Shared Worlds Update…With Fantastical Beasts

(Franz Blei’s description of Kafka, with accompanying illo by Shared Worlds’ student Miranda Severance)

A long, long day of individual consults, a session on writing, editing, and publishing, and a fantastical beasts exercise that the students had a lot of fun with here at Shared Worlds. I’ve been posting photos on Facebook because it’s easier to do that on the run from my phone, rather than blog, but I will post a true week’s end report on Saturday or Sunday. (In the meantime, check me out on Facebook.)

Here is the fantastical beasts exercise I did on Ann…


The Ann is a short but fierce mammal with cute tiny ears and T-Rex-ish arms that make it difficult for her to reach food high in the cupboards; for this reason the Ann has entered into a symbiotic relationship with the much taller Jeff. The Ann is sometimes nocturnal, but every morning nimbles frantically on a strange round bread with a hole in the middle. It likes to read, and because of this it fashions different kinds of glasses for itself out of elements of its natural habitat (which is usually indoors). As a defense mechanism, the Ann will twist its pointy elbow into the fleshy part of your arm or leg. This hurts. A lot. The Ann also edits anything it encounters, and this is how it builds its dwelling places: from bits and pieces of sentences that have been edited out of stories and thus discarded for any other purposes. The Ann’s natural enemy is the rejected writer, but the Ann has no fear of such creatures, and stands its ground despite the roaring, spitting, and general carrying-on. The Ann has been found playing in rock bands and climbing up mountains. It is slow to anger and very patient, and as evidence of that it has been married to the Jeff for a long time. If you ask her why she is so cute she will say, “It was borned into me.”


  1. Hellbound Heart says

    oh yeah ann, what’s a jeff like??? tell me tell me!!!!!

    peace and love….