Every writer deals with writing procrastination. It's one of our key traits.
We put off the next chapter, the next article, and wait until our deadline is just a few days away. Then we frantically type away at the keyboard, hoping that we have enough time to edit it before it's too late.
But why do we procrastinate?
Better yet, how do we stop procrastinating and get back to writing our book?
In this article, you can learn three reasons why you allow procrastination to stop your writing progress, as well as a simple, three-step method to overcome whatever is doing that.
Every Writer Has Moments They Procrastinate
I'm probably the biggest procrastinator in my family. There's always something I'd rather be doing, always a new way to organize my room, always a friend I haven't e-mailed in forever. Why? Why do I put projects off? I only figured out the answer to this question a few days ago.
It turns out that there are multiple reasons why one might procrastinate. Here are three possibilities.
3 Reasons You Might Suffer From Writing Procrastination
For as many writers who have great writing habits that help them finish their writing projects, there are several others who develop bad writing habits that hurt their writing process.
The process of writing is a challenge, and it's inevitable that somewhere in the writing process you will fail to meet a writing goal, or suffer from other writing struggles.
In order to overcome your procrastination tendencies and finish your WIP, however you need to understand what might be stunting your actual writing.
For instance, it could be one of these three reasons.
1. You're Scared
You're scared of rejection, of failure, of negative criticism. You might be hesitant to write because you're not sure how people will react.
The truth is, there's no point in not trying. You can't please everyone in the world. If you tried to do that, you'd be stuck with an impossible feat that pulls you in a hundred different directions. That doesn't make anyone happy, including yourself.
Put your brave face on and write what you've been meaning to write for a while now.
2. You're Stuck
You're out of ideas. That dreaded writer's block has gotten the best of you again. You're putting off opening that document because you know that all you'll do is stare at it for ten minutes before going off to check Facebook.
I've put off writing articles I really did need to write for weeks because I had no idea what my topic was going to be. When I finally did sit down at my computer, I realized that I had dozens of ideas. I just had to look for them.
3. You're Bored
Your story is no longer interesting. You've squeezed all of the excitement out of your plot and now all you have is a dry sponge.
This has happened to me too many times to count.
This problem is actually quite easy to fix, though. Add a plot twist, a new character, a surprising secret that no one knew about your character until now. You'd be surprised how many chapters you can get out of that.
All I added was one surprising secret about my minor character and suddenly the word count in my story has doubled!
Daily Writing Practice: 3-Step Method to Stop Procrastinating and Finish Your Book
Now that you know what might be holding you back, let's turn your attention to a simple, three-step method on how to stop procrastinating and finish your book.
If you've ever wanted to write a book but gotten stuck at some point in the process because of procrastination, this video is actually going to help you get unstuck and finish your book.
In it, you can learn the exact process Joe Bunting, best-selling author and founder of The Write Practice, uses to beat his procrastination. It's the same method he's used to help thousands of writers defeat procrastination and finish their WIP.
Click play to get started—and improve your writing life!
From Terrible Writer to Productive Writer
Numerous writers give up on their manuscripts because of a poor procrastination habit or procrastination excuses that interpret their writing days on the regular.
By creating a writing deadline and dedicated a couple of hours in the day or week to write, you're far more likely to overcome any procrastination tendencies determined to make you quit.
If you want to write a larger writing project, you will face days where you just don't want to write—where everything works a a a distraction. To rejuvenate a strong writing flow, however, you need to learn how to budget your time and overcome procrastination.
The best way to do this is to identify what keeps you from making progress on your book manuscript. After you do this, then try out the simple, three-step strategies that Joe teaches in the YouTube video to complete your daily writing practice or writing task.
Don't allow a sense of guilt to takeover. Take action, and get back to work!
Do you procrastinate? If so, why? How do you handle it? Let us know in the comments.
Write what you've been putting off for a while now. (Come on, I know you have something). If you really and truly don't have anything that you've been procrastinating, write about a character who is procrastinating an important project.
Now, reflect back on the three-step method. Journal out a plan using this method that will help you stop your procrastination and help you get back to your WIP.
Write for fifteen minutes and post your practice in the practice box below. Be sure to comment on a few other practices, as well.
Enter your practice here:
The Magic Violinist is a young author who writes mostly fantasy stories. She loves to play with her dog and spend time with her family. Oh, and she's homeschooled. You can visit her blog at themagicviolinist.blogspot.com. You can also follow The Magic Violinist on Twitter (@Magic_Violinist).