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Five Quick Steps To Start Writing

cartoon owl reading a book illustrating an article about five quick steps to start writingWHY IS IT HARD TO JUST START WRITING?

Whether we are just beginning to write, or have been writing for years, sometimes just getting started can seem difficult.

Why?

Does it mean we don’t want to write?

Or, maybe we have forgotten something important – the reason we wanted to write in the first place.

Even established writers can lose sight of their earlier motivation.

Often these early motivations are the strongest and that’s why it is so important to get back in touch with whatever it is that motivates us.

I have created a process that I know will work – all you have to do is try.

I have made this process as easy as I can by breaking it down into five quick steps. I recommend you print out this page before you begin.

1. DECIDE WHEN TO WRITE

Choose a time and a day when you have some free time to write. Write this in your diary – like an appointment.

If you need help with time management click here for some great tips.

Make your family aware that this is your private time. Explain that you need to be free from interruptions in order to concentrate.

If you really can’t do this then choose somewhere away from home like a library of cafe.

Once you have designated a place to write – keep it private.

Finish this sentence:

I AM GOING TO WRITE IN…

 

2. DECIDE WHAT TO WRITE

Buy a small notebook and designate this as your ideas book.

Make the notebook small (pocket-size) enough to bring everywhere with you.

two dogs in the sea illustrating an article about five quick steps to start writingRemember that ideas come from everywhere; from our life experience and that of others, from newspaper and magazine articles, from people we see in our everyday lives – everywhere you can think of.

Keep asking yourself questions. Ask yourself what if. What human situation intrigues me? What makes me fascinated, angry, curious, happy, sad?

Keep another notebook by the bed. Sometimes ideas come at night when you are sleepy and relaxed. If you don’t write them down – I can almost guarantee you that the ideas will be gone by morning.

Finish this sentence:

I AM GOING TO WRITE ABOUT…

 

3. KILL YOUR INNER CRITIC

Please note I said ‘inner’ critic! I am definitely not advocating killing anyone who criticizes your work – however tempting that may be.

No, what I mean by inner critic is the internal voice that expresses your personal doubts and fear. Writers often experience this, particularly in the early stages.

To subdue this voice try telling yourself:

Writing is a craft that improves with experience and practice.

The more I write the more I will gain experience, learn and improve.

My writing is mine. My experiment, my journey of discovery.

Finish this sentence:

I WILL KILL MY INNER CRITIC BY…

 

4. START GETTING MOTIVATED

Find out why you want to write in first place. Could it be one of the following?

Writing is enjoyable. You like it or, like me, you love it.  After all it is one of the most rewarding as well as inexpensive of past times.

drawing of woman reading to illustrate illustrating an article about five quick steps to start writingWriting is your chance to have your say on a wide variety of subjects.

You get to experience the world through the eyes of your characters.

The freedom. Think about it. You can be outrageous, bizarre, horrifying, sexy, hilarious, terrifying, sad, funny, satirical – what ever you want.

You can do it in your pyjamas with hair monkey hair!

I want to make money without leaving my house.

 

Finish this sentence:

I WANT TO WRITE BECAUSE…

 

5. SET YOUR GOALS

Some writers find setting goals helpful. Maybe a word target, i.e. 500 words a day, or per week – as long as it is suitable for you.

Some set word targets i.e. 5 pages per week or 25 pages per week.

Maybe your free time varies from week to week, so maybe a monthly target suits you better say 30 pages per month.

If you prefer you can set goals in terms of completed work. So a short story by the end of the month or a novel in 12 months.

Only you can set these goals. You know what is realistic in terms of the free time you have available and only you know the pace of your own writing.

You may begin to write faster after a while, or you may find some more time.

Review your goals carefully then as long as you keep them in mind and keep them realistic, you will soon have a good writing routine as well as a decent stack of pages to motivate you even more.

Finish this sentence:

MY WRITING GOALS ARE …

 

I hope these exercises help you as much as they helped me. If you would like to try some more creative writing exercises click here.

By the way, if you find writing goals is not for you, that’s okay. This is not a one size fits all approach.

There have been times where I have found setting goals extremely helpful and yet at other times ‘deleting’ my goals has had an invigorating effect on me.

Sometimes you need to simply see what happens when you rip up the to-do list.

Best of luck with your writing.

Grace

P.S. All the creative writing tips and information are provided here free for you. All I ask is that you leave a comment in the box and like, or share so that others may learn too.

 

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