How to Use

Suggestions for getting started

Creative Writing Word Storm:
It's simple: Drag words in. Drag words out that don't inspire you. 
Amazingly, a compelling story idea will start to form in your mind. Write it (or tell it).

Improv Scene Suggestions:
Drag in 4 words. Mentally connect them. Use word association. Start your scene. Try to commit to what is there, but feel free to drag out words that don't move you.

Structural Technique:
Drag words in until you have 2 characters, a location and some wildcard words to spark your imagination. Start your story. Feel free to drag words out that don't feel right to you. Remember, a satisfying story can easily be structured in the following way:
  1. Once upon a time...
  2. And every day...
  3. Then one day...
  4. Because of this...
  5. And because of this...
  6. Until finally...
  7. And ever since that day...

Writer's Block Breaker:
Stuck on your story? Type in a word or two relating to your story (tap on the "i" on the bottom left side of the screen) and then drag in some fresh words. Use this new input to break the log-jam. Remember... make connections. 

Lateral Thinking and Brainstorming:
Type in your question or problem (the "i" button on the bottom left of the screen). Drag in words and ask yourself how these words relate to what you wrote. Make connections and associations and note new questions as they arise. Write down your thoughts as you proceed.

Why does this work?

We are pattern seeking beings. Confronted with chaos, our minds automatically start to find connections and build new structures. With the slightest prompt, our potential for creative genius will snap into action.

What is the right way?

There is no right way to use improvi. You find ways that are right for you.
On the simplest level, consider it an amusing toy, designed to tickle your imagination.
With only a little focus though, so much more is possible...

Creativity engine

You will be tempted at first to fill the screen with words (and you should if that's what you want to do), but you will probably find it easier and more exciting and productive to move forward with only two or three. There is amazing power in simplicity.

Drag in a word and let it float around your subconscious for a moment or two. What associations does it call to mind? What does it make you remember from your past? What can you hear when you look at the word? What can you taste?

Drag in another word. And another. And another. Let them float around and move through one another. Let them connect. On a subconscious level you will sense that, in this moment, some words belong on the screen and some words simply don't. Drag off the words that you feel somehow don't belong. Trust your subconscious to lead you to an arrangement that will help you focus on what is vital to you here and now. Pull in more words. Don't think about it. Trust yourself. Drag words off. You will be amazed to see that something is slowly coming into focus. Perhaps a story idea. Perhaps an idea for an improv scene. Perhaps an idea for a drawing. Perhaps the answer to a question or problem that's been tugging at you.

If the screen is filling up with words and the idea is becoming jumbled, simply pull words out that don't seem to resonate. If you need another character for your first character to interact with, pull on words and pull out words until you find that character. If you need another location, do the same thing. If you need another spark, do the same. By the time you are back down to two or three or four words, the idea will seem to pulse with life. Then you take the next step. You create.

This goes to the very core of how our minds work. Confronted with chaos, our potential for creative genius simply snaps into action.

Get improvi now at the Apple App Store for only .99 (available for iphone, ipod and ipad).

More ideas:

CONNECTIONS - make connections with what came before. This is the nature of creativity... new connections. A tenant of improv is "move forward looking back". Incorporate what has come before and a meaningful story will emerge.
COMMIT TO WHAT IS THERE - No matter what is pulled in, commit yourself to using it - 1 word only, 2 words, 3 words, 4 words
STORYTIME  - tell your child a bedtime story - a new word or object for each step of the 7-step story (once upon a time, every day, until one day, because of this, because of this, finally, ever since that day)
BACKWARD WORD STORM - Fill the screen with words and objects, then slowly intuitively pull them away until an idea reveals itself
WORD IN WORD OUT - Bring in 4 words, then "word in - word out" until an idea emerges
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? - Begin telling a story. When you feel yourself losing momentum, pull in a new word or object and proceed from there
FIRST DATE - Consider using this on a first date to get to know one another :)