Mad Libs: The Antidote to Writers Block?

Writers Block

For weeks now, I’ve been completely consumed by a major system implementation at work. Long, exhausting days have led to unproductive nights of writing (more precisely, starting at a blank screen) and going to bed even more frustrated than I was when I left the office.

I haven’t written a single new word on my WIP in months. I haven’t even written a new post for my blog. I have, however, been able to work on edits and getting my second book ready for publication. But still, I haven’t felt the joy that writing new material brings in far too long.

And so the other night, determined to change the tides, I sat down to write a blog post about a movie I’d seen over the weekend (The Judge) and how it made me think about my relationship with my own father. On the drive home, my thoughts flowed like lava. But when I booted up the laptop and sat down with a blank screen? Nada. Not a darn word in two hours.

Frustrated, I crawled into bed and contemplated the situation. I thought about the two types of posts I usually write for my blog. The first is life matters. The deep thoughts that make me contemplate life. I love thinking about and interpreting life in ways that make me grow as a person.

Mad LibsThe other kind of post I typically write involves some kind of humor (could be sarcastic wit or something that I find gut-wrenchingly funny). That’s when I realized that it had been far too long since I’d laughed. I’m talking about the kind of laughter that brings tears to your eyes. That kind.

The problem was, I wasn’t feeling particularly funny. And then an idea struck like a thundercloud. Mad Libs. Remember those (and unless you’ve lived in a cave for the last forty years, you should)? The otherwise benign stories with little blanks that you fill in with random words (verbs, adjectives, nouns, etc) that make the story really funny?

And so, I queried my Facebook friends for an assortment of words and came up with this. I hope you enjoy.

The Criteria (words to be inserted below)

  1. A woman’s name                                                   15. Body part
  2. Time of day                                                          16. Adverb
  3. Feeling/emotion                                                     17. Feeling/emotion
  4. Body part                                                              18. Feeling/emotion
  5. Adjective                                                                19. A comfort food
  6. Body part                                                               20. Profession
  7. Fruit (plural)                                                           21. –ing verb
  8. Body part                                                               22. Exclamation!
  9. Number (20 or higher)                                            23. Furniture
  10. Adverb                                                                   24. Number
  11. Room                                                                    25. Body part
  12. Noun                                                                     26. Something cold
  13. Number                                                                 27. Body part
  14. Number                                                                 28. A man’s name

Menopause is Funny

The Subject: Menopause (because it’s funny, right?)

Marlena awoke one evening feeling rather jealous, and not only that, her uvula was gangly and touching her foot. She fanned her pomegranate, wiped sweat from her neck and realized there was only one explanation. She was only twenty-one years old and she was facing menopause. To be sure, she slowly made her way to the attic and jumped on the puppy. Ah ha! Just as she suspected. She was fourteen pounds heavier than the night before and there were seven new wrinkles on her ankle.

Her emotions began to swing adventurously from angst to happy. She needed a meatloaf ASAP! And where was the phone? She had to call the Writer to do something about her kissing. No answer! “Oh my gravy,” she screamed before falling on the umbrella stand in a fit of tears.

Nine minutes later she didn’t remember a thing till her belly button began to cramp and a milkshake-like chill made her buttocks quiver. Someone was going to pay for this, and it might as well be Brad.

Be honest, did it make you laugh? Did you ever use Mad Libs at parties when you were young?

Tune in next week when I take a scene from my current work in progress and Mad Lib it! In the meantime, drop a comment below and provide a few words for next week. I need body parts (be creative but keep it at least R rated), a physical description (of a person), adverbs, a direction, verbs (ending in ‘ed’).

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