The Center blog is teeming with tips and inspiration for starting and maintaining your writing practice.

The art we make. The work we do while others move around us, oblivious, indifferent, or simply too busy to notice. The traps we set. The very idea of a web, a network, a series of connections, attempted or established. Our fears. Our intentions. Our efforts, day after day, night after night.

What do you think of when you look at this image? Write about it.

Monthly photo prompt writing contest for email list community members!

If you aren’t currently enrolled in a Center course (or even if you are!) but want to write with us, we host a community-building photo writing prompt project through our email list.

How it works

We can get up every morning with a clear idea of what we want to write, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we have a well-conceived plan for getting there. So what if we break our goals down into more manageable steps?
We have all had to revise what "focus" means during this pandemic. When you find yourself in a rut with your main writing project, use the new reality of split focus to your advantage by establishing alternate writing projects to turn to for some relief.
They are migrants. Their lives were saved. They came to a new place and added such beauty, a yellow different from the broom plants, the evening primrose, the Gloriosa lilies, Stella D’oros, the pale yellow lilies, names unknown to me, and the tiny yellow flowering ground cover, another gift of this place to me—its name also unknown. A shimmering time of yellows, the beginning of July...
Maybe the fighting nature of the beta fish leads you to a metaphor about current events or a personal conflict, past or present. Maybe you interpret "fight" in a positive way; when is "being a fighter" a positive trait? Or maybe it conjures the memory of a pet, or a childhood trip to a pet store with walls full of fish in lidded plastic dishes, waiting to be chosen. What do you think of when you look at this image? Write about it.
Put yourself on a route that runs away from negative self-talk and toward mindful occupation of literal and figurative space in the world. Final destination? A productive, fulfilling writing life. Here’s how to get there:
Struggling with endings? You could wait for inspiration to strike. Or, you could explore four strategies within your control and arrive at a fitting conclusion every time.
Life is a relay race One passes the necessary tasks to the Next One... And we open our hands to receive them, those necessary tasks. We open our hands to touch the world—however we can.

Everyone has a shadow. Maybe this photo makes you think of your first awareness of your shadow as a child, how you hopped around trying to escape it, or pondered how it stretched and shrank but still followed you everywhere. Maybe this photo makes you consider your shadow self, in psychological or even spiritual terms--the part you might perceive as inferior, the part we deny, refuse, or project onto others. We all have one. Come out of the shadow.

What do you think about when you look at this image? Write about it.

There's a reason why famous writers tell aspiring writers to read. Here are four reasons why reading regularly and widely will strengthen your writing practice, and tips for how to make space for reading.