Just Start

I bumbled into a simple but useful idea a few days ago. These are often the best kind. Its unfortunate that you can’t go looking for them, they just appear at opportune moments. This one was on a podcast I think. Not sure which one.

Just start. Yep, pretty simple although it might need some explanation. Whenever you have one of those things that you are putting off, or are scared or worried about, or its just a plain chore, or even something you really want to do that has become really pressured, when it comes time to do it, just start.

Take jogging as an example. If you’re sitting in your armchair after work thinking ‘I have to run ten miles now,’ the chances are you will stay sat in your chair. But if you say to yourself, ‘I’m just going to put my trainers on and go stand in the road’ then you will probably end up standing in the road. Then you are quite likely to actualy start running as you are out there.

I’ve been applying this to writing. I’m not sitting down to write X thousand words, I’m just opening up the story and tinkering with the last few sentences I wrote. Usually I end up writing the next few, then the few after that and before I know it I’ve down an entire new paragraph.

Don’t think. Just start.

OK, so thats my self-help hint for the month. Please ignore if you object to this kind of stuff.

Published by Damien Walter

Writer and storyteller. Contributor to The Guardian, Independent, BBC, Wired, Buzzfeed and Aeon magazine. Special forces librarian (retired). Director of creative writing at UoL, published with OUP and Cambridge. Currently travelling the world and writing a book.

3 thoughts on “Just Start

  1. Am looking for reviewers for gonewiththewinds.co.uk
    I understand what you’re talking about in the guardian blogs – it’s something i’ve been thinking about lately – a good novel is a good story etc.
    My ebook has leapt up the yahoo search engine today – let us know if you can do a quick review – it can then go into my blogspot spot !
    ( well it’s free and easy to do – don’t want to pay anyone to put the review up 0
    ps it’s romantic melodrama but also global warming – make of it what you will !


  2. The dame looked like trouble. Dames are always trouble, thought Obscurantist, whom his friends knew as Obs. (Obs liked to think this was a reference to his powers of observation, but he was not entirely confident about this).

    This one looked like real trouble. If the devil was a woman and wore a dress, this was how he she would look. Obs was always troubled, but now his troubles were doubled. Obs didn’t need his troubles doubling. His troubles were troubling enough. And now along comes this dame to double them.

    Etc. etc.



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