The spontaneous and unfocused vomit of words upon a blank page. Sounds awesome! So how does it work?
Apparently I just stare out of the window or something and write whatever comes into my head. I’m not to think about it though. I am finding this a tad hard this morning as a there is a cat hopping all over my lap, kneading my legs and arms. Occasionally he’ll slip and drag his razor claws down my thigh. If I put him on the floor he sits under my legs. This is bad as I am only wearing a robe, which by the way is my name for a dressing gown. I worry he may look up and see something temptingly dangling and take a swipe. I can picture the blood dripping now, red and wet, warm perhaps and congealing quick. I’ll have to bandage it and clean it myself because there is no way on earth I’ll present myself at the local emergency department with a lacerated cock. I work there for Christ sake.
What the hell was that? Its not quite what I thought it would be, this free writing thing but I am surprised how quickly the words flooded out. I may do this again, without the cat. Tomorrow perhaps. The point is, I have only been up for maybe twenty minutes, and here I am tap tapping away at 7am. Usually I would be up for at least two hours before finding the strength(?) to sit down in front of my computer and start writing.
One of the things new writers will struggle with is the fear that what they write will be utter shite and that any effort is only ever going to be a waste of time and energy. This is a daemon of your own psyche and needs to be shot in the face the moment it rears its ugly head. The dreaded white page of emptiness, writers block, call it what you will, there are treatments for these maladies. Free writing is one such treatment, and although it might not allow you to keep going with that story you’ve been struggling with for weeks, it will begin to free your mind and let the words tumble out. I cannot describe how good it feels to pour words out onto a bank page and watch it fill. Think of it as a kind of therapy whereby the physical act of pumping out words helps you get back into that zone in your mind, you know the one. It’s the one that makes you feel like a real writer. Sometimes I have absolutely no idea what crap is coming out but I don’t let that bother me. I know there could be some hidden gems within that mound of raw material, and I’ll dig them out when I come to re-write.
Freewriting is worth having a pop at. Try it for just two minutes – you’ll be surprised how much you can put down in just 120 seconds and even more surprised to learn a bit more about how your mind actually works. Don’t think about what it is your writing, just stare out of a window, into a guttering flame, at the bubbles sending you morse code in your coke, it doesn’t matter. Let them out however they come and you’ll be amazed at what happens.