Monday, March 9, 2015

Finding Your Pace as a Writer

Are you racing against someone else's speed?
Writers talk about pacing within their stories, but what about pacing in their lives? Most of us struggle for that elusive perfect balance. One writer may only get snatches of writing time while another can't break away to eat lunch. Not all weeks are created equally, but where do you generally find yourself, and how can you strike a better balance? We need to make sure that we are neither putting off writing just so we can redo the closet we organized last week nor are we putting words before people.

Are you moving in the right direction?
I find myself in a blessed position. I'm an empty-nester whose husband supports me financially. This means I have the leisure to spend a good chunk of my day writing. That's a good thing because I'm a slow writer. I tend to use my left-brained editor side as often as my right-brained creative one.

There has to be something that pushes us to keep striving, to improve. After 20 crunches becomes easy, you go for 25, right? My critique group offers me the right amount of push each week. Give yourself some kind of reasonable goal/deadline to shoot for. Even if it takes you ten years to write your book, you'll have that accomplishment ten years from now.

Points to Ponder:
Motivation. What stirs you to action? Write down your realistic goals. Place them where you can find them.
Accountability. Report to someone--submit pages to a critique group, editor, share with a friend, check off goals in your diary...
Support. Who are your cheer leaders? Get with other writers online or face-to-face. Interact. Believe in yourself!
Improvement. Read new-to-you writers, take a class, find tips on blogs, attend a writer's conference...
Prioritize. Those to whom we serve/pay attention become better supporters than the neglected. Eliminate unnecessary activities.
Balance. Feed all aspects of your life in appropriate proportions. Be mindful of physical, spiritual, intellectual, personal, and inter-personal needs and relationships.

Make it the best week you can by doing your best. Happy writing!


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