So this does not have a very fun answer. Every time I think about it I wanna throw a book at someone. But I know it's the one and only way to ever get a word in edgewise.
All you do is this:
- You pick a time, any time that's best for you. You settle in, turn off distractions--phone, internet, and put them as far away from you as possible--open your word processor/notebook, read one page out of a book, and then you put your fingers to the keys and you start writing.
- You sit down and you write. Or you stand, if you like the standing desks. Or curl up on the sofa. Either way, you write.
- You stare blankly into a yawning abyss of billions of words. You can't find one that makes any sense whatsoever. And you keep on writing
- You think Pinterest will have something to offer in the way of inspiration. But you turned off the internet. So you keep on writing, plunking each terrible word down, one right after the other.
- An odd smell wafts into the air as your writing continues down its path of illegitimacy and synthetic garbage. It's so bad you think checking Twitter will help give you a break and return with a fresh perspective. But your phone's clear on the other side of the house and internet is off.
6. Then the fear starts kicking in, and the vulnerability of just laying your heart out on a page other people might read. And you'll never be able to write like Maggie Stiefvater, or stir people's souls like L.M. Montgomery, or reduce readers to tears like Markus Zusak. Never.
7. So you just slip on a hoodie, pull the hood around your head, and blare your music as loud as you can to drown out the voices of defeat and failure. Or surround yourself with silence. Whatever you wish.
Because tomorrow, when the book is done and you're editing, those days when nothing seemed to sound right, and the characters were threatening mutiny, some of those bad paragraphs won't be so horrendous after all. And some of the passages you thought were the best stuff you've ever written won't be worth the space they take up.
And you won't have to be like Maggie Stiefvater and Elizabeth Wein because you're you. And only you can write the best book you can.
Never stop creating.
Tip: Try this app. Time Doser!
How it works: You start the timer and write for 25 minutes. A pretty little strum marks the end and you get a five minute break. Another pretty strum tells you it's time to get back to work and write for another 25 minutes. You do this several times and then you get a longer break of 15 minutes.
I've used it for work and it was amazing for productivity. Simple. Easy to use. Motivating. I liked it because 25 minutes looks far more inviting than an abyss of endless unknown. You can pause and restart any time you like, and you can personalize it for your convenience.
Here, some pretty things for you.
Let's talk! Do you have any tips or tricks you've learned to keep yourself writing or get you into the writing mode?