I love that feeling I have when I'm about to write a new book. There are so many ideas racing around my head I cannot wait to get them all down on paper. And until I start jotting down my thoughts, I can't think of anything else.
So many novice writers feel like that too. Although a daunting task that requires a 100% commitment, often on a daily basis, writing a book is one of lifetime's greatest achievements. And that is why so many people will start out on this epic journey with so much positivity and enthusiasm.
But like so many other things in life that enthusiasm will fade. There will be many long days and nights where this task will seem insurmountable. Many, if not all writers will question their sanity, and think themselves crazy for putting in so many hours where no positive outcomes are guaranteed.
But that's the joy of writing ;)
So, how do you keep the level of enthusiasm to ensure you actually finish your book?
That's a simple question to answer really as long as you've written at least one book.
Let me explain.
To maintain that level of enthusiasm you need to finish your book you need to make sure you have a life outside of writing. It's a bit like saying that although it's wonderful to have all the time in the world to write a book, in practise it doesn't quite work like this. At least for me it doesn't.
To complete tasks I have to feel a level of urgency. I have to have this mind-set of: I need to write now because I'm going to be out later. I need to work now because I'll be having fun later. Although writing is fun for me, don't get me wrong. But I need something else to focus on as well as my writing. It's all about getting the balance right.
Now, remember how I said that this is a simple question to answer as long as you've written at least one book? Let me explain what I mean by that too. It's taken me two books to realise I need to have a life outside of writing.
I spent ALL my time writing the last two books. And nothing kills your enthusiasm like that does. My writing became very boring for me very quickly. And that's not good.
But please remember this as well. Once you have succeeded in writing your first draft remember it's only your first draft. There will be plenty of errors and mistakes that you'll need to correct before you can even think about sending it off for a professional copyedit. Many writers are far too critical of their work before they realise they've still got time to improve it.
It's said that in order to become a good writer you need to write for 10,000 hours, or approximately three years. That's a long time and that time will provide a decent opportunity for doubts about your writing to creep into your mind. But don't let them put you off. If you truly want to be a writer then you will find some way to write.
I've been writing seriously for around three and half a years now and I'm still at it. So long as you write regularly you will find ideas come to you naturally. I've got an idea for my fourth book even though I'm still writing my third. I am proud that I've got part way through this epic journey and I have never once looked back. I encourage others to do the same.