One of my favorite writing exercises, or techniques really, is to go for a walk and write. Some authors do this merely for a change of pace. It gets the blood flowing which in turn helps the brain to ponder different ideas.
I recently saw a meme that said lazy people tend to be smarter. After doing some research, many studies actually suggest the opposite. Exercise stimulates neurogenesis and improves learning and mental performance. It has also been known to combat depression and illness.
Writing has been linked to mood improvements, offers a better ability to understand others, and aids individuals in learning and cognition. There is something about writing that is addictive and exceptionally therapeutic. Put it together with walking and it’s euphoria.
Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit (writers NEVER exaggerate).
Most writers have day jobs. I am lucky enough to have a job writing during the day in addition to my fictitious endeavors, but time constraints create stress and pressures that often lead the creative well to dry.
It’s frustrating and can affect every aspect of a writer’s life. the solution, for me, is the walk & write. I take this simple exercise to another level. It’s not always easy and I don’t do it every day, but I get an hour break for lunch on every shift throughout the week. It’s not difficult to eat and work at my desk, so instead of driving to go get food or lounging in a break room, I grab a pen and paper and walk around the building and jot out what I can.
It’s actually how I am constructing my novel right now. I can get out a good 1k works per lunch break. It’s a steady pace. Sitting down to type it up each week, I’ve come to find that what is pouring out of me during my walks is more polished and concise than my previous 1st drafts. It takes a bit of practice. One must up their attention to peripheral vision for safety’s sake.
It’s become my process for this particular novel. I’m always working on other projects and still sit for them, but the variety is aiding my creative spark. Some days I write more than others, and I have times where I just carry my notebook with me and watch birds fly overhead. What I have found most effective is not forcing yourself into any one routine.
Writers, like all mammals, are creatures of habit, but that does not mean we must marry ourselves to one way of doing things. Walking while I write is a habit for one of my novels. Another piece I’m working on flows out of me while I sit on my porch surrounded by candles. There is something about variety and the adventure of trying something new that seems to ward of writer’s block. I have never had it and at this point feel kind of left out.
When I walk & write, my brain explodes with lines and ideas to push my story forward. I draw a very significant connection between the two and highly recommend that other writers try it if they’re stuck or just need to get the hell out of the house.