How to Write During a Crisis

In my last post, I spoke about how for some people this COVID time has opened up opportunities for living and working differently. Today, I’m going to talk about how to do just that. 

Since some of us now have a bit more time on our hands, this is a great opportunity to write. (But if you’re a carer of young children and aging parents, please do not be hard on yourselves; do what’s best for you and find other opportunities to stay creative.) Recently, I spent one and half hours with Heidi Stalla free-writing using modern images as prompts. Free-writing is a great way to get your writing juices flowing. I do this all the time always using art works as prompts. Here’s one story inspired by an artwork at the National Gallery Singapore. Do note that this story is the cleaned-up version.

Right. When you’re free-writing, put your woes and insecurities aside. Let your words flow from your consciousness to your fingertips as you write away. I recommend writing because in the act/art of orthography, your brain releases joy hormones as you put thoughts to words. Don’t worry about spelling, grammar, and those practical things that an editor takes care of. Just write. 

The other thing you can try is automatic writing. This type of writing takes one on a spiritual journey. You don’t have to be religious or believe in psychics or things of that nature. You just have to channel that psychic in you. Automatic writing is an ancient art form. Casting any inhibitions aside, just write automatically. 

The other thing you can do is blog. In one of my Instagram stories, I shared a note on how to use your blog to help readers connect to you. [see image] Much like what I’m doing here. Blogs are fun to write. You don’t need to use luscious poetic language when blogging. But nothing’s stopping you from doing that if you wish. And, you can blog about anything. So, if you follow my blog posts, it may seem a little bit all over the place. But there is order in the chaos. You’ll see that I blog mostly about art, books, and writing. So, blogging is essentially about whatever that interests you and something you want to have a conversation about with your readers. 

Then, there are newsletters. Newsletters require less creative writing and more informational writing. It’s business-like language if you will. But, again, nothing’s stopping you from using luscious poetic language to engage your readers newsletter-wise either, It’s your newsletter and you’re a writer. Here’s a great one that I love reading cos the way it’s written is just yummy. I signed up using the sign up box on the right hand column and each time David blogs about something—ping, it goes to my inbox. That way, I’m up to date on his latest recipes. I love the apéritif hour, so Swampwater was just the right mouthwatering juice for me. Here’s another that I love. This one keeps me up to date on the children’s books I love. As you’ll see, this link takes you directly to the sign up box. 

Speaking of newsletters: Over at Picture Book Matters, Debasmita Dasgupta and I have created our own newsletter to keep our readers and followers informed. If you’d like this newsletter to be sent directly to your inbox, you know what to do—just click here. If you think that this newsletter can benefit your friends, please send it on. 

Right. Write away, folks. Pen those thoughts and ideas now and inform your readers what you’re up to. This newsletter tells you what some people are doing during this COVID time. 

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