Last month I was invited to speak at the Minnesota Christian Writers Guild, a great organization that holds monthly meetings in the Twin Cities to help writers along their writing journey.
I addressed the topic of Avoiding the Summer Slump, mostly because I needed to preach a little truth to myself. If you, too, need a bit of a pep talk, you've come to the right place.
So, how can a writer avoid that summer slump?
1. Set Goals:
- Be realistic. You cannot possibly write 5 million words in one week. (Well, Ruthy can, but she's not human.)
- Make goals quantifiable. Set goals specific enough that you can tell whether you've attained them or not.
- Separate 'writing adjacent' things from actual writing. Writing adjacent things like research, marketing, emails, etc. take lots of time, but they won't add words to your work in progress.
2. Identify what Motivates You:
- Remember why it is you write. Remind yourself...often if necessary
- Set small victory rewards. Chocolate? A new coffee mug? Dinner out?
- Identify what you want to have accomplished at the end of the summer when you look back. Keep it in the forefront of your mind during writing sessions.
- Set a big victory reward. When you reach your big-picture goal, reward yourself with something cool. A vacation? A conference? A writing retreat? A laptop? Whatever. Save for it and work toward it.
3. Set your Strategies:
- Are you going to get up earlier? Stay up later?
- One weekend a month devoted to your writing?
- Turn off social media or the tv?
- Get your family involved.
a. Let them know how important this is to you.
b. Give them tangible ways to help. Dishes? Cooking? Quiet time?
c. Give them updates so they know how helpful they're being.
4. Get the Tools You Need to Stay on Track:
- Planners. Write it down and make it happen.
- Word count trackers can provide a visual of your progress
- Accountability partners can help you stay on track.
- A private FB group of likeminded people. (I belong to a group on FB called 1k1hr, which stands for One Thousand Words in One Hour. You don't have to write that fast, or you can go faster if you want, but the upshot is people check in, ask if anyone is around who is also writing, and a few folks join in. Encouragement that you're not alone, seeing the productivity of others, and a place to be held accountable. Bonus, you can make friends, too!) https://www.facebook.com/groups/338770276151416
There are only two more months before school starts and leaves start changing. What do you want to have accomplished by then? How are you going to get it done?
Best-selling, award-winning author Erica Vetsch loves Jesus, history, romance, and sports. She’s a transplanted Kansan now living in Minnesota, and she is married to her total opposite and soul mate! When she’s not writing fiction, she’s planning her next trip to a history museum and cheering on her Kansas Jayhawks and New Zealand All Blacks. You can connect with her at her website, www.ericavetsch.com where you can read about her books and sign up for her newsletter, and you can find her online at https://www.facebook.com/EricaVetschAuthor/ where she spends way too much time!
Super excited that The Debutante's Code is now available for pre-order! (Link Below)
Jane Austen meets Sherlock Holmes in this new Regency mystery series
Newly returned from finishing school, Lady Juliette Thorndike is ready to debut in London society. Due to her years away, she hasn't spent much time with her parents, and sees them only as the flighty, dilettante couple the other nobles love. But when they're lost at sea, she discovers she never really knew them at all. They've been living double lives as government spies--and they're only the latest in a long history of espionage that is the family's legacy.
Now Lady Juliette is determined to continue their work. Mentored by her uncle, she plunges into the dangerous world of spy craft. From the glittering ballrooms of London to the fox hunts, regattas, and soirees of country high society, she must chase down hidden clues, solve the mysterious code her parents left behind, and stay out of danger. All the while, she has to keep her endeavors a secret from her best friend and her suitors--not to mention nosy, irritatingly handsome Bow Street runner Daniel Swann, who suspects her of a daring theft.
Can Lady Juliette outwit her enemies and complete her parents' last mission? Or will it lead her to a terrible end?
Best-selling author Erica Vetsch is back with a rollicking, exciting new series destined to be a hit with Regency readers who enjoy a touch of mystery in their love stories. Fans of Julie Klassen, Sarah Ladd, and Anne Perry will love the wit, action, and romance.
Pre-order your copy here: https://smile.amazon.com/Debutantes-Thorndike-Swann-Regency-Mysteries/dp/0825447135