1. PLAY A GAME LIKE SOLITAIRE
....for half an hour or so before you start to write. Some writers find this mentally 'prepares' them for
writing - it's a bridge between their ordinary lives and their writing. The repetitive activity can free up
your right brain.
2. DO 15-20 MINUTES OF FREE WRITING
...before you start your 'regular' writing projects. If you don't know what to write, start by describing
the room you're sitting in, or the day outside. Write anything - but do write. Don't let yourself stop until
your time is up. Very often, you'll find your mind drifting to the project in hand.
3. WRITE A LETTER
.... to a friend, describing your ideal writing life. End with '... and the first thing I'll do towards
obtaining this is...' and fill in the answer. Think about how much you want that writing life. The first step
is to begin work on your current project!
4. FINISH SOMEONE ELSE'S PARAGRAPH.
Grab any novel from your shelves. Turn to a page at random and jot down the first whole sentence you see.
Now write a page that flows on logically from that first sentence.
5. THINK BACK TO THE LAST STRANGER YOU SAW
...that you can remember). It may have been someone in a shopping centre; it may have been someone standing in
the same queue. Why do you remember this person? Invent a background for this character.
6. WRITE A PAGE ABOUT AN INCIDENT IN YOUR DAY
....in the first person. Now write about it again, from the point of view of a stranger looking on. What did
you learn about yourself?
These are only six of many possible stimuli that might fire your imagination as a writer. When you're really
stuck, try jotting down a list of 'Creativity Starters' yourself. Ask other writers how they begin their
(c) Copyright Marg McAlister