Getting started with writing your book can be difficult, especially if you haven’t done any writing for a while. This little exercise is designed to get you writing in a stress-free kind of way so you can eliminate your insecurities and get into the flow of writing.
- Compile a list of up to 10 topics you could write about – go mad! Just write down 10 things you know about whether it’s your neighbourhood, your best-friend’s mad dog or how to bake a cake – just pick anything.
- Write each idea on a separate piece of paper then fold it up, drop it in a bowl.
- When all your ideas are in the bowl just pick one out.
- Write about the topic on the slip of paper you picked for a minimum of five minutes. If you get into the flow, keep going. If you find it difficult to fill the five minutes, just pick another bit of paper from the bowl.
- Keep picking ideas out of the bowl until you have written about at least five of them.
There are two benefits to this exercise
The first benefit is that it gives you an idea of what kind of topics you like to write about and how you like to write. For example, how to bake a cake is probably a lot of step-by-step information – did you enjoy that kind of writing or did you prefer telling stories about your friend’s mad dog? Or perhaps you preferred to describe your neighbourhood?
The second benefit is that you can use it to winkle out ideas that you find easy to write about. Simply put a selection of book ideas on slips of paper and pull them out one by one. The ones that you enjoy and find it difficult to stop writing about may be a good starting point for a book idea.
You will discover where you get into flow and which ideas really stimulate your thinking. That’s it. The topic is chosen, now all you have to do is find your angle (or argument, see my post ‘Why You Need to Have an Argument in Your Book Concept‘) and then start planning your book.