Writing demands motivation and focus; that much is obvious. But sometimes, it’s incredibly difficult to find that motivation. It’s easy for us, as writers, to want to write, but more difficult to actually sit down to write. Distraction is everywhere , whether online – email, Facebook, Twitter, Google – or personal – phone calls, family, work – and it can take away from precious writing time. The task of writing a novel can seem especially enormous, but it doesn’t have to be.
We’ve all heard this advice, and it’s about time we follow it: “Write one page a day” to stay on track. Imagine, by sitting in front of the computer for 20,30,60 minutes, with no distractions and just transferring the words that come to us onto the page, a 365 page novel can be written in a year’s time. Sometimes, a page just isn’t enough, and we can find ourselves writing 5, 6, 10 pages in one sitting, and the novel is done sooner that expected, or comes out longer.
But, of course, there are some hurdles that might keep the motivation away. So, if you’re stuck on the beginning of Chapter Two, for example, and can’t find the drive to continue, don’t let that stop you. If you know what’s coming next in the story, start on Chapter Three or Four or Five, or write the end of the novel if you have to. If you have absolutely no idea where the novel is going, form an outline to make it easier to figure out what comes next. You can always fill in the blanks later. It’s much easier to fill in blanks when the rest of the manuscript has already taken shape and you don’t have to block the motivation just because Chapter Two isn’t working at the moment.
A page a day will allow you to stay focused on your writing, and get that often dreamed about novel out from your imagination and onto the page. Simple advice we’ve constantly heard, but never follow.
So I leave you with the words of Paul J. Meyer – “Productivity is never an accident. It’s always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.”
Now’s the time. Follow this advice and write on!
The Accidental Blogger