I spent all day writing my book and none of the day working on this post, so now I’m doing it at the last minute. (Ooops.) So, here’s some random writerly advice.
1. Take your time.
I know that’s eye-roll worthy, since I just said I’m doing this at the last minute, but I do mean it. Take your time. Enjoy the process. Revel in your book.
Publishing seems like it’s all rush rush rush, and yes, definitely try to meet your deadlines. Stories tend to not like being stretched and stuffed into timelines. They’ll be done when they’re done. So if you’re not yet published, this is your chance to play with your book and learn your craft before you have to add worrying about writing to a schedule.
Another writer and I were talking about prose and sentence structure recently, and after a lengthy email outlining rules I (more or less) follow in my own writing, I shared this: Ultimately, it comes down to looking at my writing logically. As in, Does this make sense? and Is this physically possible? and Where is the character’s attention?
Writing is about communication–about accurately putting what is in your head onto the page in a way that someone else can not just understand it, but feel it, too. It’s important to learn to use every tool possible to communicate your story.
3. Remember to take breaks.
Lots of writers (ahem, I’m talking about myself) will dive into a book head first. I’ve definitely been known to develop some unhealthy habits when it comes to writing, as in not going outside, seeing how much coffee I can drink before I vibrate into the next dimension. . .
I think without discussing it, two different writers (who I don’t think know each other) told me recently that they write every other day. Like, hands to the keyboard writing, not the writing you do while you’re doing laundry or washing dishes. And while I haven’t tried that yet (thanks, deadlines), I’m definitely considering it for my next book. Because lately I find myself being very productive one day, and less productive the next day. Then back to productivity.
That may just be this book, but it may also be my brain responding to a rest period, even if that rest is only a day long.
Smaller breaks (getting up to move around the house) are important, and longer breaks (chipping away at the TBR pile or going on a trip) are important, too, so don’t forget about those.
What about you? What’s some random writerly wisdom you’d like to share with others?