Do you have a few abandoned manuscripts sitting on your computer? Are you lured away by new ideas, or do you find that getting started is easy, but continuing to write until the end of a first draft is the hardest thing in the world? If you answered yes to these questions, you are not alone! Which is why I’ve put together this page of resources about how to not give up on writing a book.
We’ve all heard the inner voice of doom. It’s the voice that tells us our writing isn’t good enough, that we’ll never be published, that we should just stop writing right now before we embarrass ourselves. I still hear this voice and I’m just finishing writing my third book! It never goes away—but it can be managed and managing it is one of the keys things that will help you finish a first draft. Here’s how.
There are times when you’re writing a first draft and everything feels wonderful; you’re having fun, the writing is working and there is nothing yo’d rather be doing. There are other times when you will hate ever word you’ve written, or have no idea what to write next. This is all very normal. Here’s my overview of what writing a first draft is REALLY like.
Failure, rejection, failure, rejection. Any writer has experienced this cycle, when every submission is rejected and you feel like a total failure. Well I had a solid year of failure as a writer and now, looking back on that year, I can hostly say I’m grateful for it. It made me a better writer. Here’s why.
Here I take you through the 8 steps to redrafting a book. It would be lovely if one draft of a book was enough but it isn’t. Some writers don’t redraft because they don’t know how. I hope these tips help you use the redrafting process to make your book the best it can be.
Everyone’s motivations for writing are different. Try to understand what yours are. I’ve written about why I write here, as have 5 other writers. I’ve also compiled some words of wisdom from the best in the business, from Margaret Atwood to Anne Lamott. Their reasons, and mine, should help you when you need motivating. Steal them! Pin them to your screen and read them aloud whenever you feel like giving up.
There are so many things that can go wrong when you write a book. Luckily, most of these problems have solutions. Here are some of the problems I’ve faced as a writer and what I did to overcome them. 5 other writers also share their ideas about how to get over the tough times; I think between us we’ve covered almost every writing problem you’re ever likely to have!
Susan Sontag says the writer must be 4 different people; you can find out here just what she means. You need to be each of those 4 people at different times in the writing process—being in the mindset of the wrong person at the wrong time is what makes you stop writing. I hope this advice helps you put the joy back in your writing.