If there’s anything I miss about school, it’s the amount that I wrote. If you major in anything related to English, Journalism, Creative Writing, or Communication in university, you’re practically guaranteed to write. A TON.
And up until this year, my three years in university had been the most productive period of my life. I was writing almost constantly (I guess being Editor in Chief of the newspaper and taking a ton of writing electives would do that).
I’ve mentioned this before on the blog, but it wasn’t until I started The Lexicon Writing Blog that I actually starting writing frequently again. I started TLWB mostly so I’d have an excuse to write every week! But here we are, a year and a half later and not only has this blog taken off in ways I never expected, but I’m also writing more than ever.
On the first Monday of every month, I create a few writing prompts to help you get writing! You’ll see them here each month and on Instagram @thelexiconwritingblog every Monday.
Happy September! There are four Monday’s in September which means…four writing prompts! School is back in season, there are new pencils and notebooks being used all over the world, and inspiration is at its peak. Get writing this month and enjoy!
Here we go!
Write the story of a child’s first day at Kindergarten from three different POVs: the child’s, the mother’s, and the teachers.
*Challenge Prompt* Write a story of two friends meeting for the first time. Convey emotion and heart and reflection. Don’t use dialogue tags.
Write a list of your least favorite and most favorite parts of school. Then write a story featuring a character whose favorites are your least favorites and whose least favorites are your favorites.
Write a story including the words “backpack”, “Debate Team”, and “cafeteria”.
My husband and I are traveling to Boston this week, and we’re pretty much over the moon. We’ve been told by multiple people that it’s the perfect city for two book-loving, art-appreciating, foodie nerds such as us.
And of course, because I can’t ever get writing out of my head, I immediately started thinking about what can I endeavor to learn on this trip that will make me a better writer.
Traveling is one of the best ways to improve your writing, for a few simple reasons:
You learn new things
You get to think differently than normal
You get to do a different routine than normal
You’re constantly aware of where you are and what you’re doing
When you’re constantly seeing new things, experiencing new places and people, and challenging yourself to think and search and be in new ways, you’re fine tuning your senses. You’re building an arsenal of experiences and feelings that you can pull from in your writing, making your descriptions more vivid, your characters three dimensional, and your plots more interesting.
And the simplest reason is when you travel, you improve yourself. And your writing is closely connected to who you are. The more you travel, the more you learn, not just about the world at large, but about yourself too. And that makes you a better writer.
I’m sharing the top three things I’ll do when I travel to improve my writing.
Keep a Notebook With Me
This should just be the first rule of being a writer… if we had rules, anyway. I’ve said this before and I’ll probably say it until I’m blue in the face: carrying a notebook with you can be a lifesaver. I’ve written about inspiration before in this post, and my first tip is to write it down! Even if you think you’ll never use it or you’ll never expand on it, write it down, whatever it is.
I don’t think I need to explain why this is so important, but you’ll never remember a blip of inspiration if you don’t write it down. I like to use a notebook because I’m old school and the tactile act of handwriting it helps it retain in my memory. You could use the notes app on your phone or send yourself an email. Whatever works.
I Won’t Write Unless I Get the Urge
This sounds kinda weird coming from the girl who is always telling you to get writing. I know. But hear me out.
Vacations are meant to relax you, pull you out of your normal routine, and rejuvenate you. I write somewhere between several hundred and several thousand words a day, so occasionally, I need a mental break.
The more I write, the more I find myself needing to be very intentional about separating my “two worlds”: my writing world and my real life. I can easily get cause up in whatever story I’m writing. I joke with my husband that my head is “still in the world”. I can easily become less present in my day-to-day life when I’m writing so much.
And this isn’t great for either of my worlds. I can get too caught up in trees rather than the forest in the writing and I’m not fully engaged with the people I want to be spending my time and energy on. On vacation, unless I feel that nagging need in my chest to go write, I’m going to take a break and let myself stay present.
Let Myself Be Inspired
It can be so easy to get wrapped up in whatever my current project it. I’m aiming to let myself be inspired by artwork, architecture, history, and music on my vacation. Allowing yourself to let other sources of beauty touch you and influence you will give you energy, enlightenment, and inspiration in spades.
You won’t be able to stop writing once you get home.
I write about self-care for writers a ton on this blog, because I believe it’s one of the most important things we can do. The more we take care of ourselves, the more we can become better writers.
I wrote an in depth blog post on the Starving Artist Myth and Why It’s Sabotaging Your Writing exclusively for my email subscribers. Sign up below to get access to it!
One of the things I’m asked all the time is “how do I start?” And this can be a tricky question to answer because no two writers will ever write the same way. The way we each need to tell our stories will differ from our experiences, how we write, and what we like to read.
But the structure is something that will exist for every writer, so today I wanted to share one of the best ways to get started: by storyboarding. Continue Reading
Money is a tough topic for writers. We all would love to be paid to write but isn’t getting paid to write negating our art? If we get paid, doesn’t that mean we’re selling out? But if we don’t get paid, why write?
These are hard questions that we each will have our own answers to, but today I thought I’d at least make one of those questions a little easier: how can we get paid to write. I’ve rounded up several of my favorite posts on various ways to get paid to write so dive in and get reading!
You thought I was going to say get writing, didn’t you? 😉
There are plenty of ways to make money as a writer, and most ways lead you a career where someone will pay you to write something you enjoy. Kristen has eight steps to a professional career on her blog.
If you’re hoping to go the route of traditional publishing, make sure your manuscript is up to snuff with this article. You can also ease your way into traditional publishing through work-for-hire assignments.
Have you ever read a story that provides such a clear backstory that the characters become real? Or become so engaged and invest in a character’s life that it’s all you can do not to mourn when you finish the book?
They’re life changing, aren’t they? Those are the characters that stick with you, the ones that follow you from story to story, around your daily life, and in your dreams.
Every writer wants to write characters like that. Characters that stick. Continue Reading