The Art of War

The pen has often been considered to be mightier than the sword.
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Weekly Writing Tips - The Art of War

The pen has often been considered to be mightier than the sword. For every history defining battle there have been countless leather bound treaties, journals full of plans, and binders of strategies written to dictate how a battle would be fought and won, if not avoided entirely. Whereas writing or journaling may not be as difficult as war, some days definitely feel like you’re caught in the trenches and unsure of any way forward. Usually when in need of inspiration, we turn to famous authors or writers whose books have inspired us. However there is wisdom in experience and I’ve found turning to strategists like Chinese writer Sun Tzu has offered a unique perspective for tackling writing obstacles and deadlines.

You have to believe in yourself.


Confidence is key. If you go into journaling or creative writing with the attitude that you do not have any worth then how are you supposed to show others your stories are worthwhile. If you do not believe in your manuscripts or yourself how are others supposed to believe in you? Trust in your writing ability.


Plan for what is difficult while it is easy, do what is great while it is small.


Plan for the road ahead by taking one step at a time. Starting by setting small daily writing goals is a good way to prepare yourself for writing opportunities with short deadlines. What could be filling a journal with short story ideas one day can quickly become filling multiple books with your own stories and scripts or even turning out essays and articles in no time at all.


Never venture, never win!


The important part is that you actually take the steps and work on yourself and your writing skills. If you don’t work on them and broaden your vocabulary you can’t expect great results or sufficient growth. The first step to being a successful writer is to try your best and work from there.


Great results can be achieved with small forces.


Writing so much may feel overwhelming for just one person to do but it’s actually quite incredible what a single person is capable of doing when they put their minds to it and find a topic that they can focus enough of their time and energy on. As tempting as it might be to share a manuscript or rough draft of your creative writing with friends and family, sometimes your vision of a story can get muddied by too many thoughts detracting from your original point.



Ponder and deliberate before you make a move.


As motivating as it may be to simply follow your dreams without fear of failure or consequence, it’s important to make a plan and be able to stay with the plan. A script or novel needs structure and a path to follow. Whether you keep these notes in a separate journal or in a separate section of your binder- keep them close by to reference while writing your story. Know your own path so you don’t find yourself being swept away and lost in the plot.



Now Try This Writing Promp
Writing Prompt:

Know thy enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles, you will never be defeated;
When writing, you can be your own worst enemy. Strategize how best to overcome your own worst writing habits and create your own Art of War against yourself so you will never be defeated by another deadline.

Writing Prompt:
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Authors: Colin Murdy & Anna Ratzburg