2015 Literary Resolutions for Writers
Many New Year resolutions try to change you: lose weight, get fit, eat healthier, etc., but I’m not about that. Instead, I support resolutions that try to challenge you to try things you wouldn’t think you’d like or ever do. And what better subject to tackle when it comes to challenging yourself than writing?
Now is a great time to reflect on your writing habits. Do you tend to write for NaNoWriMo then fizzle out? Perhaps it’s time to make the long term commitment to finishing your novel. Here are some helpful suggestions to think about practicing while you start writing in the new year:
Make time to write. As writers, it is very easy for us to come up with excuses about why we didn’t write today, tomorrow, or even this entire week. But the longer we keep procrastinating, the harder it becomes to pick up where we left off in our manuscript (or even begin the manuscript). This year, make no excuses. We’re all busy, so whether it’s once a week, several times a week, or every day, make time for your writing. Even if you only write a sentence or two, you are that much closer to completing your manuscript.
Just keep going. When you are feeling writer’s block, don’t make that an excuse to not write that day. Instead, check out helpful writing exercises that you normally wouldn’t think of on your own. Many published authors have written books on what helps them write and get through writer’s block, and some of their suggestions might help you as well.
Learn to listen. Make the resolution to allow other people to actually read your manuscript and accept their editing notes (perhaps here on Swoon Reads — and be sure to return the favor). I know this might be harder for some people than actually finding time to write, but every published writer out there has had to accept notes from their editor and receive criticism at one time or another. Have faith in your literary work, but also listen to those who can offer another perspective. Remember, anyone that is taking the time to read your manuscript and offer helpful advice wants you to succeed, so take these with your own editing notes and make your manuscript that much stronger.
And as always, Swooners, we would love to hear some of your New Year writing resolutions for the upcoming year!