Lost your writing rhythm? Here's one simple way to get it back.

Lost your writing rhythm? Here's one simple way to get it back.

Have you been feeling frustrated because you were in the flow or you did have a writing rhythm, but now you feel like you've lost it? 

If so, you're not alone. I see writers struggle with this very thing anytime they've taken a break from their writing, transitioned from one phase of writing to another—like rough draft to revisions—or gone from one type of writing to another, like short stories to a novel. I also see it happen when writers feel like their day to day life has changed. The time they have available and their daily obligations are just different.

The good news is that you can find the flow again.

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How to write five chapters in three days

How to write five chapters in three days

You know those moments when an idea comes fully formed? It's like it drops out of the sky, and once you begin writing, the momentum carries you forward.

They can feel few and far between, can't they? But the truth is, you can increase the chances of it happening.

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Transform Your Writing, Shift #8: Watch Out for Any Belief that Starts with "I Should"

Transform Your Writing, Shift #8: Watch Out for Any Belief that Starts with "I Should"

When I decided to stop working on a novel and set it aside, possibly forever, it didn't come easily. I had invested a lot of myself and my time into that book. But the writing had become more than a struggle—I was forcing it.

My choice was actually very simple: continue to struggle and feel stuck, or listen to my gut. That small voice that was telling me there was something more, something different I could write.

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Transform Your Writing, Shift #7: Share Your Writing Before You Publish

Transform Your Writing, Shift #7: Share Your Writing Before You Publish

Not too long ago, I had the opportunity to speak to an audience about article pitching. One of the first things I said? Don't get ahead of yourself. Take the time to make your writing as good as it can be before you try to publish. 

It felt like a risky move. The room was full and people were taking so many notes... these were writers who want to publish. And yet. I know what happens when you try to publish too soon.

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Transform Your Writing, Shift #6: Let Go of the Projects that No Longer Serve You

Transform Your Writing, Shift #6: Let Go of the Projects that No Longer Serve You

I have a confession. You know those writers who have a novel in a drawer, collecting dust and going no where? I am one. Only my dusty novel is in a bag in the storage space above the master closet, and I left it there on purpose. 

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Transform Your Writing, Shift #5: Follow Your Curiosity

Transform Your Writing, Shift #5: Follow Your Curiosity

I was sitting on a panel at a writing conference when an audience member asked a great question: should he write his book to be more publishable (in his mind, that meant rosy and optimistic) or stay true to his own perspective (a little more dark)?

My fellow panelists, all book authors, each said the same thing: stay true to your voice. You're going to write a better book if you're writing something that interests you.

I added what I'd learned from my clients:

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Transform Your Writing, Shift #4: Get Real About Your Writing Needs

Transform Your Writing, Shift #4: Get Real About Your Writing Needs

Have you ever noticed how a lot of writing sounds like rules? Write every day. Write first thing in the morning. Write 1,000 words per day. It's tempting to think they're the secret to writing more. 

I often hear my clients make similar pronouncements. "I'm going to write every day," they say. 

Or, in a wistful tone, "I just need to carve out two hours a day."

In those moments, I counsel caution.

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It's All Just Practice

It's All Just Practice

Toward the end of grad school, one of my friends still working on her MFA asked if all the essays I'd written for school made it into my final thesis. I remember nodding and saying yes, that most of them had. 

Seven years later, I think of this moment often, because I know I was wrong.

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How Revisions Make You a Better Writer.

How Revisions Make You a Better Writer.

I sent a short story to my writing partner this week. When I started writing, I felt certain that doing so was the right decision. The pieces of the story fell into place in an "aha" sort of way--so clear and vivid that ignoring them would have felt short sighted. 

By the time I sent it to her, I suspected it was terrible. As in completely hokey, unimportant, not worth her time and a far cry from my original vision. 

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