Concentric Circles - An Exercise for Writers

  So I've been taking a Creative Writing course through my local university this past school year. It has been difficult in some respects but very informative and has certainly helped develop me as a writer. One of the exercises I did for my class was called "Concentric Circles" and is by no means an original idea of my own. However, I figured that my fellow writers might enjoy trying it out to, so here you are! Look at me being all nice and sharing things. You're welcome.

  The object of the exercise is to ask yourself questions about your writing life; from most to least important. You can either do this on a sheet of paper/computer document, or a blank piece of paper using actual circles, going out from the middle like ripples on the water, as shown:

 So once you've either gotten this drawn up or found yourself something to write with, you can begin jotting down these questions in the appropriate circle, starting from the middle and working out:

  Circle #1 - How do I feel when I am immersed in writing?

  Circle #2 - How do I feel about the act or process of writing?

  Circle #3 - How do I feel about myself as a writer?

  Circle #4 - How do I feel about my skills as a writer?

  Circle #5 - How do I feel about my resources (equipment, place, time, editing help)?

  Circle #6 - How do I feel about the support and companionship I have from other writers?

  Circle #7 - How do I feel about how those closest to me respond to me as a writer?

  Circle #8 - How do I feel about publishing my work?

  Circle #9 - How do I feel about the reception of my work once it is published?

  These questions are obviously quite personal and reflective, very handy for considering and thinking about your work and what you really want out of your writing life. I gave short answers since big ones don't really fit in the circles, but here they are below, in case anyone was interested. :P

  Emily's Answer #1 - I don't know as I feel happy or unhappy, I simply feel the story and where it is taking me. I get caught up in my imagination. 

  Emily's Answer #2 - It is an act and process I normally enjoy and am proud of, but it is also one I can find frustrating. 

  Emily's Answer #3 - Sometimes I feel like I'm not one, that I could never be good enough to describe myself as a writer, but that is still how I identify. 

  Emily's Answer #4 - I feel like my skills need improvement and conditioning. I am not as good as I want to be. 

  Emily's Answer #5 - I wish I had more resources, I also need a better time and place for consistent writing and all the editing help I can get. 

  Emily's Answer #6 - It seems that my writing identity bothers some people at certain times, like my parents when I spend a lot of time on the computer, or friends when I put my project ahead of them for a time. Overall though I have been met mostly with approval from family and friends. 

  Emily's Answer #7 - I have a good group of writer friends that I enjoy but I wish we were able to share with each other better, and only one of them is actually serious about their writing whereas the others treat it totally as a hobby. 

  Emily's Answer #8 - I would really like to publish someday, I would like my work read by more than just family and friends and I think I have something to share with the world.

  Emily's Answer #9 - I am somewhat nervous of how my work will be received. I am not entirely sure of the outcome. 

  I really enjoyed doing this exercise and learning a little bit more about myself as a writer. What about you guys? What kinds of exercises do you like to use? Did you like this one? Let me know in the comments!

  PS. To all those in the Go Teen Writer's 300 for 30 Challenge, how is it going? What progress have you made so far? I'd love to hear about it!


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