Top Tips for Writing
While the essence of good writing is rewriting, persistence is arguably even more important to progression as a writer. The saying that genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration is very much applicable here. Only by actively working on your writing and learning from past mistakes can you grow as a writer and find your voice.
Here are a few tips if you’re struggling to get started or still trying to find that inspiration:
Keep a journal
Using your environment can help to stimulate ideas which can be incorporated into a story to establish a sense of realism. This could be from using events in your own life, or just observations from daily life. Sometimes ideas can come unexpectedly so it might be useful to carry a notebook to jot these down. If you’re looking to write something more abstract, what I like to do for inspiration is keep track of dreams instead.
To overcome writer’s block, sometimes it’s good to just mind map writing briefs and give yourself a theme (this could be a colour, myths, fairytales etc.) to work with. I would aim to write about 300-500 words initially and see where it takes you. It could be that it develops into a more fully fleshed idea, or it opens the door to stimulate further inspiration.
Structure is secondary to content
If I’m already starting out with a vague idea of my direction, I always find it’s easier to just write about subjects/events as they come to me. So, I will type out a few sentences or scenes which sound like they might add value to the story, and then worry about piecing them together into a more coherent sequence later on. I like to think of it as a jigsaw in this regard.
Finally, if you’re still struggling to get started, then my last tip would be to read around. It can be helpful to just dive in and read a book which is a similar genre to what you want to write or is written by an author that inspires you personally. Take notes on what they do well and particular extracts which resonated with you and consider how you might incorporate some of that inspiration and innovate your own writing with it.