From Becca’s Write on Wednesday:
How about you? Do you have a writing practice? What’s it like? How has it helped you become a better writer? If you’re thinking about starting a writing practice, how do you envision it? What would work for you?
Over on the Write on Wednesday site, Becca has a great summary of what writing practice is, along with author Natalie Goldberg’s take on it.
I do writing practice or morning pages or whatever you want to call it every morning. Like Becca I really need that first cup of coffee to get going. It goes pretty much like this:
- Start the coffee
- Open up my notebook
- Write down the date and a few words
- Zone out for a bit
- Get coffee
After that, I work out (after three cups of coffee, I’m beyond ready to work out). Over the years, I’ve experimented with the best time for writing practice/coffee/exercise. Starting back in November 2007, I finally hit upon the combination that works (at least for now).
Back in the day, as a young lieutenant, I used to laugh at the “old” warrant officers and sergeants who’d show up at first formation with a large cup of coffee. They’d say, “Just you wait, ma’am. Just you wait.”
These days, I so need that cup (or three) in the morning–both to write and exercise. And I hereby extend an apology to Chief Warrant Officers F. and M. along with Master Sergeant D. You guys were right.
A friend of mine called morning pages/practice “the best therapy money can’t buy.” Julia Cameron recommends them for all artists, not just writers. I think, initially, it’s hard to get past not writing something of significance.
These days, I happily litter my morning pages with Internet shorthand (I seem to LOL to myself a lot) and litanies about how tired I am (generally written before that second cup).
So, writing practice. Like the swearing (see yesterday’s post), it’s something I highly recommend.