The drafting stage is fraught with distracting, terrifying thoughts. Writers navigate mazes of doubts and uncertainty, sure only of the fact that a completed manuscript is waiting somewhere at the finish line. We beat ourselves up, questioning every scene and every sentence. And then there’s the procrastination, followed by a whirlwind writing session after which we collapse onto the couch in a daze.
The drafting process can be rough, but we’re in this together. Here’s some of the stuff writers think while they’re getting their words on paper.
“My inner editor is such a jerk.”
During the drafting phase, we spend a lot of time cursing our inner editor. Here’s how that conversation goes. ...
When you finish your draft, it can be tempting to dive right into revisions. But that’s a bad idea. Say it with me:
Let your manuscript rest.
Giving your manuscript time to “settle” is one of the most important things you can do for the quality of the final product. But somehow, doing nothing seems to be the most difficult part of the process.
Why the Resting Stage is Crucial
Keeping in mind the reasons the resting stage is so important will help you keep your mind off your manuscript. Here’s why you absolutely cannot overvalue the resting stage. ...
These five thoughts will destroy your creativity. If you think any of them, stop writing and speak to your doctor—I mean writing partner—straight away.
1. I’m not good enough.
The absolute number one way to destroy your creativity is to believe you’re not good enough. You don’t have the talent to make your stories come to life, and your characters are destined to spend eternity locked inside your mind.
You don’t write because you’re good at it. You write to become good at it. tweet this The only thing we, as writers, need to worry about is improving. Ask yourself if the story you wrote today is better than the one you wrote last week, or month, or year. If so, you’re on the right track. ...
We all have our own writing doubts. Sometimes, depending on where we are in the writing process, we might work our way through several writing doubts before we are able to finish our content.
Why do writing doubts pester us?
Fear wanting to protect us. Why? Because the blank page is unnerving. Honestly, it does hurt when our work is criticized. It is embarrassing when we make a mistake and don't notice it until we've published.
So fear tries to keep us from the risks that put us in these vulnerable positions. Fear's problem though is he doesn't recognize balance. He doesn't realize it is a good thing to take writing risks. It is okay to make mistakes—yes, even publicly. Sharing our writing helps us grow. But all of these good things are risks, so fear pesters us with writing doubts to protect us from these risks. The thing is, you're a warrior, and you're going to write regardless...
Inspiration strikes in strange and unexpected ways. But when it doesn’t strike, there are lots of tricks to juice it along. Here are three that might surprise you.
StoryCorps creates an archive of oral interviews for future generations. It began in 2003 with a StoryBooth set up in Grand Central Terminal for family members to record their interviews with their elders; the results were archived for the rest of us to hear. These days, StoryCorps encourages the interviews to happen at family dinner tables after Thanksgiving, or anytime, anywhere, thanks to its free smartphone app. ...
To be the most productive and hit your word count target, make use of your off time as well as your work time! Taking breaks is an important and often underemphasized way to increase productivity. But there is a method to the madness.
This infographic from Quid Corner breaks down options for splitting your time and provides ideas for activities to recharge during your breaks, while keeping your mind sharp and focused. ...