As the jolly old elf can attest, using lists keeps you organized and prevents important facts from falling through the cracks. At Writer’s Relief, we know that making lists and checking them twice like Santa does can also help improve your writing! Don’t limit yourself to making to-do lists. Here are some creative ways to use lists in your writing life (provided in a list format, of course!).
How To Use Lists In Your Writing Life
#1: Post lists on your social media and blog: Whether it’s simply for fun or offers useful advice, information presented in a list format is easily digestible and readable. One of the most popular and easiest social media or blog posts to write is a “top” list: top writing tips, top reading lists, top author quotes—the list goes on! Posting lists on your social media and blog will help boost engagement and keep your followers and readers coming back for more.
#2: Use writing prompt lists: Need some inspiration? Check out a list of writing prompts to reenergize your muse. With so many different types of writing prompt lists available, you’ll be sure to find one that overcomes your writer’s block!
#3: Make lists to trigger new ideas: Take a page from author Ray Bradbury’s book Zen in the Art of Writing and create lists of words to inspire fresh ideas for your work. By freewriting lists of nouns, verbs, or adjectives, you can mentally unlock ideas for stories, poems, or titles. These lists of random words may even reveal subconscious patterns in your writing and thinking.
You can also create lists of your everyday activities and use the information to make your characters seem more real and three-dimensional. Incorporating ordinary tasks into your characters’ activities helps ground them in reality. A list for a protagonist who’s a single parent—and a superhero—might include: fold laundry, pick up kids at soccer practice, and save the world. Meanwhile, your villain’s list might feature: return library books, buy tinted eyeglasses, and send the earth spinning off its axis into the sun.
#4: Write descriptions in list format: Lists can be a powerful resource to employ in creative writing, but should not be overdone! When used in moderation, descriptive lists can bring a person or place to life by providing an abundance of details. Cataloging the variety of foods at a feast can arouse images and smells so the reader feels present at the event. Similarly, an inventory of the eerie décor elements and dusty furniture in an old mansion can help boost a sense of ominous dread. You can see a few more examples here.
#5: Use lists to get organized: Once your written project is completed, you can use a checklist to ensure you don’t miss any editing or proofreading steps. And when you’re ready to submit your writing for publication, you’ll need a list to keep track of all the markets you research. Or you can make things easier while boosting your odds of getting an acceptance with a list that has only one entry on it: Let Writer’s Relief help with the submissions process.
With Writer’s Relief, you can check off all the tedious tasks associated with researching and targeting the best markets for your work. We’ll do all the busywork for you! Learn more and submit your writing sample to our Review Board today.
Lists can help you stay organized, connect with your readers, and generate new writing ideas. And as a special favor to us, Santa’s created a list just for writers like you…
- Try one of the lists above.
- Share these lists with other writers.
- Submit a writing sample to Writer’s Relief pronto!
- Leave milk and cookies for Santa.
Question: Which type of list will you try in your writing life?