Thursday, January 23, 2014

Write every day - no, really

If you've ever made any attempt at seeking advice on becoming a writer, you'll have run across one suggestion that pops up everywhere: "Write every day." It's easy to look at this suggestion and say "Okay, I see the intention here. You're supposed to establish a work ethic, keep your output steady, and treat your writing seriously. Fine, but I can do that by just writing two or three times a week, so long as I keep it up."

There's certainly nothing wrong with writing just X days a week, or Y days a month, so long as you keep to your schedule. That's how I got Stone of Names finished. But recently I've rearranged my schedule so that I actually can write every day.

I've found that the effect of this goes beyond merely word count. Now that I'm writing every day, it's getting into my blood. I find that some small part of my mind is always thinking about the book. I'll be standing around, waiting for the microwave to ding, when a line for my next chapter will pop into my head. Then I have to run and grab my little notebook and write it down. When I do sit down in front of my laptop, I can get back into the flow more easily, because it feels as if I never really left it.

When I was writing just a few days a week, I felt like a software developer who sometimes does a little writing on the side. Now that I'm writing every day, I feel like a writer.