready for submission, since an agent requested it, but when I get a breather, this would be fun to try. Thanks for the idea.

  1. 1 10 Ways to Jumpstart Your Writing When You’re Feeling Uninspired « Strangling My Muse Trackback on February 18, 2010 at 7:08 am
  2. 2 Keep Your Writing Mojo Flowing « Strangling My Muse Trackback on March 19, 2010 at 6:14 am
  3. 3 Weekend Writing Flow « Strangling My Muse Trackback on July 9, 2010 at 4:00 pm
  4. 4 Keep Your Writing Flowing « Strangling My Muse Trackback on May 24, 2011 at 12:33 pm
  5. 5 Some Fuel for Your Creativity Tank | Strangling My Muse Trackback on July 3, 2013 at 6:04 am
  6. 6 Keep Your Writing Flowing | Strangling My Muse Trackback on December 21, 2013 at 6:03 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Download a Free E-Book! Click on the Cover Below for your Creative Bursts Workbook

And get fun 15-minute creativity prompts delivered to your inbox twice a week

About Sandy Ackers


Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach and Writer.

To learn more about Sandy, click here: About Sandy

Connect With Me On Facebook:

Meet My Muse

Click here to read the post discussing my relationship with my somewhat pesky male muse.

Inspiration in your inbox:

Blog Archive

Total Hits:

wordpress analytics
wordpress analytics

Share This Blog

Bookmark and Share
Add to Technorati Favorites
Writing Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory


Copyright © 2009-2017 Sandy Ackers. All rights reserved, with the following exceptions:

Writers retain all rights to any comments, stories or other original work posted on this blog in the comments sections or the Readers' Sandbox.

Many of the photos on this blog are in the public domain. If you'd like to reproduce a photo, contact Sandy Ackers at the email address listed in the ABOUT section of this blog for information on whether the image is under copyright.

Reproducing, copying or distributing the writing on this blog without the express permission of the author is strictly forbidden.

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

%d bloggers like this: