Molly Ovenden

Leaning on God's understanding

Archive for the tag “habit”

Using 5 Senses–Description

The following is the second lesson of my six week course for developing creative writing and making it a healthy habit in life: Creative Writing: Making it a Habit. Let me know how you get on.

Week Two of Six: Using 5 Senses–Description

Take a moment to review how Week One went for you. You may choose to write a five minute reflection. If you are able to, perhaps you could choose a piece you wrote last week to share with someone.

This week we will be spending a large chunk of time writing about what is in our surroundings to work on how to write descriptively. Part of using vivid language and specificity to make writing more lively is to use all of our senses. This way, the reader is able to relate more intimately to the piece of writing.

Freewrite 5 minutes on each sense (25 minutes total): see, hear, smell, touch, taste

Do this without pausing between each, except to reset the timer. Remember to write the prompt and date at the top of your paper and go with your first thoughts. This is a freewrite, so anything goes as long as you’re using your senses. You might find this activity is best done in a public place such as a library, coffee shop, park, etc. Whatever you do, keep your pen or pencil moving across the page and don’t worry what you’ve written (even if it’s the same same same same word over and over until you get unstuck). Simply write.

How did that go for you? Did you get writer’s cramp in your hand?

Freewrite 10 minutes or make a list of events that occurred in your life in the last 24 hours (e.g.: brush teeth, take shower, argument, film, sleep, eat…)

It might be easier if you start with NOW and choose some event, however minor, for each hour, working backward.

Have a quick look over your completed list and select one event.

Freewrite 15 minutes on that selected event using all 5 senses

Read your freewrite aloud after 15 minutes. If possible, read it into a dictaphone so you can play it back and actually listen to it being read aloud. Well done for getting so many descriptions in your writing!

Spend 5 minutes writing affirmations (come up with at least 5); you may choose to write the same one several times to really let it sink in.

Some examples of my affirmations:
I write like a child.
I have an inspiring imagination.
I am a success.
I write efficiently and interestingly.
When I write, I am free.

-Write a draft of 250-500 words of flash fiction (a very short ‘story’) using the first 6 or so random words that come to mind (some words my group came up with: helmet, earrings, boat, salvation, nougat).

-Freewrite 5-10 minutes with one of these prompts: “teapot” or “monsters in my closet” OR make up your own.

-Write one page of affirmations.

How did it go? Leave a comment for me–I would love to hear from fellow writers.


I write because…

The following is my freewrite* responding to a prompt during Week One of Creative Writing: Making it a Habit.

I write because I feel I have something to say. I want to communicate what I have learned. I write because it wells up inside me and I need to get it out otherwise I get grumpy and feel icky and a bit ill and like I might explode. I write because I like it. I think I am good at it so why not do something I like to do that feels natural? I write because it feels normal. I write because it is more comfortable to get my thoughts out that way rather than talking and blabbing for ages. I want to lay out all of my thoughts clearly so that later on I can see what I think and restructure what i actually think. I write because it’s fun and I get lots of story ideas and people have been entertained by my stories. I write because I am creative and writing is a way to express it all. I write because I have done so since I was little and could write. I write because I love it and when I do write I feel alive and like I am doing something special, life giving and authentic. It makes me happy.

*A freewrite is a piece of writing in which one writes without regard to conventions, grammar, punctuation, or the need to make sense.

NEW COURSE! Creative Writing: Making it a Habit

A habit is something that has become natural to you, something you do regularly without thinking. This is what I want writing to be in my life. I do not mean I will write without thought, of course, but that I want to go to writing every day as a happy instinct, not by dragging my feet or forgetting to actually do it.

I recall hearing that in order to become an expert in a particular field, skill, or art, a person must have practiced at it for 1,000 hours–or is it 10,000 hours? (Please leave a comment to correct me.) Either way, it’s about a commitment to practice and forming healthy habits. I also remember hearing somewhere that a marathon runner doesn’t wake up and think, “Oh, I might pop out for a run today,” but the thought of looking ahead and actually running is whirring through the runner’s mind upon waking up. Wake up. Brush teeth. Put on running shoes. Run.

The same goes for writing.

What is something you have made a habit? How did you make it a habit that would stick?

If writing is your thing, or something that you would like to do more of, please read on.

I know that one way to learn to do something well is to teach others what I already know. That being said, I have developed a mini course and have a couple of people who have come along to learn with me. I want to share with you my six week class of Creative Writing: Making it a Habit in hopes that you will be inspired to write more, better, and habitually.

I would love to hear from you about thoughts and experiences with developing writing as a habit in your life. Do get in touch and leave me a comment.


Post Navigation