Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Hone Your Writing Skills With Exercise

We read constantly that we need to exercise our bodies. Keep moving! That's the mantra in this 21st century. And a good one one it is.Seniors are also advised to exercise their minds. Makes sense. If the boedy needs to keep moving, so does the mind.

Writers can take it one step farther. They need to do exercises to sharpen their writing skills. Is that muttering I hear coming form dissenters? Do I hear snippets of things like "I don't want to practice, I'm ready to write." Or "I'm not a newbie, there's no reason for me to do writing exercises."  Or "I don't have time to devote to writing exercises. I need to work on publishable pieces."

Well, think again! Writing exercises benefit the newbie writer, the intermediate and the advanced, as well. Concert pianists who perform would never give up practice time. Star athletes still put in practice time.

My husband and I saw the Yamoto Japanese Drummers a few weeks ago. They were so in tune with another that their show was sheer perfection. I read in the program notes that they spent hours and hours each week practicing. They were skilled musicians, who were not satisfied to continue without keeping those skills razor sharp.

As writers, we need to take that same attitude. So, for the next few days, I'm going to post some writing exercises. Try them and see which ones appeal to you, which ones are easy and those that are difficult. Can you guess which ones are going to improve your writing skills the most?

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