Creating “Spine” Stories

If you are like me, you’ve never heard of a Spine Story (or Poem) before.  I hadn’t until I read Erica’s wonderful children’s blog “What Do We Do All Day?” about a Summer Literacy BINGO game.

In the game, some of the squares were titled; learn a new song, finish a crossword puzzle, read a book outside, listen to an audiobook, and write a comic strip. As the the kids do each thing, they cross off the square. Five in a row means a BINGO win.

The square that caught my eye  was, create a spine poem.

I’d never heard of a spine poem before so I clicked on a link to her page that explained them. Of course, if you’ve viewed the photos in this post, you will already know what one is. I call them stories instead of poems. A real challenge would be to do a Haiku poem in Spines.

I’ve yet to create one myself, but by the end of this post, I promise to put one together to share. Meanwhile, here are a few in Erica’s post.

(In case you can’t read the above Spines, they say “How to Write Poetry” “Brainstorm” “Where do You Get Your Ideas?” “All the world.”)

At the end of her blog on Spine Poems, she added a link to 100 Scope Notes which had a slew more of these poems/stories, titled “2013 Book Spine Poem Gallery”. There are other years of galleries available too. Lots of laughs and some really good Aligned Spines.

Okay, here are a few I tried. (haha) It was actually more fun than I thought. Once I’d done two, I saw many more possibilities!

Now it’s your turn.

Gather some of the books on your shelves or TBR stacks and try to create a few stories or poems?  I’d love to see a photo, or just write the titles in your comment below. Hey, you are very talented storysmiths. Let’s see what story you can tell… from your bookcase? Create a cool, scary, funny, mysterious, clever, or romantic “aligned spines” story.


Erica’s Literacy Bingo page:

Erica’s Spine Poetry page:

100 Scope Notes Book Spine Galleries:

Author: Jackie Houchin

First, I am a believer in Jesus Christ, so my views and opinions are filtered through what God's Word says and I believe. I'm a wife, a mom, a grandma and now a great grandma. I write articles and reviews, and I dabble in short fiction. I enjoy living near the ocean, doing gardening (for beauty and food) and traveling - in other countries, if possible. My heart is for Christian missions, and I'm compiling a collections of Missionary Kids' stories to publish. (I also like kittens and cats and reading mysteries.)

11 thoughts on “Creating “Spine” Stories”

  1. Goodness, Jackie, you always find the most amazing ideas to do with writing. Spine poems are a great and simple way to inspire us. Each will be unique as writers’ tastes are eclectic and our piles will all be different as far as the order we pile the books into. It is also a great way to interest children in poetry. I hope a few teachers bring the idea into their classrooms. Thank you for telling us about this new (to me) kind of writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What an interesting way to start a story or poem. I can imagine doing that with a bunch of mystery book spines. They tell a bit of a story on their own. Thanks, Jackie, for the post.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. No, I didn’t see until you pointed out! Duh, how wonderful…goes perfect with What Elephants Know! I’m not too good at the stacking, but brought to the front of my mind a lot of books I’d forgotten about. Fun…

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow, looks as if I’d better spend some time just sorting through my books to check out their spines! What a novel idea–and/or nonfiction. And potentially fun. Thanks for an enjoyable post!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What a terrific idea! You really do find fascinating stories, Jackie. Of course you’ve given us another diversion: to rearrange our shelves of books into new story lines…. but such fun for our very creative imaginations. Thanks for a great post.

    Liked by 1 person

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