We will always pass judgment on a place we are in, whether we are just passing through, or even if we live there. Humans are judgmental and opinionated creatures; we can’t help it. You probably have some strong opinions, memories, and observations about the town you live in. Channel those judgments into a productive piece of opinionated writing that will help others understand your community.
Challenge 1: Write a letter to a newborn child in your town. What will their first impressions of your town be?
Challenge 2: Write a letter to someone who is leaving your town forever. Now that they know it well, and have lived here, what are the things they will miss most about your town?
The key is to reflect on the surface “facts” about your town with your first piece, and then to dive in deep into the real secrets and traits of your home with the second.
Read the work of your peers. Comment on their letters. What was similar? What was different?
[Photo Credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Caleb Dudley, 2015]