Why, you ask?
Because they don’t know the three tools every writer needs to complete a novel. Here are the three tools that will take you from novel-writing dream to novel complete.
1) A Desire to Write a Novel–Though this seems kind of obvious, you’d be surprised how many writers really have no desire to write a novel, they just dream about doing it because they think “that’s what writers are supposed to want.” Not true. Writers should write whatever it is that makes them happy, whether that be a screenplay, short story or a novel.
Writing a novel takes a lot of hard work and commitment. It’s not something that you can complete by closing your eyes and wishing for it to happen. You have to actually work at it and spend time each day (or as often as you’re able to) writing.
Having a desire to write a novel from start to finish makes the entire process that much easier because when you desire something, and I mean truly desire it, not just desire it because you think you should, it makes the overall process a lot more fun and you’ll be more willing to stick with it.
2) A Deadline–Every writer who wants to complete a novel must have a deadline. Deadlines are extremely important to writing success because it gives you a specific endpoint.
Having a deadline to work towards will help you make better decisions when it comes to “should I write tonight or should I watch that rerun of Pretty Woman on TBS?”
And an in-flexible deadline works better than a deadline that you can change. This being because when you know there is no way of getting out of the deadline, you’ll also be able to think clearer about other activities that aren’t as important as getting your writing done.
3) Support–All writers need support to get their writing done. This is especially important for procrastinating writers. Having someone to answer to will keep you writing.
The support can come from a friend, a spouse, a sibling, a parent, neighbor, writing coach or a combination of them all–anyone who will keep you on track, give you a pep talk when you’re uninspired or stuck, and encourage you along the way.
When I was gearing up to write my novel, I needed to first figure out if I actually did have a desire to write one. After realizing that I did, I hired a writing coach to help me stay on track (since I’m a major procrastinator, I knew self-set deadlines wouldn’t work for me).
Her and I set a deadline that seemed reasonable (Sept. 22, which was my 25th birthday), and we were off and running. I wrote as much as I could each week, and turned in to my coach 2 chapters every Tuesday. Then we had a 30-minute meeting each Thursday to talk about the chapters I turned in and for her to give me a pep talk whenever I needed one (which was pretty often as it turns out).
Knowing that I had a long-term deadline and a weekly deadline to hit made me procrastinate less and made me get my novel finished on time (early, actually. I finished a week and a half before my deadline!).
So tell me…how did you get your novel written? And if you still haven’t written your novel, but you truly desire to, try out my three tools for novel writing success, and be sure to let me know how it goes.