Here’s an edited version of a talk I recently gave at a writers’ conference. The talk was called “The Problem (+ Promise) of (Pre-)Writing?” Really it’s about how to forge a more sustainable relationship between your writing process and the projects it produces. As a “recovering MFA” who’s spent the better part of the past twenty years putting too much emphasis on my projects and not enough on my process, I’ve found it empowering to realize the importance of all the thinking, writing, and making that happens before a project comes to life. And that realization isn’t just important to my writing life. It’s important to my life-life too.
Some pertinent links:
- “Why Walking Helps Us Think” by Ferris Jabr (The New Yorker, September 3, 2014)
- “Freewriting” from Writing Without Teachers by Peter Elbow (Oxford UP, 1973)
- A list of 30 things I loved in May of 2020
- “How to Keep a Commonplace Book” and “How to Keep a Dream Journal” via masterclass.com
- Some examples: Jung’s Red Book and Auden’s A Certain World
- Other resources:
- Burn After Writing by Sharon Jones
- Journal Sparks: Fire Up Your Creativity with Spontaneous Art, Wild Writing, and Inventive Thinking by Emily K. Neuburger
To learn more about the Write Mindfulness Project, click here.