Over the last few days, I have spent some time typing things in rhyme. I have posted a few. Two here here and here. Writing, thinking, or daydreaming this way activates parts of the brain that we may not normally use. It takes creativity, comprehension, and logic to put together a whole post that rhymes and falls pretty close to iambic pentameter. The rhyme holds attention while the cadence helps you follow what is going on and emphasizes the strong words while softening the weak words. When woven together well, a good rhyme can tug on the emotional strings with much more force than the same thing written in prose. Of course, this is not always the best answer, but it does make you think. If you are struggling with an idea or concept for your story, try to think about it in rhyme. Finding the right words and making them rhyme makes your mind look at it a different way.
When writing the things I have over the last few days, I found out, or should I say quickly remembered, that once you find the rhyme on the second line, you frequently have to modify the first line to keep the cadence. The whole thing has to flow from line to line. You must read it back to yourself multiple times to make sure you can keep up with it like a good tune, a good beat. If it seems like the beat just stalls or does not seem in tune at any point in the process, you have lost the flow and have to analyze how to fix the flow right there. These may not be your final sentences, but you will experience a new way to think about where you are stuck or maybe even new ways to freshen up parts of your story that you think are done.
Even if you think you can not do it, just give it a shot. The easiest way to start is to write two sentences that end with rhyming words, like below.
“Gazing through the gentle yellow glow of the morning sunrise. Upon the hill, I can still hear the cries.”
Above are two sentences that rhyme with ending words and a nice cadence. Up and down, up and down with the flow.
Now we continue on and make the beginning of a story by adding more rhyming lines. This all just came together as I typed.
“Plants glistening golden and dripping with morning dew. That thing I did was all I knew. I never wanted it to be this way. Sadly I could not keep it at bay. The beast within tore its way out. Now I must sit here in depression and doubt. Was it my fault, or was it not? No one will care when I get caught.”
Above with the next 8 sentences, we have an intro to an intriguing story. It could be more detailed. These are just examples to get the thoughts flowing by looking at your story a different way.
Humans are creatures of patterns. We follow patterns, work in patterns, build in patterns, see patterns, and are pattern people. Good music always has a rhythmic pattern that is noticeable and followable. Good music, be it Country, Rock, EDM, or any other kind of music, depends on the pattern to get the people into the groove. If you do not have a good pattern, hence rhythm, your music will not go anywhere. It is the same way with writing or any other kind of entertainment. People need a pattern. But then you need to break that pattern with something groundbreaking. For instance, think about your favorite song. Like most songs, there is the intro, the verse, the bridge, the solo, the bridge, the outro. These parts can be moved around, which progressive artists frequently do, but in the end, the parts are the same. It is how you arrange them that makes the song.
Writing is very similar. You have to have an intro, a build-up, multiple solos, multiple bridges, verses, and somewhere along the line an outro. Singers and bands do this with their instruments and vocalizations. Writers to it with pen and paper or a keyboard. But in the end, we are both still artists working towards the same goal, to entertain the people. Music tugs at the emotional strings through the melodic music score and storytelling of the singer. Think about it, most songs tell a story in 3 – 6 minutes. Unless we include Opera, which is an art form of its own. A well-written story has hundreds of pages to pour that heart and soul into. Think about it, the heart and soul of the best singer you know and 500 pages to pour it all out. That is what you should strive for every day, every time you sit down to write. Not to be like them, but to have the heart and soul that it will inevitably take to make it to that last line of the story you have always wanted to write.
Find a rhythm. Change that rhythm. Write in any meter you want. Write in iambic, write in prose. Try something and see how it goes. All rhythms are unique. We all have an internal mystique. Tap into this and let it flow. Only you will know. This is your story. This is your path. I only offer advice, but not on math. That is a lie, I must say. I sort of use math every day. This ending was written in rhyme. See, it doesn’t take much time.