Creating a rough sketch

Okay, now let's take all that free association and channel it into a rough sketch of our concept.

We're not going to look at the original snippet for this, we're just writing notes, but we do want to answer two questions:

  1. What is this experience? What do you feel? What do you see and hear? In concrete terms?
  2. What is it like? If you could boil it down to a metaphor, what would it be? 

Try to button your metaphor, meaning wrap it up in a punchy statement.

Here are examples for our drive-thru and everything-falls-apart themes:


Drive-thru window during a meal deal is an endless parade of entitled customers, arguing, fussing, fighting, shouting into the speaker, but you can’t hear them over the roar of their own truck, they want to argue about codes and coupons, they don’t follow instructions, want you to be fast but they’re not ready themselves, with their cash, cards, decisions. You want to quit but you’re trapped.


It’s like the internet: a stream of haters in your mentions, yelling at you, except you can’t block them, you just have to keep on tapping and swiping. They are in your feed, in your DMs, in your ears, in that little window. 

Eventually the best thing you can do is close the window and walk away.


Life is a trick. You think you own things, but you only ever subscribe to them. They always fall apart. Need to be replaced. That goes for relationships as well as objects. There’s this constant entropy. You have to work to get anything, and then you have to keep putting in all this effort just to keep what you have, and it’s never enough.


It’s like swimming against an endless current, whether it’s time, or a solar wind, or gravity, if you stand still you are worn down and blown away. We’re all sailing against it, some better than others, but eventually everything wears away.

What starts out a stream becomes a flood, backed by an ocean as big as the universe.

You can see how these are plain language, we're not trying to model the Macbeth snippet too closely.

We're just writing in prose, like a journal entry, trying to consolidate our thoughts.

Here are your word-association notes from the previous page, for reference. Write your own sketch. Describe the experience of disappointment. How might you express it as a metaphor? Delete the old notes when you are done.

Copy stamp

We strongly suggest you copy your brainstorming notes to a Word doc or similar so you can refer back to them easily as you go through this lesson.