The Writing Process for Beginners
The Writing Process
Even if you don’t know this yet, there is a definite process to writing. Many writers naturally follow this pattern. If you’re a beginner, here’s a guide to the writing process and how to get started. If you’re already a writer, but are struggling with an essay, short story, or poem, following a guided process will help.
The first step is the prewrite.
Have you been stuck in a writer’s rut? Have you spent countless hours staring at a blank screen, canvas, or page? You may have skipped this step. This vital process of prewriting encompasses everything you do before you start the first draft. In a bare minimum, prewriting involved coming up with an original idea.
The second step is gathering ideas and inspiration.
Ideas are concentric and all around you, like pure, untapped geometry. If you want to start writing but can’t just yet, try using a writing prompt to get started.
Here are a few examples of writing prompts:
- The deafening chant of the ocean waves…..
- Write about your most embarrassing moments.
- He wasn’t much to look at on sight, although….
- Who is your favorite author and why?
- Maybe it’s all about the money.
You can try writing about childhood events, past traumas, or daily incidences. Keep a diary or notepad filled with current flowing ideas. Put pen to paper and write your every inspired thought down. Try also creating a vivid character before expanding into a larger story and theme.
Tip: Once inspiration strikes, it’s gold. Dig for it. Reach for that idea and don’t let anything hold you back. Don’t start writing right away though, or the structure will not flow as smoothly from the reader’s angle.
“I shunned father, mother, uncle, lover when the word of my soul beckoned me.” –Anonymous
A couple of ways to build on an idea are to free write or to brainstorm. Free writing means opening a new blank slate and writing any and everything that comes into your head about your topic of choice. No editing allowed! This differs from brainstorming, which outlines your story according to preferences. Some people start with a topic circled at the top of the page and write relating ideas underneath.
The next step after gathering ideas is planning and structure. Map out your story. Most prefer an outline format, however vague. Try to have a logical story progression.
Next is the writing step! Start the first draft with all your notes in front of you. Every idea is still liquefiable. Many accomplished writers resort to a set schedule every day. Try going somewhere where you may be undisturbed and your mind won’t wander.
After writing the rough draft, comes revising and editing. You can add, rearrange, remove, replace, and rewrite. Try showing your work to someone else. Another opinion helps.
Hopefully, you end up with publishable material!
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