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Finding Creative Ideas

Sometimes no matter what we do we get into a slump. Everything we try to write or do is just not achieving the level that we want to strive for. Here are some quick tips for things I do when I know my writing isn't bright and shiny.

1) I go to the library. There I gather up at least 30 of my favorite children's books and just soak them up. I read them. I look at the pictures. I think about how I felt when I read them for the first time. I can smell my mother's new just-washed dress when she snuggled next to me and read the words that I still couldn't read myself. That was over half a century ago. It seems like yesterday.

2) I go to the art gallery. There's something about looking at art that always triggers my mind in new ways. I stare at the paintings. I try to emerse myself in what I think the artist was thinking or feeling when he or she created the painting. I love art.

3) I go to the bookstore. There I wander in the stacks looking at all my old favorites but picking up bright, shiny, new works from children's writers I've never heard of. I remember when I first picked up Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site. I knew it would be a best-seller when I read it. I like being right about things like that.

4) I bake something new. I go on Pinterest or look at my cookbooks and find something I've always wanted to try. I go to the grocery and buy all the needed items. Then I go home and bake and smell all the soothing, warm, rich smells that tell me that what I baked won't last very long once it's put out on the table. There's something very therapeutic about baking.

5) I cut pictures out of magazines. I take a stack of old magazines and start cutting out pictures to make a collage. They can be pictures of anything I like but sometimes I notice that they're coming together to make some still unwritten story. It's fun to use visuals to prompt story ideas.

6) I review the art portfolios of children's artists. I frequently look through art that illustrators I've worked with have prepared but I also peruse the work of new artists, especially those I'd like to work with someday.

Do you have a special tip for jump starting your children's writing creativity? If so, please share it with me so I can include it in this column.

Happy Writing!

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Content copyright © 2013 by Annamaria Farbizio. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Annamaria Farbizio. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Annamaria Farbizio for details.



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