Tag Archives: dogs

Writing Wins and Woes: Dog Days of Summer

I have to admit I get a little disenchanted with my writing this time of year. I’m not sure why. It’s summer. I want to be out and about doing fun things, not cooped up in the house writing. Not to mention that it’s hot, and it tends to drain my energy. Yes, I have air conditioning in the house, but after a long day’s work, I just don’t feel much like writing.

There’s a lot of reasons why summer just doesn’t seem to fill me with motivation. So I decided to list some motivational tools to help others who are going through the same thing.

  1. Start a brand new project. Sometimes the old projects get boring, so a new endeavor can spur you on to write.
  2. Use the five minute plan. I’ve talked about this before. Decide to write for five minutes. If you are still motivated, write for five more minutes.
  3. Journal. Here’s another thought I’ve harped on before. If you don’t have a story you feel like writing or adding to, just write your thoughts down. It may motivate you to write other things, and it’s good practice.
  4. Reward yourself. Decide on a special treat after you’ve finished writing. Then give yourself some pats on the back. Rewards work with kids and adults.
  5. Go somewhere specifically to write. Sometimes a change of scenery can start the creative juices flowing.
  6. Free yourself from distractions. Don’t answer your cell. Don’t open the door. Don’t check facebook. Shut the door and write. Don’t even throw the ball to the dog. (I have that problem when I’m sitting down to write.)
  7.  Write a whole story in one sitting. Challenge yourself. I know this sounds hard but you really get a sense of achievement when you finish something. Try not to stop until the story is done. Work on fine tuning later.
  8. Add a chapter. Add just one chapter to the novel you are currently working on. It’s forward progress and it feels good.
  9. Write something completely different than you usually write. Again, it’s fresh and fun and you might be surprised that you actually like writing in a new kind of way.
  10.  Practice whenever you can. Read a news story. Write about it. Watch something on tv. Write about it. Read a book. Write about it. These projects are actual things. They are called book and movie reviews and editorials. They are fun and helpful to developing your writing skills. Even try writing a review on a product you bought on Amazon or a recipe you liked.             There you go. Take one or all or make up your own. Just write.019

Writing Wins and Woes: What do dogs and successful writers have in common?

1188932Lucy pics 012I thought it might be time for another humorous post especially as my past posts have been somewhat disheartening in their tone. So, without further ado let’s consider the question, what do dogs and successful writers have in common?

  1. They stay focused on their task. If you ever see a dog siting patiently waiting for that last bit of food you have, or training his eye on a tennis ball, or even sheep herding, you know that dogs stick to the job they know they have to do. A writer who stays focused on the novel he’s writing, or the story that flashed into her mind or the tireless research to make a story authentic, you will find the writer who is successful.
  2. They are loyal. Everyone knows dogs are loyal creatures. They love their masters. They forgive and forget. Writers need to be loyal, too. They need to be loyal to writing groups, writing friends, people who buy their books and anybody who might give a crap about their writing. Without faithful supporters, you can’t have a successful writer, so we have to support them in return.
  3. They struggle against impossible odds. Incredible Journey. Lassie Come Home. Benji, Greyfriar’s Bobby. Some of these stories are even true, but even if they are a bit concocted, dogs will do anything to be reunited with their masters. Selling a book is definitely an impossible feat. Even when you do sell a book, do you know the average book sells less than 500 copies? Yet, we stick to the task against these odds. Why? Because we’re writers.
  4. They love what they do. Ever see a dog hang his head out a car window? Run wild in a field after absolutely nothing? Eat a bowl of disgusting dog food? Dogs love what they do. A writers who loves what he creates is a successful writer.
  5. They keep the faith. Dogs don’t lose faith in us. They wait even if we’re gone all day or days even. They don’t lose hope. They stick by gravesides, bedsides, couch sides and table sides. Okay, maybe that’s for food, but we can’t argue that dogs have an incredible amount of tenacity. They don’t give up. If we want to be successful writers, we have to keep believing in our work, ourselves and our futures. So, do you want to be a successful writer? Take a few lessons from dogs. Chase your dreams and run them down.