“There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love; there’s only scarcity of resolve to make it happen.”
― Wayne Dyer
The questions writers ask themselves can be daunting, and self-defeating. We often second guess ourselves in the middle of a manuscript. The sagging middle of a book is the clear indication we have failed plot point 101. But most of us know how to fix those things.
The best writing advice anyone ever shared with me was to plan ahead. Yes, I have many writer friends. Don’t we all? I need to be in the company of people who “get” me and where I’m coming from, what I’m working on and how difficult it is to be so involved in a story that I cannot see the forest for the trees. This happens to every writer, usually pre-editing.
But for writers who choose to be prolific–that is correct, choose to be prolific–they plan ahead.
So if you’re doing new year resolutions, and if they have anything to do with writing you may want to consider some of these very salient points.
Never sit down to write without a plan.
That doesn’t mean you have to outline or plot until you lose all enthusiasm for the story. It means just what I wrote. Plan ahead. Chose what you are going to write about, and have a goal in mind. For example, a single scene or chapter with clearly defined goals.
Before you start, you should know a few things; who’s the POV character, what is their goal for this scene, and how it might turn out. Please take note here– how it might turn out.
Sometimes even the most obsessed writers believe they know what a character will do until the character tells them it’s going to be different than the writer’s plan.
To properly get the most bang from the conflict we present to our characters, we offer them choices between bad and worse. Accomplished writers can make the simplest choice seem like a good idea, and then turn a story completely around with unexpected complications.
Those twists and turns are the surprises that keep your reader from putting the book down. The twists and turns that take you through to the end of a good story will also keep your readers coming back for more, and dragging their friends along with them.
That’s enough for now, more about writing resolutions next time, and belated Happy New Year to all the aspiring writers. Remember you are a writer until you quit!