Heather Harper I Borderline Press I Feb 29, 2016
Create an outline
In elementary school, you may remember drawing a rudimentary bubble outline with one main thought in the center and the supporting ideas extending from it like a deformed spider. If so, you were fortunate to be educated about this process early on. Forming an outline is like creating a map to where you want to take your #writing. If you don’t have all of your ideas in place yet, just write a simple outline and fill in the blank areas as you go.
Do your homework
Research is a tedious, but necessary part of the process, in most cases. Some people enjoy it (I do!), but others would rather do anything than research; they’d prefer to be writing. If you happen to be an expert on your selected subject, more power to you; though you may want to look up a few references to corroborate your story, just for good measure.
Write a rough draft
Go ahead, get started and let it all out. No one is going to read this part except you, so who cares? This is your chance to write down all of the stuff that needs to be sorted through and modified. If you have done some research and created an outline, you should be prepared to write what you want, but if you get stuck, try going back to your research and see if that helps you find some direction.
Read your work
This is the most exciting part, other than seeing the finished product, of course. This is where you get to see the little errors that spell check didn’t catch or notice that you have used the word also five times in one paragraph (oops!). You may be tempted to skip the reading and revising part of the process, but it is always worth it because there is almost always going to be an error, guaranteed. Give it a once over, make some comments, and go back to the beginning.
It’s a given that this process doesn’t happen chronologically. Often writers will revise their work as they go, or they will revise several times. It’s really up to the individual to decide what works best for him or her. Just make sure that at some point you read your work at least once and rework the kinks. This practice is one of the keys to crafting your writing style.
Look for my next Upcoming Blog Post for this Series: “Immersion in the Creative Process”
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Heather Harper is AN Contributor and veteran writer. Most of her interests center in the non-fiction realm where she strives to use her “strength of the pen” to advocate on various social issues and causes. Learn more about Heather’s contributions to her writing craft.
*My twitter handle: @ExistentialMed
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