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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Transform Your Writing, Shift #1: You Are More Than a Writer

Transform Your Writing, Shift #1: You Are More Than a Writer

There's this image of "The Writer" that permeates our culture: a solitary creature, so devoted to his or her craft that she writes EVERY DAY. Perhaps that means writing all day, from 9 to 5, and treating it like a job. Perhaps that means getting up at 5 a.m. and sacrificing sleep for writing. Or perhaps it means writing first thing, no matter what.

These approaches work for some writers, and certainly for those whose entire livelihoods are based on writing (Steven King and Dani Shapiro come to mind). I'll never argue against consistency and the importance of showing up. But there's a flip side to thinking you have to do it like they do: you feel guilty when you don't write, you question whether you're meant to do it, or you wonder if you're a fraud. 

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It's possible to transform your writing life.

It's possible to transform your writing life.

Not too long ago, I was dissatisfied with my writing. It wouldn't have looked that way from the outside: I was an editor at a successful weekly newspaper, where I got to write pretty much whatever I wanted. I'd been published in The Wall Street Journal, more than once, and in magazines. I'd published essays, too. 

But instead of focusing on what I had accomplished, I couldn't stop thinking about the things I hadn't done. I'd never published a short story. I'd never taken a novel far enough to seek publication. 

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