Writing requires discipline, commitment, energy, and above all, self-belief. So how do you manage to keep all those elements positive, which in turn will keep you moving forward with your writing?
Keep connected with other authors, who are, after all, like-minded people who understand! It could be a simple as a chat on social media or as in-depth as brainstorming plot ideas. Just connecting with other authors will fuel your positivity and belief in yourself as a writer. As well as your enthusiasm. The act of writing entails hours sat alone, in front of your screen or notebook, and being alone when you hit a sticky patch in your writing can be soul-destroying.
This might seem strange but get away from your screen or notebook. Take time to allow thoughts and ideas to percolate. After all, you don’t have to be putting words on a page to be writing. Thinking time is as important as writing time. If I get stuck, I find a good walk with the dog can unblock things. When that happens, dictate into your phone so you can retrieve that breakthrough when you get back to your desk.
Set achievable goals that fit in with your everyday life and commitments. If you can only manage one afternoon a week to work on your novel because of your work and family commitments that is perfectly fine. As is daily writing. Whatever you set as your goal make sure it is achievable otherwise you are setting yourself up for failure and misery. It’s so much more satisfying to surpass a goal!
I set myself a weekly goal and then break it down into smaller daily ones. Sometimes I don’t meet the daily one, but an achievable weekly goal helps to lessen the impact on my confidence of a day when the words didn’t come or couldn’t be written because daily life got in the way. And that means I usually hit my weekly goal.
Work with a professional to get the most out of you, the writer. Don’t wait until you get that agent or publishing deal. You and your writing deserve the best right now.
During lockdown, I worked with Joanne Grant Editorial Coach, who has a fantastic new Facebook group Motivation for Writers! to join as well as a weekly newsletter to subscribe to.
Over the last few years, life has hurled quite a few curve balls my way, and my confidence and belief in myself as a writer was at an all-time low. Working with Joanne got me back on track and was the best investment in myself as a writer I have ever made and I’m writing in a more productive and positive way than I have done for some time.
Read and Watch
Image - Pezibear Pixabay
Reading is as important as writing. If you aren’t comfortable with reading the genre you are currently working on, then try something new. It’s a great way of discovering authors new to you as well as sparking your imagination.
I also find movies or a binge-watch of a series a great go-to when I need to stir up my creative juices too.