Day 3: Try Free Writing

“Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.”

Gene Fowler, Author

29 Ways to Stay Creative

Credited to Life on Michigan Avenue

Ok, we’re here: Day 3. Free writing. What is “free writing” and why should you try it? How does free writing help you stay creative?

It’s kind of like this. Free writing is like doing sun salutations. It’s nonjudgmental, non-competitive, an authentic self-expression and just a way to loosen yourself up. I could have said it’s like doing sit-ups, but I thought that would kill it for you.

A good half hour of free writing can help you put the brakes on and get past all the internal chatter that hinders your creativity. (A perfect subject for a blog on Slow Living, no?)

How do you do free write? You just do. You sit down in a place where you won’t be interrupted and you just start writing. You give yourself time and permission, then you ignore your internal censor and just go for it, preferably for a half hour. Write about anything you want but keep your hand moving don’t cross anything out don’t worry about spelling or punctuation or grammar you are not being graded and don’t think too much or worry about being logical and yes feel free to lose control. There. That’s free writing.

As I was preparing to write this post, I pulled an old book off my shelf, Writing Down the Bones, Freeing the Writer Within by Natalie Goldberg.  This serendipitously fell out:

It’s my daughter, Alisa’s first baby picture. “Hi, it’s me…..” Alisa, by the way, is one great writer, with a very authentic voice. (And I’m only saying that because it’s true.) She heads to Boston in the fall to study journalism, which will make our home life far less interesting.

Anyway, back to free writing. Free writing allows you to declare to the world, “Hi, it’s me….” It frees you up so you can discover your own unique creative voice. We all have one. Try it. Let me know how it goes.

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