Writing is more than just putting a story to the page. It is also about building author platform and running the business side of your writing. This is a place where writers who want to start sharing their work with their readers often start feeling overwhelmed. And the worry is, will the business of getting your work to your readers impact how much time you actually have to write? But the good news is, you can be productive in both spheres and the momentum in each can feed the other.
Here are some quick tips you can use today across all categories:
1. Social Media
As you start sharing your work on social media, don't worry about coming across as contrived. Writing is what you do. You are just showing more of yourself to your network. Think about it, would you feel odd sharing your love of travelling, crafts, a great meal you made after work, or a book you really enjoyed? No, you wouldn't. Because it's interesting to you and you know others will be interested either because it coincides with a shared interest of theirs or because they like you and want to know more about you. So think of something to share and do it -- a picture of your writing space in your early morning session, a great book you are reading that teaches you more about your craft, or a website other writers would enjoy.
2. Word Count
It helps to think of chapters as just being made up of scenes and paragraphs. And each of those paragraphs is made up of sentences. You can write sentences, can't you? Good. So you can write a book. Have your outline nearby to save yourself time. (If you produce 1500 more words today, but they don't fit with your plot line or character development, you have just completed a writing exercise, but not more of your book) You can grab my free resource -- Take Your Book from Concept to Finished Product in Less Time by signing up on the right hand side bar.
3. Reader Feedback
You don't have to have a book released for sale to get your first reader feedback. You can get avid readers you know to act as beta readers for you -- they don't need to have editing experience to let you know how your work comes across to them. If you feel like they're not getting it, you probably haven't explained the storyline or your character well enough. Ask questions until you see what needs more developing. Then, you'll also have a plan for your next writing session (ie. 2 more scenes that explain why Martha has such a problem with her neighbour)
4. Free Resources
There are so many resources you can access for free to fuel your writing progress from everything from author platform building to the keys to finishing your project. Some of my favorites (other than the one listed in #2 above) are Michael Hyatt's interviews on youtube, the website The Write Life, and scribd, the netflix for books.
5. Writing on the go
To ensure you have access to your writing projects wherever you go, I recommend carrying your jump drive and/or your notebook. Often times ideas will come to you as soon as you take a break and your brain switches modes into the creative. You can take advantage of those spurts of inspiration and spaces in your day by making sure your story is nearby.
6. Office set-up
Keep your work space ready to go. If you're going to stack paper, don't do it where you write. Simple things like keeping your laptop charged up and having a pen and paper handy, and having enough desk space for your coffee cup means you can start writing without having to address all of that. Because while moving back and forth from writing to other tasks works if it's structured on a day you have open primarily for writing; it does not favor production to have distracting tasks to do when you have a small window of time in which to write.
Hoping for a great writing weekend for you. Make it count.