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Writing and Mindfulness Day-by-Day

Summing up the Writing and Mindfulness Challenge

How did it go?

How did you find the Writing and Mindfulness Challenge last week? Have a look over the notes you made on day seven of the challenge. What did you discover about your writing over the seven days of exercises? Will you change anything about the way you approach your writing as a result? Will any of the observations you made come in handy when you go back to on your current work-in-progress? Did they generate any ideas? Let me know how you got on in the comments.

A handy summary

Here’s a summary of the exercises we did over the week, for you to clip and come back to. It provides you with all the links you need in one place. You’ll find it useful to try them out again over the coming weeks and months.

1. On day one you simply found some space in your day to do nothing but sit (drink tea if you wanted!) and observe the world around you. I suggested that you could build up to three of these tea breaks if you had time.

2. On day two you spent time noticing the colour green and you added another sense – smell. You were still taking those tea breaks but focusing on the senses as well.

3. On day three you did a quick review of what you’d done so far, then focused on hearing, taste and touch.

4. On day four I suggested that you went on a mindful walk and spent 5 minutes writing a description of what you saw in as much detail as possible, adding at least one of the other senses.

5. On day five, I talked about the ‘sixth sense’ – when you sense the atmosphere of a place – and you practised writing about it.

6. On day six, you brought everything together – or started to – looking at what you wrote over the week and how you might use it.

7. On day seven, you found space in your day simply to sit and observe, with or without tea – then you made a list of the things you’ve noticed about yourself as a writer over the week. I suggested that you plan a treat for yourself in the shape of a longer pause, where you can take time out from the every day and spend time observing the world with writer’s eyes.

And here’s the outline of the workshop I did at the University of Brighton’s Rewild Festival on writing and mindfulness.

Want more?

For lots more activities like these, take a look at my colourful (and short!) books on the writing process. You’ll find lots of writing prompts in How to Write and a couple more writing challenges in Find Time to Write. There’s more on writing and mindfulness in How to Think Like a Writer, and advice for novelists in How to Write a Novel and Get It Published.

More soon. Until then, happy writing,

Lou xx


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