Monday, June 30, 2014

Things to Remember When Writing

1. You can always edit and revise and your first draft should reflect that. Use your first, second, maybe even third draft to get your plot figured out and your characters clear. Worry about the language that will make your piece exciting to read towards the final drafts. Do not try to make your first draft publishable, this will only cause stress and disappointment when you realize that is too difficult a task.

2. Have a plan before you sit down at your computer. Starting with a blank mind and no idea what you want to accomplish in your writing that day is an easy way to make yourself feel uninspired and quit early. I like to take a few minutes with a notebook, write down which story or article I want to work on and jot down a few ideas for a scene or topic points for an article.  I don't always accomplish everything I write down, but I feel that writing—rather than typing—jump starts my brain and creativity. I also find that it can be a good thing when I don't do everything that I write out first because that leaves me with some extra ideas to come back to the following day.

3. Read and don't feel bad about it. I have a hard time just relaxing and reading because I feel like it's a luxury that is taking up time I could use to do something more important. Don't get me wrong, I love reading and I would do it all day if I could! But I always end up feeling guilty about it. This is something I need to stop because all writers will tell you that reading is just as important as writing. It expands your vocabulary, it introduces you to writing styles and stories you would never think of, and it could really help with your own writer's block. Writers need to read so make sure you schedule enough time into your busy day for reading.

There is tons of advice out there for writers by writers and I find that it really helps to keep me focused and motivated when I think about some of these things. It is easy to get discouraged when writing, for many reasons, but these three things keep my mind in the right place.

Do you have any advice for writers or positive thoughts you use to stay focused?

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