Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.
Walter Mosley, author of over 40 books said, "Probably the highest hurdle for the novice novelist - and many seasoned veterans - is writing the first few words. That beginning is a very emotional moment for most of us."
Indeed, truer words have never been expressed. The blank page, the expectations, the fear. Writers of all stripes have numerous rituals for getting started and keeping motivated. Special chairs, a unique place to sit surrounded by cherished objects, playing a much-loved piece of music, a talisman that may bring good luck and keep the holder from harm or evil and the list goes on. My thing is to get up as early as possible so that my mind is fresh and nobody is sending me distracting texts.
But regardless of rituals, above all, the hardest work is to get those first few words on the page. Knowing that you are not alone in this endeavor should be comforting. There are 1000s of writers across the globe in the same predicament.
Here are a few tips to get you motivated and possibly raise your comfort level as a writer:
- Get those first words on the page
- Start with a draft
- Make writing a daily habit. Keep on schedule, as if your life depended upon it.
- Develop your story arc. Generally, story arcs can have five key components:
Exposition - Groundwork
Rising action - Elements that move the story forward
Climax - Story reaches critical mass
Falling action - Eases readers into conclusion
Resolution - This is where the story comes to an end, problems are solved and you can possibly lay the groundwork for a sequel.
- Create timelines to track the main sequence of events
- Develop your characters, develop their nuances, get to know them, live with them, make them come alive. How do your characters change over time?
- Seek input from trusted mentors and advisors
- Commit to finishing and getting your manuscript published
Mara Purl, Wordeee author, Wordeee University Instructor, actor and musician stated, "I have three rules for my own work that I'd like to share with fellow authors:
1. Choose your topic with your heart. Love your subject and be sure it's connected to your core values.
2. Write with your head. Do extensive research, careful story structure, compelling character development.
3. Appreciate your readers, invite them in person and on social media, listen to their comments and ideas, give them special offers.
In closing, whenever your hard work has paid off and you've finished your manuscript, continue writing new work. Use the momentum gained to propel you into the future to write your next masterpiece!