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Start Somewhere

Writers like to debate whether or not writer's block really exists. Some say that writer's block is just an excuse for procrastination. Others say that it's fear that's blocking your source of inspiration. And then there are those who are convinced that the muses are just out to a really long lunch.

Whatever the reason, no matter how we name it, sometimes as artists we feel a little stuck. No matter how much motivation we have, that blinking cursor tends to mock us as we tap our fingers mindlessly on the keyboard. We don't know how to start. We don't know where to begin.

So, how do you begin?

Too often, facing that blank screen feels like a Herculean task. How do you come up with something new, captivating? How do you start with that first sentence so that all the others that follow will flow quickly, easily, flawlessly?

Maybe the trick is to just start somewhere.

As writers, many of us are subject to believing that our first drafts have to be remarkable. But as writers, we get second, third, and fourth chances. As writers, we edit.

Your first draft is really just that -- a place to get started, a puzzle with which you can begin filling in the pieces to see the larger picture. Start with the outline, the edges -- a single scene, thought, piece of dialogue or setting. Whatever comes to mind, put pen to paper and start writing.

Trust that the rest of the pieces will begin to fall into place.

Trust the story.

And trust yourself.


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