This Powerpoint contains helpful tips for use in Unitarian Universalist worship and more.
How can I start creating my own reflections and stories?
I’m so excited you want to create your own! Beyond what’s in my Powerpoint, I suggest this four-stage process:
- Begin by BRAINSTORMING. Free-write, google-meander, meditate, play with word associations, and search online library collections. Brainstorm several days to a week before you need to present the piece, so you have time to sleep on your initial ideas and let them stew awhile. Come back to your ideas again and then again.
- When you think you have a partly-formed core idea, START SPEAKING IT ALOUD and see what you have to say, as well as where you find yourself stumped about what should come next. Think some more and then try again. Eventually, you want to get so you can speak the whole thing through.
- Then, TIME YOURSELF. Run the whole thing with a stopwatch. Knowing how much time is allotted to you, adjust as necessary. I’m used to a timeframe of about five minutes and I almost always have to trim the piece down. Be mindful not to save time by talking faster; instead, edit out what doesn’t seem to add to the story. Remember, if you are asking questions or otherwise involving the children and congregation, build in time for this. The “KISS” (Keep It Simple, Silly!) rule applies here! You’ll know it’s getting close to being ready when you know what you say first and you can remember the ideas and verbal transitions that get you from section to section.
- When you have it to the time and form you want, RUN IT ALOUD 2-3 TIMES BEFORE BED in front of an imaginary audience. Then, the next morning (presumably the morning you’ll present it), RUN IT A COUPLE MORE TIMES. This way, you’ll feel confident it’s ready to deliver!
Finally, ENJOY THE SHARING PROCESS!
Here are some helpful online resources to get your creative juices flowing!