12 Simple Writing Exercises

Summary: If you want to more develop a more efficient writing routine, use the following exercises to warm up and get started faster.

Do you find it hard to get started with your writing?

Here’s a suggested approach to get started, stay focused, and avoid writer’s block.

  1. Location – find a place to start. Like any exercise, it’s best to have a dedicated place where you can do your writing. This also works for a second reason. When you make it a routine, something in you begins to click in as it knows ‘writing time is coming up.’
  2. Time – stick to a routine. Stopping and starting will defeat you. Instead, pick one day, set it in your calendar, and make that your writing day. If you’re serious about writing, block out 30 minutes every day. Within a month, you’ll see a huge change.
  3. Distractions – turn off the phone and close the web browser. Even better, leave the phone outside the room and turn off the wifi.
  4. 30 min block – work in chunks of 30 min as anything less doesn’t give you time to get started, and more can lead to overwhelm and exhaustion.
  5. Start – with something easy, such as proof-reading yesterday’s work for 5 min. Once you get started, even if it is something small, you’ll find it easier to transition into the actual writing.
  6. Identify writing tasks – make a list and save them to Google Drive, Evernote or some to-do list Chrome extension. Make sure it’s portable so you can review and update it on the go. Even better, write it on paper and keep in your pocket. Somehow, writing a goal on paper makes a huge difference in terms of results.
  7. First writing taskbullet point what you intend to write. For longer pieces, create a quick outline. These serve as a reference point. Outline and lists help you stay focussed and ensure you avoid drifting. It also cures writer’s block.
  8. Work to completion – don’t start the second task until you finish the first. Keep pushing until you make a breakthrough. It is often at the point where you are about to give up, that you stand to gain the most. Persist.
  9. Start second – once you have the first completed, see if there is time to start the second. If not, do some quick planning, take a break, then restart.
  10. Watch the clock – setup an alarm on your phone (forgot, it’s outside the door) or use an egg-timer. Try to get a sense for the time passing. Soon you’ll sense how much time if left. Often this acts as a catalyst to speed up and get to the finishing line.
  11. Break – stop, have a rest. Get up. Move.
  12. Evaluate – see what worked, then start the next 30 min block.

Green Energy theme – ideal for environmental, health, and energy-related white papers.

 White Paper templates – MS Word and Excel

Summary

It’s tempting to go over the 30 minutes if you’re in a momentum. A few minutes over is fine if you’re about to finish a piece of work, otherwise stick to the plan. Also, don’t hit the pause button if a phone call comes in and then restart the clock. The phone call was time out of your 30 min slot.

Thousands of templates to jump start your project

Acceptance Test Plan

Contingency Plan

Software Development Templates

Acquisition Plan

Conversion Plan

Software Requirements Specification

Action Plan

Cost Benefit Analysis

Software Testing

API Documentation

Database Design

Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)

Audience Analysis

Datasheet

Statement of Work

Availability Plan

Deployment Plan

System Administration Guide

Bill of Materials

Design Document

System Boundary

Business Case

Disaster Recovery Plan

System Design Document

Business Continuity

Disposition Plan

System Specifications

Business Plan

Documentation Plan

Technical Writing Templates

Business Process

Employee Handbook

Test Plan

Business Requirements

Error Message Guide

Training Plan

Business Rules

Expression of Interest

Transition Plan

Capacity Plan

Fact Sheet

Troubleshooting Guide

Case Study

Feasibility Study

Use Case

Change Management Plan

Functional Requirements

User Guide

Communication Plan

Grant Proposal

Verification and Validation Plan

Concept of Operations

Implementation Plan

White Papers

Concept Proposal

Installation Plan

Work Instructions

Configuration Management Plan

Interface Control Document

Software Development Templates

Acceptance Test Plan

Maintenance Plan

Software Requirements Specification

Acquisition Plan

Market Research

Software Testing

Action Plan

Marketing Plan

Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)

API Documentation

Needs Statement

Statement of Work

Audience Analysis

Operations Guide

System Administration Guide

Availability Plan

Policy Manual

System Boundary

Bill of Materials

Project Plan

System Design Document

Business Case

Proposal Manager Templates

System Specifications

Business Continuity

Proposal Template

Technical Writing Templates

Business Plan

Quality Assurance Plan

Test Plan

Business Process

Release Notes

Training Plan

Business Requirements

Request for Proposal

Transition Plan

Business Rules

Risk Management Plan

Troubleshooting Guide

Capacity Plan

Scope of Work

Use Case

Case Study

Security Plan

User Guide

Change Management Plan

Service Level Agreement (SLA)

Verification and Validation Plan

Communication Plan

Setup Guide

White Papers

Concept of Operations

Social Media Policy

Work Instructions

Concept Proposal

Contingency Plan

 

Configuration Management Plan

Conversion Plan