Self-Help: For Writers

If you write for a living, you can’t make excuses like, “I’ll write when the mood hits,” or “I’ll do it when it’s quiet, ” and other stuff like that. You’ll end up a poster child of what a writer should not be.

Here are five things I do to make writing easier on myself.

1. Set specific hours.

I always say eat the biggest meanest ugliest frog in the morning ,and eat as much as you can take without falling victim to its toxicity. I tackle big tasks and difficult projects daily between 8 AM and 10:30 AM. I sit and write. No excuses. If I finish ahead of time, I do some more writing on freelance sites or update my blogs.

2. Protect your workspace and avoid distractions.

Nobody touches anything on my table and during the times mentioned above, most people know better than to come calling (since I work at home.) For me, no distractions means no eating, no TV, no reading, and absolutely no peeking at my social network accounts.

3. Take appropriate breaks.

Writing is a series of bursts-pauses-stops. That means you have to give your mind some rest. That’s how I interpret the “Write drunk, edit sober” motto. Not taking a break just drives me crazy. After a burst of 1,000 words, I’m drained. Breaks allow you to recoup. So get up and do something else.

4. Proofread and Edit.

It’s inexcusable to submit an article that’s full of errors. There are a lot of spellcheckers aside from Spellcheck you can get online. Use them. You’ll thank yourself for doing so. Be the absolute grammar Nazi when you edit your work. In my case, I write in the specified time in the morning, and I edit my work in the afternoon. There were instances that I had to overhaul whole paragraphs but excellence is a must.

5. Don’t Force It.

We’ve all been through mental blocks and it’s easy to get frustrated when we have deadlines to deal with. Be kind to yourself and do something else instead of banging your head on your keyboard. I find that reading about the niche and letting information brew in my mind while I do other stuff works. Or I’d take a walk, do some errands, rearrange furniture to distract myself.

And last but not least, join a writing challenge to warm up and stretch those writing muscles.

3 thoughts on “Self-Help: For Writers

  1. Such awesome advice, thank you so for sharing. I agree 100% with don’t force it. I also find it helps to constantly write little things down when you are randomly inspired. That way you can use these little bits to help jolt you back to that inspirational space when you are under the gun.


    1. Hi Joedalio, wish it were otherwise but writing is pure grit with some inspiration thrown in, right? Waiting for the right moment is futile. I’ve learned that writing begets better writing, no shortcuts.


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