Today I am THRILLED to welcome one of my favorite bloggers, Angela Ackerman of The Bookshelf Muse. She is here to share her tips for combating writer's block and procrastination. And for the record, I take whatever Angela says as gospel! Enjoy.
Stay Motivated: 7 Fun Ways To Keep Words Flowing
Butt-In-Chair. It’s the struggle of all writers. We know it’s smart, the right thing to do, yet it can be so darn difficult! Sometimes, we’re not in the mood to write. An ouch-a-rific rejection, news of an author snagging a huge deal on her first manuscript which took her three weeks to write and polish...yeah. Totally sucks away the motivation to write. Other times, procrastination creeps in-- the shiny lure of new email messages, the slippery cascade of tweets, the siren song of Scrabble.
HELP IS HERE, FRIENDS!
I thought it might be fun to scour my @WriterThesaurus feed for some great motivators to keep you in your chair with fingers on the keyboard. (For those of you who don’t know about my @WriterThesaurus account of twitter, check it out sometime. Each tweet is a link to an unusual or unique writing tool or resource for writers. 375 tweets means 375 gold nuggets to help you with your writing!)
Without further ado, here’s some tools to keep the words flowing!
- Focus Writer For the distracted writer. Do all those shiny desktop buttons beckon? All those internet tabs waiting to be filled with search terms? This program hides all distractions, keeping your eyes locked on the flow of words.
- Keep Writing For the chronic reviser. This ‘typewriter-esque’ program won’t let you delete words, forcing you to stay focused on the word count, not the revising. (You can do strikethroughs, however!)
- Penzu For the Longhand Writer. Love writing longhand but hate how long it takes to turn thoughts to words on paper, to a doc.? Worry no more! This tool supplies the visuals to make you feel like you’re writing longhand on paper as you type.
- Written? Kitten! For the cat lover. Each time you write a set amount of words (100, 300, you set the number) you are rewarded with a cute kitten picture. AHH! *dies of cuteness*
- Written? Bacon! For the Bacon Aficionado. Just like the app above, when you hit your word count, a picture of GLORIOUS bacon fills the screen. (HINT: you can change the search term in the browser to anything you desire to keep you motivated. Like pictures of chocolate. Or Firemen. *coughs*
- 750 Words: For the determined-yet-busy writer. 750 words is a modest goal--three pages a day. In a year, that adds up to a full novel. Accessed from anywhere, you get points for each 750 words you write, giving you something to challenge yourself with matching month-to-month. Darcy Pattison uses this method.
- Write or Die: For the hardcore writer. Time to get down to business. Set a target word count & reach it in the allotted time...or your writing will ‘unwrite itself!’ Be warned...this is a tool for the adrenaline junkie or high stakes writer!
Your Turn! What keeps you motivated?
Let me know in the comments!
Angela Ackerman is one half of The Bookshelf Muse blogging duo, and co-author of The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Expression. Listing the body language, visceral reactions and thoughts associated with seventy-five different emotions, this brainstorming guide is a valuable tool for showing, not telling, emotion.