Maintaining your motivation can be one of the hardest things to do as a writer. I don’t know why that is, but so often I find myself staring at a white page and randomly wandering if I need to dust the tops of picture frames or write a list of people I need to buy Christmas gifts for when it’s still the month of July.
And we all know…that doesn’t exactly help you write. No matter how many uses an exhaustive list of who to get Christmas presents for can have, being a tool to stop you from writing should not be one of them.
I’ve talked about this a little bit before in my post on conquering your writing hang-ups and used the tool of self-reflection in the workbook. It’s an extremely helpful exercise and one that can indeed get you writing again.
However, there’s always more work to do amIright?
Especially when lacking motivation is a problem that shows up over and over in your writing life. There could be a deeper issue.
For many people, writing is a serious endeavor. It’s our heart, our passions, and for a few, our livelihood. Maintaining your momentum can be crucial not only to your pocketbook but to your own creativity and self-connection.
Sometimes we don’t need to ask the questions…sometimes we need to treat writing like a job.
Let’s face it: we all give up at some point in our writing journey. In fact, we could probably call it inevitable.
Things happen. We try to write a novel in a month and the weekends aren’t spent writing, and our friends don’t get it, and we lose our steam. We work for years on a work-in-progress without seeming to make any progress at all. We lose inspiration or motivation of confidence.
I’ve attempted NaNoWriMo six times. I’ve finished twice. I know all about giving up.
But I also know about moving on when it feels like giving up is the end of the road. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
Camp NaNoWriMo is almost two weeks in. Can you believe it? And yet here is when so many people lose their motivation and taper off, perhaps never looking at the project they started again. This is where the sludge hits. This is where you must show your gumption to make it out on the other side.
I’m all about self-reflection. I think it’s one of the best tools to aid in your writing journey. It makes you better writer and a better person.
Finding a spot to write can be pretty straightforward. If you have a desk or a dining room table, it’s fairly easy to set up your computer and attempt to write. You could even crash on your couch, computer on your lap.
I’ve done all of the above. I’ve also written in some abnormal places and I have to say my writing has benefited from it. Taking the time to go somewhere else, let my brain think in a different place, and let my heart respond to different things than my usual surroundings, my apartment, or my cat, helps my stories become a better reality than if I were to write sitting at home.
Don’t get me wrong, having a usual, normal writing spot that’s mostly all yours and can be a source of comfort and inspiration is really important. It helps trigger your brain that when you sit down, you’re sitting down to work. To write.
But sometimes, the triggers don’t work, or they get distracted, or you stare at the blank screen and wonder what in the world you’re doing.
And when that happens, dear writer, it’s time to get up off your butt and go somewhere else. Grab your computer or your notebook, and get out of there!
And thank goodness that there are plenty of places in the world to write!
For those of you who don’t know, July is Camp NaNoWriMo month! Do you have a writing project you need to tackle? Do you have a novel that needs finishing, or editing, or revising? This is the month to do it.
And because of that, I figured I’d write about First Drafts. There’s a few stages you go through when writing your first draft, of any story and there’s plenty of ways to set yourself up for success. Here are my tips to help you navigate writing your first draft and what I wished I’d known along the way.
On the first Monday of every month, I create a few writing prompts to help you get writing! You’ll see them here each month and on Instagram @thelexiconwritingblog every Monday.
Happy July! And Happy Birthday to the USA too! There are four Monday’s in July which means…four writing prompts! July is also CampNanowrimo so if you need a story idea to get you going, look no further.
Self love is something that took me a long to really understand. I first heard about self-love while working in a college dorm when I was 19 and, after years of thinking the values of humility and selflessness were all there was, the idea of self-love sort of went against everything else I had heard before.
I started to test out different practices, like meditation, mindfulness, journaling, forgiving myself, extending grace to others, being honest about what I wanted and what I felt.
It sounds silly, but I had to credit this new discovery of self-love as being an anchor for my writing. It became the thing that always helped me write!
Without a healthy bit of self-love, I wouldn’t be as in tune with myself, wouldn’t be as empathetic to others (or my characters!), and wouldn’t be as aware of the rest of the world as I am. Which all enables me to be a better writer.
When you listen in on people’s conversation on the bus attempting to be mindful, you can get some really good fodder for dialogue!
Just recently, I had set aside a day to write. This was a get shit done sort of day. I had my goal list, my to-do list, my what-to-do-if-I-had-spare-time list. I was all set. I dove in and breezed through a few blog posts and a bit of planning for TLWB.
And then I got the text. A good friend wanted to know if I’d be spontaneously free to hang out.