Friday, September 22, 2017

Prepare Yourself Mentally for Writing a Book


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Deciding to write a book is an enormous challenge, and in fact, sadly, many people who set out to write a novel never actually get close to finishing.
One of the things you can do to make sure you do complete your book is to prepare yourself mentally for the road ahead. You need to feel passionate and committed as well as being aware of the challenges you may face and realistic about what it really means to write a novel.
So what can you do to get yourself in the right frame of mind for writing? Try these tips:

Decide to commit
Before you start writing your novel truly decide to commit to it. No matter how long it takes or how difficult it gets tell yourself that you will keep going. Focusing on this and making a promise to yourself to do so will help you set out in the right frame of mind. Tell friends and family about your decision too - the more people you tell, the less likely you are to go back on your word.

Be clear about why you are writing this story
Understanding your motivation for writing your story is also helpful. It might be that you have been carrying around this story with you and have always wanted to tell it, it might be that you woke up in the middle of the night struck with an entirely random idea, or it might be that you just want to give it a go. Be clear about your motivation and your expectations too.

Make a realistic plan
Having a proper plan in place before you begin will help you to realistically map out exactly what you have to do to complete your book, and the time it will take to do so. You can then set yourself goals and deadlines to keep you on track.

Familiarize yourself with common challenges and think about how you might overcome them
There are many obstacles that all writers will face on their writing journeys. Read and learn about them and think about what you will do when faced with them. Having solutions already in place means you will be better equipped to deal with challenges as and when they arrive.

Be a bad writer
Understand that you are unlikely to be this brilliant writer as soon as you start. Good writing is a process; first drafts are usually bad. Accepting that some of your writing might be terrible and may well make you cringe is a good place to start from. At the beginning just focus on getting your writing down instead of making it amazing.

Buy lots of books to read
Reading is one of the most helpful things a writer can do. Buy lots of books that you think will inspire and influence you, before you start your book. This way you’ll always have something new to pick up and will keep reading alongside the writing process.

Get help
Get a writing buddy to keep you motivated and to share work and ideas with along the way. A writing buddy will mean you are more likely to keep writing. Also sourcing other people to help you such as writers groups, online forums, editors, cover designers and anyone else you might need before you start will keep you organised and on track and leave more time to focus on your writing.

Enjoy the journey!
Remember, writing is supposed to be a positive experience, and it’s good always to remember that. Start writing with a great attitude, and try to think of obstacles as exciting challenges you must find solutions too. The more you enjoy the journey, the more like you are to keep on going!

Doing the above before you even put pen to paper can help you focus and stay committed to your writing. This way you are far more likely to achieve your goals and enjoy the process of working towards them too.

I feel I was prepared in most of these areas. Though I'm not too sure about the "familiarize yourself with common challenges" one. And I'm still unable to find writing partners or a group. I saw that there is a writing workshop at the local arts council center, but it's on Wednesday nights and will conflict with the Advanced Memoir Writing Class that I plan to take (I sent in the registration for that class yesterday), at least for the six weeks that the memoir writing class will run. 

And I didn't try to map out a plan as described above, as I was not aware of this idea when I first started writing. So I guess not knowing that one set me back a little in trying to get to the next step in finding an editor. But I won't let it stop me from trying. Just knowing where to look is what has been difficult. 

Despite all this, I think I can continue. I just didn't know about these preparations until today.

1 comment:

  1. I have a friend who considers himself a writer. I think his work is woeful. I firmly believe that part of his problem is that he doesn't read.