Friday, 14 March 2014

How to be a productive writer in 3 simple steps

Until I read a blog post by a certain Rachel Aaron, my writing was a vague hope of eventually getting a novel together. I was struggling to keep up pace and motivation. And then, I saw this amazing blog post.

It changed my life!

Long story short, it's about how to be more productive and better in your writing and enjoy it (rather than feeling like you're flogging a dead horse...).

It's the story of how Rachel Aaron went from writing 2k a day (which was me on a very good day) to 10k a day. (Yes, you read that correctly. No I did not mistype that!)

It changed my entire approach. In 2011, I wrote about 40,000 words for The Tainted Crown.  Most of those were after September 2011 when Christopher Paolini had inspired me and after I had seen Rachel's blog post. By summer 2012 I'd finished draft one on 101,269 words.

It helped me decide where I was going, fine tune the details, and charge out of the starting gate with all the information and motivation I needed to reach the finish line. The nice side effect was the increased word count that Rachel also saw in her own work.

I was able to make much faster and better progress (because writing is about quality not quantity) by following Rachel's advice;
  • planning my writing (the fewer gaps/more you know, the better your flow)
  • being enthusiastic about writing (boring scenes must die! Great scenes are a joy to write and arguably write themselves!)
  • using my time well (pick your most effective time of day - for me, the evening)
I quite literally have had this written/drawn on a post-it note stuck to my desk for the past 2 years+ to keep me on the straight and narrow.

Recommended reading:
I would highly recommend you read the blog post above, but also look at Rachel Aaron's e-book "2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love" which covers this in much more depth. It's a text I refer back to regularly to keep on track!

Check out Rachel's website and blog if you get a chance - I hope they provide you with the same inspiration they gave me!

Ciao for now,


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