- Books, Literature, and Writing
How to Get Started When Writing
For some, writing can be an absolute chore. For some, writing is easy and flows just like the thoughts in their heads. Whether you're a brilliant writer, a beginner, or someone who stops and starts like a learner driver in a stick-shift car, there are a couple things that can make the process of writing more enjoyable, relaxing, and successful.
Not that the following tips should be viewed as things you have to do in order to write, but here are tips that can make writing an experience that can have you coming back for more:
The first thing to do when sitting down to write is to sit down. I don't know about you, but writing standing up seems like a pretty difficult thing to do. Put your computer on a coffee table, desk or even your lap (and if you're writing with pencil or pen then sitting down becomes more important) and try to clear your mind. Stress is one of the major factors that lead to writer's block. Thinking about bills, job security, or what is on television later that evening will cause you not to concentrate on the task at hand, which is to write as well as you possible can. So get comfortable. If a hot cup of coffee and a biscuit is what you need in front of you to get those relaxed juices flowing, then go ahead and make it happen.
Read and Research
If you're about to write a diary entry then this point won't benefit you all that much. However, writing articles that are meant to be informative require a little bit of background research or a few minutes to look back in one's experiences to gather the relevant information. Before you begin writing you should already have an idea of the layout of your article going in your head. You're going to have to write an introduction for sure, so what information will be going into that? Are you going to write in essay-format or will you use bullet-points? How will you conclude your article? All these points should have been explored in your mind already so that all you have to do when you begin to put words on the page is just that, put words on the page because all the planning and research has been done beforehand.
One of the worst things to do (in my experience) is to stop writing mid-way through an article, unless you absolutely have to. I know quite a few writers who like to take a break in the middle of writing to walk around, do some jumping jacks... I believe this breaks your train-of-thought. By forcing yourself to keep writing, not only do you focus more, but you also finish earlier than the writer who takes breaks every once in a while. By fighting through any blocks or breakages in your concentration, you're able to put more words down on a page - which, if you're on a deadline - means you may have more ideas for what to write next. Taking a break is not conducive to productivity, in my opinion. So fight through it, keep going!
Don't listen to music you know the words to
How many times have you tried listening to music while writing and accidentally written down a lyric in the song, instead of a word you meant to write? Listening to music with lyrics, and more specifically, lyrics that you know is a massive distraction. You'll start singing the song in your head instead of focusing on writing the next word, the next thought. So, do your best not to listen to music when you begin to write. If you absolutely have to, try listening to music that doesn't have lyrics. That way, the sounds will become passive (much like that elevator music you hear at hotels) and your brain will ignore it.
Lastly, a tip for the troublemakers...
Because I can already see the cauldron boiling... Tea is fine as a substitute for coffee.