Friday, January 28, 2011

Encouraging Words for Writers

Writing takes guts, thick-skin, and determination—especially when rejection is so prevalent in the publishing world. If you're like me, you need encouraging words every now and then to uplift and inspire you to keep on truckin'.

Feel like calling it quits?

Self-doubt beating you up?

Think you're the only writer being rejected? You're in good company . . .

Need some motivation?

Don't give up!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Writing Accountability Partners and What They Can Do For You

What exactly is a writing accountability partner (WAP)?

Someone you can check in with on a regular basis to share your writing goals for a given length of time and they will hold you to things like completing that manuscript you said you’d finish . . . or start.

How do you know if you need one?

If you’re having trouble focusing on writing goals and actually following through, an accountability partner may be a good kick in the pants for you Mr. or Ms. Procrastinator.

What can they do for you?

Your productivity factor will increase because they will challenge you. You WILL get that manuscript done. You’ll send those queries out. You’ll (insert your goals here), (and here), (and here) . . .

How do you find one?

Ask a writing buddy, a family member, or hire a writing coach. To me, finding a writing friend is your best bet. That way, your relationship is a give and take deal and it’s FREE.

I'm a self-motivated kind of gal. But there are days when I slip back into my slacker mode and fail to meet my goals—especially on sunny blue sky days when I want to have long lunches with friends or when it’s raining outside and I want to be curled up with a good book and some nice tea. There are days for that, but I must stay on course and complete my goals in a timely manner so I won’t disappoint myself and face the wrath of my WAP.

I have a new accountability buddy—one of my best and oldest  friends, Sara McAlister. This past Sunday, we emailed each other our writing goals for the next two weeks. After that time is up, we'll check in to see if we've completed them. Then we'll share our goals for the next two weeks and so on.

Do you need to shake your writing up a bit? Maybe teaming up with a writing accountability partner is something you’ll want to do, too. And instead of Mr. or Ms. Procrastinator, you'll be Mr. or Ms. Successful. Now, doesn't that sound better? Goooo, you!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

7 Ways to Motivate Your Writing in 2011

"Climb high, climb far, your goal the sky, your aim the star.”
- Anonymous

1. Set realistic goals. Otherwise, you will be setting yourself up for failure. That’s not a good way to begin a new year. Start out by writing down what you'd like to accomplish and give yourself a deadline. Let a writing buddy know your goals so they can hold you accountable. They’ll beat you over the head if you get off track.

2. Pace yourself. Just like a runner in a marathon, you can’t run full speed ahead and expect to get to the finish line. You have to pick a pace that's sustainable for you. Then you can run the distance and actually finish the race to the end of your manuscript and get there in one piece.

3. Exercise. A healthy bod gives you more energy to accomplish your goals. Your rear with thank you for it, too--especially after spending so much time on it in your writing chair.

4. Get in the zone. Meditate, pray, listen to music before writing--doing this will help provide you with the stamina to keep you focused on the task at hand.

5. Spend time with writing friends. Hanging out with kindred spirits can help inspire and motivate you. You will want to hurry home and start typing. Don't speed, though. You may get a ticket. And that will ruin your day.

6. Turn off Facebook and the boob tube. Time suckers. ‘Nuff said.

7. Reward yourself. Eat some chocolate. Have lunch with a friend. Do a cartwheel. Do heel clicks. You’ve completed a goal. CELEBRATE!