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Writing exercise: maps

Creative writing exercises based on the theme Future

Last updated: 02 June 2020

Warm up: photograph

Look at or think about an old photograph of yourself. It could be an official document, like your passport, or a favourite photograph. What does that image say about the current version of you? Describe attributes in the photograph that might tell something of what was to come in future.

Brainstorm: mapping the future

“Map out your future – but do it in pencil” – Jon Bon Jovi

Think about all the different kinds of maps there are – from maps of a single room to maps of the whole of earth to the largest maps of our known universe. Writing often serves as a verbal map too, guiding the reader through a town or place, explaining what they might see along the way.

Maps also serve as a marker of where the mapmaker is in a moment in time. As soon as a map is made, it will begin to date. Things about it will eventually be wrong in the future. Think about how maps tell us about the past, and how maps may have hints of the future in them.

Start writing

"I need two markers, one in Dumfries where I live now, and one in Inverness where I am going, however slowly..."