Clustering:  A Writer’s Tool Writers need ways to come up with topics.  Here is one way to experiment with.
<ul><li>The gift of insight—of making imaginative new connections—is there for anyone who persists, experiments, and explo...
<ul><li>In most lives insight has been accidental.  We wait for it as primitive man awaited lightning for a fire.  But mak...
<ul><li>The essence of human intelligence is to forge links; to go beyond the given; to see patterns, relationships and co...
<ul><li>Creation is inherently relational—there cannot be creation without interconnection. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul>...
Novelist, master teacher John Gardner said: <ul><li>Writers need some magic key for getting in touch with their secret res...
<ul><li>Clustering is one such magic key. </li></ul><ul><li>It can be one of the crucial first steps for bypassing our log...
<ul><li>Clustering can be a magic key to natural writing. </li></ul>
What is clustering? <ul><li>It is a nonlinear brainstorming process akin to free association. </li></ul>
<ul><li>It makes an invisible design process visible through a nonlinear spilling out of lightning associations that allow...
What are the results of clustering? <ul><li>We naturally come up with a multitude of choices from a part of our mind where...
The Writer’s tool, Clustering accepts: <ul><li>Wondering </li></ul><ul><li>Not-knowing </li></ul><ul><li>Seeming chaos </l...
Trust in the process… <ul><li>It is okay not to know </li></ul><ul><li>Wondering is the natural state at the beginning of ...
How to create a cluster: <ul><li>Begin with a nucleus word, circled on a fresh page. </li></ul><ul><li>Let go and begin to...
Frustration <ul><li>As you cluster, you may experience a sense of randomness, or, if your are somewhat skeptical, an uneas...
<ul><li>That is your logical mind wanting to get into the act to let you know how foolish you are being by not setting tho...
<ul><li>There is no right or wrong way to cluster. </li></ul><ul><li>Just try and see if it works for you. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Your mind knows where it is heading, even if you don’t. </li></ul><ul><li>Your creative mind has a wisdom of its o...
<ul><li>Simply begin to write; the writing takes over and writes itself. </li></ul>
<ul><li>The technique of clustering gives you access to the patterns and associations of your Design mind. </li></ul>
What does clustering provide? <ul><li>1.  Choices from which to formulate and develop your thought </li></ul><ul><li>2.  A...
Quote from a student: <ul><li>Clustering brings to my mind truths I may have lost sight of. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Continue to cluster for two to three minutes or until you experience a shift from randomness to a sense that you h...
<ul><li>Now take out a clean sheet of paper and begin writing about what idea or vignette or pattern came about from the c...
A basic technique of natural writing <ul><li>Clustering, the basic technique of natural writing, can be use to: </li></ul>...
<ul><li>Although it is human nature to resist the unfamiliar, the unconventional, give clustering a chance. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Don’t prematurely bring down the curtain on a process that is certain to produce enormous changes in your writing,...
<ul><li>In making the invisible process of your Design mind visible through clustering, you avail yourself of the rich arr...
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Clustering

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A tool for writers

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Clustering

  1. 1. Clustering: A Writer’s Tool Writers need ways to come up with topics. Here is one way to experiment with.
  2. 2. <ul><li>The gift of insight—of making imaginative new connections—is there for anyone who persists, experiments, and explores. </li></ul><ul><li>Marilyn Ferguson </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>In most lives insight has been accidental. We wait for it as primitive man awaited lightning for a fire. But making mental connections is our most crucial learning tool. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>The essence of human intelligence is to forge links; to go beyond the given; to see patterns, relationships and context. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Marilyn Ferguson </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Creation is inherently relational—there cannot be creation without interconnection. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Charles Johnson, M.D. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Novelist, master teacher John Gardner said: <ul><li>Writers need some magic key for getting in touch with their secret reserves of imaginative power. </li></ul><ul><li>What we lack is not ideas but a direct means of getting in touch with them. </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Clustering is one such magic key. </li></ul><ul><li>It can be one of the crucial first steps for bypassing our logical, orderly Sign-mind consciousness to touch the mental life of daydream, random thought, remembered incident, image, or sensation </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Clustering can be a magic key to natural writing. </li></ul>
  9. 9. What is clustering? <ul><li>It is a nonlinear brainstorming process akin to free association. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>It makes an invisible design process visible through a nonlinear spilling out of lightning associations that allows patterns to emerge. </li></ul>
  11. 11. What are the results of clustering? <ul><li>We naturally come up with a multitude of choices from a part of our mind where the experiences of a lifetime mill and mingle. </li></ul>
  12. 12. The Writer’s tool, Clustering accepts: <ul><li>Wondering </li></ul><ul><li>Not-knowing </li></ul><ul><li>Seeming chaos </li></ul><ul><li>The unknown </li></ul><ul><li>The writer maps an interior language as ideas begin to emerge. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Trust in the process… <ul><li>It is okay not to know </li></ul><ul><li>Wondering is the natural state at the beginning of all creative acts, as recent brain research shows. </li></ul>
  14. 14. How to create a cluster: <ul><li>Begin with a nucleus word, circled on a fresh page. </li></ul><ul><li>Let go and begin to flow with any current of connections that come into your head. </li></ul><ul><li>Write rapidly, each in its own circle, radiating outward from the center in any direction they want to go. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Frustration <ul><li>As you cluster, you may experience a sense of randomness, or, if your are somewhat skeptical, an uneasy sense that it isn’t leading anywhere. </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>That is your logical mind wanting to get into the act to let you know how foolish you are being by not setting thoughts down in logical sequences. </li></ul><ul><li>Trust this natural process. </li></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>There is no right or wrong way to cluster. </li></ul><ul><li>Just try and see if it works for you. </li></ul>
  18. 18. <ul><li>Your mind knows where it is heading, even if you don’t. </li></ul><ul><li>Your creative mind has a wisdom of its own, shaping ends you can’t really evaluate yet. </li></ul><ul><li>This wisdom has nothing to do with logic. </li></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><li>Simply begin to write; the writing takes over and writes itself. </li></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>The technique of clustering gives you access to the patterns and associations of your Design mind. </li></ul>
  21. 21. What does clustering provide? <ul><li>1. Choices from which to formulate and develop your thought </li></ul><ul><li>2. A focus meaningful enough to impel you to write. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Quote from a student: <ul><li>Clustering brings to my mind truths I may have lost sight of. </li></ul>
  23. 23. <ul><li>Continue to cluster for two to three minutes or until you experience a shift from randomness to a sense that you have something to write about. </li></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>Now take out a clean sheet of paper and begin writing about what idea or vignette or pattern came about from the clustering. Write in a free manner. It is only a draft. See where this takes you. </li></ul>
  25. 25. A basic technique of natural writing <ul><li>Clustering, the basic technique of natural writing, can be use to: </li></ul><ul><li>Generate ideas for writing of: </li></ul><ul><li>Fiction, poems, essays, business reports, song lyrics, even novels. </li></ul>
  26. 26. <ul><li>Although it is human nature to resist the unfamiliar, the unconventional, give clustering a chance. </li></ul>
  27. 27. <ul><li>Don’t prematurely bring down the curtain on a process that is certain to produce enormous changes in your writing, your attitude toward writing, and your assessment of your own creative powers. </li></ul>
  28. 28. <ul><li>In making the invisible process of your Design mind visible through clustering, you avail yourself of the rich array of choices on which natural writing thrives. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Gabriele Rico, Ph.D. is a professor of English and creative arts at San Jose State University. She lives in Chicago. </li></ul></ul>

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