by Laura Brown
Originally Published Nov 1, 2013
This week How to Write Anything Facebook fan Vy Chazen sent in this great question: “I write professional content all day and it’s hard to switch to more flowing creative prose. Any advice?”
Anyone who writes professionally during the day knows how hard it is to shift gears between practical writing and creative writing tasks. In fact, anyone with any kind of “day job” who also writes on the side can have a lot of trouble getting their head to the place where they can let the creative energy flow once the work day is done.
What helps me to make this transition is to create a clean break from the practical writing and do something else for a while before I start the creative writing process. I try to do something that will take my head completely out of work–take a dance class, watch a movie, even watch a TV episode. I think TV drama and movies can be very good for resetting your brain, because they can help bring you into the realm of creative storytelling while flushing the cares of the day from your brain.
The creative process is different for everyone, I think. Your best bet is to experiment and see what works for you. You might be the kind of person who does best when you can get entirely away from work and really get into a creative writing groove–over a long weekend, for example. Getting into a different physical environment can also help. I work mostly at home these days, and I love to get out and find a different place to write.
Vy writes blog content, research papers, presentations, speeches, etc. One of her methods for keeping both the practical and the creative brain alive is to keep “a tiny moleskine notebook for sentences, rhyming words, synonyms and words” that she likes. “I think I’m going to try writing long creative sentences with prompts to get into a new state of mind.”
Check out Vy Chazen’s super cool writing blog, The Letter Vy, and follow her on Twitter @vchazen.
What are your tough questions about writing? Send us a message on our Facebook page, and maybe we’ll feature your question in our next blog post!