Thanks to a latte at Atlantis, I finished the last essay an hour ago. Six words, was the assignment. Pick six words, follow them into your personal material, see what you see.
Students need help doing this. Any connection between writing and joy has nearly vanished, but an assignment like this one gives it a chance, that was my idea anyway.
A few writers ran with it--for some reason, I think of horses--and seemed to feel frisky. After all or before all, the writer who turns down the road into his/her own stories doesn't have to run far. A few follow-up assignments would kick things along even further.
All that's left to grade: final exams.