Free writing, which is also sometimes referred to as stream-of-consciousness writing, involves writing continuously for a set period of time. Spelling, grammar, punctuation and even a topic are largely irrelevant. Although the process may appear to result in mostly unusable material, it can help a writer get to grips with their subject matter or to overcome the dreaded writer’s block. If you’re a regular writer, whether of stories for children, magazine articles, non-fiction pieces or something else entirely, you most likely already have a topic in mind, but you can certainly adapt the free writing method to suit your own purposes.
It can be a good exercise to see if you can write a certain number of words in a day, but don’t be too conservative and don’t be too concerned with the fact that you don’t consider your ideas to be good enough. You also don’t need to think too much about editing and revising at this stage either, since you can do that later. When you are engaged in the exercise, the objective is just to write as much as possible in the time you have allotted. You may decide to get a certain word count completed in that day or actually set yourself a time limit. Working against the clock may give you the incentive you need to get the job done. A thousand words, for example, may at first seem a little daunting, but is actually very achievable.
Even if you end up deleting a lot of this text afterwards, you still have the material to work on, no matter how irrelevant some of it may turn out to be. You still have to review the material before you decide which parts to get rid of and in the process, you might get some new ideas for the project or take it in a completely new direction, as you discover that much sought after inspiration.
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