Today I started my day by going outside on the back porch with my coffee and did a breathing exercise. I breathed in and thought about light and then breathed out slowly thinking about releasing dark. Very simple, but calming and effective.
As I sat in the sunshine of this beautiful June morning I thought about what it means to be a writer. It comes down to a simple truth:
It is really is that simple. There are different methods and processes, but that is the number 1 secret. You have to do the writing. Whether by pen or by keyboard, the words have to get on the page. You don’t even have to share the writing to be a writer, not really.
As humans and teachers, we sometimes over complicate ideas and get in our own way. I like a combo of writing by hand and typing. A spark starts and then fuel is added to the fire by my writing practice. The writing practice has to happen every day for me but is a minimum of 10 minutes. Depending on life, sometimes this means writing in the bathroom as one writer friend said to me the other day!
In addition to writing I do these other things to make me a better writer:
- Free write for 10 min every day with a daily prompt sent to my email: today’s is to write a scene with the words flake, hopscotch, and fold.
- I am taking a self-directed writing course and spend time with the lessons every day.
- I read books on writing craft. A new one I received yesterday is The Thorn Necklace. I am always searching for the Holy Grail of writing advice but I keep coming back to Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg. I am a true believer in using writing craft books as a teacher that are not necessarily geared toward traditional education.
But the number 1 secret?
What will you write today?
Tammy Breitweiser is a writer and teacher who is a force of nature and woman of honor; seer of nuance; accidental inspirationalist; keeper of the little red doors, and conjurer of everyday magic who is busy writing short stories. A future Minnesotan temporarily hiding in Indiana, her poetry has been published in The Storyteller Magazine and her flash fiction in The Ninja Writers Monthly and Elephant Never. Her essay is published in the I Wrote it Anyway anthology. You can also connect with Tammy through Twitter @TLBREIT.