Creative Journal Writing with Timothy Sullivan!

Did you read part 1 and part 2 of this series already?

If you are philosophically inclined, (who isn’t, really) a triad triviality may suggest a question, an enigma or existential conundrum you could explore, research, expound upon. I mean, we all have questions. Big ones and trivial ones. Can you connect those to word triplets? 

How you engage those questions reveals the kind of philosopher you are. Or, rather your usual philosophic style or way of dealing with them. Are you a stoic, a cynic, an idealist or realist? Perhaps you actually use a different attitude for different situations, or with different people. 

Do your favourite or preferred triplexes reveal your philosophic disposition or attitude?  

Triplexes and triads suggests a way to do inquiry. I mean radical inquiry: diving into your life exigencies, dilemmas, and conflicts with a playful poise, using your creativity, intuition and mindfulness in novel ways to understand, accept and resolve them. 

Or to just to ponder the mystery of those enigma variations. 

If you are more scholarly minded, or just an everyday philosopher pondering questions about reality, the cosmos, or human nature, triplets suggested by the sciences, physical or social, may be a way to speculate and explore new ideas, new ramifications of extant theories. Create new ones. 

Or, even suggest ideas for science fiction stories. The writer in you lurks about, peeks into all your endeavours, real or imaginal. 

A friend of mine wrote a PhD dissertation on the theme: movies, memes and morphic fields. This brought together art, science and semiotics into an exploration of today’s culture and the transmission of ideas, true and false. 

That phrase was also the initial spark that fired my imagination and impelled me to write down those alliterative triplets arriving every so often.  

So, let’s get ready, stoke the fire, discover the aim and rename the game: Triplets, trivialities inspire significant pursuits.

Here is more variations:

Choose a triplet, find it’s opposite or contrary. You decide what that ‘opposite’ is for yourself. Start a conversation in your journal between them, a back and forth, a dialogue or dialectic. See where it goes. 

Come up with a name or tag for one triplet and another name for it’s contrary, in order to make it less cumbersome to write about. 

For example: Fraction, frission and fumbling may be called Mr. Dreary, while daring, doable and undaunting is Ms. Abegail. Where have they met? How do they get along? 

Then, later on, or the next day, read and reflect. There may be more journaling at this point to capture your new questions and insights.  

Other ways to use your triplets creatively:

Are you a visual artist? Create a collage where each word suggests an image, or a theme for a bevy of images. Paint a tone-poem abstract in three colours, diversified with subtle shadings, and appropriate chiaroscuro. What colour does each word evoke?

Or, perhaps you first choose the three-colour palette, then find the words that go with each colour. You may see the threesomes as a colour combo playing off a word gestalt. Here, we relax the earlier requirement that the words begin with the same letter. 

Red, yellow, and blue can pair with troubling, tried and true, for example. This may suggest an image, which you then can sketch out, or spontaneously paint with your acrylics, pastels, or coloured pencils. 

Maybe you create a triptych. Does that composition and associated triplex suggest a title for it?

Does the painting & triplex together suggest a story, that you just have to write?  

Are you a musician? Compose a tune, a melody perhaps in the key suggested by the first letter of a triplet. Each word could be a chord to harmonize the melody in that key. Lots of possibilities here. Use a jazzy chord progression, like Dm7 to G7b5 to Cmaj7. What words would correspond to those chords?

You are a lover of music, this I know. So, song titles and lyrics can be another inspiration for triplicities, or vice versa. How would you go about that exploration?

There are an infinite possibilities once you get the general idea.  

About the Author:  Timothy Sullivan is an artist, painter, writer, and philosopher.  He is also a member of the You can learn more about his work on his website >>