Fiction Writing Process: Writing as Art

Writing is an art that requires patience, creativity, and a process that is unique to every writer. I have developed my own personal writing process much like my design process that allows me to cultivate ideas, develop them, and eventually turn them into a finished product that I am ready to share with the world.

When it comes to getting started, I believe that the seed of an idea can come from anywhere. Whether it’s a conversation with a friend, a memory, a news article, or simply observing the world around me, I always keep my eyes and ears open for inspiration.

The project I’m currently working on was inspired by a memory of life in the 1990’s. I’ll spend this Summer writing my first draft and documenting the process with you so that we can learn together.

As the idea begins to take shape in my mind, I often find myself reaching for my phone to take notes. This might mean jotting down a few key words, recording a voice memo, or even typing out a rough outline of where I want the idea to go.

Once I have captured the initial spark of inspiration, I like to transfer my notes to a dedicated spiral notebook (My favs are from $5 Below). I guess it’s the visual artist in me, but there’s something about physically writing down my ideas long hand that helps me to further develop them and bring them to life.

I read “The Artist’s Way” in 2020 and the author suggests writing morning pages and going on “artist’s dates,” one idea being buying supplies to make your writing fun. I knew this project needed to work my nostalgia muscles so I added some Hello Kitty stickers to my cart.

I’ve found that instead of writing morning pages about random things, I am more productive when I give myself limits and put that writing time in this particular notebook towards a purpose, this season being to complete a 80,000 word novel.

From there, I like to sit with my ideas for a while, meditating on them in my mind. This can be a challenging part of the process, as I am often eager to dive in and start writing right away. However, I have learned that taking the time to fully flesh out an idea in my mind can save me a lot of time and frustration in the long run.

Of course, not every idea is a winner. As I continue to develop and refine my writing process, I have also learned the importance of weeding out the bad ideas and saving the good ones for later. This can be a difficult process, but it allows me to focus my time and energy on the ideas that have the most potential.

In the end, my personal writing process is all about finding balance between inspiration, creativity, and discipline. By staying open to new ideas, taking careful notes, sitting with my thoughts, and weeding out the bad ideas, I am able to bring my writing to life in a way that is hopefully authentic, engaging, and meaningful.

I hope you’ll enjoy following along this Summer and learn along with me in the process.

**Stats from a podcast featuring writer, Lisa Cron, talking about her book “Story Genius.”