Clare Davidson

Writing without compromise

Tuesday Writing Tips: Natasha McNeely

Welcome to the first Tuesday Writing Tips post. My aim is for this to become a regular post, with writing tips from fellow authors.

First up with have Natasha McNeely, who kindly agreed to share her thoughts on writing schedules. This post is pretty good timing for me, as I spent yesterday evening working out a writing schedule! I hope you enjoy the post and look forward to reading your comments.

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What schedule should you use for writing?

Before I start this off, I’d like to thank Clare for being such a lovely person and letting me write a guest post for her to share on her blog.

Without further ado, let’s get this show on the road, why don’t we?

What do writers do? We write.
What is the most important things writers do? We write.

Sure, we research, we market our books, we query, we edit, and so on and so forth, but the main reason people call us writers is because we write – plain and simple.

Going by that logic, the more we write, the better it is for us. A lot of people say to write every day, even if it’s just a paragraph. I’m inclined to agree and at the same time, I’m not. I won’t deny that daily writing is useful. Why? Here are just a few reasons:

It creates a schedule, a pattern for you to keep up.
You write every day so you practice and improve daily.
It keeps the words flowing.

All of these things are true, but does that mean there aren’t any pros to writing less? Personally, I like writing less. Does that mean I write less in quantity? Not necessarily.

People say that writing 1,000 words per day is a good way to stay in shape and keep making progress. Sure, if that’s how you like to write, then you can do that. For me, personally, I try to do things a bit differently.

I write three days per week – Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. However, I write more than that daily average is, namely a full chapter each day that I write. For me, that means I write generally between 2,500 and 3,500 words, depending on the length of the chapter. If, for some odd reason, I don’t finish the chapter when I start it on, say, Monday; then I will finish it on the bridge day between one writing day and the next.

Guest what? This writing pace puts me at the same word count as daily 1,000 words writers. It makes me ever surpass them at times.

Now, understand that I’m not saying that writing every day is wrong. What I’m saying is that every writer needs to test out different writing methods and see what works for them, personally. No two writers are alike. Sure, we might write the same genre, write the same amount on the same days, but there is one aspect that will always separate us.

Life.

If you are absolutely insistent on writing those 7,000 words per week, regardless of what happens, it’s easy to fall behind. Life will often get in the way. Something might happen and you can’t write one day, so you’ll need to move those words over to the next day. Do that enough and the words will accumulate a lot faster than you ever realized.

With my schedule, if something prevents me from writing one day, I move it to one of my bridge days. I feel that it gives me, as a writer, a bit more freedom.

Again, this is only my opinion and every writer must find what works best for them.

So, what does work best for you? Let me know in the comments and share your story if you’ve ever struggled to find your perfect schedule!

If you’d like to contact me and discuss this ever more, you can contact me on social media:
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Natasha McNeely was born in Seattle, Washington on January 7th, 1993 and traveled to Europe when she was seven. An avid reader for as long as she can remember, she enjoyed writing from a young age and strove to improve her craft. In early 2011, she was first published traditionally and later in the year, took the leap into becoming an indie author by publish a short anthology, A Glimpse of The Dark.

Currently she is working on various projects, most importantly The Hunted Trilogy.

Next week, Stephen Montano will be sharing one of his writing tips.


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On 04/09/2012 Ruth Ellen Parlour said: I tend to write weekly goals, it gives me flexibility as on some days I can't write much but other's I'm on a role. My goal is always achievable but if I smash it then I up my goal. Like you said, its a very personal thing and you have to find what works best for you!


On 04/09/2012 Natasha McNeely said: Thank you for letting me share a writing tip on your blog! I appreciate it and hope it's helpful to readers. <i>By the way, you misspelled my last name several times. ;)</i>


On 04/09/2012 Clare Davidson said: Fixed! Sorry!



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