Showing posts with label writing motivation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label writing motivation. Show all posts

Monday, April 24, 2017

How to Re-motivate Your Writing Career


What do you do when the well runs dry? Give up in disgust? Refresh your ideas and ambitions? Learn a lot and start again?

If you can afford it, breaks give you time to rethink what you are doing, start from scratch or carry on regardless. Try answering these three main questions first.

 Why am I writing? 


Are you writing for love? Or to help others? Is this simply an ego trip or a serious attempt to earn a living? In other words, are you  being professional or is this just a glorified hobby?

Writing for your own enjoyment is now seen as a proven way of improving your mental health. Sharing your knowledge to help others was one of the initial ideas behind the Internet. But with rising costs, nowadays we really do need to consider the outgoings to support websites and expenses of hardware, software, subscriptions, paper, books and more books.

Yes, many people are earning good money writing about how rich you can become through books and articles, or giving courses on a hobby or passion. Many more are struggling well below the minimum living wage.

The trick is to write to market. Find a need, find where buyers are, and find how you can fill that need. Easier said than done. You could spend hours writing about grooming a dancing panda, but if no one cares, it does not matter how well you do it.

The research needed to locate your readers is arduous and takes time. A new helpful site on the block when it comes to writing fiction for Kindle is The Genre Report. It analyses  this market and produces graphs showing which books are making money, which have a chance of making money,  and which lines may fit your niche but have such a small readership, that they will never make more than a minimal part-time income.

It is a new website, it is in beta. And for that reason it is still free to use. If you're into working with Kindle at all, it is a time saver and very useful. A couple of sections are open when you reach the website but you need to sign in with Facebook to release the full menu for the reports. I, at last, found a niche in which I can confidently start work and hopefully make an income. Watch this space.

 Have I a list? How am I building it? 


My email inbox, and I'm sure yours, is flooded daily by messages promising to increase  followers,  email lists,  income. Much of it is no better than spam and my heart breaks for people who really believe the hype that they could make six figures in a month. Very few of us are going to become the super-rich. Many of us, if we're not too greedy, will earn enough to keep the wolf from the door. But it doesn't happen immediately. Don't be deluded. We're in it for the long haul.

Funnily enough many people have brought the business of email lists to my attention this week. The best piece of writing I have seen on this subject  is from Kristine Kathryn Rusch.  A writer and editor who has built her reputation over the years. She is, for me, well worth following. The comments are interesting, too.

How do I manage to do everything? 


It takes hard work to master Scrivener and Dragon. I hit them with determination on the days when I feel jaded with writing and am making headway. Scrivener's outlining mode helped me batter a new synopsis into submission. An achievement indeed. My word count, using my old Dragon Naturally Speaking, jumped from 20 words a minute yesterday to 40 words a minute today. Yay!

How do I know? Through the joys of using a website called 750words. Initially it seemed wrong to try doing morning pages without actually writing in a notebook. But for those of us who love gimmicks, the little badges for achievement bring their own joy.

I've collected the beginning  egg, a turkey for five days in a row, the lovely flamingo for ten days in a row, a hamster for concentration (yep, babyish but it works for me :-)) and help in analysing what I'm doing. The daily statistics even show whether you're using sight, sound, and touch in your writing. Not totally serious but interesting.

This site is free for the first month, then $5 a month. If you find yourself falling behind in your word count, it might be worth a look.

I'd love to know how you'd answer any or all of these questions, so please use the comments box below and let's discuss the best strategies for re-motivating ourselves when we feel worn out.


Anne Duguid
Anne Duguid Knol

A local and national journalist in the U.K., Anne Knol is now a fiction editor for award-winning American and Canadian publishers. As a new author, she shares writing tips and insights at Author Support : http://www.authorsupport.net .

Her Halloween novella, ShriekWeek is published by The Wild Rose Press as e-book and in print  included in the Hauntings in the Garden anthology. (Volume Two)




Saturday, June 21, 2014

Using Bookends to Overcome Procrastination


If and When were planted, and Nothing grew.” ~Proverb
Procrastination………….who me? I know how to get things done; I also know how to procrastinate. As a writer, sometimes procrastination has to do with feeling lost in a project, other times it’s about not being satisfied with a draft.  Personally, I'm pretty disciplined with my writing time, but I can procrastinate for months when it comes to sending a draft off to an agent or editor.  After having my 900 word manuscript accepted by a magazine, the editor sent it back to me asking that I further develop the topic.  I quickly added the info requested and sent it back.  The editor responded with ..."tell me more."  Again, I added another section and resubmitted the manuscript.  I was sure I was done with the manuscript.  The editor responded with highlighting another section  and once again said..."tell me more".  Frustrated and not sure what she wanted, I put the manuscript down for three months.  When I finally finished the manuscript it was almost 3,000 words.  I was sure too much time had elapsed and the editor would no longer be interested, but with the next submission to the editor, I received my contract for publication.   Fortunately, my procrastinating didn't cost me the contract, but it certainly raised my angst about the project.
Now when I find myself procrastinating I apply bookends to the project.   Once I decide what I'm gong to work on, I schedule it and plan a pre and post project incentive. It’s my bookends. I treat myself or do something I enjoy prior to starting the project and again when I finish it. Sometimes, it’s something small like a trip to Starbucks before doing research on a project, other times it’s a day at the zoo or the art institute. Why do bookends work? I think because the first bookend marks it’s time to start and then the last bookend acknowledges the accomplishment. Sometimes the bookend at the end is something that I’m really dying to do or is time sensitive. This gives me the added push to slug through until I’m finished. So if you find yourself procrastinating, try bookends.
Mary Jo Guglielmo is writer and intuitive life coach. For more information check out:

http://facebook.com/DoNorth.biz  



Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Summer Is Here!


Yes! Summer is here - and so are the distractions.

While writers always tend to find the ability to do other things than write - answering emails, 'marketing' on Facebook, etc, the distractions are even more challenging when the sun comes out and the fun begins.

How can you keep your focus this summer?

Today, even before the first official day of summer, sit down and write down your goals for the next few months. 

1. Set a goal for the number of words or pages you will write per day, week or month and keep that goal front and center on your desk. Make it a commitment that you cannot break. No excuses.

2. If you are a member of a writer's critique group, make sure you have the meetings marked in your calendar and search for ways to contribute even if your summer journeys take you away for a week or two.

3. Summer is the perfect time to find yourself a writer's conference where you can work on your craft.  Close by or a journey away, either can help to keep you motivated.

4. Finally, set your work hours and keep to them. Yes, you can ask the 'boss' for a day off, but know that your work will still need to be completed.

This summer put down on paper your goals and keep moving forward.

________________________________________________

D. Jean Quarles is a writer of Women's Fiction and a co-author of a Young Adult Science Fiction Series. Her latest book, House of Glass, Book 2 of The Exodus Series was written with coauthor, Austine Etcheverry.

D. Jean loves to tell stories of personal growth – where success has nothing to do with money or fame, but of living life to the fullest. She is also the author of the novels: Rocky's Mountains, Fire in the Hole and, Perception. The Mermaid, an award winning short story was published in the anthology, Tales from a Sweltering City.  

She is a wife, mother, grandmother and business coach. In her free time . . . ha! ha! ha! Anyway, you can find more about D. Jean Quarles, her writing and her books at her website at www.djeanquarles.com

You can also follower her at www.djeanquarles.blogspot.com or on Facebook

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