Drive-by Creative Games

Ole Lady MobileI recently learned a new game from an administrator at Disney. When she has a long hard day, she likes to do something out of the ordinary. She likes to stretch her creative juices and explore story from a new standpoint on the fly. Playing a simple game with those riding in her carpool exercises her creativity.

The rules are simple. The goal is to create a story one phrase at a time. She goes clockwise and each person shares a phrase of the story. The key is that the story must include everything the person has recently observed.

For instance, let’s say Person One notices birds fly out from a tree, railroad gates go down, and a loud horn honk. Person One might say, “Birds flew from the trees as the railroad gates blocked traffic and a sinister horn echoed down the rusty tracks.”

Person Two must continue the story where One left off and it must reflect what he observed. Let’s say it was a train, school kids, and an irate driver stuck at the railroad gate. Person Two might say, “The loco train, known for attacking at a moments notice, chugged past the gates and angered a man who was blocked from seeing his daughter leave school.”

Sometimes people only observe a single item that stands out unique from the day’s normal activities. Person Three might say, “The swirl of dust in the alley behind the bakery swooshed up into a super hero ready to protect the student.”

By the time the train passes, Person Four might have captured her observations. She says, “Fearing a great loss from the micro burst, the loco train chugged out of sight, leaving the girl unharmed.”

The story continues for several more rounds until all enjoy a great story. Even the first four phrases suggest a story that can entertain, while developing the skills of a creative person. Here is the compilation of the first four phrases in story form:

Birds flew from the trees as the railroad gates blocked traffic and a sinister horn echoed down the rusty tracks. The loco train, known for attacking at a moments notice, chugged past the gates and angered a man who was blocked from seeing his daughter leave school. The swirl of dust in the alley behind the bakery swooshed up into a super hero ready to protect the student. Fearing a great loss from the micro burst, the loco train chugged out of sight, leaving the girl unharmed.

The beauty of a creative story game is that there are no wrong answers or phrases. Each person can impact the direction of the story and its implications. Conflict is naturally increased within the story based on the process that forms the content. And, everyone can enjoy numerous laughs as the story weaves in and out of its form.

© 2016 by CJ Powers
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