Sometime last week, someone commented on one of my posts, asking for advice on how I am able to stick to one story. While I gave my methods (these will be covered in Part Two, coming this Thursday), I asked one of my fellow authors to give her thoughts on it. I have had the pleasure to get to know Devin over the year, and even got to be a beta reader for her novel, The Mason of Hearts! Without further ado, here is Devin Berglund!
Stories are everywhere. They find you everywhere you go: at the supermarket, mall, airport, even on vacation, and also in your dreams.
They demand to be written. Sometimes they even wake you up in the middle of the night.
Have you ever been awoken from sleep in the middle of the night to write an exciting note about the story you want to write next? Does that story continue popping into your mind pushing you to drop the project you are currently working on? Is your current WIP feeling like a dry riverbed? Is that new idea looking better and better all the time, but you still want to finish that WIP you are working on? If so, read on for some tips on sticking to finishing the book baby you are currently writing.
Reread Your Current WIP –
There are many moments in our writing where a story might feel like a dry river bed in Africa. No signs of life. Parched. Thing is… even there, in that dusty waterbed in Africa there is still life. Small microcosms and even some fish survive periods of draught by tunneling deeper down into the ground where it is moister. From the outward appearance of that dry waterbed it would appear all that life was nonexistent.
The same is also true for your story and the land within your story.
There is life in it, even if you think you should just drop it for something newer. Those characters won’t exist if you don’t finish the book.
When you reread your story:
-Write your new ideas down. It will help you see your story in a new light.
Remember Why You Loved Your Story In The First Place – It is important to remember why you first started this WIP.
What made you fall in love with the land and characters?
What are your story goals?
Why did you start this story?
Finish The Book – You are already ahead of thousands of other writers in the world when you actually finish your novel. Finish it. It doesn’t have to be perfect. You will do many edits after finishing it. You can do it.
Free-write – Some authors have a book journal. Not just a normal journal. But a Book Journal where they free-write about the novel they are working on. You could even free-write about the spots you feel confused about or the notes you took during your reread.
The Hard Work Begins – Once the crazy awesome inspiration ends… that’s the moment the actual hard work begins. This is the point where many people quit.
It reminds me of a time when I went for a run in the country near my home. After running about 3 miles I wanted to be done. I stopped running and threw my arms up. I quit, I thought. But, the thing was that I was still 1.5 miles away from home still. I couldn’t quit. I needed to get home. So I kept going.
When things get harder, it usually means you are about to break the surface of something amazing! Continue digging deeper and writing to finish the book.
-Give yourself a deadline. (How many words are you going to write a day?) You could even break the big deadline into smaller deadlines (to have so many chapters written by a certain date).
-Stop procrastinating. Get it done. 🙂
-Finish the book. (I know you can do it!)
-Have fun and enjoy the process.
What are things that help you stick to one story? And to finish it?
You can find Devin on these following platforms: