Monday, July 27, 2015

Writing Tools I got from library books - Jumping the small writing blocks

As I'm trying to absorb learning tools for my craft, I've been checking out books at my local library and I'd like to share some of it with you. Some of these are more in line with someone writing essays and reports but a few tidbits run along the lines of writing novels.

These are from "Writing with Power - Techniques for Mastering the Writing Process" by Peter Elbow.

If you are in a slump are hitting a wall, then I believe that this could get you through that:

Open Ended Writing - Write for fifteen to twenty minutes without stopping. Start with whatever comes first to mind or perhaps with some particular topic you've been wanting to write about. But make sure to let your writing go wherever it wants to go.
Pause to find the center or focus in what you wrote then summarize it into one sentence.
Use that focusing sentence and expand on it. When you're done, go back and cut what isn't crucial to the main point of focus.
Keep this up until you have a larger picture of what you're accomplishing (even if you have to jot down note) and go between spurt of writing to focusing/cutting and then back again.

For those who have a scene or idea and need help to grow it, then try this:

Loop Writing - As fast as you can, type out all you can see about your scene/idea. Don't tie yourself down with getting out any details, no matter how small they may be. Such as, if your character is waking in a park, what smells/sounds/feelings would go along with this?
Write write the issues with what you've already typed. Like, why is the character there and why would he be picking up these feelings?
Then step into the shoes of that character and jot down an instant/raw version f what they are experiencing.
At this point you can add any dialogue that comes out of you character while you're feeling what he is feeling. Ask yourself what you would do if you were that person.
Get a description out that mirrors those feelings and settings.
If you have a small piece of back story to add, then see it the story allows it here. Is it a full scene and can you feel what the reader should be feeling?
Go back and cut out anything that is not immediately relevant to that picture. Like, too much back story or too many details about the scenery that can distract the reader from your main opening image.
Then broaden you image with any needed details that will push you to the next scene. (realizations by the characters, moving them forward).
Rinse and repeat :-)

In the past, I saw that I was using the Loop Technique but am learning the Open Ending  Technique is very usual in my current WIP. So far, I've been using the visuals to jump start a scene that may have stalled in my brain. See if any of this helps you and I'll keep looking for more info to help all of us.

)))Corset Hugs((( and Happy Writing
Ginny Lynn
Wench Writer 

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