Jim Harris Talks About ...
Tips for Young Writers
A few thoughts about writing…
1. Turn off your TV. Writing takes time. Time to stare out the window and wait for a good thought. Time to scribble down thoughts that arrive all at once out of the blue. And time to re-write what you thought was creative genius just a few days ago, but now recognize as rather boring.
So where can you get more time? Well, I suggest squeezing a hunk off the 20 hours a week most people spend watching TV. It’s a scary thought… but you’ll never regret doing it.
2. When you’re ready to write… take off your shoes, kick back on the sofa, and let the creativity flow. A long time ago I heard someone say that human beings are at their most creative when their brains are horizontal. At the time that sounded silly to me… but it really works.
You just have to develop the knack of writing (or typing into your laptop) at a funny angle. A knack for ignoring smart remarks from other people helps, too.
3. Write to a particular person. No, no, I don’t mean write a letter to someone. What I mean is, imagine that you’re writing your article or story for one of your acquaintances to read… and choose your words to grab that person’s attention.
If you decide to “write to” Uncle Joe and as you go along you realize this stuff would put Uncle Joe to sleep… you know it’s time to start over. But if you’re thinking, hey I just might mail this off to Uncle Joe… it would give him a good chuckle. Well, then you’re on to something.
4. Lend a hand to someone who needs help. You’ll see the world from their point of view… and have more to write about.
5. Write your ideas down right away. You never know when creativity will strike. A beautiful vista, a bizarre event, a joke – any of these things can inspire the mood or a plot for a story… and you can’t rewind these moments!!! So if a story idea reports for duty inside your head, grab a pen and jot it down.
In conclusion, I’m tempted to repeat tip #1 here in big bold letters, but instead I will just say, it’s your life… don’t use it up watching pretend people live pretend lives.
Be a writer instead!!!
Images and Text © 2009 Jim Harris. All Rights Reserved