Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Writing Wednesday: Baby Steps

Writing a novel, for me at least, is an exciting, fun, inspiring, arduous, frustrating, tedious process. There are so many emotions, but, ultimately, writing is something that feeds my soul. Be that as it may, it can be difficult to get motivated sometimes, especially when it comes to editing and rewriting.

Something that has worked remarkably is to set up writing times to hold space with another person. For about two years now, I call my friend Janet at around 9am and check in with her. I then hang up and set a timer for 20 minutes and I write or work on my book in some way. So does Janet. When the timer goes off, I call her again.

No matter what else happens that day, I've worked on my book, got my thoughts going, engaged my subconscious, done something that a writer would do. More often than not, I continue working after that 20 minutes, but the important thing is that I got started, which if often the hardest part. To be honest, this has changed recently due to various circumstances, but I still feel accountable to work at least 20 minutes a day. It has now become a habit.

This simple baby step has resulted in my novel, Antigone: The True Story, being edited enough to send to the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards and making it to the quarter finals (even though I think it needs another part added now and am working on that...). It is nearly finished the editing stages and will be ready to send out into the great big world of agents and publishers soon. And it is thanks to baby steps taken consistently - or even mostly consistently.

And, as for my friend Janet, her book that she's been working on for nearly 7 years is almost done! She's just doing some final work to get it ready for her beta readers. Yeah for baby steps!

I would love to hear from other writers what works for them? How do you keep motivated and working, even when you don't feel like it?


  1. So awesome you commit to 20 minutes a day. I admit the starting is the hardest part. With blogging and work and family, I don't commit to a daily writing schedule but I do write regularly. Sometimes I get more writing time in on the weekends.

    1. That's awesome. You can even make the baby steps smaller, like opening the file/notebook or working for five minutes. Baby steps are meant to be small.


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