I often tell workshop participants that writing is not an easy task. Stories do not always come in full bloom. It takes skill and time to craft a story. One strategy to skills building is to carve a writing time into one’s routine on a regular basis. Keeping a journal is a good start.
A diary is different from a writing journal since the former is a personal documentation of one’s activities and experiences. The later is a tool designed to develop specific writing skills. Both are helpful in building writing skills over all, but the writing journal has a special purpose. Journals can be in print or in digital format.
Once you have set a writing routine or schedule, and your journal ready for writing in, organize mini topics or prompts that functions as writing exercises. Writers write all the time and they keep their writing muscles in good condition.
To begin with, here are some writing prompts you can do.
1. Write a paragraph about a person you met recently.
2. What did you eat for lunch? Describe how the food tastes like.
3. Choose photo number 10 in your phone and remember when and where it was taken. Write about the experience in your journal.
4. Take a walk in the mall, at the park or sit in a cafe. Write what you hear, what you see and what feel at that moment.
5. Remember a dream you had and spontaneously write it on an empty page as the memory comes spilling out.
6. Think of two characters from a TV show you like or otherwise. How will they talk if they are in cafe or some place unfamiliar.
7. Imagine yourself as an object, a pencil, a dress or a car. How would you look or feel like?
8. Compare opposites: light and shadow, sunrise and sunset, coffee and tea, etc.
These writing prompts will keep you going. Do not think of the grammar. Not at this stage. There is another phase and time to improve that.