Writers of all levels need book writing help from time to time. No matter how many books you write, how many land on bestseller lists, or how large your fan base, writers struggle just like any other professional.
However, just like a change of pace, expectations, or even management can help those in the corporate world, the same can help writers. This article covers seven common issues writers face as well as the help available to them.
You, the writer, set your own writing pace, expectations, and choose how you manage your time. That said, there are ways to take advantage of this flexibility and leverage it for your good. We discuss the following:
- Writing Community
- Take A Course
- Writing Software
- Office Space
- Ergonomic Keyboard
- Writing Block Tips
Don’t forget to read to the end for some tips on how to handle writer’s block and a fact you may not be aware of!
#1 – Writing Community
When it comes time to write your book, engagement in a solid writing community can make or break your success. It’s romantic to think of authors writing on parchment by candlelight, but writing a book really does take a village.
The act of writing itself may be done best alone, but take the time to build a community to help you through the process. When you get stuck on a chapter, write yourself into an impossible situation, or simply need encouragement to continue, your writing community will be there to help you.
Tip 1: Make sure you don’t spend so much time engaging with your writing community that you don’t spend writing time writing.
Tip 2: Be sure to give back to the community who regularly pours into you! A writing community goes two ways and should be a give and take.
#2 – Take A Course
All writers struggle in various areas. As much as we’d like to think we can master the art of book writing, there is always more to learn. There are many aspects of writing that a course could help you brush up on:
- Writing in 1st or 3rd person
- Writing actively, not passively
- How to write a standout protagonist
- Plots that keep readers turning pages
If you find yourself struggling in one of the above areas, or a different area entirely, you may want to consider signing up for a course. This could be done through a community college in-person or online, through a subscription, or even with a free webinar.
#3 – Coaching
A writing coach sees your areas for growth as well as where you excel. When you focus on growing your strengths and learning how to best cope with your book writing weaknesses, you set yourself on a trajectory for success.
When looking for a writing coach, ask:
- What is their area of expertise?
- Do I want one session or recurring?
- Would an online guild be a good alternative?
Keep in mind that many coaches will charge for their expertise, but you do pay for what you get. If you’re able to invest in coaching, it could be the next step for your book writing help.
#4 – Writing Software
Some writers thrive using software like Grammarly or Scrivener. If you know you need that extra bit of help that Word documents, Google docs, or Pages can’t give you, consider looking into writing software. Do some research, ask other writers what software they use or enjoy, and go from there.
Remember, just as it’s easy to get lost in research for your book, it’s simply to waste hours finding all the ins and outs of your new software. If you purchase software to help you write your book, make sure you write!
#5 – Office Space
If you browse Pinterest you will find countless images of pristine writing spaces and intricately designed offices. It’s easy to think, “If only I could write there, I’d be a bestselling author!” While we can likely all relate to this thought, it does hold a ring of truth.
The space you choose to write in can affect you. For me, my office needs to be clean, organized, and as minimalist as possible. Yes, as a college student I wrote where I needed to, but now as a professional, I can choose what space I work in.
If you need book writing help, sometimes taking fifteen minutes to clean your home office space, light a new candle, and set a fresh cup of coffee on your desk can be the answer.
#6 – Ergonomic Keyboard
When you find yourself under a book writing deadline (self-imposed or given by a publisher) you may find your fingers get tired. You have to type X amount of words daily, no matter what. Investing in an ergonomic keyboard can be life changing.
It can be difficult to write when hand cramps steal your attention. Make sure you try out a keyboard prior to purchasing, or keep the tags so once you get your hands on it, you can return if necessary. Ergonomic keyboards are extremely individualized, so make sure you make the best purchase for you.
Something as simple as investing in the right keyboard can make your writing time fly by and be a book writing help you never would’ve thought of, but changes your mindset entirely.
#7 – Writing Block Tips
Writer’s block can feel so very real and it’s something many of us writers seem to struggle with. However, I stand by the advice my writing mentor gives. He says writer’s block is a myth and actually reveals a deeper cause:
If you think you struggle with writer’s block, ask yourself:
- What am I afraid of?
- Am I procrastinating?
- Do I expect my first draft to be perfect?
- Am I allowing distractions?
Consider combating these issues by:
- Recognizing fear is normal
- Choose to do the work
- Deciding to write and edit later
- Silencing distractions
Simply turning off notifications or maximizing your writing screen so you can’t see other projects can be a big help!
You Are Your Own Book Writing Help
You know yourself well enough to understand what you need help with, and why. Your writing community can help point out areas they notice, but it’s up to you to acknowledge where you need help and make the appropriate changes.
Once you accept that you could use help in a specific area, you are free to move forward and become an even better writer. A perfect first draft is something all writers have probably dreamed of a time or two, but writing is hard work.
Often, the most time-consuming part of writing is the battle in your own head. Am I good enough? What about this chapter makes it sub-par? Will readers like this character? Is my story worth sharing?
Your writing community can play a dynamic role in answering your what-if questions. In a different manner, a coach or course can help you grow in the actual writing craft itself. Wherever you find yourself in your journey, reach out for the help you need.
All writers are either learning or stagnating, so choose to be the former. Get the book writing help you need, and we look forward to hearing about your progress!