I’d like to challenge you today, to challenge yourself. Step outside your own comfort zone with your writing! Expand your creative mind and try something different. You may not be interested in writing in a different genre, or style, but like a singer who strengthens her voice by singing scales, you can strengthen any writing ability you already have by expanding your range.
There are many different ways to do that. At the beginning of every writer’s group, we pick prompts and write for twenty minutes, usually on a topic we hadn’t been thinking about until we picked up that little slip of paper. It’s a common writing exercise to strengthen our creative skills. If you’ve never done it before, you’re missing out on something really fun. It may not turn into anything useful. On the other hand, it could spark an entire story, article or novel.
You could also try your hand at a genre that you’ve never tried before or that you might even feel a slight aversion for. I’ve never really cared for the horror category but several years back I tried writing a horror story for a web site and it turned out to be very well received. Likewise, poetry is not my first instinct, though they do occasionally pop into my head. For me, it takes a different mental state to write poetry. We’re having a poetry writing workshop at my library on Saturday though and I’ll be there. I think writing poetry is a great way to strength your skills at imagery and playing with words.
One of my favorite self-help gurus, Martha Beck, recommends doing something in a different way every day to challenge your brain. She talks about walking a different way to work or eating with your non-dominant hand. Strengthen your writing muscle today with a new exercise. It may be just what you need to see things in a new light. Follow the adventure, see where it leads you.