I write this to myself as much as I do to any of my readers. It can be difficult to get yourself to write. This may be odd coming from a writer but it is the sad truth of the matter. Writing is not all unicorns and dragons. Sometimes getting your word count can be drudgery. In order to write better, you need to write more.
Get Rid of Distractions
It can be difficult to focus on writing when other things are vying for your attention. I know that I often write with multiple other things going on at a time. I will have my phone and that alone is a huge distraction because I am tempted to check my messages or hop on social media. However, this is not conducive to writing.
You need to get rid of distractions so that you are able to immerse yourself in the story and focus on what you are doing. Interruptions will through you further out of the story than you think. If you can immerse yourself in your story then your writing will improve and the more words you get on the page the better your drafts will be.
Set Goals For yourself
You can often feel like you are floundering in the directionless ocean of words with no end in sight. A way to avoid this feeling is to set daily, weekly, and monthly. It can also be helpful to give yourself deadlines. This is especially necessary for unpublished writers. They need to get there stories written without any outside force or person driving them to the end.
It’s a marathon, not a sprint. (but that doesn’t mean that writing sprints aren’t a useful tool, they are!) Your daily goals can be plotting, word count, time, or scene related. I find that it is helpful to have more than one of these goals, such as time and word count, in order to further your writing. If you focus solely on time, your wordcount could suffer. If you focus solely on word count, you could waste time and not be focused which will affect the quality of your work.
Draw in Inspiration
It can be difficult to write when you are drained or feeling uninspired. This means you need to figure out where you draw inspiration from. Reading your favorite authors can be a great source of inspiration. See have they write and figure out the breakdown of their writing style so that you can understand your own style better.
There are many different places to find inspiration and ideas. Go for a walk with your dog, garden, paint, cook or bake. Do something creative and stimulating but not mentally draining. When you write, it takes a lot of mental energy so you will want to conserve mental energy in author areas, while still being creative.
Make a Working Idea Page to Consolidate Your New Ideas
What do you do with the ideas that you come up with, it’s too much to write at once? I use a working idea page. This is where I dump lists of ideas that I come up with throughout the day. I know that they are safe there and I can come back and grab any one of them when I need something to write. This can be useful because it means you will never run out of ideas because you wrote them down when you initially thought of them.
The bottom line is, you must revise. The first draft will not be what you end up with and that is a good thing because it is often a mess. That is okay. The point of drafting is getting words and ideas on the page and not to spin gold. Do not compare your rough draft to other author’s finished products. They have done revisions and that is a good thing. You will need to revise as well.
How do you motivate yourself to write?
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-Evi. L. Holmes