10 exercises to shake off the writing doldrums

When you’re struggling to find the right words, sometimes it helps to think outside the box. Here are some ways to unblock your creative flow.

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Having trouble coming up with the right words? Unable to string more than a few sentences together?

Perhaps your brain needs a workout. Consider trying out a new writing exercise: constrained writing. It’s just what is sounds like—imposing conditions on your writing, such as disallowing certain types of words or writing to a specific pattern.

Imagine writing a short story without using the letter “e” or the word “is.”

Writing with a constraint forces you to solve writing problems in new ways, as you can’t always use the words or phrases that you usually rely on.

Here are ten descriptions and examples of the most common types constrained writing:

1. Acrostic a poetic form in which the first letter of each word, sentence, or paragraph forms a word or sentence.







2. Alliteration each word in a sentence or phrase must start with the same letter of the alphabet.


Early exclusion eliminates excessive exposure.



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