Friday, September 28, 2012

The bullet that kills writer's block

Here's a little tip that has helped me with writing lately. It may sound like I'm talking about an office job, but bear with me, I think this can also be used with fiction.

At work when I have to summarize information for a report, I've learned the best way to communicate summaries is with bullet lists. Are there four key points I need to share? I put them in a bullet list. Recently I've also learned that information in resumes and cover letters is also better "showcased" when it's set apart in bullets, rather than as complete sentences in a paragraph.

The other day when it was time to start a new scene in my story, I froze up because I didn't know how or where to start it.  I thought to myself, "if only I could make a bullet list like I do at work."

Eureka! Why not start out with bullets? So I listed three or four things that I wanted to happen in the scene. Then I added a couple more things to the list as reminders, like "what's her goal in this scene?" and "make sure to add sensory details".

And then, lo and behold, I was past my writer's block and happily writing that scene (with full sentences).

I think this may be the SHORTEST blog post I've ever written (I'm famous for long, rambling monstrosities of posts). But hopefully someone may find it useful.

What do you do to kick-start your writing?

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