As all athletes know, whether you’re getting ready for a basketball game or a short jog, you need to loosen up. But for elite athletes, just like writers, loosening up isn’t just about warming up the physical body; it’s also about preparing yourself mentally for what is to come.

If you’ve ever seen basketball star LeBron James’ pregame “chalk toss” ritual, you’ll know what I’m talking about. You may not toss chalk before you write, but you can develop writing habits that will make your writing easier.

If you’ve read my recent guest posts, you’ll know that I’m obsessed with Susan Perry’s Writing in Flow: Keys to Enhanced Creativity (1999), an analysis of hundreds of interviews with award-winning writers. Based on her interviews (of everyone from Michael Crichton to Octavia Butler), Perry observed 5 common traits/ practices that most successful writers seemed to have in common.

In this post, I talk about what Perry calls “Loosening Up” and how it can not only make writing easier, but can also make you a better writer. Follow me over to the The Write Practice to read the rest of my guest blog on “How Writing Rituals Can Make Writing Easier.”

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