Lots of people love the idea of becoming a writer, so why is it that so few actually do? The problem most beginning writers face is not knowing where to begin.
The answer is that you can only begin when you begin. Thinking about it doesn’t count. What you need to do is start now. If you don’t have a clue what to write about yet, that’s fine.
Many writers start without a particular project in mind. In fact that could be a good thing. It means that you will free to start without feeling pressure to write that big story.
The best place to start is with writing exercises. These give you valuable experience, unlock your ideas and promote good writing habits.
Learning good writing habits is vital. If you are to bring your project to completion then you will need to start writing regularly.
To do this make appointments for your writing in your diary and keep them. Short, half hour writing sessions are better than one big exhausting and long session – every now and again.
Exhaustion isn’t motivating, but leaving your writing session feeling fresh and eager to carry on will fire your enthusiasm. Scheduling your time to make room for your writing will ensure you do this.
Any writer who has been published will tell you stories about friends and family members who casually mention that they could have written a book too – if only they had the time.
The implication is that they could have written a book if they chose, but had better things to do! Like I said above, everybody wants to have written – not so many want to write.
So do writers get extra time? No – we’re all on twenty-four hour days but it is up to us how we use those hours.
Maeve Binchy, who when she was alive, was one of the highest earning writers, started her career by getting up an hour earlier to write.
She did this in addition to holding down her full-time job. Even if you’re not a morning person you can still swap a single hour of television, or reading for an hour of writing – couldn’t you?
BEING A WRITER MEANS WRITING
Nobody in their right mind would offer their services as a concert pianist if they just read a book about playing the piano and never actually sat down to play. We all know it takes practice and time.
If you wait for inspiration that’s all you will do – wait. While you are waiting, others are busy writing.
There are lots of ways to get started and I have lots of ways to inspire you and help you.
Start by visiting any of the following pages. These contain different writing activities and exercises designed to get you writing straight away.
THE POWER OF YOUR IMAGINATION
The best place to start is with exercises and you can begin with any of them. I also recommend starting by learning how to use the power of your imagination.
OPEN YOUR MIND WITH CREATIVE WRITING ACTIVITIES
Very often we go through life with our minds closed to certain things. For example – you might dislike historical drama or fiction without ever having really thought about why this is.
It may be simply that you once saw a bad historical film, or were forced to read a certain book that you simply didn’t like. A great way to open your mind is to do things you haven’t done before.
Don’t worry, you don’t have to go hang-gliding or shark fishing (unless you really want to) there are lots of easier ways to stretch your imagination and I have lots of tried and tested suggestions on my creative writing activities post.
JOURNAL WRITING – A PRACTICAL APPROACH
Some people swear by journal writing and this can be a useful tool to help stimulate and organize your ideas. There are many ways to do this – from scribbling your thoughts on waking to collecting random images.
If these work for you then keep on doing it. However, if you would like to try a more practical approach then try my easy to follow guidelines on journal writing for the creative writer.
If you still think there’s some big mystery or secret to creativity – there’s more practical information about how to be creative here.
Whatever you do, just remember – it’s all about the writing.
Best of luck