Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Writing Every Day

I didn’t provide a source for this adage. It can be found in any number of print and online articles on writing, and it's the one topic that I’ve encountered the most disagreement on. So is it true? Must we writer every day? My answer to this is a resounding it depends. On what, you ask? On your goals as a writer. If you want to be the next Stephen King, or Nora Roberts, or James Patterson, or [your favorite author’s name goes here], or make a six figure living by writing, then you better plop your butt in a chair everyday and write. After all, the best way to learn to write is to write. As with many other professions, the more you do it the better you become. How much should you write? In his book, On Writing, Stephen King states his goal is to write 2000 words a day. Other authors are happy with 1500 or 1000. Some write for a set amount of time from two to eight hours. I admit it. I don’t write every day (at least not before I started this blog), and I’m happy if I tap out 500 words. For me, the important thing is to set a schedule for when I write and stick to it. The first part, creating the schedule, is easy. It’s the sticking to it that’s difficult. I’m not a morning person, so I write from 1:00-3:00 in the afternoon, Monday through Friday. If I'm working on a project, I may write on Saturday and/or Sunday. It works for me, and is a schedule I can keep. And if something happens that makes me miss a day, I try not to beat myself up over it. Hey, life gets in the way sometimes.

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