Stop blaming it on writer’s block. No such thing exists. Seriously, it really doesn’t exist. It’s all in your head. You know, where your novel is, because you’re using excuses for not getting it out of your head and into a manuscript. Stop staring at that blank screen/page like it’s going to suction your life away. The blank screen/page is you arch enemy, your alabaster nemesis. Destroy it by filling it with words. Don’t worry if the words are good the first time around. They won’t be. Stop fidgeting with the keyboard like it’s going to devour your fingers. It’s awaiting your punishment, not the other way around. Your fingers should be striking it with machine-like staccato, merciless and unending.
You have a novel to write. It’s been gnawing at your subconscious for months, perhaps years, and you’re sick of the guilt trips whenever you revise that trunk story yet again instead of writing the novel. So nail the trunk shut and write the novel. Those short story markets will still be around when you’re done. The good ones, anyway.
Remember, procrastination has never built anything. Not even a little matchstick hut that two ants couldn’t fit in. So why give in to it?
Stop claiming you can ‘write better than that author’. Maybe you can, but guess what? You’ll never find out until you write your own damn novel.
Stop saying that no one will publish your ultra-gritty, controversial, darker-than-a Goth’s-wardrobe, too big and epic to be told in one volume, masterwork. Truthfully, a publisher probably won’t, but write it anyway.
Don’t lower yourself to blaming the gatekeepers. Agents and editors would love to enjoy your work, because they could sell it to a big super-duper publisher, and that makes them money. They don’t get paid for each rejection they send out. I shit you not.
So you fear rejection? Don’t be a writer. No, it’s that simple. Don’t. You’ll only get depressed and become one of those bitter, wanna-be auteurs that haunts the coffee tables in the corner of the bookstore. Yeah, that person.
Hmm, so you don’t have the time? If you want to write, you’ll find the time. Stop binge-watching television shows. Lay off the gaming console. Have one less night out with the gang for drinks. Time is a human creation, after all. Like your novel. I don’t care if that makes sense or not. But writing your novel does.
None of this advice is new. It’s been said before, and more eloquently, by better authors. But it bears repeating. Why? So many people ignore it. Man, do they ignore it, try to work around it, read books about how to work around it, bug established authors about what their big secret is for working around it, and on and on and on. There’s no magic formula, regardless of what ‘master class;’ is being sold to you. You can’t drink it from a bottle because, a. you’re not Ernest Hemingway, and b. there’s no words in that bottle. So write your damn novel already. That first draft is the easiest part, and I cannot overstate that. The real work lies ahead.
Oh, and writing less blogs when one could be writing the novel instead? I completed two chapters on my latest work in process before I typed this, thank you very much. Hypocrisy isn’t a hat I wear well. Probably because I don’t wear hats.