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  • Writer's picturePearl Lorentzen

Tricking Myself into Writing

Often I struggle to convince myself to start writing, so I find a short time frame and writing prompts useful. Writing prompts can come from anywhere. There are many books and websites, and everyday conversations, observations, and inspirations work very well.

Notebooks and creative prompts on display to remind me that writing is doable.

Recently, I started working as a reporter and photographer for a local paper. To fill the paper, I need to generate at least twelve items a week. Not all of these have to be articles. Some can be photographs with a cutlines or brief paragaphs.

Generating new ideas can be daunting, but curiosity and observation can trigger ideas at the most unlikely times. It is useful to write these down as they arise. Many of us have smartphones with notes or another application to record these thoughts. Pen and paper work just as well or better. At a later date, these can be used as writing prompts and story ideas.

No matter how much I'm dreading something, I can usually do it for a few minutes. I know I enjoy writing, so convincing myself to sit down and work with a prompt for five to ten minutes usually gets me writing. The same thing works with larger project. The other day I did not want to edit a short story, but told myself I would only work on it for fifteen minutes. After I'd made significant progress, I checked the time. I'd been editing for an hour, and it hadn't felt much longer than the original fifteen minutes.

Writing is hard work, but it can also be great fun. Pick bite size chucks and keep writing.

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