Short and Sweet Advice for Writers – Do Your Writing Exercises

Live to Write - Write to Live

vintage classroomSo, you think writing exercises are just for beginners, or writers who don’t have a “real” project to work on? Think again.

It’s back-to-school season for many of us, and time to give ourselves some homework. Writing from prompts is an excellent way to keep your creative and craft muscles strong and limber.  Whether writing exercises are the primary focus of your writing, or just a small part of a broader practice, they help you hone your skills while simultaneously stretching your imagination. It’s a win-win.

Each time I take a writing class, I am reminded just how effective writing exercises can be. Whether the assigned exercise is intended to spark the imagination through random association (e.g., write a story that involves a pelican, a key, and someone who has lost something or someone) or to challenge students with constraints (e.g. write a 100-word story in the second person), writing…

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