Take a Walk on the Creative Side of Your Mind!
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Take a Walk on the Creative Side of Your Mind!
Outsmart the Unexpected is a collection of suspense-filled, no-time-to-lose, unusual, impossible predicaments where it's up to you to figure a way out of the fix the central character ultimately finds themselves in. How will things end? - Happily? In a twist? In more of a muddle?
Use them to sharpen your ability to find creative solutions to sudden predicaments and strengthen your ability to think on your feet.
In the course of life, problems may suddenly arise and they may sometimes be things you've never dealt with before. So your mental filing cabinet of experiences and skills can only partially assist in coming up with a solution. Most of the predicaments in this book you will hopefully never encounter. You'll need to apply your creativity and work the problem in order to find a solution. You won't just be able to grab onto the familiar. You'll also have to decide where your and the character's boundaries are -- what you're capable of mentally, morally, and emotionally when faced with a situation you didn't see coming.
In some, you may need to suspend your disbelief to play along (Read that sentence one more time!). Some will make your head spin. Others may make your heart pound. Still others will make you go hmmm. But, all will stretch your brain and help you develop your creativity and ability to make successful decisions when there's little information to work with and you have to come up with a response in a hurry.
Try your hand at inventing different endings and discussing and debating the possible solutions or interesting outcomes that you came up with. Your mission in reading this book (should you choose to accept it) is to put your creativity in overdrive and start thinking in different directions searching for possibilities.
Do you think that the best solutions come from asking the right questions? Get your brain humming thinking up what those questions would be. Do you enjoy dreaming up your own endings? Let your imagination run wild.
Dive in and bring your creative side with you!
Fun way to keep your mind sharp
It is an interesting concept for a book and it encourages readers to use their imaginations. The situations the characters find themselves in can sometimes seem very dire and in some cases I found myself thinking, "Oh no! This cannot end well", but the beauty of the book is that if you like happy endings, it is up to you to use your creativity to find one.
The book encourages you to ask questions and analyze the various scenarios from different angles. What are the issues? What significant information is omitted? What reasonable solutions (or unreasonable solutions) are possible? This book is a fun activity for an evening home with friends (game night for critical thinkers). You can read the book out loud and discuss the possible outcomes. It is interesting to see what conclusion other people draw and their reasoning. The discussions can lead to some very stimulating conversations and your friends may even surprise you with the conclusions they draw. You may even gain some new insights into your own creativity and critical thinking skills.
Excellent supplemental material
This book is a great opportunity to work with a teen program on thinking quickly. I thought of several book talks or teen reading programs (that's the librarian in me) where I used this book to engage students in thinking quickly about tense, crazy situations, and how to best get out of a bad situation. I'm glad I received this e-book. I intend to reread it for future activities.
Give your personal creativity a shot in the arm
In this debut effort the author presents us with bite-size stories that stop just short of the climax leaving the reader to ponder " what happens?" . In fact, that's our task - to determine the answer to that question based on how we've understood the stories and read the clues. There are no right or wrong conclusions just different ones depending upon the readers interpretation, imagination and creativity. It's like having a friend present you with a dilemma , tell you how he's thinking of attacking it and asking for your advice and when you give it, you find out he had something else in mind altogether. Or being confronted with a situation at work that you've never before encountered requiring you to think on your feet and find a workable solution. It's even a bit like wondering what will happen next Fall when your favorite show leaves you hanging after this season 's finale. Do the police catch the murderer? Does the wounded character survive? As a viewer, you have all kinds of theories about how the situation will be resolved and presented when the show returns, but the producers may come up with something else entirely. It just proves that there are many ways to skin the proverbial cat.
In this book the reader only gets the highlights of the situation that the character is facing and has to work with information that is often "sketchy" or "sparse", as she points out, so you don't just have to come up with an ending, you have to fill in the gaps along the way. By supposing what's in those gaps, you have more information to help you arrive at a logical conclusion and help the character out of his fix. You may have an "aha" and come up with a solution right away and other times you'll have to let things marinate a little before you settle on your answer, but however you reach your conclusion, it will tell you a little about how you solve problems. The stories provide avid puzzlers with some brain exercise that requires analysis and deduction and by extension asks them to consider the consequences of their proposed outcomes.
The book challenges us to look beyond the ordinary, because as much as we're weighing alternatives all the time when we see things play out around us, we don't often come across the kinds of situations we see in her book, but they are good training to help us hone our decision-making skills. From mystery to mayhem and anywhere from 1 1/2 to 5 pages in length, these stories are just long and involved enough to get your creative juices bubbling without bogging you down with a lot of extraneous detail. It's a fun, entertaining way to spark your inner artist.
Outsmart the Unexpected would make great material for a book club discussion or a terrific teaching aid for a writing class, similar to books like The Artists Way which asks the reader to build a story around an ordinary object randomly placed . It can make for some very active discussions without any reprecussions for making the "wrong" decision.
We've all heard that keeping the mind active and exercised will help keep it healthy so if your're looking for something besides crossword puzzles and Sudoku, Outsmart the Unexpected is a good tool to add to your repetoire.
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