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Put first things first. We often put our writing off until after everything “important” or “immediate” gets done. Our dreams, our happiness—OUR WRITING—are BOTH important and immediate. They need and deserve to come first, not last.
Beginning has “genius, power and magic in it.” Start writing. First one word, then another, and another. Before you know it, the words will be flowing.
Be fearless in your first draft. Bury all your “shoulds” in the backyard. Send your inner critic out for ice cream. Relax. Have fun. Let ‘er rip!
Without commitment, discipline is impossible. With commitment, discipline is inevitable. So let go of trying to force yourself to be disciplined. Instead, focus on deepening your commitment to yourself, your dreams and goals, and your writing.
Writer’s Block is not “the problem.” It’s merely pointing you towards whatever’s really getting in your way: fear; lack of commitment, clarity or organization; being tired, stressed or not feeling well. With “writer’s block” don’t get frustrated, get curious. Once you discover the real problem, the solution becomes obvious. To move forward you’ll need to: brainstorm, make a choice, be specific, get a good night’s sleep.
Find a brainstorming partner, or join a mastermind group. Besides the wonderful ideas that others will come up with just for you, brainstorming with others sparks ideas in you that you wouldn’t have come up with on your own. It creates a powerful synergy.
Fear is a liar. It says, “You can’t do this,” when you can. It says, “You’re not inspired. Why bother writing,” when writing is the very thing that will open up your connection to inspiration. It says, “You’re too tired to write,” when writing is what gives you energy. It says, “You’ll never be as good as them,” when it’s your unique voice that is your greatest asset. It says, “You’re a dreamer. Get real,” when everything of value that sas ever been created, started as a dreamer’s vision. Fear is a liar. Start writing and turn the volume down on fear.
Whenever you're stuck remember—where focus goes, inspiration flows. So stop, take a deep breath, relax and focus.
Always remember to “Divide and Conquer!” Or, to be more specific, “Divide and Complete!” There isn’t any writing project, no matter how large and overwhelming, that can’t be divided into smaller, more easily completed pieces. As you complete more and more of the “pieces,” your large project will feel more doable and less overwhelming. One day, one piece, one page, one paragraph at a time.
When facing the blank page makes you go blank—treat it like a Jackson Pollock canvas. Throw words at it without worrying how they’ll land, or what picture they’ll paint. The more words and the less white you have, the easier it is to write, and the more confidence and creativity you bring to the page.
Celebrate! every page, every piece, every publication. Celebrate! every risk taken, every goal met, every milestone achieved. Celebrate! every fear faced, every excuse overcome, every time you thought you couldn’t do it, and then did. Focus less on “when?” and “not good enough,” and “so much more to do,” and focus more on acknowledging how far you’ve come, appreciating who you are and what you’ve done, and celebrating every step along the way.
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The Writing Process
The Writing Process
"A writer writes." How many times have you heard that? It sounds simple enough, but getting from that first faint spark of an idea to a finished book takes a fair amount of chutzpah, skill and perseverance.
In this section you'll find out what it takes to get started, stay focused, and finish your writing projects. You'll learn:
- tricks of the trade from successful writers
- elements of craft and how to write well
- fast writing techniques
- what it takes to complete a long project
The Story Knows the Way: Fiction Writing with Award Winning Novelist Mark David Gerson|
"The act of telling a story, of setting it to paper, is a life-chaning one. You cannot control the outcome. You cannot know how the story will end. You cannot know what will happen around the next corner. All you can do is recognize the truth of this moment, of this feeling, of this world... and move on to the next from a place of trust. Trust the story, and yourself--through each word and sentence--until your page is alive with the wonder of creation, until you are in wonder at the life of your creation." . . . keep reading
The 15 Minute Writing Miracle!|
When you've promised yourself you're going to write, but you're too tired, too busy, or feel blocked--what do you do? Give in and forget about writing? Give yourself a pep talk, or a swift kick in the pants? Or write for 15 minutes? Which is it going to be?
. . . keep reading
Lists: A Free and Easy Content Creation Tool|
Lists are everywhere. They're a natural way to brainstorm, organize and present information. When you add to that a list's ability to make writing and reading easier, it's understandable why so many people write list-based content. Here's a formula for writing list-based articles, along with the Top 5 List Writing Tips. . . . keep reading
Where Does Professionalism End and Perfectionism Begin?|
Where does caring about the craft of writing end, and perfectionism begin? How can you tell the difference between the two, when perfectionism so often looks and feels like wanting your writing to be the best it can be. Isn't that a good thing? Isn't that professionalism? . . . keep reading
Screenwriting, A Director's Perspective: An Interview With Academy Award Winning Director Arthur Hiller|
Oscar winning director Arthur Hiller has directed 33 films, including Love Story, The Americanization of Emily, The Hospital, Man of La Mancha, The Man in the Glass Booth, Silver Streak, and Outrageous Fortune. We talked about Neil Simon, Paddy Chayefsky, what makes a good script, the relationship between writer and director, and so much more. If you dream of your novel being turned into a film, someday, you'll want to listen to this interview.
. . . keep reading
What Do J.K. Rowling, Jane Austen, and Sylvia Plath All Have in Common?|
J.K. Rowling's famous wizard, Harry Potter, may seem to have nothing in common with Emma, Jane Austen's Regency era matchmaker, or Esther, Sylvia Plath's tragic fictional alter-ego, yet they all sprang from the same literary genre--the bildungsroman, or "coming of age," novel. . . . keep reading
Here's what they're saying about Julie Isaac and WritingSpirit.com...
"You’ve done a superb job with this. All very clear, very easy to follow, very well organized. I would say it definitely delivers on its promise."
Hal Zina Bennett
Author of over 30 books, including:
Write From the Heart
Writing Spiritual Books
"Julie, I am looking forward to writing in a way that I haven't in many years. I completed a long short story, got published, did a bunch of readings, am applying to an artist colony, in other words, something has broken open."
"Your suggestions about how to gain clarity and focus while researching my market were incredibly helpful, and your energy amplified mine. I had no idea I would gain so much immediately from your guidance. Thank you!"
"Thank you, Julie, for helping me to see a blank page as not something to fear but to embrace for all the creative potential it holds. Our coaching session opened my eyes to the realm of possibilities for my project that I wasn't seeing. I can't wait to apply the suggestions you've given me, and am excited about the writing process again."
"I never considered concepts like courage, curiosity, intention as journaling tools. I can begin to see how they are just as important as a working pen and sheet of paper."
"Somehow 'starting', putting those first words on paper, is daunting. These exercises give me focus and purpose."
Julie’s writing and creativity tips have saved me from the clutches of self-pity and procrastination. I now have no excuse but to do what I love, and stay focused. They have pushed me further in my goals. With each tip, I find myself smiling and printing them out to be pasted around my monitor.
"It got me motivated to write again which has been great."
St. Louis, MO
"A lot of excellent advice presented in a nuturing way."
"Thank you for your inspiration.