As we near the end of October next week and get closer to winter, I thought it would be a good idea to share a free writing exercise. I did some free writing exercises in some English classes and have utilized them in my tutoring. Here’s what you will need:
A quiet room
For this free write, do it for 5 to 10 minutes, writing as much as you can. Don’t worry about your sentences being inconsistent and not making sense. Just think about your favorite season and talk about whatever enters your mind. No matter how strange, silly, or funny your ideas may be, write them down! They might be useful later on for a good story.
I apologize for no post last week. My laptop unfortunately lost its Internet after a Windows 10 Update. Hopefully I can get that fixed soon. In the meantime, I hope you all are well on this chilly and sunny Wednesday! Today, I want to talk about slowing down and how that can help you creatively.
In today’s world, I think we can all agree that it’s very easy to go through life at a fast pace. We want to be on top of the latest current events and social media posts, keep up on trends in our given industry so we do not fall behind, and purchase the latest products or items we enjoy so we appear “cool” or on top of things.
For me, it’s been books. Buying the latest book from an author I love so I do not fall behind in terms of book reviews and reading articles through Publishers Weekly about what’s going in the book industry. Many writers have also heard the suggestion of writing every day to complete a writing project, especially if it’s a novel.
When it came to books, I found myself getting them but neglecting to read them. Books on my shelf or tablet become forgotten until you stumble upon them one day and realize they’re there. Your to-read list piles up and becomes overwhelming. By the time you get to a book, you might even lose interest and ask yourself why you bought it in the first place.
Recently, I decided I needed to slow down. The last book I have purchased this year was The Hearts We Mend by Kathryn Springer, a sequel to The Dandelion Field released last year. I found it in the Kindle Store for a very cheap price. Since then, the temptation to buy a book from a favorite author has lingered but I have been firm. I want to focus on the stories I have not had the pleasure to enjoy yet and return to the ones that changed my life, faith, and perspective on love. Just because a certain number of years have passed since a book was published doesn’t mean the impact or quality has changed. Our perceptions may change, but our love for a story won’t. Then again, sometimes we move on to other writers and books but there is never anything wrong with that. As we change, so do our interests and the stories we desire to read.
I think this can apply to writing too. Some of us can write every day without breaking a sweat while others can only write a few times a week, a certain number of words a day or when we feel inspired. Eventually, we all will finish our stories. That doesn’t, and shouldn’t, diminish our contributions to the world.
If you can slow down for a couple minutes or take a day for yourself, do it. You will feel better and think more clearly about your goals, your mind can wander freely and your heart can find peace.
Remember, slowing down can take as a little as five minutes a day or throughout. We all take in information and creativity differently. We all have something of value to give.
Don’t forget to take care of yourself during the exciting times, too.
I think we all could use something positive after this week. So here is a short writing prompt. You don’t have to share what you come up with here but if you’re so inclined to, go for it!
What made you happy this week? Think about a moment that brought you great joy and reminded you of the goodness of others. If you can’t think of one, get creative and use music, a memory from childhood or anything else you love.
Aim for a minimum of 500 words and a maximum of 4,000.