Practice Writing With These 6 Exercises

Jess Henderson

How do you become a great writer? Like any craft, it requires PRACTICE. You’ve got to put in your 10,000 hours. So with that in mind, here are 6 writing exercises that you can do whether you are well-practiced or just starting out. Use these as weekly or monthly habits or to get you started on a brand new idea. 

  1. Write a letter to your future self. You could imagine where you’d be in 5 or 10 years time, or maybe just a week from now. 
  2. Write a scene from an unfamiliar perspective (e.g. from the perspective of an animal, a child, or even an object). 
  3. Write one-page diary. This is great for when you’re stumped or don’t have a lot of time! Author Austin Kleon talks about this in his book, Show Your Work.
  4. Rewrite a well-known fairytale from the villain's perspective. This exercise helps you dive into your character development skills.  
  5. Write a poem about a specific moment in time. Pick a particular rhyme scheme and practice writing with rules and limitations.
  6. Do a cluster or "mind map." Start with one topic in the middle of your paper or screen and then without editing, write every thought and idea that comes to mind. If one idea spawns other ideas, link them together by drawing lines and circles. 

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