Saturday, January 2, 2010

Keeping up with your creative writing new year resolutions

Its day two of new years resolutions. How are you doing? If you're like me, you're already realizing how difficult your resolutions are actually going to be. Life just gets in the way so often! How do you keep up on your writing resolutions past the first day?

Control yourself. Let's start off with a not-to-do list from 52 Projects. Very entertaining list, and true. For example, careful not to spend too much time online. Creating a web presence is such a part of a writers life these days that it is way too easy to spend hours on end doing online stuff. The online part is an important part of being a writer, but its not the most important.

Time yourself. Both the distracting things and the writing things. Say you'll spend one hour online in the morning, and then get in three good solid hours of writing. Something like that. And then stick to your limits.

Inspire yourself. There are tons of great quotes about writing from authors who have succeeded. Find ones that inspire you and stick them around your desk. When your tempted to slack off, the quotes will remind you what you're aspiring too.

Stretch yourself. Branch off into new and different types of projects that you haven't tried before. Try new styles and genres. That way you can avoid getting bored and frustrated with your usual stuff.

Resign yourself. Just do it. The only thing really stopping you from becoming and accomplishing what you want to is you. Sit your butt in the chair and just write. I probably need to work on this one more then most, but it is a necessary part of being a successful writer.

Market yourself. Keeping in mind that one can't spend too much time online or distracting themselves, its important that writers put themselves out there and spread the word, and more then that, it can be fun. Making friends on sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr, Twitter, etc, can be exciting and rewarding. Market yourself online, but also research local opportunities like book clubs, writing groups, etc. Making new friends can help you avoid feeling like you're in this by yourself.

Forgive yourself. No one is perfect. You won't get done what you want to every day. So get over it, and do better tomorrow. If you wallow in your mistakes you'll never pick yourself up and make progress. If things just don't work out one day, then work harder the next. Do the best you can every day, do better the next, and you'll be surprised how much progress you can make.

What challenges have you been facing with your writing resolutions? What has helped you?

Happy writing!
Sarah Allen


  1. Hi! I found you through the comment you left on Janet Reid's blog.

    Like you said, I think the hardest thing to do is just to write. Actual, physical typing. I can't tell you how many times I've told myself, "Not today, maybe later. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe when I'm not hungover anymore."

    I find it helps if every night before I go to bed, I try to visualize what I'll write the next day. My brain feels more... loose? at night so it's easier for me to think. But that's just me.

  2. Great idea! I really appreciate your feedback. Thanks, and best of luck an all your writing!


  3. Hi Sarah! Excellent points. My resolution is to stop taking on too many projects. I think, like a lot of writers, I tend to say "yes" more than I should, and then suddenly I'm overwhelmed with projects, and I'm frazzled. Wish me luck!

  4. Good point! I think a lot of times one of the best things writers can learn is to just say no. Thanks for the comments!



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