"At times I think my coffee and tea addictions truly drive my artistic energy. It’s a small sacrifice for the greater good."

Writing Exercise: Fear

Posted: 3/11/10 | Written by Jeannie | Labels: , ,

This is a little exercise I found on Meredithsuewillis.com #37 A character (or you, if you are writing memoir) thinks about a fear. This could be something practical, like the upcoming results of a medical test, or something vague and indefinite... While I admit it's not that practical, it is my fear.


“I’m not going any further until you kill it.”

“I can’t even see it? Point to it.” My mom is examining the ceiling outside her entryway.

“If I point to it, it’ll look at me. It’ll see me. If it comes any closer I might scream.”

“Jeannie, I don’t see it. It’s either too small for it to hurt you or it’s gone.”

“No, it’s not gone. It’s right there. And he’s watching me. Stupid spider, yes, I see you.” Squinting my eyes, I look directly at him swinging gently by a single strand of his super strong silk. Every time I move, his body shimming around the web to follow me. He takes no notice of my mom as she tries to find him. His focus is solely on me.

“This is ridiculous. Jeannie, come in the house. We’ve been out here, in the cold, for almost ten minutes. I’m not going to get sick because you’re afraid of a spider.”

“It’s not just any spider.” I scoff, “he is the spider that scared the crap out of me in my car.”

“You can’t know that.”

“No? I can’t? How do you know he’s not? He’s got the same beady eyes. That stocking personality as I try to go around him.” I bend to my left trying to get around it. The spider shimmies on his silk, following my movements. “I’m telling you it’s the same spider.”

“Well if that’s the case,” she swipes her hand in the air unhooking the spider’s lifeline and throwing him to the ground. My mother stamps her foot down on him.

“You’ll never have to worry about him again. And I don’t have to worry about buying you another car.”

“I’m telling you when you have a spider reared on his hind legs ready to strike; you’d jump out of your car too.”

“Doubtful, if it was as small as this one. Though, I’d probably have the good sense to put on my parking break before diving into the bushes and letting my car run me over. Now come on, it’s cold. Your spider is dead. Come in the house.”

2 replies:

  1. L. Diane Wolfe said...
  2. Interesting exercise. Not sure what I would choose...

  3. Jeannie said...
  4. It might come to you later. This popped into my head as it only recently happened. Not the car bit, but the standing outside my mom's house, not able to ring the doorbell because of that spider hanging in the entryway.

    *snort* my parents shouldn't have let me see Arachnophobia when I was 7ish.

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