How to Get Started Writing

Hi Fellow Readers and Writers–

Recently I was asked how someone could get started writing.  Well, I can only tell you how I did it, and maybe that will help.

While taking care of my mother, who had Alzheimer’s, I got hold of a book by Julia Cameron (of The Artists Way fame).  The book was called The Right to Write.  In it she talks about Morning Pages, a form of journaling.  Every morning I would write my three pages in my journal.  It didn’t have to be about anything in particular, just as long as I wrote.  Then I started doing some of the exercises from her book.  Before long, I was writing–really writing! 

After that I took some writing classes at the University of Riverside Extension campus, and the writing bug firmly implanted itself in my brain and in my heart.  My first book was about the journey through Alzheimer’s with my mom.  It took me a year after her death to complete it.  When I finished it, I felt as if I’d been through the whole experience a second time, but I knew it would help other family caregivers, who were going to have to take that same journey.

Then I decided to play.  I started writing mysteries and suspense novels.  It was quite a departure from nonfiction, but it still pulled from my emotions, my experiences, and a lot of imagination.

So that’s my story, folks.  I hope it helps to get you started, if writing was ever something you toyed with, or dreamt of doing.  Start journaling–write about a favorite pen, a childhood memory, ANYTHING–just let yourself go.  You may be surprised with what comes out of your head.  It’s all a journey.  And you know what I’ve discovered?  They say readers read because they want to escape their lives and go to a new place, meet new people.  Well, guess what?  That’s why writers write–to escape, to place themselves in a world of their making, surrounded by people they’d like to know, and adventures they’d like to take.

Enjoy the journey!



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