How can you avoid writing? Try these 10 easy steps!
- Dream about all the books, blog posts, and articles you want to write.
- Constantly build your library and read, read, read some more.
- Pursue everything interesting that comes your way.
- Justify that extra half hour of sleep in the morning and kicking back in the evening. After all, you need your rest.
- Ask yourself repeatedly, “Does the world really need another book? Do I have anything worthwhile to say that hasn’t been said a million times before?”
- Convince yourself that you wouldn’t want to see your byline on a newspaper or magazine article or your name on the cover of a book if you were truly humble.
- Fill your day with all those urgent things that call your name.
- Let each day unfold come what may.
- Bee-bop around your social networks. You wouldn’t want to miss anything.
- Remember tomorrow is a new day.
Actually, there is nothing wrong with any of these things . . . if we let them serve as springboards for our writing.
Dreaming about what to write is our pre-planning stage. We just can’t get stuck there.
Stephen King has been quoted as saying, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” Reading is good, both nonfiction and fiction. We just can’t read so much that we don’t take the time to write.
Being eclectically interested and knowing that amazing things have come my way from a variety of sources makes me inclined to flit around like a butterfly. However, we all have to buckle down and write knowing we just might miss something along the way, but that’s okay.
Getting sufficient sleep is extremely important. However, we won’t just find the time to write if it isn’t our day job. We will have to make the time.
Years ago, I read that no one will say something exactly like I will. We each have a unique perspective and a unique “voice.” Plus, it’s important to remember how many times we’ve read or heard the same thing, but there comes that time when it really hits home. You may be the one to write something in just the way your reader needs to hear it.
It’s important to do whatever we do to the best of our ability—even writing. Sometimes we will be acknowledged for our achievement. This often opens doors to even more opportunities, and that’s not a bad thing. More open doors for our writing means more readers reached.
Stephen Covey referred to the urgent and the important. The ringing landline. The chiming cell phone. The Facebook message. These are among the urgent things that call us away from what is truly important. If our writing is important, we must let our calls go to voicemail, silence our cell phone, and set aside specific times to check emails and social media—and stick to those times.
Not every day will unfold the way we plan, but we do need a plan. Somewhere between scheduling every waking minute and scheduling none is the right balance. And in that balance, we must include our writing projects—not just writerly pursuits, actual writing.
There are countless great writing blogs out there in cyber space and countless writers with whom we can connect. It’s always incredible when a favorite author actually answers our email, but if they didn’t sign out for significant portions of the day, they wouldn’t get anything written—and neither will we.
Procrastination can rob us of so much that is truly important. However, at the end of the day when we haven’t accomplished all we’d like, it is a very good thing to remember that, indeed, tomorrow is another day.
All the best for all your tomorrows.
by Stephanie Nickel , CES Editor, Writer, Coach, and Critique Specialist