It certainly seems that I have not mastered the daily writing routine. My life isn’t that orderly and perhaps I am not that disciplined. So I have a number of tricks that help me return to my fiction writing. One of my favorite tricks is to write about the writing process. I can explore my writing habits and I can challenge or encourage the processes, depending on the effectiveness. So that is one way that I get back writing. Another is to devise exercises for myself, as I describe in this essay.
“Practice the craft”
My current ‘practice the craft’ exercise concerns the transitional methods that can be used. A transition is the movement from one thought, one action or one paragraph to another. I have a list of common and ordinary transitions – after, at first, before long, suddenly, eventually, before and the like.
The exercise I have devised is to take a short story written by someone else and to list the transitions used. Then I can examine them.
How does the transition work for the author’s purpose? Is it effective? Do I like this? Are the transitions used similar to each other? What effect do transitions have on the style or the readability? What do I think the author is trying to accomplish?
And then I intend to do the same for one of my stories. Is there another way? Is this a place where my story falters? What new knowledge can I apply? Can I do better as I practice the craft?