Saturday, January 9, 2010

Writing Makes Good Writers

My horoscope for today says: “Put your head together with friends or associations with whom you share a common objective. If you build a team with a good purpose in mind, you’ll have an excellent chance at success.”**

Today is the kick off for one of my writing groups’ project to focus on writing. We are doing our own version of the National Novel Writing Month typically held in November. Many in our group think November is a bad month to do it. In Michigan, January and February are when you can hunker down and write while the snow flies outside. You don’t want to go anywhere anyway. I’ve participated in the national November event three times and have been successful twice. It works if you have a group of people keeping everyone going.

I’m not much of a follower of horoscopes but I think this one hits the mark. The best thing writers can do is write. Write when you feel good, write when you don’t. Write when you are inspired, write when you feel awful. It’s amazing that you don’t need to feel inspire to write well. That is what it is like to treat writing as a business, not as a hobby. Just like a job, you need to write every day. After a while, you will miss it if you skip a day. Then find others with similar goals and meet regularly to keep everyone on task.

If it helps, the best thing about NANO is that you get to turn off your editor and just get the words on the page. That is very liberating especially if editing can take the buzz out of your work. I would happily create all day and never have to edit. I wonder if that is how James Patterson does it? Someone else gets the job of editing everything into perfect spelling and correct grammar. For now, though, just writing is the joy and I’ve even found some joy in editing with I’ve figured out how to fix a plot problem or timing issue. So my advice today is …Just write.

**Astrograph by Bernice Bede Osol printed in the Muskegon Chronicle.


  1. Hi Wendi,

    You are so right about writing every day. I don't mind the edits because if you start the next day by editing the previous day's work, it puts your writing muse into high gear!

    Happy writing!

  2. Thanks, Monti! That's good advice. If I edited yesterday's work first, it wouldn't be so bad at the end and keeps the flow of what you worked on. I will give that a try as soon as I finish the final edits for this one.