Writing a novel is hard.
My goal sounded achievable and straight forward. Complete a first draft within 8 weeks. If a first draft is usually around 60,000 words, then I would have to write 7500 words a week.
Meaning, I only have to write over a thousand words per day! Easy, right? After all, every November is National Writing Novel Month!
Look. I know there are superstar authors who can pump out 4 novels within a year. And for a brief moment, I thought that could be me. However, after facing burn out, I am taking a break from writing.
And I’m unsure about when I’m returning.
It is sad, because you have an idea that brings you so much joy and excitement. And you can’t even finish the first draft! Needless to say, it’s frustrating and even demoralizing. You also have thoughts that you aren’t meant to tell stories. And that really hurts!
Since then, I’ve realised my mistakes. And to make a short list, they include:
- Being too eagar to jump into writing my novel
- Not being realistic about my capabilities
- Being a bit arrogant and cocky
- Editing whilst I go
- Secondguessing every word I typed
- Not dealing with my insecurities before I opened a Word Document
When you do all of these things, writing a novel is hard. In fact, it’s probably even more difficult.
Now, writing isn’t a bed of roses. Whilst writers should enjoy some form of the writing process, there are going to be times when writing is painful. And you know what? That’s okay. But I don’t think I really accepted that when I started my manuscript.
To any writer who is struggling to finish their book, know that you are not alone. Chances are, you have problems with motivation or self-discipline. Those two things have little to do with writing, and can be worked on.
So, what am I doing about it? Well, taking a break. But I’m also going to research how other writers finish their books. And of course, when I finally do open up Word Document again, I’ll make sure my expectations are realistic. Perhaps I could aim for 300 words a day, 5 days a week instead of 7500 words a week!
For now, I will continue to dream about publishing books…
What do you think? Have you ever written a book? Or do you struggle? Please comment below, I’m sure your experiences may help someone.