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Visualizing May Help Your Writing

Have you ever tried visualizing your writing?

Sounds weird, but it may help.

Speak to an athlete on any level, and he may tell you that he visualizes catching a football, shooting a basketball foul shot, hitting a home run, scoring the winning goal on a one-timer from the blue line, or speeding to the finish line ahead of other sprinters.

I have said that writing doesn’t happen over night. Like athletes, writers have to practice the craft, or they may not rise up. Elite athletes are elite because they have god-given talent, but they also know how to practice their crafts by breaking down essential movements, and also thinking and seeing their products.

What I mean is they put themselves in unique situations and practice how to maximize their output. They are aware of what they are doing, and so when a situation is presented to them, they can react because in their minds, they have rehearsed, and know the perfect solution. Athletes study films to better understand how to progress. They are at the top of their games because they put in the time to practice the small, refined details.

Writers can do the same, but with words, sentences, and paragraphs.

It begins with the writing process — brainstorming, rough draft, editing, revision, publishing.

Usually during brainstorming is a great time to visualize how you will write your words. It’s nothing fancy. It’s just you taking time to see yourself putting words to a page by either computer or writing utensil. This way if you see yourself acting out the physical process, when it’s time to actually write, you will not have a problem getting your words to the page. And remember that during the brainstorming portion, you are writing words in an informal way to try to make sense of your ideas.

Next is your rough draft, Don’t be afraid to visualize writing your rough draft. If you imagine yourself writing, then it will be easier to finish your rough draft. Next, imagine how you would edit your rough draft, by paying attention to grammar, spelling, and punctuation. You can visualize still more when you revise. You may want to switch some words or paragraphs in a different order. Your ideas are set, you just have to make sure you get them across to your readers. The revision is a fine tuning of your work. You can visualize publishing as well. You may want to only print out your copy on a white sheet of paper. Or you may want to make your copy look different by using programs like Adobe InDesign or Apple Pages. With those programs, you can place text, graphics, and pictures anywhere on the page to better tell your story.

The key is to visualize how you want readers to see your words.

It’s that easy.

It’s that hard.

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