Day 13 – Gabriela Pereira Sings Nursery Rhymes


Choose a nursery rhyme.

That is going to be the plot of your story.

The key with this exercise is that now choose an author whose voice you love.

Write that story with that character, but in the voice of the author you chose.

Bonus Prompt

This is actually a great prompt to do more than once. Once you’ve done this exercise, you may want to come back to it after the StoryADay challenge and do it again, choosing different writers as the inspiration for the voice.

If you do this, use the same Nursery Rhyme each time. Then you’ll start to get a sense of how, when you’re putting on another author’s voice, you’re sort of wearing that author’s voice suit, how your voice behaves in that ecosystem, and eventually you’ll start to get a sense for what your voice is and what you bring to the table that is completely unique and you can then, write.

After you’ve done it two or three times, I want to challenge you to write that same story in your own voice with your own storytelling awesomeness. This is a great exercise to practice stretching yourself a little bit in terms of your voice, but also to help you find your voice.

People always say, you need to find your voice. Well, you never lost it in the first place. It’s always been there. This will just help you uncover. The things that make your voice especially unique. So there you have it, the Nursery Rhyme Exercise


Gabriela Pereira is a writer, teacher, and self-proclaimed word nerd who wants to challenge the status quo of higher education. As the founder and instigator of DIYMFA.com, her mission is to empower writers to take an entrepreneurial approach to their education and professional growth. Gabriela earned her MFA in creative writing from The New School and teaches at national conferences, at local workshops, and online. She is also the host of DIY MFA Radio, a popular podcast where she interviews best-selling authors and offers short audio master classes. 

Gabriela is a long-time friend of both myself and the StoryADay community. To find out more about DIY MFA, click here

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Leave a comment to let us know what you wrote about today, and how it went!

11 thoughts on “Day 13 – Gabriela Pereira Sings Nursery Rhymes”

  1. I chose ‘Little Bo Peep ‘ and the author I chose was Tracy Chevalier. I tried to fulfil the challenge but it came out very disappointingly! I think this really stretches me do I will revisit it. It fies make you search for a voice.
    Thank you.

  2. Challenged. I’ve chosen Bye, baby Bunting and Sara Douglass. I will come back to this one. Needs more thought.

  3. Loved this prompt as well! I chose Little Miss Muffet and wrote the story using E.B. White’s voice/Charlotte’s Web for inspiration. Instead of Fern asking where Papa’s going with that ax, this story starts with Miss Muffet’s mother asking Miss Muffet where she’s going with that swatter. Then the mother spares the spider’s life by getting Miss Muffet to see that spiders are helpful, not frightening.

  4. Having to think about this one! I’m dithering about the nursery rhyme and the author to choose!
    I’ll definitely come back to this exercise as I can totally see the value of it.

  5. 833 Words of Goldilocks and the three bears in the style of Gertrude Stein. It didn’t go well for Goldi, she was careless. Great fun!

  6. Three Blind Mice, super real, with a farmer’s wife who is skilled with a knife.

    This was fun!

  7. Humpty Dumpty in the style of Mickey Spillane. Sort of a Good Fellas feel of walking on eggs. Good prompt. Nice exercise. Thank you Julie and Gabriela Pereira.

    1. Oh, you’re the second person I’ve seen using Mickey Spillane, but the other one was Jack & Jill. Super fun!

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