Friday Writing Experiment No. 12: The Power of Four

I was reminded the other day of the Blue Peter advent crown. Made from wire coathangers, four candles, and some tinsel and balls, it was made and remade every year. They adapted the ritual (I think), and rather than lighting the candle each Sunday before Christmas they’d light a candle on each of the four twice-weekly episodes running up to it, Mondays and Thursdays. We made one at home, though I am not sure we ever really rigged up the candles.

It makes me think about the magic of four. Four elements, four seasons, four gospels, four corners of a room, the balance of four legs on a table. Balance, structure, harmony.

And those candles bringing light into the world.

Write something (a short story, a flash fiction, a poem) in four roughly equal parts. Four sections that shed light on each other. You can make it Christmassy if you want. Or Solstice. Or End of the World.

PS I discovered after I posted this that today is the last day (and right now it’s 23:59!) of children’s programming on BBC One. It’s all moving to the CBBC digital channel. I guess that the tv shows will survive, but in a margin, no longer part of that unifying teatime of the Clangers, Jackanory, Hector, and Val and John and Peter.

End of an era. It makes me wonder what fills that gap, or how this changes that slot, or how this pattern of consumption will reflect itself (light again) in future generations.

Go make something magical to compensate.




  1. Vanessa

    I didn’t make this – but far more essential I remember making the comic binder from coat hanger and wool … I think. Had it for years. Happy Christmas Andrew x

    • Andrew

      I vaguely remember the comic binder but my fave was always the wizard puppet I made out of a dishmop, a Jif lemon, and some purple felt. Happy Christmas to you, too xxx

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