The experience of writing my own book

I’ve been trying to write a book since 2016. I came up with different ideas for 30 stories and told myself that only 25 would make the cut. I wrote as much as I could, and as often as time allowed it. However, procrastination got on the way and didn’t advance much in 2017.

In 2018, I retook the project. Still, my commitment wasn’t as serious as you’d think it would be. Constant ups and downs slowed my process, but I didn’t kill my manuscript. I made time to continue.

Continue reading “The experience of writing my own book”

Tip: Choose the verb over the noun

One of my favourite chapters in Keep Going by Austin Kleon is “Forget the noun, do the verb.”

Let go of the thing that you’re trying to be (the noun), and focus on the actual work you need to be doing (the verb). Doing the verb will take you someplace further and far more interesting.

If you want to be a writer, first of all, you need to be writing something. It doesn’t matter what title you give yourself if you’re not actually spending your time with words.

A “verb”, in this context, is an action. Creating. Crafting. Writing. Editing. Those are the steps that take you places. The “noun” is a title that you give yourself or that someone else assigns you.

If you wait for someone to give you a job title before you do the work, you might never get to do the work at all. You can’t wait around for someone to call you an artist before you make art.

So choose the action over a random title. Your actions define your results at the end of the day.

What are your thoughts?

New Year: Planning your progress

The beginning of a new year is one of my favourite seasons. Everybody is genuinely trying to be a better version of themselves. I think this is a noble cause. We can affect our environment a little bit by bringing some positives vibes.

At the same time, we wonder how long we’ll be able to maintain our goals and turn them into a reality. While it’s a long journey that requires a lot of energy, I recommend focusing on solutions rather than resolutions to obtain realistic results.

Here’s a few more thoughts and my list of personal objectives for 2020.

Continue reading “New Year: Planning your progress”

Write for yourself

This is wise advice.

Writing is about finding your voice. Some will like it, some won’t. Some will tell you how you should be doing it. The truth is, you decide how to develop your own style. No one can tell you how to be unique.

Actually, no one can actually teach you how to write. Sure, you’ve taken courses that tell you about grammar and proper punctuation, but the art of writing goes beyond that. All you need to do to become great at this craft is writing a lot and reading a lot. That’s all.

The occasional workshop can guide you, yes, but you gain real experience with your hands on the keyboard and with your eyes on a book.

Thoughts on prolific writing

I recently read an article about becoming a prolific writer. The key is pretty nice and simple: Write a lot.

It’s a simple truth and couldn’t agree more with it. It makes sense to write as much as possible to offer multiple readings in multiple formats. One of the first forms of writing that comes to mind is blogging. While you’re working on your manuscript, your online presence should stay active in some way. Posting a couple of entries per week (or per month) keeps exercising your writing skills.

If you have an audience that enjoy hearing from you and your work, it’s also a way of keeping them informed on your most recent activities. On the other hand, if your blog is not popular yet, it’s always a good idea to start building an audience and tell them about your writing.

That article also reminded me of one of the many ideas that Joanna Penn has shared around multiple streams of income. It’s not enough to publish one book and hope it sells millions of copies. It’s working on new ideas to keep producing more books.

Consider different genres and different formats like audio books, workbooks, and ebooks. The more you create, the more sources of income you’ll generate.

What do you think?

First drafts are for your eyes only

For some reason, the other day I woke up with this song playing in my head:

This song reminds me of my childhood. My parents tuned in the radio quiet often, and this song would be playing. Back then, I didn’t pay attention to the lyrics, but now I can really feel it has a powerful message.

Sing a song (…) don’t worry if it’s not good enough for anyone else to hear. Just sing. Sing a song.

I feel the same thing happens when writing. You compose a story, and then you wonder if it’s good enough. However, the first draft is for your eyes only. Nobody else is reading it or judging you. All you need to do is write and edit later on.

As long as it all comes from the heart, the next improvements will follow. That’s what the song says to me. What does it say to you?