rid writer’s block today

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Without using any of the adjectives (or synonyms), write a half-page scene or passage that shows the character engaged in action and perhaps speaking some dialogue that will suggest the selected qualities.

2) List 10 objects in your main character’s bedroom, car, living room, or other place. Using this list, write a half-page description of the character’s space, mentioning the objects or other elements of the décor (such as paint color) that will give readers clues to character.

3) Cut your story into scenes, summary, and flashbacks. How many scenes are there? Are important scenes buried in sections of summary?

4) Choose a moment from your story-in-progress that could benefit from intensifying a character’s physical or emotional experience.

For three minutes, free-write sensory details as rapidly as possible in present tense. Look for places they might fit into the original passage.

5) Write three different endings. Think about what is resolved and what is left unresolved with each ending.

6) And finally– this is so obvious I hesitate to put it on the list, and yet I’m always amazed at how many of my students consider it a novel idea. Retype at least one full draft, “making both planned and spontaneous changes as you go,” as Janet Burroway advises. “The computer’s abilities can tempt us to a “fix-it” approach to revision, but jumping in and out of the text to correct problems can.

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