I struggle mightily talking about the Dos of writing because it talks about the behaviour of a person. On the other hand, many new writers ask me what they should or should not do to finish a project without getting drained out. I am putting down all that has kept me highly focused in my journey as an author. I am also including the advice other authors shared during my interactions with them.
Connect with yourself
Many great stories go unsaid and unpublished because it becomes hard for the writer to overcome the emotional turmoil that comes along with writing. I have heard many published authors say that the process of writing transformed them completely. It requires courage to see your dark side that surfaces during writing. Most successful writers use journaling to connect with themselves – in fact many famous stories arise from the dark emotions expressed in a journal at one point.
Become like a child
To be a writer, you have to be fearless to speak your mind and bare your soul. Get your inspiration from young children because only they have the ability to be honest in expressing their emotions and feelings. Along with that, they have this uncontrollable curiosity to learn, explore and do more, without being afraid of the outcome. For them trying is more important than anything else.
Drop that P word
“Your procrastination comes from the urge of perfectionism.” If it was about writing a perfect book, there wouldn’t have been any book to read and no author would have ever been published. If you are aiming to be an author, then drop the idea of writing the perfect book. Most authors who desire to create a perfect book are big procrastinators. Of course, you have to write high-quality content, but along with that, remember to throw the idea of writing a perfect book out of the window. You would do a big favour to yourself.
Talk about your book with other people
This one thing has definitely helped me finish my book and stick to my timelines. I have actively developed the habit of talking about my book (or any other project that is important to me) with at least one person every day. This helps to reinforce the action I need to take to work on my book/to complete my book. This also gives me an optimal amount of push to do the task and prevents me falling into the excuse trap. Additionally, it provides me the opportunity to promote my book for free.
Lastly, do get critical of your work, but remember to enjoy the process of writing. This is the single most effective step in transforming yourself from a procrastinator into a writer.