The Writing Process

(for Beginners)

Every writers’ process is different.

Some writers like to listen to music while others prefer silence. Some writers are planners while others are plotters (actually working on a plot rather than just jotting notes) or pantsers (also known as “writing by the seat of your pants.”) And some writers have a special place dedicated to writing while others can write anywhere and everywhere. See what I mean?

The writing process is different for everyone.

As a writer who is just starting out, it can be hard to find that “perfect process” or headspace for your writing. You might find some things work some days and other days it is different or more difficult to get started. But the key is finding the process that works for you!

Now, I am no expert. This is information is purely from experience. But I hope it helps you, the beginner writer, figure out your writing process.

Writing space

What is your ideal writing space? Find a space that is comfortable to write in, a space where there is minimal distraction and maximum inspiration. This space must be nurturing to your writing flow.

My writing space is not just one place. I write in my bedroom and in my car. Before the pandemic, I used to enjoy going to the library or local coffee shop or bookstore and sit and take in the world around me.

My space can be silent, but I prefer playing instrumental music in the background like classical, jazz, movie soundtracks, or something lo-fi. It’s less “awkward” for me, if that makes sense.

I like having background noise. If I don’t use my music library, I use YouTube to find long music loops because there are less commercial interruptions than Spotify.

Finding ideas

My ideas come to me at the most inconvenient time: when I’m in the shower, when I’m driving my car, generally when I’m occupied with something else. It’s annoying! But it always happens when I’m bored or have nothing going on.

Letting yourself get bored is one of the best ways to bring ideas to the surface. Sometimes you have to be doing nothing to bring about something, if you know what I mean.

I know my ideas, when I’m not bored, tend to come from music, movies and videos, and outside world things. I’m influenced by the world around me. Sometimes memories come to mind and become a great story idea or an awesome poem.

You just have to find that mind-space for ideas to flourish. Let your mind wander.

Getting it done

When you are ready to write, just write. Don’t worry too much about spelling, grammar, punctuation at first. It’s good to let ideas flow, especially if you’re on a roll. Just let the words “go, go, go” on the page and worry about structure later.

Write in paragraphs. Write in circles. Write on lined paper. Write on a napkin. Just let it all go. The first draft will always look a little funny, but that’s the idea of the first draft: it’s the first of many before your masterpiece becomes a masterpiece.

Published by Georgia Iris Salvaryn

Writing Arts graduate student

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