My writing mentor once gave me invaluable advice in three very simple words. “Write every day.” Of course, the most obvious reason this is good advice is that it continually moves your story forward. And if you read my blog last week, you’ll know I think this steady, consistent approach is crucial to meeting your writing goals – especially for those of us who also work at some other job to put food on the table (which is – hmmm…let me think, yes – most of the writers I know)!
Another reason to write every day is it make you a better writer. If you’re out there practicing your craft (and let’s face it, you better be!), the last thing in the world you want is to learn new techniques or raise your writing ability, then take a big break and forget everything. Writing every day allows you to keep up your skills. Of course, for me that means working on my novel but for others who like more variety or just have more time, it may mean writing a short story, a play, a diary or – heaven forbid – a blog. Just write.
But for those of us writers who work full-time at some other job, there is an even more important reason to write every day. Continuity. Plain and simple. Working on my novel every day REALLY keeps my head in it. It’s all going on up there without me ‘having’ to think about so that despite whatever crisis, fire-of-the-day or world-shaking event is going on at work, the moment I stop for just a second, the machinations of the plot or what comes next or which scene goes where or any one of a hundred other things about the novel just naturally pops into my head. And every morning when I wake up, I know exactly where I am in my writing – I don’t have to try to remember where I was or get back into it because I never left it.
So there you are. Take this down. Write – every – day. Put it on your wall, write it on your hand, burn it into your brain. But do it.