I face writer’s block. You face writer’s block. We all face writer’s block, so I decided to research the science behind a few of my favorite ways to get unstuck. I’ll admit it may have been another way to procrastinate, but I think you’ll like what I found.
Nope. You don’t. You definitely, absolutely, 100% do not have to write every day to be a writer.
So why do some writers claim you do? Because they do. It’s fabulous that they can sit down and write every single day of their life. Plenty of successful authors do that. Plenty of successful authors don’t.
If a daily schedule works for you, beautiful. But if it doesn’t, that’s okay too. Like athletes, many of us need breaks to recover, adapt, recharge, and prevent burn out.
Want some proof?
I talk a lot about finding the right agent for you, rather than just any agent. You want someone who gets your vision, who knows how to sell books like yours, and whose personality gels with yours, which means finding the right agent is a pretty personal task. That said, there are a few consistent qualities we should all be looking for:
If you want to sell your book to a major New York publisher, you need an agent, no question. As with anything in life, there are rare exceptions, but do you want to drastically narrow your chances in hopes of winning the lottery? If so, why? A good agent has relationships with editors and publishers, they know who’s looking for what, they know how to sell a book, they know how to negotiate a good contract, and
You’re trying to juggle a dozen things at once – an unforgettable first line, a fresh voice, an original theme, complex characters, mood and tone and conflict and a sense of mystery, and so on and so forth. In so doing, there’s a good chance you’ve inadvertently lost the most important element of all – clarity.
Once upon a time, I was a magazine editor with an inbox full of pitches from writers and publicists. Many of the senders probably submitted those queries and imagined me waiting for them to come in, reading through each one carefully to decide whether or not it had merit.
Here’s what was really on my mind each time a new pitch pinged through: