21-day Creativity Challenge

It’s said that it takes 21 days to break an old habit, or better yet, to break in a new one. How about making Contemplation and Creativity YOUR new habit?

An example of one of my creative collages to use as a writing prompt

An example of one of my creative collages to use as a writing prompt

What if every day for the next 21 days you created something new? It might be something you write in your journal. It might be a collage you make, add a short message to, and post to Instagram. You might challenge yourself to write a new blog post or update your Facebook page.

So here are a few personal thoughts about creating a 21-day creativity challenge:

1. Everyone needs a can opener to start new writing. I’m an experienced writer. And even so, I need prompts and visuals to get me going. Otherwise, my writing tends to be unfocused and without purpose.

2. Visuals provide excellent starting points to open both your heart and your voice to put doodles (and words and sentences and phrases and lists) on the page. When I trust my heart, and just write to visuals and prompts, I don’t have to worry about where things go. It’s freewriting, something I talk about ALL the time. Sometimes what turns up is useful for my creative process. Sometimes, it turns into product.

3. Reflections on creativity are personal. They’re part of your inner work and journaling process that may or may not lead to other writings you do.

4. The practice of freewriting increases your confidence as a writer. Opening up to write whatever comes builds your writing muscles. Every time you show up to the page and write, it becomes easier.

5. Practicing writing for 21 days in a non-judgmental way invites the muse in and creates a consistent habit. Sneaking into the flow of writing like this keeps that sweet muse alert to visit you more often too.

6. At the end of the 21 days, you’ll be a stronger writer. At least that’s been my experience. I want to keep on keeping on, and write, write, write some more. I notice that it gets easier, day by day, and at 21 days, I’m eager to put pen to page EVERY day.

So what do you think? I’d love to see your name in the comments, or on Instagram, or your blog. Please share our writing experiences (not what you wrote, but about your experience of the highs and bumps, flaws and all, of having written). I’ve already attracted many writing friends and colleagues who’ve joined the challenge.

If any of the above resonates with you, then say YES to it. Take creative action. And let me know what you did. Onward!

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Capture The Season – Fall

View Out My WindowThe days are getting shorter as summer wanes.  Have you noticed it?

I like the new angles the sunlight displays as it moves back northward.

Each day is a new day as I open the blind in my office. The sun casts its presence across my desk in significantly different patterns, making every day magical and different.

It’s quite inspiring when you notice these subtle changes in nature.

Even in Florida, where the midday temperatures still hover near 90 degrees Fahrenheit, there’s a sense of fall in the air.  Beyond the changes in light, what was once lush and green is now fading, as though spent from summer’s rush to vitality.

If you’re feeling stale, pay attention to what nurtures you.  Every day is different even when it seems like same old, same old.

Collect a list of these seasonal changes in your journal of the daily changes that are purely nature’s changes.  Expand the lists into mini-vignettes.  Later, these recordings may serve you in a story or setting detail.

Now you go… what will you write today?  How is the fall season special to you?

Who Gave You Your Name?

Who will know your story if you don’t begin to write it now?

I’m such a fan of writing prompts.  For me, they are the juice that gets me going.  Like a morning cup of  coffee, they clear the pipes and defog the eyes.

Write for ten minutes on each of these prompts. Use a separate page for each. Put pen to page and just write. First thoughts, no censoring.  Now go…

  • Who gave you your name?
  • How did they choose that name for you?
  • Did you have a family nickname?
  • Who gave you the nickname?
  • How did you feel about being called that special name?

Now, take what you have written. Reread. Write for 30 minutes on each of the above over the next few days, or weeks, and develop a short vignette.

June Writing Prompt for Memoir – Your Bedroom

smbedroom

Whenever a group of memoir writers get together, and when we talk about home, the subject always seems to turn toward stories that took place in “our rooms.”  No doubt, our earliest bedrooms made a lasting impression on us because they provided a safe haven.  Or did they?  What went on in your room?  Put pen to page and just write. First thoughts, no censoring. Now go…

  • Describe your childhood bedroom. What was the view from your window?
  • List one special memory about each of your brothers and sisters (or friends).

Now, take what you have written. Reread. Write for 30 minutes on each of the above over the next few days, or weeks, and develop a short vignette.