In praise of free writing

Free writing actually works! I can plot again.

Despite having been advised to write freely by nearly every writer and book that I’ve met and read, I still hadn’t believed that it would work. Writing whatever was on your mind non-stop and expecting to come up with something good sounded silly.

But after repeatedly writing half a page of ‘I want to write well’, or something to that effect, my anxiety and frustration were flushed away. I started brainstorming, trying not to break the flow of words I’d built up, and in just half an hour, I came up with a rough plot synopsis for the first third of my novel.

I will never doubt timeless writing advice again. I’m still not sure if free writing can directly produce brilliant ideas, but I think it has a wonderful detoxifying effect on a writer. Now I know that the best way for a writer to find the energy to write is by writing.

I’m grateful to K. S. Villoso for nudging me into free writing. I’d heard of it many times before, but her comment made me take the final leap.

6 thoughts on “In praise of free writing

  1. Have you looked at Julia Cameron’s ‘The Artist’s Way’? She recommends writing pages first thing in the morning, before you’re quite awake. I know writers who’ve tried it and swear that it’s the best thing they’ve done.
    I’m glad your writing is going better!


    • Thank you! That method sounds wonderful, and I’d try it if I didn’t find it so difficult to get up early! I’ve wanted productive mornings for years, but usually I wake up so late that I only get the necessary chores done before I go to work.

      If you have any tips on getting up early, I’d really appreciate them.


  2. I just saw this, and I’m glad that it worked for you! So much of writing is figuring out what you want to say, and it’s really hard to do that with all the constraints we tend to put ourselves in. :)


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