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Free Writing – Battling Bloggers Block

Posted By Darren Rowse 23rd of November 2005 Writing Content 0 Comments

3. Free Writing – Just Write – When I run out first sit down to work out what to say for a public speaking gig I often lock myself in a private room and just begin to speak (to myself) randomly on the topic that I’ve been asked to talk about. It feels a bit odd when you first use this technique but it’s amazing how quickly a talk begins to form in your mind as you do it. I find as I do these exercises that the first few minutes is generally pretty gibberish but that in most cases as I write whatever comes out that eventually I hit on an idea that is worth building on.

I also use this same technique with blogging. Some writers call it free writing and argue that it helps exercise your right brain – I’m not sure of the technicalities of it – but I find that it definitely gets the ideas flowing. One of the hardest parts of writing a post can be starting it – and this technique attempts to help with this.

Free writing purists say to start writing whatever comes into your head (any topic) – I do this from time to time but more regularly set myself a broad topic so that if I do stumble onto a good idea that I have some chance of using it on my blog.

It’s amazing to see what flows out of this type of exercise. Some of my best posts ever have been as a result of forcing myself to start writing. Quite often I’ll start writing on one topic and end up on another or will end up publishing only a section of what I write (having deleted the unordered gibber at the start) but on many occasions there is a gem or two in the mix that can be a post (or two) in and of themselves – or at least the beginning of a post.

This is part 3 in the series examining how to beat Bloggers Block

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. Daren thanks for sharing your thought on the subject.

  2. Darren thanks for sharing your thought on the subject.Have often found your blog very resourceful.I think its hay time your blog make’s my blog of the day series.

  3. When I’m working out what I’m going to do for a speaking engagement, I frequently use the same technique as you do, with just a change of location. I talk in the car.

    I used to get all sorts of odd looks from drivers, but with the proliferation of hands free phone options, now everyone just assumes that I’m on the phone.

  4. Freewriting works fine for very general posts that don’t require any in depth analysis or references. Of course I have done this before, I just end up leaving information blank and then coming back to it later when I have researched my topic further.

    This is what I suggest:
    Free write using those webs that you used to use in school. You know where you make a bubble in the middle, and branch off into other bubbles. This basically works as an idea web. You can write on a topic, and then shoot off to another. With one simple idea you can have 10 in no time.

  5. I am a paddler and photographer. I often write in my paddling blogs “around pictures”: adding some comments and observations, connecting it to some historical records or news from web, etc., returning to it after a few days. The picture is usually my starting point.

    I don’t experience a bloggers block, but, right now, I have a block on writing my work related paper. Somehow, these plots from my computer simulations don’t trigger my imagination …

  6. Great series Darren. Just the opposite sometimes works well for me. Instead of Free Writing, I will use “Structured Writing”. My favorite structure to use comes from some books that study influence. I will write this structure down and then use it as a template to work from:

    Create Interest (headline, first line)
    State the Problem (what needs to be solved)
    Offer Evidence of the Problem (examples, testimonials, etc.)
    Solve the Problem (the reason you are writing)
    Call to Action (what the reader needs to do)

  7. I like the information that i have read….its intereting and i’ve got many things…i hope to read more interesting topics.. thank you

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