10 Stages Of Writing

There's something about writing that sets it apart from every other subject I've had to study. I even did "writing club" for a week at the camp I worked at, despite my camp director cringing at the idea.

It can be therapeutic, it can be adventurous, it can be whatever you, as the writer, wish it to be.

As a creative writing minor I managed to write for three outlets during the academic year (The Northern Iowan, The Odyssey, and my writing minor classes). During those times there were deadlines and more stress on turning things in publication-ready or workshop-ready. Now, there's a lot more time and a lot less deadlines to knock some stories out. But there seems to be a process that stays pretty consistent with writing.

1. Beginning

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/writing-y8rtj0fF5S66Q">via GIPHY

Beginning can be the hardest part. What are you going to write? What's it about? What's the deep meaning? How long's it going to be. Oh. I've only written one sentence. How exciting.

2. Writer's Block

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/lisa-simpson-writing-the-si... GIPHY

Writer's block can be slippery and there always seems to be a stage towards the beginning where you have to set something up to get to the scenes you really would rather be writing, but you have to get there first.

3. Windfall

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/cat-lol-idea-3o7bua2pl98HQS... GIPHY

This is when everything just clicks. This can hit in the strangest moments. 2 AM. In the shower. At the supermarket. In the middle of class. It's imperative to get it out in that moment before it's lost potentially forever.

4. Writer's Block

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/5Zesu5VPNGJlm">via GIPHY

After you get that windfall it can be difficult to move onward or even decide if the piece should be added on to or stay as is.

5. Workshop

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/school-college-test-12vJgj7... GIPHY

This is the moment when you and your writing piece are most vulnerable: writer's workshop. You've sent it off to your class or colleagues to be reviewed, commented on, and criticized (constructively). And the scariest part is, a majority of workshops won't let the writer defend their piece until everything has been commented on and debated.

~the moment between where you're just trying to gather your emotions after the in-person workshop and reading everyone's comments on the piece~

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/writer-qbBUDImAjPXuU">via GIPHY

6. Break

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/shameless-lip-gallagher-ver... GIPHY

They always say to set your piece aside for a while before working on revisions. Go out, meet up with friends, work on other things.

7. Revision

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/writing-smuGCry4aY9DG">via GIPHY

Revision is a trying time. What you may have thought was good, perhaps the workshop proved was not. Or there might be an area you're having difficulties resolving. Revisions can be tricky because you can either end up improving the piece or utterly destroying it.

8. Problems

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/computer-ron-swanson-parks-... GIPHY

So, you may come across problems in revision. But you may come across problems just in the sense of computer problems too (or if you prefer paper & pen(cil) there might be problems there). In this case don't give up, but be patient.

9. Stalemate

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/angry-pissed-off-n60aPuXZLJ... GIPHY

You're over it. You're done. You've reached a point with the piece that you can't seem to do anything else and you're either content or dissatisfied. But it's definitely time to step back for a looooooooooooooooooong while.

10. Rediscovery

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/food-ahead-upcoming-Lcn0yF1... GIPHY

It's been a very long time and you go through your writing pieces and, poof, there it is, the writing piece you'd been working on waiting patiently for you to rediscover it like an old friend. (Sometimes it's a good reunion, most times it's a body-wracking cringe looking back on old works).

And onward to the next writing venture...

via">https://giphy.com/gifs/writer-Mg1Qsutq27kEo">via GIPHY



Report this Content

More on Odyssey

Facebook Comments