The process of writing creatively with no pressure opens up and loosens the
mind. If you can get rid of the risk of writer’s block before you start then that’s a good first step.
For me, that exercise gets me into the mindset to get my ideas on paper. Something else may work for you.
Once that’s done then I follow these steps:
I use a Saturday as my ideas day, which gives me a specific time and day where I focus only on idea creation. It means I have a purpose-built time to focus only on that work. It also gives me a week to think about my writing. That breathing space lets my subconscious get creative.
I get my list of ideas out. For this is an A4 legal pad because I like to still write with a pen and paper some of the time. An excel spreadsheet or word document may be an upgrade on this.
Normally I’m able to come up with at least 5 of those ideas myself. Once I get through the ideas in my head, I move to social media and look at what’s trending. If I feel I can write about a topic then it goes into the list.
I like to try and list out around 10 ideas at a time. If I have more then that’s great, but 10 is the minimum. These can be anything and everything. I never limit myself to the topics I could write about.
The next step is to run my idea’s through google. Anything that people are searching for is worth writing about. If it’s only you that’s searching the topic, then chances are it’s not going to be so interesting.
Those are the steps that work well for me. I have been using this system for the last 6 months. It’s given me the tools I need to write consistently and without the pressure to generate ideas out of thin air.
Like anything else writing is a process. Starting with step 1, if there is a consistent process and approach to idea generation. Your chances of success will increase.
Poetry is another great way to flex your writing muscles. Its also one with few rule’s!
Poetry, the ultimate in short storytelling.
If you have been thinking of flexing your creative writing muscles. It’s a great place to start.
There are very few rules in poetry at least when you’re starting out. It’s more about free thinking and expression.
You need some structure to the verses but that’s really about it. What you do within those is up to you.
As a way to start writing short stories and fiction, poetry is pretty hard to beat.
Got writer’s block or need an exercise that gets you into the zone?
Poetry again is great for that, you don’t need to share it and it doesn’t need to make sense. What it will do is open up your mind, get you writing, and provide some inspiration.
Since there is no word count and minimal editing required, the pressure to produce the goods is not there.
If you have ever thought about trying it, I’d say give it a go.
Poetry as an art form for a writer is seriously underrated. It’s a very useful tool to get your mind ready for a day’s writing. It will also take you to places as a writer that you never thought you would go.
Poetry has taken me into the world of short storytelling and longer fiction pieces. Something I never thought possible.
Switching to poetry on my writing days when I start to struggle also keeps me in the zone for longer.
It’s a great tool to learn how to improve your writing
Let’s get this out of the way first. I’m not being paid by nor am I in anyway connected to Grammarly. I simply tried the free version and saw a huge improvement in my writing. Because of that I wanted to share.
Writing tools, they are everywhere. So is the advice on what to use. It can be confusing, there is so much information online.
As someone who started writing online recently. I resisted that advice for a long time.
Why would I want to write in a program where a computer tells you how good your writing is?
It’s a valid question.
There are people who will insist that it’s pointless and won’t help you in the long run. They believe that the computer will take over writing for you.
For the rest of us though, these free to use tools can be invaluable. Many of us who decide to write don’t have a formal education in it. Writing is hard enough without having to worry about structure and grammar all the time.
While we should edit our work without mercy. There is nothing worse than our internal editor showing up to ruin the writing process.
That’s where free writing tools come into their own. You can write in them without distraction. Knowing that when you are finished the software has run through your work. There is a list of tips there that you can action to start the editing process.
This approach works for me, for two reasons:
1. I love a long sentence. These programs train me to keep it short and structured. 2. I struggle with Grammar, if I don’t have help then my writing is hit and miss.
Once I’m done writing the story and reviewing it in Hemmingway. I move onto Grammarly.
Once that review is done, I move onto Medium and format it there. The last step is that I then read out loud, make any changes, and publish.
How Grammarly helps me in this process is:
– It gives me suggestions to clean up my spelling, grammar, and punctuation -It gives direction to the clarity of my writing. The direction, the engagement, and the clarity of what’s on the page come from the suggestions provided by the software.
As a free resource (there is a premium option) it’s fantastic. I don’t know of any other resource, that helps me as much in my writing.
Over time, my writing has improved. My understanding of grammar and punctuation has also increased and it’s helped me find my voice.
As a result, I spend less time using these programs to edit, which leaves me more time for writing. The engagement in my writing has increased and as a result, I find myself motivated to write even more.
If you have read the advice about these tools and thought it was all just hype. I would say take another look and spend 5 minutes exploring them.
I think you would be pleasantly surprised at what they have to offer and the lessons we can learn from using them.
If you ever wanted to try, there is no time like the present
If you have always wanted to write and didn’t know where to start, or if writing is a more recent dream, I have great news for you, its never been easier to get started, to learn from others on the same journey as you, and if you wish its never been easier to publish.
Writing can be a strange and frustrating pursuit if you let the process take control of you but it really doesn’t have to be that way.
There are so many ideas about what writing is and is not, and when you can really call yourself a writer.
None of them actually matter, the truth is writing is such a personal thing that, the only correct answer is the one that fulfills your passion and yuor expectations.
The important thing is to start at a pace that works for you, you may be shy, you may not know where to start and like most of us who want to write, you may be overthinking the whole thing.
The great thing to remember is that their really is no right or wrong, a word on the page or the screen, leads to a sentence, which leads to a paragraph which can lead to something magical.
It doesn’t matter if it takes five minutes, days, months or longer as long as its comfortable for you.
You could start journaling for yourself with pen and paper, a lot of people starting out enjoy the challenge, it lets us play around with words and structures and also has the really wonderful benefit of getting thoughts and feeling out of your mind onto a page, reducing stress and anxiety and also clearing your mind.
You could set up a blog, all you really need is a fantastic resource like medium or a website such as a free WordPress site and a smartphone and your all set to share your writing with the world.
You can draft and edit and play about with your writing as much as you like, and if you want to publish your writing and share it with others your one simple click of the mouse or touch of the screen away from becoming a published author.
As your confidence builds and if you want to pursue writing as something more than a hobby you could even apply to join the medium partner program and be paid for your work.
Again what you do with your writing, if and how you share it and if you want to make it more than a hobby are all up to you. No one is right and no one is wrong, what works for you is best.
One thing I can guarantee you though from someone who spent a long time, overthinking it and terrified to share anything in public, is that your far from alone, there is a whole community who stood in those same shoes and made the first step. In turn that means there is huge amount of help, resources and support out there to get you started and writing with confidence.