You have probably known someone who has said “I want to write a book.” Or “I should write a book.” Or “I could have written that!” Perhaps you’ve ever said these things yourself. I have.
The difference between me and a lot of people is that, for better or worse, I have written a book. But I did a whole lot of talking about writing before I figured out how to get around to it. Now I’m working on two more.
If you have read The Knot, you know that it is pretty long: 450+ pages. When I look at it, it’s hard for me to believe that I’m the one who wrote all of those words. After all, committing to long-term projects and knuckling down has never been my thing, aside from my strength training.
Here were the excuses I made that kept me from starting my book and from finishing it sooner. Do any of them sound familiar to you?
I’m too busy
Not true. The busiest people I know are the one who always seem to be able to free up 15 minutes if they have to. I include myself in that category.
I’m not a good enough writer
This totally misses the point. Maybe I wasn’t a good enough writer to with the Pulitzer, but I was a good enough writer to write a book I loved. Once I was writing for my own pleasure, not for someone else’s standards or the thought of a big payday, it got a lot easier.
I don’t know where the story is going
That is what makes it so fun! This is one reason I don’t enjoy writing non-fiction as much: I already know how the story goes. If you write for fun, it is easy to make progress on your book–just start writing and keep your fingers moving. You can clean it up later.
Outline, shmoutline, unless you’re doing a research-heavy book for a deadline and the deal hinges on a detailed, pre-approved outline.
So…if you have ever had the urge to write a book, you are writing a book, or you think you would like to in the future, I would love to hear about it.
What is your book about?
Have you started it? Ever?
Why isn’t it finished?
Let’s talk. As a writer, I know how far a little encouragement can go. What are you geniuses working on and putting off?
PS: Today only–if you would like a for-sale, signed copy of The Knot, please contact me and put “book writing” in the subject line. $23, shipping included, unless you live overseas. In that case, I’ll give you the first $10 of shipping for free!
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