Everyone wants to be a writer at some point, or at least they say, “I’ve got a few stories I could tell!” Nothing wrong with that.
But then, at some point, you have to sit down and write the bloody thing.
Earlier, I wrote a post on my 10 steps for writing a meaningful story, something that everyone will want to read and enjoy. For those writers who’ve made it past that phase, here are my rules on how to stay on task while putting your story together from conception to publication.
Rule 1: Shut out the rest of the world.
This advice might sound antisocial to you. And you’d be right. Brainstorming and editing can be done by committee, but the actual creative process of putting words down in a coherent narrative needs to be done solo. It’s also because, whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, you can’t afford to let distractions or doubts get in the way of losing yourself in your fantasy world.
Even if you’ve set your story in the modern day, in a town just like yours, you need a quiet environment to bring that other world to life on the page.
Rule 2: Stick to a consistent writing schedule.
Maybe you don’t get a chance to write every single day. That’s fine. Emergencies happen, something comes up, etc., etc. We’ve all been there.
However, when you have time to write, make sure it’s a time when you’re at your best. In my case, my best writing happens between 11 a.m. and 11 p.m. I’ve started earlier and finished later than those times, but I can tell the quality of said writing isn’t as good. That 12-hour period is my golden time for work, even with lunch breaks and social visits in between.
If you’re a morning person or a night owl, you can decide for yourself when your best hours are. Then stick to those hours no matter what.
Rule 3: Leave your revisions until the next day.
You’ve done it. You’ve written over two thousand words into your new story, and you’ve got more to add on. But before you continue the narrative, wait a day.
As soon as you’ve written something new, don’t edit it right away. Wait about 24 hours (or 12 if you’re a little pressed for time) and then read what you wrote. Become your own editor and look for every spelling error, every awkward sentence, and every confusing line of dialogue. By the light of a new day, you’ll soon find whether or not you’ve got a real scene on your hands or something that needs more work.
Trust me, your readers will thank you for your diligence.
So, fellow writers, what do you think? Would you read a story based on these rules? Do you have your own points for getting through writer’s block? Please share your thoughts in the comments and thanks for reading.