Blackout poetry is when a page of text is completely blacked out with a marker pen save for a few, well-chosen words. The page of text can be anything and is often a page from a newspaper or magazine.
When you have finished and only your chosen words are visible you have created a brand new story or poem.
This idea originated from writer and artist Austin Kleon when he accidentally created this new form and at the same time cured a bout of writer’s block.
When picking an article or passage to use it’s probably best not to read it too carefully. That way you are not influenced by the water’s thought but can create new ones of your own.
A good way to start is to glance at the page and put boxes around the words or phrases that strike you. You can decide if you want to make a broad story out of just “big” words like nouns, verbs, and adjectives, or if you want to create a more coherent narrative, using big words and little words like “is,” “of,” and “the” to move the story along. Then, just blackout all the other words on the page.
If you would like to try something more complex have a look at this video.
Let me know how you get on in the comments section below.
Have fun and keep safe.
A writer of short stories.