Writing Prompts of the Week – 9

1. Many people feel reading fiction is a waste of time. Write about your position on this, giving reasons to support your argument.

2. Write about a memorable experience you have had while traveling.

3. Write from the point of view of a child as he/she perceives the world around him/her.

4. Write an essay, story, or poem making use of the following words – shopping, interest, someone, understand, and rumor.

5. Write about the first thing that comes to your mind on seeing this picture –




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Inspiring Authors

Writing tips from authors. An extremely inspiring video.

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Happy New Year

Ring Out, Wild Bells

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light;
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind,
For those that here we see no more,
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes,
But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease,
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkness of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.

~  Alfred Lord Tennyson

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Happy Holidays

A simple wish for joy.

A heartfelt wish for love.

A lasting wish for peace.

A special wish for you.

Season’s greetings and best wishes for a peaceful and prosperous new year, 2010.

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Looking for Writing Inspiration?

“Where do you get inspiration from?” This is a question almost all writers get asked some time or the other. And why not? Inspiration is an integral part of writing. All writers – no matter how good – need some kind of inspiration to keep them going. They may need it some of the time, or all of the times. “Some of the time” because quite often ideas come on their own or unexpectedly from the most unlikely places, and “all of the times” because sometimes no matter how hard they try, they just cannot think of anything. The mind goes completely blank.

So, what does one do when the mind goes blank? Where do writers get inspiration from? Well, different writers have different sources. If you’re wondering, or are looking for sources of inspiration yourself, here are some of the most common that writers go for:

1. Reading. Reading anything – books, magazines, newspapers, even milk cartons and cereal boxes. There’s so much variety in reading material that it almost always gives you food for thought, which in turn gives you ideas – sometimes new, sometimes the same with a different angle. As you continue to read, one idea leads to another and you’re full of ideas.

2. Talking. Talking to people – family, friends, colleagues, anyone – leads to ideas. Sometimes ideas pop up on their own during a conversation, at other times you can ask them to give you ideas. You’ll be surprised at how much you can get out of this, you’ll even wonder – why didn’t I think of that? Remember the saying ‘two heads are better than one’?

3. Surfing the web. Go to any site, follow random links – links that you don’t usually go to. Going over something completely different gives you completely new ideas. Go to various blogs and forums and see what people are discussing. Pick up the latest trends and give them new twists.

4. Going out. Go out, anywhere that you don’t usually go to – museums, shopping malls, parks, or just take a walk down the road. Look around and observe the new environment, the people walking by, the sounds, sights, everything. You’ll be amazed at how many ideas you can come up with.

5. Letting your mind wander. Sometimes having too much on your mind prevents new ideas from coming in. So let yourself go. Listen to some soft music, go for long leisurely drives alone, or to a quiet corner in a park – anywhere where you can let your mind wander in peace. Just stop thinking of the routine things and go for the random and unusual, and see how many new ideas you can come up with.

Like Jack London once said, “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”

Where do you get your writing inspiration from? Anything different from the ones above? We’d love to hear from you.

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Stay Motivated When Writing Is Boring

motivation 2Staying motivated when writing for yourself is at times hard enough, but when you’re writing for someone else…. well, it’s not that easy, especially when the topic is one that you’re least interested in. This is what freelance writing is all about – having to write about things that interest your client, not you. But whatever the topic, you must stay motivated or you’re out of business.

In the beginning of my career, I sometimes found it difficult to remain inspired when the writing was boring, but not anymore. Now words flow easily, no matter how uninspiring the topic.

This is what keeps me motivated:

1. I know I am not writing for myself. I am writing for others. I am writing for people who are interested in the topic. They are going to read my words and gain something from them. Just the thought that someone is going to learn something from what I’m writing gives me a sense of satisfaction.

2. I myself am gaining knowledge about something that I otherwise would never have. Quite a bit of research goes into the writing – whatever the topic. During the process of researching and writing, I am learning as well. Learning and gaining knowledge is always gratifying.

3. Researching involves a lot of reading, and while you’re reading, you inevitably hit upon an idea – ‘now this is something I can write about’. A writer is always on the lookout for ideas to write their own articles on, and here I am, getting ideas without even having to look for them. So, the more I read and write, the more ideas I get.

4. A wide variety of writing increases your versatility. You become adept at writing almost anything at any time. This in turn hones your writing craft. In other words, I am improving as a writer on the whole.

5. I will be rewarded for writing. Now let’s be honest here – why are we writing? To earn some money. So, it’s not like I’ll get nothing out of writing something that doesn’t interest me. Besides all the benefits given above, I’ll also be paid for the writing. This in itself is gratifying.

Now aren’t these reasons enough to keep a writer’s muse active?  Just keep these points in mind and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t stay motivated, no matter what the topic.

What about you? What do you do to keep your words flowing? Do share your thoughts and ideas here with us.

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Happy Friendship Day

Here’s wishing all my readers a Happy Friendship Day.

Today I’d like to share a beautiful poem,  entitiled Friendship, written by the famous poet and writer, Khalil Gibran:

 

Friendship

 

And a youth said, “Speak to us of Friendship.”

Your friend is your needs answered.

He is your field which you sow with love and reap with thanksgiving.

And he is your board and your fireside.

For you come to him with your hunger, and you seek him for peace.

When your friend speaks his mind you fear not the “nay” in your own mind, nor do you withhold the “ay.”

And when he is silent your heart ceases not to listen to his heart;

For without words, in friendship, all thoughts, all desires, all expectations are born and shared, with joy that is unacclaimed.

When you part from your friend, you grieve not;

For that which you love most in him may be clearer in his absence, as the mountain to the climber is clearer from the plain.

And let there be no purpose in friendship save the deepening of the spirit.

For love that seeks aught but the disclosure of its own mystery is not love but a net cast forth: and only the unprofitable is caught.

And let your best be for your friend.

If he must know the ebb of your tide, let him know its flood also.

For what is your friend that you should seek him with hours to kill?

Seek him always with hours to live.

For it is his to fill your need, but not your emptiness.

And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures.

For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.

 

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