When I took his workshop on the novel at Centrum Writers’ Conference, Michael D. Collins shared an antidote to the dread BBS. The tincture continues to work for me (for short as well as longer pieces). Keep in mind that my best starts come from the organic rather than the structured side of the spectrum.

Collins begins with what he terms “islands of fiction”–writing into an image or a thought, no particular plan in mind. Not a “forever” commitment. He is searching for a voice that will hold him for three hundred pages. By the time he moves to hammering out a draft, he might have (get this!) about 100 pages of writing. Non-linear to be sure, but still; pages. Without the God-awful trying.

Get cracking, amigos.

PS. This thought generated by a question on this helpful publishing blog.

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