I know this is old advice, but it’s always worth repeating. If you want to get better at something, you need to practice. That means if you want to be a writer, you have to write. In fact, you have to write every day.
See, here it is in bold: write every day. And here it is in all-caps: WRITE EVERY DAY. And here it is in bold, all-caps, and red, just to show I’m really serious: WRITE EVERY DAY.
Even if you’re a novice, amateur, fledgling, undiscovered, or just outright noob. Hell, especially if you’re a noob. It’s the only way you’re going to get better.
Now make that promise to yourself and say it out loud. “I, Newbie McWrites A Lot, swear that I will write every day. No matter what.”
I know it’s not easy. I know stuff comes up, but unless it’s a work or family emergency, anything that “comes up” is no excuse to break the promise you just made to yourself that you will write every day.
Once again, I’ll bring up the Stephen King mantra stating that you need to write a minimum and fixed word count every day. While that may be a good idea for some, I don’t recommend it because I think it can lead to discouragement if you’re low on time or having trouble coming up with something.
What I would say instead is to plan ahead. Look at every day separately and know in advance how much time you have allocated to write. Then you’ll be able to set an reachable goal when you sit down at your computer.
And finding time isn’t hard if you look for it. There is always time to fit something in. Start a blog post during lunch, for example. Or if you only have fifteen minutes at the end of the day, pick a chapter and look for grammar errors, or browse QueryTracker for an agent.
Point is when I say “write every day,” I don’t necessarily mean write something new. I really mean work on your writing every day and continue to learn and improve.
And then maybe together we can both stop being noobs.
What should you be doing every day to help yourself become a better writer? Let us know in the comments!