I did an extremely informal poll among some writers to determine what their biggest challenge is when it comes to writing.
Most of them came up with same issue.
Is it plot development? No.
Characters and dialogue? No.
Maybe language structure and use? No.
A writer’s biggest challenge is writing.
You know what I mean–making sure that the writing actually gets done.
On the one hand, life is busy; there is always so much going on and so many people need our time.
On the other hand, we all do want we ultimately want to do. So the question becomes, do you really want to write?
[Tweet “We all do want we ultimately want to do. So the question becomes, do you really want to write? –MyPublishingCoach @alanepearce #writing”]
If you do, then the issue is making sure you do it.
A friend and I were talking about this just today. Over a lovely cup of coffee this morning, we discussed how we spend our time. We all have 24 hours in the day. At least fifteen of those hours we spend awake. We decided that out of those fifteen hours, we should easily find (or make) the time to do the things we say are important to us. We decided we needed to make the commitment to sit down for thirty minutes and get it done.
Out of that conversation, I’ve come up with three ways to help you overcome a writer’s biggest problem–the problem of not making the time to write.
Commit to sit
The first step in overcoming your time issues is to commit to sit in your writing chair every day for at least 20 minutes to write. Notice I said to write. Not to research. Not to cruise social media. To write. Dedicate the time and commit to it. Set it as an appointment on your calendar. Make no excuses! You’ll be amazed at how much writing you can get done when you are deliberate about sitting at your desk and getting it done.
Give up some “excess” that doesn’t serve you
How do you find those minutes to write? Sometimes it means giving up some excess in your life. Excess sleep…excess social media…excess television. Don’t get me wrong, sleep is important, and there is a valid place for “downtime” in your day. But excessive downtime? Hours on Pinterest? Too much time on Twitter? Binge watching Orange is the New Black? Sleeping in day after day because you can…maybe that is excessive.
Can you look at your leisure activities and determine where you are spending excess time that could be put to better use writing? If you trade some of that time to meet your writing goals, you will be much happier with yourself.
Something else that helps a writer write is having some kind of accountability for their writing. Can you find a critique group that expects you to turn in a portion of your story each time you meet? Or maybe you can find a writing partner who will hold you accountable to producing pages. A coach can do that too (and even more because a coach can also help you develop your story into something wonderful).
Employing one or all three of these tips is a good way to overcome the challenge of not making time to write. And once you do that, you are halfway to getting your manuscript completed!
Indeed, this life is a test. It is a test of many things – of our convictions and priorities, our faith and our faithfulness, our patience and our resilience, and in the end, our ultimate desires. –Sheri L. Dew
How about you? In the comments below share your biggest obstacle to finishing your book. Why is that a struggle for you?
filed under the first step in the self-publishing process #write