How to Write with Your Eyes Closed

Piano keys

Writing with your eyes closed feels like playing the piano.

Writing with your eyes closed is mighty fun. I could do it on my netbook easily, but now I have a new laptop and I am a little clumsy, but I reckon that in two weeks at most I will be able to do it gracefully, even faster than before, because the new keyboard is wider, and my nimble fingers have more space for their dizzy dance.

How to do it

Anyone who writes on a laptop can pull it off. A comfortable chair is the only essential requirement. I also wear a black hat, which a certain Anna thinks magical, but it seems unlikely to me that the hat has anything to do with it. If you do have a hat, you’d better put it on though, just to be sure. You might also want to draw the curtains and lock the door, to prevent misinterpretations.

  1. Straighten up your back, hold your head high, and clear your conscience.
  2. Take a deep breath, close your eyes, and paint the blackness in vivid colors.
  3. Write, converting the scenes in your head into black-stained whiteness.

The longer you keep your eyes closed, the better, but you can open them every thirty seconds, to make sure you’re still at your desk. Seek to gradually increase your blindness to at least three to five minutes, or how long it takes you to write a paragraph.

The benefits of writing with your eyes closed

  • Just like me, you might see better with your eyes closed. The scenes will be more vivid.
  • Writing no longer feels like a physical act, but like spellcasting in the dark.
  • Your eyes get much deserved rest. Writing on a laptop is tiring for the eyes. I hate having heavy eyes. Writing with them closed, even if it is for just 30 seconds, relieves some of the strain.
  • You do not get to see your typos and grammatical errors right away.
  • You do not notice your bad sentences right away, which is good, because it keeps the story flowing. You edit later.
  • If you play piano music in the background you feel as if you’re playing the piano. I always wanted to play the piano, and this is the closest I’ll get to doing it.


Writing with your eyes closed works with any kind of imaginative writing: first drafts, character sketches, brainstorming, descriptions, blog posts. Of course some typos will make it on the page, but the more you practice, the fewer they will get. For writing with your eyes closed to be effective, you have to edit only after you write everything down.

To make writing with your eyes closed a habit you have to do it consciously, daily, for at least a week. But once you get used to it, it no longer becomes a conscious act, and your eyes will close instinctively the moment you create a new document and begin writing your story.


Don’t write with your eyes closed if you’re drunk or sleepy or both! Have you ever heard the sound of a hatted pate hitting the desk? I have.



52 thoughts on “How to Write with Your Eyes Closed

  1. I have to say, this article was entertaining… but the warning was the joyful ending of my day! And I’m writing this with my eyes wide open since I’m sleepy from the day and drunk from your writing.

    1. Dear Julie,

      If I could send a bunch of troubadours under your window to sing you, I would do it.

      Each time you leave a comment on this blog, the sun here peeps through the clouds. 🙂

  2. i have typed while turning around and looking at someone before. I was surprised I could do that. So writing with my eyes closed shouldn’t be no problem.

  3. I’ve written with my eyes closed before on paper and it’s a beautiful feeling because you end up writing so much that you would have censored otherwise.
    I’d have a try doing it on a laptop but I imagine there would be a lot of typos and gibberish..

    1. At your green desk? In your green slippers? On your green laptop? With your green glass of water close at hand? Inspired by your green sirens and muses?

  4. I often write/type with my eyes closed. It’s especially productive if you do it the moment you wake up and write/type whatever comes to mind, no matter how crazy, disturbing or silly it may sound. A stream of consciousness… you’ll be surpised at what spills out of you. I’ve gotten many ideas for poems this way. It’s also great (cheap) therapy!

    1. Cheap therapy indeed! I also like to brainstorm ideas just after I wake up. The mind is still dreamy from the night’s sleep, and that’s good for the imagination.

  5. What a wonderful and inspiring idea. But I have to say, the best part was the disclaimer 🙂

  6. I can play the Doctor who theme and a bit of Pirates of the carribean on the piano with my eyes closed. It’s very difficult though. Anyhow, this looks like an interesting idea and I think I’ll give it a go. 🙂

  7. I’ve drawn pictures with my eyes closed! But, I’ve never tried doing the same with writing so far. I’m pretty sure I will though. 🙂

  8. I think that sounds like a splendid udea!! trulu! 😛 eyes opened: i needs some practise, but if I do it every day I’ll probably become a better (master) typer!

  9. I really like your blog! You have some very interesting ideas–ideas that make me think. Anyway, I’m going to try this sometime!

  10. His sounds like a dangerously brilliant idea. I might give it a go. I’ve always found it hard to visualise when writing creatively and I think this might help.

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