The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Monday, July 12, 2010

You Know More Than You Think You Know...

    Writers will hit an impasse, and then the flow of words slows down and then...stops.  Putting words down on paper is always more effective when you have a friend or colleague to share your thoughts and plans with.  After all, we write for an audience, not so our words can be read by ourselves, in a dark closet.  However, sometimes you don't have anyone around to give you feedback.

     Try this:  Imagine a critical person that you know. Pick someone who does not like your writing. Imagine they are there, with one eyebrow raised in doubt.  And imagine they are listening to you describe your writing piece as they sit in their pajamas...

      Write a letter to this critic.  Tell them about the piece, describe your obstacles and well as the strengths, and outline what direction the piece is going to take. 

       I did this activity as part of Gateway Writing Project's  summer institute.  I scoffed at it.  I thought it was a ridiculous strategy; I was sure I did not know more than I thought I knew.  But I was wrong.  Writing about it, as I envisioned an overly critical person, gave me some new ideas and some new insight.

         Try it.  And I would love to hear what your secret is when battling writer's block.  Send it my way!  (The music idea I'm sending you is marvelous music to write by.  It's also great driving music.  I got it because the title of the CD is The Phenomenal Ruthie Foster, and I was interested in if, indeed, this singer was phenomenal.  She is.)

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