“If I only had a brain,” sang the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz. Lucky you, you’ve got a brain and it is magical.
Your brain is nature’s connection making engine. Give it a hint, like the opening lyrics to a song and your brain often jumps right in with the rest of the song. When a friend mentions “Des Moines,” your brain reminds you of when you were there or calls up other thoughts about that city.
The key to getting the most from your brain when you write is that wonderful connection making. Here’s how to make it work for you.
Make connections for topic development. Start with the question: “What do I know about this topic?” Your brain will give you bits of data and information, plus ideas about whom to contact and what to find out more about.
Be sure to capture ideas as you get them. You won’t remember them all later.
Make connections as you write. Do your research, but write your first draft without looking at your notes. Your brain will remember the important points and suggest things you should learn more about. Don’t stop to do more research. Make a note right there in your draft and keep moving. Go back later and list the ideas and information you need.
Trust your brain to make the connections that will make your writing better.