Imitation with a Difference

In composition classes, Cleve Wieze recommends the practice of "imitation with a difference," that is,

have students rewrite or even perform specific passages from literature in different styles or forms, for different real or imagined contexts and audiences (poetry into prose, past into present, etc.). Or better yet, have them recreate passages in entirely new mediums: For example, a scene from a novel could be “imitated” in multimodal form as a performance, video, animation, Photoshop image, even a game. By using the text as cue for invention rather than stable artifact, this kind of transposition would actually force students to focus more closely on the text itself, determining exactly what – at the level of style – constitutes its specific effects on readers and how those effects can be recreated in a different style, format, and medium.