Where to Start Your Writing Project So You Can Get Words On the Page

Where to Start Your Writing Project So You Can Get Words On the Page

Where to Start Your Writing Project So You Can Get Words On the Page
Photo by Todd Dailey

Where to Start Your Writing Project So You Can Get Words On the Page

Ever wonder where to start a new writing project? You have a task to complete -maybe it’s a full-length book that will take you several months to write or maybe it’s a blog post that you need written in under an hour.

So, where do you start your writing project?

While there are never any right answers or perfect formulas when it comes to writing because it's mostly subjective and there are so many ways that can be done, there are better ways to convey the information.

Fiction writers are told to start their stories at the start of the action, and that’s generally a good place to start. But does it need to start there? It all depends on the story and what makes it sound good.

While you’re deciding where to start your story or how to jump into your blog post, here are some tips that will help you get moving now. Rather than waiting until you have everything figured out, start now so you can prevent delaying the process. By starting now, you’ll be able to use that time to become more familiar with your story or topic, and as a result, you'll feel like you're making progress on your writing project.

Starting somewhere

First of all, understand that at this moment, it doesn’t matter where you start. The first step is simply getting words on the page. So, focus on writing what comes to you and work on getting your thoughts down on paper. It doesn’t have to be perfect at this point because you will give your rough draft a thorough edit once you have your thoughts down.


Another way to get started is to use sample copy. Are you not really sure what to say, but you have a general idea of how you want it to read or look when you’re done? Find some copy that you like (i.e., a novel or an article) and then use it to get started on your own writing. This doesn’t mean plagiarizing someone else’s work and it doesn't mean using the whole thing. Simply use a sentence or a paragraph or the basic structure as a template so you can get started and the creativity flowing.

While you're using the template, you'll find the writing process becomes a little easier and you'll be able to edit the sample to make it entirely your own. To clarify, this process is just to help you get started. Since it's just a tool to help you get started, the sample you use as a template should not be in your final draft.


In addition to starting somewhere, anywhere, and using a template as a guide, get a list of talking points together and then start filling in the details and the gaps. How much information do you want to share, and what are your main points and subpoints? Do you have only one main point or are you creating an overview (or a complete guide)?

At this point, your main focus should be on getting words on the page so you can advance toward completion. As much as we want to write well the first time around, we have to remember, however, that the plot or outline doesn’t have to be perfect before we get started. So, start now and get those words on the page.

Jody Calkins
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