From Michelle Naka Pierce’s Writers in Community course:
Prompt by BZ Zionic, MFA candidate at Jack Kerouac School.
Language, for the majority of the world’s speaking cultures, is primarily mapped to the left frontal hemisphere or left frontal lobe. (Some languages, such as Chinese and Japanese, which utilize pictographic and ideographic characters, do demonstrate some right parietal lobe activity.) Furthermore, it has long been established that most people tend to belong somewhere along the spectrum of pure verbalizers (left brain) and pure visualizers (right brain) in their object-spatial reasoning.
Consider what it means to process language as a pure visualizer (with the right brain). Can language be experienced the same way our brain processes a picture? Can it produce evocative, spontaneous reactions just as music is experienced, or as a Rothko exhibit might be? (As writers, all of you will say yes to these questions, I’m sure.) In what way can you imagine the different regions of our brain communicating or corresponding? What brain functions and regions do you expect are involved in your creative process? How would the imaginative or the creative process be mapped in your head?
Now, consider what writing exercises you might conceive of to access this right brain activity while you are writing. What techniques, what drills, what practices can you design to stimulate your writing to become less planned, and more spontaneously emotive? Design at least three writing activities for this purpose.