Roseann Biederman reports from Don Fry's Writing Your Way:
"The following writing techniques work because they dynamite you out of your routine ways of thinking and dealing with the world. They make the world ‘strange’ so you can see it fresh...Ask experts to explain how ordinary things work, preferably things invisible to the public...If something bothers or puzzles you, find out why by interviewing people with similar reactions...Take alternate routes to your normal destinations, and try out different types of transportation, especially slower ones that let you see more. Leave your car at home and walk to work, or ride a bike. Climb stairs instead of taking elevators, take the service elevator, or enter through back doors...Strike up conversations with people you don’t know, even cultivating weirdos. Introduce yourself to airplane seatmates, to people carrying a sign or wearing a name tag...Accept any piece of paper handed to you on the street. Read junk mail. Watch awful TV shows and ask why they appeal to anyone. Buy TV gadget offers, test them, and try to get your money back...Role-play the lives of people with viewpoints different from yours or your readers’. I once spent half a day in a wheelchair and learned about hazards I never imagined. Bob Graham, the former governor of Florida, did manual labor one day a month to understand the public. All of these writing techniques jar you out of your normal vision, because that’s where the writing ideas are, invisible in plain sight.”
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