The Great Balancing Act

It’s a tricky business, writing. A writer wants, and needs, to write. If only life were that simple. These days, a writer has to be so much more…editor, formatter, agent, marketer, webmaster, publicist, and many times a publisher. The days of writing a story and handing it off (so you can get started on the next one) are pretty much a thing of the past. How can one person keep it all going? It’s not easy, but perhaps there’s a way to make it all work.

Brain Fade?

When my brain is tired from writing, it helps me if I shift to something else that is still related to writing. I can make a quick post on social media about writing, progress on my book, or something completely different. You’re reaching out to your audience, keeping them engaged, and ticking a couple of boxes on the business side of things. I might do some research on things in the story I know I’ll need answers to – the names and locations of 14th century villages in Scotland, appropriate fabrics of the day, commonly-used names, etc.

Promote and Plug!

Update your website by adding content and recent events you’ve participated in. Did you win an award? Attend a writing workshop or conference? Your readers will be interested in what you’ve been up to. Put on your marketing hat and consider giveaways, holiday bundles, and interesting bits about your work-in-progress. Is there an upcoming holiday or event that ties into your book? Let your readers know, and ask them to spread the word.

Hone Your Skills

If you’re struggling with certain aspects of your writing (sentence structure, plotting, punctuation, etc.), it’s easy to find resources on the internet to help out. I keep one of my monitors on a thesaurus so I can find creative alternatives to a particular word I might find myself using too often. There are lots of webinars out there (most are free!) that provide great information and advice on any number of topics associated with the writing process and all that goes with it. Most run about an hour and have time for a Q & A. What a great resource to tap into!

When I need to take a break and I dedicate some time to the other aspects of my writing world, I come away more energized and productive when I sit back down and open up my latest draft. I feel like I’ve seen my work from a different perspective, and that gives me renewed inspiration and insight as the gentle key-tapping resumes.

Image credit: Anne Hawkinson


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