Instant Improver

The Ingenious Writer Emergency Pack

How's the novel coming along? That badly, huh? How about that screenplay? Or the poetry? Surely you've got an inspirational Tweet in the works...?

There are no fool-proof avenues around the writer's block, but John August has come up with a pretty novel tool for tackling the creative brick wall.

A screenwriter whose credits include Go, Big Fish and Frankenweenie, August has launched a Kickstarter for his Writer Emergency Pack. Drawing on conversations he's had with writers for his creative podcast the pack consists of a collection of illustrated cards offering useful suggestions for fiddly characters and stubborn plots. 

There are 26 illustrated cards designed to throw up short, insightful prompts in the style of an old science text book: "Stop talking - Actions speak louder than words. If you character couldn't talk, what would they do?" "That's not the dragon - You thought that was the enemy? Nope, not even close. The real danger lies ahead."

Each of the 26 illustrated cards has a matching Detail card, with even more specific suggestions to help you along. Aimed at emerging and young writers, the packs don't promise to spawn endless classics, but educate writers struggling to get their ideas going. Think of it as a creative laxative. On second thoughts, just think of it as a Writer Emergency Pack. You can order one here for around £13.

(Images: John August)