Writing, no matter how easy it may seem to amateurs, is a tough job. It takes a lot of time and work to produce one quality story or chapter.
But even though it’s so hard, we never give up – we keep writing and editing, creating these little (or not so little) worlds for people to enjoy.
And while actually writing is difficult, even more difficult is the process of coming up with the idea is even harder. Especially when you are in the middle of a novel and something g needs to happen right away or you’ll just bore the reader.
Creativity is fickle. One day it’s here and then it’s not.
But to make it last and keep it strong, you can do the following:
Write even when you are not writing
Now, this may seem a bit confusing.
Throughout the day you probably do many mindless tasks – washing dishes, doing laundry, taking a shower and so on. You could use all of the time to write – but in your head.
For example, I like to plot my scenes while washing dishes. I create dialogues while in the shower. I come up with ideas while cleaning the house.
I’m writing, but not really. All of these things accumulate and later, when I have time, become a full blown chapter or more.
Always be prepared to write
Waiting for the perfect place and time to write is like waiting for the rain in Sahara. Never going to happen.
Your kids will start fighting, you’ll have to study or something entirely different will interrupt your moment and you’ll never get to it. But if you commit to those incremental writing times – bathroom brakes, early mornings, while your kids nap or while in commute – you’ll actually get a lot done.
Waiting for that perfect Virginia Woolf routine reproduction is not going to work for you.
Have the tools on hand
Because of these incremental writing times, you’ll need a few tools, always on hand.
Every writer needs a notebook and a pen or a pencil – choose something durable since you will carry it everywhere. Write any ideas you can think of – some of them will probably go straight to memory wasteland but there might be some use of them at some point.
Next, install a notes app on your smartphone – this will serve you well when you don’t have time or place to take the notebook. Again, record all of your ideas and thoughts in case something valuable comes along.
Create a plan
“Create a plan for your novel so that you always know what comes next – at least in the broader sense. For example, outline your most important things, decide what’s most important and stuff that you will not change in the future.
For everything else, you could simply flesh it out as you go and be surprised by events. That’s inspiring too,” says a book reviewer from OriginWritings and 1Day2Write, Grisham Osborne.
Write what moves you
This is very simple – write a story that matters to you. Don’t write just for the sake of writing but because you care about the characters or you want to know what happens or you simply need to do it because of unknown reasons. But make sure to write because you care. That way, you’ll never be uninspired again.
You might get a case of the writer’s block but you’ll always be inspired to move on.
Develop your skills
“If you work on your skills diligently each day and try to remove some of your faults and mistakes, you will keep getting better and better. Seeing these results and getting confirmation from professionals that you are a good writer will mean the world to you and you’ll be inspired to continue writing more and better,” says Fiona Berkeley, a writer and editor with Write My X and AcademicBrits.
Never wait for perfection
Margaret Atwood said: “If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word.”
This is the best advice that anyone can give you. I know many writer who let their motivation and inspiration die away after their first draft is rejected. But your first drafts don’t need to be perfect, they are for your eyes only and they just have to exist. Editing and revising make them good and polished. So, just write your first draft and then you have something to work with.
Writing, as hard as it can sometimes be, is an amazing profession. You get to create worlds and dream up characters and their lives. However, what you can’t do is let your creativity go. Always keep moving forward and trying new things.
Sherie Raymond works as a writer and editor. She loves writing educational and business articles for various online publications. In her free time she likes doing yoga.