squeeeeee~ from excitement first of all: you’re gonna write something! yaaay! whether it be the next bestseller book, a groundbreaking article, or a heartthrob love song, the point is, there is something valuable inside you, wanting so badly to come alive! it is trapped in your mind, begging to be released into the real world, and that’s where you, the writer come in: your job is to breathe life into it, give it wings, and set this new little creature loose in the world.
…but how to do it?
maybe you’ve spend a lot of time planning, reading about, ruminating on the ideal conditions and techniques to write, while longingly visualising your final masterpiece, and then noticed that moe and more time is passing, and meanwhile the work is still not doing itself! damn!
i know this feeling very well because i’ve fallen prey to it myself.
before i launch into unravelling my touching origin story (every villain needs one, lol), i need to say that the single most meaningful advice that i follow to this day is: GIT YO BACKSIDE ON THE CHAIR AND JUST START! 😀 there ain’t no better time than the big, fat NOW!
i was always known to have a vivid imagination, with worlds within worlds inside my head, and years ago, still in my teens (ugh cue the feeling of oldness) i finally picked out one of those worlds and wrote a 200something page novel about it, whilst wilfully neglecting my school work. i the reread it, thought it wasn’t good enough, then… became embroiled in the epidemic of good grades, college hassle and the compulsive need to chase a future. since writing was “just a pastime”, it was, at least in my mind’s construct, not allowed to be important, unless there was some idle time that really needed filling. yeah right. idle time never just pops up. it meeds to be created. unfortunately, at this time, i don’t know that yet.
Fast forward a few years and I’m turning my world upside down, the exact details of which I will spare you, the point being that I was ready to become more… life-affirming? idk. whatever. On Christmas Eve 2016 I create a new file on my laptop called “Chapter Template.doc”. For the rest of December, that is all the progress I make, but it was a start. In the beginning of January I finally sit down and consciously, with determination, start with the first sentences. Now we are nearing end of February and i am almost done with chapter 7! *creepy heavy breathing*
So how did this happen? Not by magic, though it certainly felt like it. The simple things that suddenly glared me in the eye were the following:
- What we do with our time is a consequence of our decisions. ONLY. Therefore, we are empowered to MAKE TIME for things we really want, like, writing! In my case I cut out the absolutely unproductive time of scrolling around on facebook, which I never enjoyed anyway, and abracadabra, already some free time! With the first such “weed” found, it becomes easier to find even more.
- Don’t treat it as “just a pastime” if you want it to be more. I’m not telling you to quit your job or anything but the point is to set clear goals and boundaries, for example: Resolve to write for 1 hour each day, uninterrupted. That means no emails, no messages, no social media, etc.
- Is the blank page creeping you out? The emptiness at the beginning of a new story can be daunting. Start by building a world, and it will be filled in no time! What can you see there? What is the sky like? Any smells? Sounds? Movement? You can always come up with the perfect first sentence later. More on worldbuilding in another post :3
- Use useless snippets of time (like waiting for the perpetually late countryside bus) to plan ahead and write kind of mini-drafts of a dialogue, action sequence or whatever will come next. This wil be really helpful when you suddenly sit there and want to make progress.
- You don’t need to be a genious, have a flashy diploma, or be a renowned expert, t write something worthwile! You also don’t need to be rich, have a prestigious job, the perfect family, or “have control over your life” in order to “be allowed” to start writing. The only one you need permission from is yourself!
So with this in mind, grab your laptop or paper (does anyone still write their manuscripts on paper? just curious) and get started! Let the seedling inside your head grow wings and become… become what? That’s up to you :3 personally I hope mine becomes a cute little monster with sharp teeth. :3 I really hope that I have inspired or helped one/some of you reading this ^_^ till next time~