Tip #8: Write with a purpose
Often when you write, you have an idea, a purpose, but it gets lost when you are writing a poem or a story or an essay. That’s okay. You just need to hunt it down. Find it again. After you’ve written something, ask yourself if what you wrote delivered what you thought it would. Did you say what you meant to say?
Then, think of your audience. Will they get what you meant? Did you make it clear for them?
Tip #7: Using tools like “comments”
In Google Docs, I use the comment feature often to remind me of things I want to work on, work out, fix, change – you get the idea. Something like this:
Once I have returned and fixed the problem, I “resolve” the comment in the comment box – it goes away, and I know that I have taken care of the problem and don’t have to worry about that any more.
Tip #6: Put crazy ideas together for the fun of it
What if a flying squirrel who could talk landed on the backpack of the loneliest boy in school and the squirrel knew that a deadly earthquake was coming?
Why not dream up some crazy thoughts and play around for a page or so? You can do it! Anyone can. Just imagine what could happen, what characters might say to each other and start writing it down… just like you imagine it.
Do that once a week for the whole summer and by the end, you’ll probably have a story or two that you really like and you’ll want to spend more time with it. Not only that, you’ll be practicing some great skills for school next year – keeping yourself sharp and ready to learn.
Writing Tip #5: Ways to Revise your Writing
1. Ask someone to read your work and give you specific advice (like, “Would you read this and tell me if where the details are helpful and where I don’t give enough?”).
2. Read your work again and see where it doesn’t make sense.
3. Read your work and ask if your main character has a clear goal.
4. Ask yourself who your target audience is and if you are writing for them.
Tip #4: Write poetry to think about a problem. I’ve done it many times. I’m not even sure what I’m going to write. I just sit in front of a computer and know that I am going to put something down about whatever problem I am facing. Today it happened to be worrying too much. So I wrote a tiny poem about it. You can check it out here.
Tip #3: Try “The Writing Fix” random plots generator – It gives you 3 random ideas to use in the form of a setting, a character and a conflict. It is fast, sometimes funny, and fun! Check it out here.
Tip #2: Make a list or a drawing (or both). Some people use a mind map – combining a list with drawings. A fun way to lay out your ideas. I use a set of color pens when I do this (and I do it fairly often).
Tip #1: Try talking out your ideas with a friend (or to yourself, if you dare) and then writing down what you said. It may be a draft or some sort of list – either way, speaking it first may help.