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I’m not a big believer in writer’s block. Most of my motivation issues are fueled by reviser’s block.

When running, I seem to do much better after a warm up and some stretching. I write like I run. Sometimes the warm up is a list of observations. Sometimes I try to answer an unanswerable question.  Sometimes I write mediocre pantoums before switching to free verse.

Here’s one of my favorite warm up prompts :

  1. Create a stockpile of words. Cull the good stuff from magazines, the newspaper, or any other print media. I cut out words and throw them in an old pencil tin. My public libraries sells old magazines for 25 cents.
  2. Invade your stockpile of words. Start by selecting three words at random.
  3. Toss the words over your page. Paste them where they land.
  4. Create a poem by writing around your words.

How do you prepare for writing and revising?


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