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November 29, 2015 / catherinebwrites



Writing Process  Stage 1.

This is the moment of inspiration.   An idea comes and it grabs you and you know you want to write about it. And it’s like a beautiful golden bubble, floating up there  in your brain. The entire story is inside it, perfect, elegant, poignant, funny and thrilling… utterly perfect.

And you begin to day-dream about the book cover… about what to wear on the red carpet… about witty lines to say when accepting your Booker/Oscar/Pulitzer… the interviews, the signings, the invitations to literary events…  This is a lovely part of the process.   Enjoy it.

But, I hear you cry, I don’t get enough of those  Golden Bubbles!    Well here’s some ways that should help.

  1. Write every day.   Use your e-mails as practise.   Write them, then read them aloud to yourself with the ear of the person you’re writing to.   A phrase that sounds amusing in your head can read like an insult so EDIT your e-mails to make them as clear and effective as possible.   Doing this will help to hone your writing skills.

2. Write for yourself, just to see what comes out of your head.

  • Start with your very first thought
  • Do not edit
  • Write whatever comes into your head
  • Don’t worry about structure or spelling or grammar
  • If you stray into other topics, that’s fine.
  • Keep on writing for 15 minutes.

And in case you get stuck.  Make a list of subjects you can use as a starter.

  • Things I love.
  • Things I hate.
  • People I know.
  • What made me who I am.
  • Things that drove me mad this recently
  • Things that went well

No subject is too silly or too serious to add to the list.

Pick the subject that seems most attractive to-day.


There will be no marks, no slaps, no detention, no stars and no prizes!   This writing is For Your Eyes Only.   You can say anything at you like, no matter how stupid, prejudiced or awful!   Most of it will be junk but amidst the junk you might discover  what you really think about things and also you will discover occasional jewel.

Next… developing imagination.


We’ll come to that…


Read: Writing Down The Bones; Natalie Goldberg, Shambhala Publications.


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