DIY Writing — How’s that going for you?

DIY — do-it-yourself. Is that the way you learn best? Me too.

I’ve been a DIY learner pretty much my whole life. One day when I was a toddler, I heard one of my mother’s teacher friends talking about my education. She mentioned the time—still some years off—when I would learn to count by twos.

“I can already count by twos!” I announced indignantly. And indeed I could. I didn’t know that’s what I was doing, but once she named the skill I recognized the game I’d made up with my grandmother’s playing cards.

DIY
Hardanger altar cloth by me, photo by Nina Nicholson

Many years later, I bought something that looked like a counted cross-stitch pattern book and was working through one of the pieces when I encountered a stitch I couldn’t figure out. I went back to the store for advice and the proprietor said, “Oh, that’s probably in the beginners’ book.”

There’s a beginners’ book? I’d done it again—taken a skill that some people find impenetrable and taught it to myself.

For the record, it wasn’t counted cross-stitch; it’s a Norwegian craft called Hardanger. I made this altar cloth for my old church using the technique, which turns ordinary linen into something resembling lace. And, yep, I’ve still never had a lesson in my life.

DIY writing?

If you’re a DIY learner like I am, you may think that what you already know about writing is sufficient.

Well, is it?

Are you satisfied with the work you turn out, or do you secretly wish you could be a stronger, more consistent writer?

You don’t need the “beginners’ book.” You just need a nudge in the right direction. And maybe a dose or two of real-life inspiration from writers further along the path than you.

And because writing can so often slip to the bottom of the to-do list, maybe you’d like a reminder every now and then, a writing prompt to kickstart your creativity.

A DIY writing program

That’s exactly why I created Write Now—a 13-week-long DIY writing program. Every week you get a writing prompt. Use it or save it for the proverbial rainy day. Post your work to my private Facebook group—if you ask for feedback, you’ll get some thoughtful comments. If you don’t want feedback, say that and we’ll respect it. My group attracts some amazing people—whether they’ve worked with me through a course or three or a 5×15 writing challenge, they’ve all been where you are.

If you’re nervous about calling yourself a writer, there’s only one thing to do: Write. And if the “I’ll do it someday” approach hasn’t worked for you yet, Write Now may just be the extra (pardon the expression) prompt you need.

Register here and get your first prompt in minutes.


Also published on Medium.