One of the biggest lessons I have learned since I first started to take writing seriously about five years ago is that to do good work—to do any work at all—you need the ability to get out of your own way. Every single day of a writer’s life brings fresh doubt and uncertainty. Some days […]
If you’re like most writers, you probably struggle to keep your focus and concentration while writing sometimes. I know I do. Despite having an outside writing space where I can lock myself away, I still have family around me (including a rather energetic and at times loud three year old) so distractions in the form […]
If you are like most people nowadays, you probably avoid boredom like the plague. From a young age, we tend to be taught that boredom is a negative state. Consequently, we learn to become dreadfully uncomfortable with boredom as we do our utmost to fight it every step of the way. These days in […]
Most of the work in being a writer does not come from the writing itself. It comes from actually getting started in the first place. The act of writing itself is usually pretty painless once you get going. Sure, there are days when it feels like writing is the hardest thing in the world and […]
I have a confession to make. For the last twenty odd years, I have been smoking weed every night of the week. I also confess to loving it. I don’t drink or do any other drugs (any more), so smoking weed is like my one “vice”, although I don’t think of smoking weed as a […]
H.R. Giger’s work has always fascinated me-as it has many people-right from when I first saw Alien at a young age (I think I was seven when I saw the movie for the first time). There is just something amazingly unique about Giger’s work that makes it incredibly striking to look at. Looking at Giger’s […]
I’ve never really been one for writing down ideas in notebooks. I have tried to do so in the past, but I never maintained the practice. I couldn’t stop myself from thinking that it was a waste of time. In the brief periods where I have recorded some of my ideas, I found little benefit […]
You wanna mess up a writer tell them to write something original. See how long it takes them to freeze up and then fall to bits. What many beginning writers fail to realize to their detriment is that purposely trying to come up with wholly original stuff is folly and only results in one thing: […]
Where would a writer be without their subconscious? What chance would a story have to be written without the help of the subconscious to tell it? Writers kid themselves into thinking that they are the sole architects of their creations, when really, they aren’t. Sure, a writer does most of the leg work, puts in […]
Finishing the first draft of a novel for the very first time is for a writer akin to finally learning to swim.
You’ll have spent so much time struggling to complete a finished draft—floundering in a sea of confusion, frustration and procrastination—that when you finally finish it can seem like you’ve been saved from drowning.
You have learned to swim and you are now free to take yourself in any direction you want to go. Suddenly, it’s not about keeping yourself from drowning, but about staying afloat and swimming towards the goal of a fully completed novel.
The choppy seas have calmed somewhat, making it easier for you swim.
Once you know you are capable of finishing the first draft of a novel, things change. A mental shift occurs and suddenly you have the confidence to feel like a real writer.
You now have what it takes to write novels.
There’s no going back after that.
You’ve done it, you know you can do it and you will keep doing it.
It’s a milestone that every novelist has to cross in order to find success, which is why it is so important that you do all you can to insure that first draft gets completed.
If you still struggle to finish the first draft of a novel, don’t despair, all is not lost. It’s not as hard as you think and there are things you can do to make reaching that goal even easier.