Novel Writing · Publishing · Writing

How Bad Do You Want It?

If you are a writer, you’ve likely heard these suggestions often:

“Write every day.”

“Writers write.”

I’ve taken the NIKE Ad a little farther, and often say to myself and other writers, “Just Write It.”

Okay, in theory, these are excellent suggestions. If you want to be a writer, you have to actually put in the time and stay disciplined. But what if you’ve got a day job? What if you’re a single parent? What if you share living space with other noisy students, and have no where quiet to write?

Yup, it’s never easy, but if you want to write a book, you have to remove all the obstacles, make a plan that works for your particular situation, and then stick to that plan. If you have a day job, you’ll have to get up an hour earlier every day for a few months to write. Or possibly stay up later, if you’re a night owl. If you’re a single parent, come up with creative games to occupy your children for an hour or two every night. I’m not a single parent, but if I were, I’d raid the Dollar Store nearest me and create a special “Quiet Time Craft Bag.” I’d tell my kids to use the Quiet Time Bag so I can get my book done, and remind them it’s only for a few months, and you’ll make it up to them. I’d also rely a lot on the flickering babysitter and DVD movies. This is not the time to be Parent of the Year! Let that go for a while and allow yourself your dream of writing a book. You could create a special rewards system for when the kids give you a good, peaceful half hour. I suspect my books would take a lot longer to write if I were a single parent, and my solutions may not work well for someone whose kids demand a lot of attention. You know your kids and your situation best. If I had kids under five, I’d beg a family member or good friend to watch the kids a few times a week (and then I’d owe them big time).

Parenting and writing don’t often work well together, but you can always come up with a plan that works well for you for a while, and then modify that plan as you get deeper into your writing sessions. As for finding a quiet space in your shared apartment: libraries and cafés with headphones on (so no one speaks to you!) have worked well for me in the past. It’s not fun lugging your laptop to a library every night, but if the end result is your first novel, you may decide it’s more than worth the extra trouble.

There’s a country song performed by my favorite country singer Tim McGraw that goes, “How bad do you want it?” I sing it often. I think its theme is the key to writing and finishing a book. There are always obstacles to staying disciplined as a writer, but there are always ways to remove those obstacles – if only temporarily, for a few months – if you want the end result badly enough.

So, what are your obstacles? What might be your solutions? Could you implement those for a few weeks, just to give it a try?  Is your finished book worth it?

How bad do you want it?

L-R JM Lavallee, Heather Grace Stewart, Nancy Beattie, Jennifer Bogart - Morning Rain Publishing Authors who sat down and Wrote It!
L-R JM Lavallee, Heather Grace Stewart, Nancy Beattie, Jennifer Bogart – Morning Rain Publishing Authors who sat down and Wrote It!
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2 thoughts on “How Bad Do You Want It?

  1. Reblogged this on imagesbyceci and commented:
    The same issues apply to any endeavour, but perhaps even moreso when it is sometime ‘artistic’. Sadly, there is less support and empathy for anyone struggling to create something – a book, a poem, a photography project, painting, sculpture – whatever – if it is not ‘traditional’ work.
    Want to build a house? There’s support for that. Want to write a book etc.? You have to create your support system – one that works for you – and that depends on, as this write said “How bad do YOU want it?”

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