Whether you’re been writing for a long or short period of time, we sometimes need motivation to write. I’ve been writing since I was eight years old, but I sometimes get discouraged and lose motivation too.
Blogging is something that motivates my writing. It’s instant gratification. You write and publish instantly, and often get feedback very quickly. And if you have a fair amount of followers, all the better. You don’t have to wait months to hear from a publisher, magazine or journal. It’s out there for everyone to read.
A routine can be an incentive also. I usually write, depending on my appointments that day, right after breakfast. I associate that cereal, fruit and tea with writing and sometimes even start the process while I’m eating. I start thinking about what I’ll be writing after I finish. Writing after breakfast will also give you energy and prevent you from getting sluggish.
Another way to motivate is through social media. I know most of us think of social media as a time waster, but try using it. When you run out of steam with your writing, take a social media break. Look at Facebook or Instagram. I know many people think of it as a time waster, but look at the ideas of other people. You can even use some of the dialog in your writing. If you are on with other writers, you may get incentive from them and their process.
Try reading. I spend a good deal of my non-writing time reading. I’m a poet, so I often read new poets or my favorites. If I’m stuck on a problem, like how to write a particular form, like a Quatern, I’ll read other poets in this form and see how they have handled this. I’ll read novels just for the use of language in certain ways. It’s also just a pleasure for me to read good literature. Sometimes I read my friends most recent books and review them on social media.
I will be blogging on Thursdays about the writing process. Follow me here on WordPress.
For writers, reading is a way of life. We read early and often. We read, we write. We check our media contacts, read newspapers or magazines online or in hard copy, then read a text of something similar to what we are working on in our own writing. If we stop reading, it’s deprivation.
It’s a paradox that by emptying our lives of all that text and distraction, we are actually refreshing the wellspring. By absenting ourselves from all the media, we get in touch with our inner selves, which is where all the creativity comes from. By keeping the inflow to a minimum, the outflow improves. Our true thoughts and feelings will begin to penetrate and come out in new writing, running freely. I knew a playwright who would take off his shoes and socks and stand in a running stream with a paper and pencil to literally get his flow going.
If you find not reading difficult, and many writers do, here are some suggestions:
.listen to music that has no words
.cook a complicated, time-consuming recipe and then
.invite friends to dinner
.rearrange the kitchen
After a number of these activities, sit down and write again. Notice any differences in your feelings or content. Your writing may benefit.
There is going to be an in-person reading of prose and poetry at Grand Hall, Workshop 13 Cultural Arts and Learning Center in Ware, Massachusetts on Sunday, October 23 at 2 pm. If you’re in the area, do drop in. It’s right down Route 9, which is glorious fall now. Grand Hall is at 13 Church St. , Ware.
Trying out new things is part of the creative process. Things can change at any stage in a painting’s or manuscript’s development.
The writing process is an exciting and adventurous process. It sometimes feels electrifying and at other times, downright discouraging. A writer needs to go in knowing that it might not work. It means that results don’t matter as much as the process, the joy and the journey.
I try to keep this in mind every time I sit down at a blank page. An athlete has to work out to get to a point where she wins the competition. A writer sometimes has to fail many times before succeeding.
You may think that what you wrote is terrible, but it may work out later in a future draft, or help you get, through experimentation, to a wonderful manuscript. t’s part of the journey to that wonderful piece that finally works.
Why does literature endure? Why do we read it? What makes the words so compelling, we can’t put the book down?
Literature, and the reading of it, has saved many people in difficult situations. Literature can show people at their best. If you’re living through a difficult situation, say prison, this can be an important hope and message. Words can teach, illuminate and inspire us. Nelson Mandella cites the books he read in jail that gave him solace during his long incarceration. He devoured anything he could read on armed combat because he was trying to form a Liberation Army. As a young strategist, he read about boxing when he tried to defeat his opponents in the ring or books on chess when he was competing in chess tournaments. “I had no time to brood. I enjoyed reading and writing letters and that occupied my mind completely…” says Mandela.
Most prisons have a library and prisoners are encouraged to read books. According to most state statutes, prisoners are entitled to legal texts to research their own appeals. In addition to lawl books, almost all libraries have literature. Sometimes there are limits on content, like rape or gun construction, but overall there is much literature available to inmates. Some of the most popular in prisons are Stephen King and Harry Potter novels. Orange is theNew Black and Gone Girl are some of the most popular novels in prisons. Longer novels are also popular, like Ayn Rands The Fountainhead. Biographies of different famous Americans are also sought-after in prison.
We should donate books, and keep books circulating, to The Prison Project. In this way, prisoners will continue to read. It can only help us as writers. I will continue to blog on Thursdays. http://www.eileenpkennedy.com.
How does blogging differ from writing? I guess when I sit down to write a poem or prose piece, I have a more formal block in my head. I think the main thing is that blogging is more spontaneous. You could argue that blogging has changed formal writing. But if you can write, you can blog.
The conventions of writing and blogging are very different. Run-0n sentences and asides don’t work in a blog. Short declarative sentences do.
Print stories are often written in the third person, especially nonfiction. Blogs are mostly in the I, first person.
In books, footnotes are frequently used to tell the backstory on your topic. They take up space. Hyperlinks serve a similar purpose in blogging. No one has to read them unless they click on them and they take very little space.
I enjoy blogging as a variation to my poetry. I will blog on Thursdays about the writing process. Follow me here at WordPress.
I’m writing to you from my summer home in New England. As a retired college professor, summer is my favorite time. It always represented freedom to me.
I love fresh vegetables, beautiful flowers, farmer’s markets and stands, swimming in cool lakes.
But my favorite thing to do is to go to a local bookstore that’s located in an old mill with a stream running by it. I feel like my creativity flows more easily with the flowing stream. I knew a playwright who would stand in the stream and write with a pen and paper to get the creativity flowing?
Now that summer is coming to an end, I will look for new inspirations for my writing. What do you do for inspiration?
I will be blogging regularly one Thursdays again, with announcements, as they happen, on Tuesdays. Follow me here on WordPress.