“I believe the act of writing is itself the muse.” Bret Anthony Johnston
Thanks to Cheryl Sease who presented another informative workshop at our IRN meeting today, I have some ideas to share with you.
The old stand-by is brain storming. This is an exercise you can do by yourself or with a group. One suggestion I have heard is to write down 20 ideas and then write down 20 more. By then you will have gone past the cliche’s and come up with something fresh. If you are doing it in a group you could just start with a prompt and have everyone brainstorm and share their ideas.
The next method was free writing. If you have never tried this, you should. Just turn off your editor and start writing whatever comes into your head. Some people suggest setting a timer and don’t stop until the time is up. No editing.Some writers say that you should do this with pen and paper rather than on your PC. Personally I would do whatever works for you.
One of my favorite books is ‘The Writer’s Book of Days’. It is packed full of writing information and a daily prompt. I have used the prompt for my current work in progress. I just direct my brainstorming toward how I can use that prompt for a scene in my story. If you have never thought of this, do give it a try. There are also websites where you can sign up for a daily prompt. Some will email it to you. That can be dangerous though. To meet my daily writing goals, it really is best if I avoid the internet. It can really suck me in. Before I know it, I need to head to bed and did not achieve my goal. I have to watch my internet use and the time I spend watching T.V. I try to use that as a reward for meeting my goals and that may be another post for in the future.
How do you begin your projects? What do you do to get your ideas? Please feel free to comment and share and if you don’t mind I would love to highlight your ideas in a future post.
Next week I will have some more methods for kick starting your project.
If you live in the Des Moines Area and are interested in local writer’s groups. I belong to Iowa Romance Novelists, a local chapter of RWA. We meet monthly to critique and have a program about the business of writing. Feel free to contact me for more information. If you lean more toward mysteries, I also belong to SINC-IA, a local chapter of Sisters in Crime.
Until then, keep writing.