2k a day keeps the deadline at bay

One bit of advice I keep hearing.

“You must write every day. Doesn’t matter if it’s complete rubbish.”

Now, if anyone gives me advice and starts  off with the words you must, then you can be pretty sure I will do the opposite. In fact, the best way to get me to sit down is to tell me to stand up.

The other one is very similar – it involves writing 2000 words every day.

Anyone who’s done NaNoWriMo knows only too well what that one’s like.

This could be a great idea if you’re just inclined that way. However if you’re not the sort of person who can write 2000 words a day, you could easily end up beating yourself up over it. You don’t want to push yourself and end up hating it. For instance the first time I went running I sprinted for 10 minutes and as my life flashed before my eyes, I started thinking that perhaps running wasn’t for me.

The problem was, I pushed myself too far straight out of the gate. I learned very quickly after that to build myself up to it. The issue in that moment was that I was in great danger of feeling like a complete failure because I couldn’t sprint for 10 minutes without wondering whether I had a decent life insurance policy or not. Also, I started thinking that I hated running and that I never wanted to do it again.

Writing, as with exercise, is not something you want to push yourself too much all the time because it will put you off. And once you have been put off, you don’t want the risk of not wanting to have another go.

Random, self-interrupting question…  all the ‘I hate Monday‘ memes I keep seeing on Twitter… now, from people who hate their jobs but love having a roof over their heads, food & heating etc – that I get. But writers? Why do you hate Mondays? I love Mondays. Monday means I can get back to writing. Do other writers hate Monday for the same reason? Then why write? Or… is it that, in some cases, the need to return to a day job is taking them away from their writing? That, I also get.



Push yourself, by all means, but remember, as with most things we learn, it’s always going to be a gradual process.

So what did I do with the running? I built myself up gradually. And now, on days when I don’t feel like running, I do something else. But I do something. I don’t sit on my backside watching daytime TV and mainlining chocolate bars.

Tempting though it may be…

Similarly, with writing, if there’s a day when I don’t feel like writing (let’s face it, that practically never happens – ask my husband) but say that on a particular day, I don’t want to work on a particular project. Rather than push myself to work on that project that day and run the risk of putting myself off working on it at all (First Impressions, anyone ha ha), then I simply work on something else, or I do some editing.

Or proofreading.

Or rewriting.

Or I play with software/sites I’ve found

You get the idea.


next time…

  • What’s new, Pussycat?
  • Running with an idea

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This entry was posted in Author, Book fair, Editing, Film, Humour, Manuscript preparation, new fiction, Novel, Proofpreading, Research, romance, science fiction, Self-improvement, stage play, Uncategorized, writing, Writing advice and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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