How would you define a writer? What do writers do to become successful? How come some bloggers have tons of followers whilst others don’t?
The answer lays in the things they daily do over and over again, so basically, their habits. Maine we sometimes don’t realize, but what we do every single day is what defines us. Not our words, not what our close ones say. No. Our daily habits. Consistency is the key (and the fault) for who we and who we will become.
Picking up the right habits will help you get wherever you want to go, so let’s see which are the right habits for a writer.
1) Make writing a priority
I know this doesn’t sound like a habit, but it kinda is. Just think about it for a second. If something isn’t a priority, how high are the chances of you focusing on it? Little to zero. So if you make writing a priority, there is a higher chance you do something about it. Of course, this doesn’t mean dropping everything and go write all day long, even though that sounds great, but using any spare time you have to concentrate on your writing will surely help.
For example, if you prioritize writing over sleep and you wake up half an hour earlier and you go to bed half an hour later, it will give you one extra hour for writing. In my case, I start my normal job at 8 AM, but I wake up at 6 AM to be able to write these posts.
2) Write down every idea that comes to you
This is extremely helpful when it comes to handling writer’s block. If you write down your ideas whenever they come (in the shower, in the middle of the night, while walking, while eating, on the toilet, while playing with your plants and so on), it will give you writing material when you seem to have no new ideas.
I use to create drafts on WordPress so I can access them wherever I am and from any device. Oh, and it seems I have a problem with plants… I mention them too often.
3) Set up a daily/weekly writing goal
Sometimes you cannot write daily… you just can’t (you don’t seem to find the time, you are not in the mood and so on), but make sure you have some weekly goals and stick to it. As an example, I have a daily goal of publishing two posts per day (the main post and the Wisdom Of Writers post). When I have inspiration, I write a bunch and then I schedule some posts ahead just in case some dark days come.
If you have a goal, you’ll tend to act upon it to achieve it (if you are serious about it, of course). I have a friend that wrote a 200+ pages book in 6 months. He did it by having a daily goal of 1000 words. He also had a full-time job and to be able to achieve his goal, he woke up every day at 4 AM for 6 months to achieve his target.
As another example, a few years ago I ran into a YouTube video where a well know writer (unfortunately I don’t remember his name right now) said that a daily goal is too strict for him, so he has a weekly goal of X number of words (I don’t remember the number either… I guess I’m getting old).
Set up the goal that works for you and stick to it. In time, it will compound and the results of your effort will come.
If you read my post about the 3 reasons why a writer should be a reader, then you know why this is important. Reading your feedback, reading other people’s posts, reading books, reading anything will help you shape the way you think, as a writer. It will help you evolve and this leads to making better posts, which will attract more and more readers. It’s a snowball effect.
I recommend doing it daily, but as I know that sometimes it is almost impossible, do it weekly. As I mentioned in the beginning, consistency is the key!
5) Interact with your readers
If you have a blog and a reader comments on your post, reply to that person. If you have a book published and someone gives you a feedback, write them something back. If your readers take their time to interact with your content, it will be at least polite to answer them. That’s how you create a connection with your readers.
6) Believe in yourself
Again, this doesn’t sound like a habit, but when things get tough (and they will), you need to keep believing in yourself. Set up some strategies to keep writing when things get tough, but keep going. If you stop, it will be much harder to pick yourself up and do it again than keep going.
Of course, there will be people telling you that you’re just wasting your time with writing and that there are tons of other writers so why should you succeed and so on, but you need to keep believing in yourself because you know better. You started the road, you have the answers to your questions, so you need to keep going and not letting anyone decide what you should do!
As a writer, what habits do you have?
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Oh, and don’t forget! Now you can Ask Me Anything! through this form. I’m looking forward to talk to you!