Writing in Unexpected Places

I’ve been lucky enough to spend the last three weeks in Continental Europe, where I’ve done my fair share of eating, exploring, more eating, and lots and lots of writing (to the extent where I’m beginning to question whether or not this is in fact a ‘holiday’). I always carry around a pen and some paper with me just in case there’s something I’d like to jot down, and to my great delight, I’ve been writing practically nonstop in all sorts of wonderful and unexpected places, such as:

  • A car driving all around Belgium (this mightn’t have been as effective if I was also the driver)
  • Trains all over Belgium
  • St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral in Brussels
  • A not-so-yummy restaurant in Brussels
  • An uber yummy brasserie in Liège

Writing in these unexpected places has reinforced my love for penning thoughts on the go, and apart from boosting my word count, I was also able to capture a bunch of things that would’ve normally eluded me. I’m not talking about writing an entire novel on the go (though maybe there are some super organised people out there who can do that), but about writing snippets of things that tend to come more easily and naturally to us when exposed to a new environment—and these snippets, small and fragmented as they are, can be really useful in improving that poem or short story or novel you’re working on. Here are five reasons why.

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Five Tips to Help Keep Your 2012 Writing Goals

With the New Year fast approaching (and with some of you already on the other side of the dateline), many of us are finalising our list of resolutions for 2012. Those of you who dabble with words will probably have a writing-related resolution on your list, whether it’s to get those drabbles out there or to finally finish that manuscript. My own list contains some pretty daunting projects and even scarier numbers. So with these resolutions in mind, here are five tips to stay motivated and keep writing throughout the year.

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