Friday, February 3, 2012
Bill Miller: Author Guest Post
In my next post I will be featuring Bill Miller, author of Heroes and Hounds. It is a delightful read and one that I HIGHLY recommend! Bill stopped by the blog today to talk about writing patterns, a fascinating topic!
Do you have a writing pattern (place, time, etc.) that you follow each day or does the writing decide what type of day it will be?
Writing is a job, just like going to the office nine to five. In order to be successful, and by that I mean finishing your project not necessarily writing a bestseller, you must be disciplined. You need to work at your writing job every day. It can be fifteen minutes of eight hours, but be consistent. Have a plan, a goal that you set for yourself and keep a log where you can chart your progress. Your goal can be 500 words a day, 3,000 words a day or whatever you set for yourself. And it’s okay if you miss a day or two, but if you find yourself not sitting down to write for a week or two, then you must reassess your commitment to writing or finishing your project.
I like to write early in the morning or late at night, when the phone isn’t ringing or the chores around the farm aren’t calling me to interrupt my writing. I also like to write for a solid, uninterrupted period of time, usually about two hours at a time. After that, my brain goes numb and I have to refill it. This is easily accomplished by mucking stalls or taking the dog for a walk. I write very quickly and my first draft is usually horrible. I don’t worry about grammar, spelling or sentence structure. I just type as fast as my ideas and story development come to me. Then I let it sit for a day or two, or even a month, and revisit my writing to clean it up, rewrite and assess where the story is going.
There are times where I, like every other writer, has writers block. Not much you can do about that so learn that from time to time you will be mired in a blank brain. That’s the time to take a long ride on your horse, motorcycle or anything else that will take you away from the stalemate with the computer.
But keep at it. If you have a story to tell, it’s going to come out. And remember, there are great editors out there who will keep you honest in your writing. Don’t be afraid to use them.
Posted by Lindsay at 12:30 AM