Thursday, January 4, 2018

The Magic Of A New Writing Project

We talk about new beginnings at the start of every new year. For writers, the feeling that it's time to start a new writing project can come at any time--June or October--it doesn't matter.

You might have been mulling an idea over and over for weeks--or longer. Then one day, it all comes together and you're inspired to begin the project. You're eager, can hardly wait to get your routine chores done so you can write. The opening line has been dancing in your head for days. It's time to begin.

All we need is the beginning to inspire us to continue writing. We've all read many times how important that opening line or first paragraph is. It sets the tone for what comes next. It's got to be something that grabs the reader and spurs them into wanting to continue reading. Facts and figures, unless they are pretty startling, aren't going to do it. Your beginning needs to reach the human side of your reader. 

Once you finish the piece, it's possible that you'll write an entirely different beginning but that's alright. We have to get something down in print to jump start the project. It's also possible that your opening paragraph is the magic mentioned in today's poster. If so, consider yourself ever so fortunate. 

Once we have the opening lines written, it's much easier to continue. I try to keep writing that first draft right to the end before I go back and look at the beginning and rest of the piece. Let what you wrote first stand as is until you have time to put the draft away for a few days. Then, take a look at it and try to be objective. Hard as it is for us to do that with our own writing, it's worthwhile. 

Ask yourself what the reader will see, what the reader will take away, what the reader will enjoy. Even though we say we write for ourself, anyone who hopes to be published is writing for the future readers. It would behoove us to keep them in mind at all times. 

And yes, there is some magic in beginning a new project. It's fresh. It's open to myriad possibilities. It's stimulating to you, the writer. It makes you want to write and write and write until you have a finished piece. I wish you all new beginnings very soon.

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