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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

“Over and over I feel as if my characters know who they are, and what happens to them, and where they have been and where they will go, and what they are capable of doing, but they need me to write it down for them because their handwriting is so bad.” —Anne Lamott

When you practice freewriting, you learn to let go and let the words come up from wherever they reside without trying to form them or push them into being a certain way. It takes practice and effort, just like those Magic Eye books that were so popular in the 90s. It seems counterintuitive to look at a picture and instead of focusing on it, to let your eyes relax and gaze into the space beyond the picture. But that’s the only way you’ll ever see the Magic Eye picture form out of the crazy pattern.

Freewriting is learning to unfocus your mind and let images emerge. It is about letting Wild Mind be in the driver seat. Let your Muse take charge. You’ll know you’re there when your characters start doing and saying things you never would have expected.

Once you reach that place, you’ll feel as if your characters have a life of their own, a past you must discover rather than invent, secrets you must coax out of them, fears and dreams and desires they may or may not tell you about. Enjoy the discovery!

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