Sunday, June 9, 2013

A tip a day to keep rejections away

Here's another topic on which opinions vary greatly.  Some people firmly assert that serious writers must write a certain word count each and every day, without fail.  So let's explore this issue, considering pros and cons.

YES, write every day

First, we'll talk about the benefits of writing each day.  Many people need a schedule to adhere to, or else fall by the wayside.  There are many distractions in the world (and on the Internet).  Some people focus better if they have a set word count goal that they must accomplish each day.  This also gives people a sense of accomplishment.

To be honest, part of the reason I started this writing marathon was to force myself to write a blog every day for 26.2 days.  I wanted to see what it felt like.  And I do enjoy the sense of accomplishment after I publish my post each day. 

But I won't be continuing this process, although I've read of other bloggers who have written daily for much longer than this.

Why?  Because I don't believe in putting every writer into the same box, with one set of instructions.

NO, you need to figure out what works for you, set your own rules, but be strict with yourself

I'm more the type of person that works to get the job done.  When  I have a deadline, or a project to do (either an article for a magazine or paper, or yet another round of edits on a WIP), I can motivate my own self to do it.  I set my own deadline.  As I confessed before, I joined a writing contest earlier this spring to force myself to finish edits on a MS I'd let idle for a while.  But I'm glad I let it slumber that long.  Allowing that time to pass by gave me a whole new perspective on the MS.  The necessary edits seemed so obvious:  what needed to stay, what needed to go, etc.

To be honest, I don't write everyday.  I work in spastic, obsessive spurts.  I work, work, work and then I just stop and take breaks for awhile.  Usually it's during these breaks that I finally allow myself to enjoy reading something besides a quick magazine. 

But writing isn't my only job.  I'm a veterinarian and a parent.  I have responsibilities that take time.  I'm more interested in finding a healthy balance, then conforming to someone else's ideas of what is right and good as a writer.

But I've always preferred to make up my own rules, rather than following someone else's. 

You need to decide for yourself what works best for you.  But do yourself a favor and be honest.  There's no shame in setting daily word count goals for yourself, if that is what you need to progress as a writer.  It's much better to have a system in place than to flounder and never progress.

Now I will step down from my soap box.

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