Writing can be a complete nightmare, no matter how interesting the topic. It can take hours to write just a few paragraphs, even if you have plenty of ideas and just want to get going. Sometimes it can all come tumbling out in a caffeine induced typing high, leaving you with a jumble of incomprehensible drivel. The hardest part with writing is starting. Trust me, as someone who calls myself a writer, I can spend hours staring at my blank computer screen, waiting for the urge to arrive, no matter how compelling the idea. I get stuck in my own head, becoming my own obstacle. I know I’m not the only one. So, I have come up with some of the best ways to motivate yourself to write!
1. Take a Break!
Don’t keep staring at your screen if nothing is happening. As strange as this sounds, sometimes taking a break from your writing (or lack thereof) can be just what you need to motivate yourself. Be it doing some exercise or even just watching some TV; do something that will distract you from thinking about having to write. I often find that I write best when I stop over-analysing how I need to get started By taking the pressure off, you will find it much easier to get going.
Stephen King once said, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write”; I couldn’t agree more. Reading and writing go hand in hand, which is why reading can inspire you to write more. You should read anything and everything: from books to journal articles to gossip magazines. You should go online for inspiration; don’t limit yourself to just reading print. By looking at blogs, news websites and even social media profiles of people in the industry you look up to, you can be inspired. Even a Twitter post could ignite your creative flames. Try and find out what is already being discussed and how you can contribute to the conversation.
3. Talk to Fellow Writers
Ask your friends/co-workers about what they are currently working on. You might be able to draw inspiration from what they are doing. Even bouncing around ideas about topics you need to write about can help you come up with content you may never have thought of on your own. There’s nothing more stimulating than creative conversations.
4. Set a Time for Writing & Stick to it!
If you set aside time each day, or every other day, purely for writing and planning things to write, you will find that it becomes easier to just sit down and begin. Plus, if you’re like me, the hardest part about writing is sitting down and actually starting. If you set aside a particular amount of time for writing, it will make it easier to just begin, which will bring you closer to finishing (the most satisfying part!). Some people work best in the morning, others late at night. Whatever suits you, find your comfortable creative time and embrace it. It’ll be worth it!
5. Embrace Criticism
Everyone is critical in some way; it is just part of human nature. No writer will ever say that the criticism they received about their writing was not helpful. Embracing constructive criticism is the only way to grow and improve as a writer. Although writing is a solo activity, it is enjoyed by numerous people. For that reason, our writing needs to be relatable to pretty much everybody. Criticism allows us to explore what we may not have thought about and enables us to improve in ways we didn’t know we needed to. Writing is all about communicating, so embrace it, you’ll be glad you did.
Now you have my tips, head back to your writing! Or make yourself a cup of tea or something…
About the author: Anna Kochetkova
Anna Kochetkova is a journalist by trade and a marketer by accident. She is a founder of Content Queen, creative platform for small businesses to learn about content marketing, storytelling, blogging and other wars. A Russian born Australian, she is known for being a creative strategist, exceptional writer and a marketing expert. Anna is also a senior manager at Yours Socially, a social media agency for busy entrepreneurs. She loves all social and carries a selfie stick in her purse.