|Photo courtest of Morgue File|
I follow a ton of blogs on the writing process and find it fascinating how people approach the process. Some advocate the importance of writing every day while others preach the notion of skipping a day here and there. I've tried both methods and can see the value in each.
However, my method and reasoning is simple; you breathe every day. You eat every day. Why should you not be writing every day?
Sure, you don't need to write like you need to breathe (although sometimes I swear I feel as though I need too), but the only way to get better at something is to develop it through repetition. Writing is hard, hard work, and the harder the work, the more you should practice it. So, here are three reasons why I think you should write every day.
1). Develop a Routine.
The more you do something, the more your mind expects it of you, and when your mind becomes set on something, the task may become a little easier.
I don't think timing is so much important as it is that you do it every single day. Get it in your mind that somewhere, over the course of the day, you will sit down (or stand) and do some type of writing. If you do this enough, I promise, your mind will begin to expect it, and you may find things feeling a bit off if you don't get to it.
Make something a routine and it may become easier (note: this may prove untrue for parents.)
2). You Improve.
It's like writing a bike; the more you do it, the better you become. Keep at it long enough and you may end up a superstar at it. Yeah, I said it. I'm not guaranteeing that you'll achieve Rowling-like success with your work, but it sure as hell couldn't hurt to better yourself.
The beauty of the improvement is that it's subconscious. You won't be aware when it happens. Gradually, though, you will notice some improvement if you devote some consistent effort to it.
Don't believe me?
Write something. Date it, and then set it aside.
Write (something else) every single day for one month.
Then, go back and look at what you wrote at the beginning of the month.
If you don't wince at it, you're either a freakin' natural or you need a reality check.
You should, however, see how far you've come in a short amount of time.
3). You Get More Done!
Herein lies the true joy of writing, at least to me. Writing itself is hard work, like dragging oneself through fire over and over again. Finishing something, however, brings the greatest sense of gratification in the world. Say you set a goal to write fifteen short stories in a thirty day period. Yes, it's going to be hard work, and it's going to hurt like hell, and you may not finish all of them in that time frame.
However, you will finish at least some of those stories, and you'll be able to hold them in your hands (if you print) or publish them or show them off...and if nothing else, you'll be able to push away from the keyboard and say Hell yes, I did this.
So that's it; three reasons why I feel it's important to write every single day. As it stands, I hop up between five and five thirty in the morning just to get this done. I still manage to blog several times a week, I've made huge progress in my novel (although I'm really feeling the burn to get it done, it's been two years), and I can actually see where I've gotten better over time.
Thanks for reading.