A number of years ago I came across a book about writing by Julia Cameron. The Right to Write: An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life has been one of those resources/sources of inspiration that I’ve turned to time and time again. With writing exercises throughout the book, it’s been helpful in getting my creative juices flowing when I otherwise feel a bit stale. One particular exercise that has been helpful is what Ms. Cameron refers to as Morning Pages.
My brief synopsis of Morning Pages: set yourself in the chair every morning, grab your pen, put it on the first line, and don’t stop writing until you’ve filled three notebook pages. For further information, I recommend picking up The Right to Write yourself (or at least checking it out at your local library), and allowing Ms. Cameron to inform you, in a way only she can, about this tool that she implements in her own life. The entire book is worth the read, anyway.
Like most things in life, it takes me a bit of time to process information before I start using it daily in my routine. But over the last few weeks to a month I’ve been doing the Morning Pages, and it’s already made a difference in getting my brain to function more creatively. A number of mornings my non-stop scribbles read more like a journal entry, but occasionally I’ll start with a short story idea and keep going until I’ve reached the last line. This morning’s entry ended up reading like a newspaper opinion column, and fit in as background information to the novel that I am working on. So not only did I write, but I wrote something that can help in bettering my current work-in-process. Win-win.
No matter where you are on your writing journey, I can’t recommend enough the Morning Pages exercise, and The Right to Write by Julia Cameron as a whole.
What writing exercises do you use in your daily routine? How have they helped you grow as writer?