Friday, January 16, 2009

How to Practice Wordless Writing

“Although writing every day is still the best practice, there are many ways to improve your skills without really writing at all.” -- Chandra Moira Beal in How to improve your writing without writing a word.
I don’t find time (or is it I don't make time) to write everyday, but I do partake of some of the suggestions in this article. I'll mention three. The first one I’ve seen many times -- read. I learn a lot from other writers. Now that I’m writing more, I pay attention to how a room is described, or the speech patterns of the various characters. Often this slows my reading, especially if I go back over a scene to capture what I missed the first time. Another suggestion is to take a walk. I do this also. Some days it may be on a treadmill, but it still offers me the opportunity to either clear my mind or work out the details of a scene I’m stuck on. The last one I’ll mention here is to talk about your work. This is something I don't do that much. I may mention an idea to my wife to get her reaction, but otherwise, I can’t imagine why any of the people I speak to regularly would be interested. Perhaps I should join a writing group.

1 comment:

Loren Christie said...

Hi Jim,
I have been reading more, paying attention to description and dialogue, like you mention. I started a book club and we're choosing the classics that we've never read. I also find it very helpful to read and listen to the book read professionally on my Ipod at the same time.