First of all you have to remind yourself that you ARE a writer. You are here to make a difference through your work by the simple act of expression. Every now and then the purpose has to be re-visted. It’s necessary to do this in order to get the ball rolling and to start getting noticed for your work. You ARE a writer. Go ahead and say it out loud if you need to!
What inspired you to become a writer in the first place? Was it because you read a certain book or admired another writer? The fact is, when you’re truly inspired to do something, your heart is set on doing it no matter what. Some folks write because it’s a way of release and expression. They literally cannot rest until they get whatever is rolling around in their head onto paper.
Maybe it’s your own story you’ve lived that inspires you to write. Whatever the reason may be, always re-visit it to give you a boost in keeping up with your writing. Many writers will remind you to look around you because there’s inspiration everywhere. It could be something as random as a corny magazine that will give you fresh ideas. It’s important to get out there and find inspiration at times. J.K. Rowling uses this to find ideas for her own writing:
“And the idea of just wandering off to a café with a notebook and writing and seeing where that takes me for a while is just bliss.”
So much writing material can be developed from relationships – good and bad. As far as the good ones go, it’s important to have a healthy circle of folks who aren’t afraid to remind you of who you are and what your plans are as a writer. Having people around you who doubt or criticize what you’re doing can make it more difficult for you to grow and develop to your full potential as a writer. I’ve experienced both; the people who are in my corner and aren’t afraid to nudge me every now and then when I start slacking and those who don’t understand or don’t relate to what I’m set out to do. I’ve taken both experiences and used them as a motivator for me. Not only do I have good material but I can apply certain concepts and thoughts to my work and the way I get it done.
This is a very challenging area for most writers. Cracking down and getting the work done. The bottom line is, the dedication to your writing comes with the discipline. Not that you have to write 24/7, it’s okay to take breaks, walk away from assignments and come back with a fresh mind. But there should be some type of structure in place in order to stay productive. Here are some simple ideas:
- Make a weekly checklist of assignments and tasks to complete. You’ll feel much more accomplished and encouraged as you check them off!
- Figure out when you’re most active and productive. Are you a morning person or a night owl? Do you get more done on the weekends because of your full time job? Determine when you’re at your best for performance and schedule yourself accordingly.
- Move away from the TV. It’s often difficult to type out articles or case studies while watching The Real Housewives of Wherever. You may have the intention of being productive in front of the tube, but it never plays out that way. Sometimes you may have to leave the house altogether, i.e. the library or café in order to be more productive. You know it’s the truth!
A Realistic Vision
The beautiful thing about a vision is that it’s always changing. It doesn’t have to start and stay the same way. That’s why it’s important for you as a writer to come up with a realistic vision for yourself and your work. Don’t create goals that are out of reach and exhausting to accomplish. Have a reachable vision and once it comes to fruition, enlarge that vision. Do it by steps or levels.
Confidence in Yourself
Lack of confidence can definitely lead to no production in your work. If the confidence isn’t there, then your writing journey will be very short-lived. Keep in mind confidence doesn’t come overnight. It has to be cultivated and nursed to a strong level. A good place to start is practice. Write up some drafts for yourself until you’re comfortable to share a piece of your work with someone to review. Without practice, you don’t develop rhythm and it’s impossible to develop your writing voice. Your voice will not be the same as J.K. Rowling, Robert Frost or Shakespeare. Everyone has their own voice and you have to find your own. Find out more about developing your confidence in a previous post where I share secrets for writers to improve their work.
What slows you down as a writer? How do you overcome that obstacle?