Saturday, June 28, 2008

WORD: Writing Around Vacation

by Gabrielle Linnell

I've written a lot these past weeks about writing at home during the summer: taking your laptop to cafes and libraries, or hiding up in your room. What happens if you visit your grandparents for three weeks? What if Cancun has no WiFi? Below are three tips on saving your writing career, one vacation at a time.

Change it up. If you write in the morning at home, write during siesta while you're gone. Never martyr yourself to write. Or, in other words, never feel self-piteous while writing. Writing isn't an obligation, it's a joy and any thoughts to the contrary is hogwash. So make sure it feels like a writing vacation... just not a vacation from writing.

Be inspired by your surroundings. Like every experience, learn from what's happening around you. Look for historical events and buildings, rarities, oddities, or the perfect meal for under $5.00. Keep a notebook, as these kinds of first-hand notes are great for travel writing articles and descriptive scenes.

Essay on. If you've never attacked an essay with gusto, do it now. Vacations are great for reflecting on your childhood experiences, your family, your future, turning points. If you're unsure how to structure an essay, use the basic five paragraph formula: introduction paragraph, points 1-3 (one paragraph each) and then conclusion.

Stop writing if you seriously can't do it... but define "can't."

Gabrielle Linnell likes cooking, ballroom dancing and getting published.

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