It happens to all writers, I am sure, but for a beginning writer like me it’s probably the main problem I face. I get into a project, start off with enthusiasm, but then at some stage I hit a wall. It tends not to be a “Writer’s Block”, whatever that means, but more a waning of enthusiasm, or a feeling that I would rather be writing about something else. Perhaps I should ditch what I am currently writing and start on another project that might be more interesting?
I think the problem here is just being able to stick at something for the long haul and not give up. Even if you feel like what you are writing is not the best thing ever, it is probably going to help you more as a writer to actually finish the damn thing rather than to stop a third or half of the way through. After all you can always go back and revise your first draft.
So how can you keep motivated and kick start your writing project again. Here’s a few ideas:
- Remember Heinlein’s Rules – #2 of which is to Finish What You Start. A professional writer finishes stuff and then makes it better afterwards.
- Revise your outline for the rest of the book – if you’re an outliner. Perhaps the reason that you are losing enthusiasm is that what you have to write doesn’t excite you any more. Freshen up the plot and get back your enthusiasm.
- If you’re a pantser then consider getting an outline to see you through to the end. This is my problem when writing without an outline – the initial part of the book goes well but then I have no idea where it is going and I despair. A brief outline can provide motivation by giving you a possible ending. You can always change it as you write and come up with better ideas – in true pantsing style!
- Read what you have already written. You might find that its not half bad and it will also give you a reminder of why you started writing it in the first place.
- Keep putting words down and don’t switch your focus to something else. Your new baby will suddenly take all your attention and you’ll end up where you started from.
I am going to try all of the above right now!