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Own Your Process

I often joke that no writer is ever happy with her process. In nine out of ten client meetings there is some point when the author expresses concern about her writing process or her inability to write the same way or at the same rate as others.

Stop and listen. Nine out of ten client meetings. It means that 90% of you feel like your process stinks. For those of you having success as authors I’m pretty sure that’s not true.

Instead of bemoaning your writing process and wishing you could do what the gal next door does just embrace it. If you’re a pantser who wanders around thinking about the book for six months and then only sits down to write when the deadline is looming embrace that (as long as you’re meeting your deadlines). Accept the fact that your process is six months mental, one month physical. Use your mental time to go on long walks, the gym, or the beach and when push comes to shove, write the book. In other words, quit wasting time freaking out about the fact you “should be” writing. You shouldn’t be. That’s not your process.

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5 comments

  1. That’s me alright! I feel tremendously guilty about it and you’re absolutely right. Thanks for reminding me that my style is who I am and it’s okay as long as I’m moving forward to complete my goal. Thank you’

  2. Oh, Jessica, I wish you knew how much I needed a post like this from an expert now! I’m really struggling with my writing process because I seem to take much more time than other writers. My editor is capable of shooting a super scene in 10 minutes while stirring in a pan and keeping an eye on two kids, one of which a toddler. And she writes kick-butt scenes. Another writer friend of mine asks for advice on a scene, then sends me the written scene in half an hour. Me, I need to sit down, warm up to it, I write a sentence and read the ten others I’ve written before that. The first draft is mega important to me, I can’t just slap it on the page as well as the others do. Please write more on this. I really need it.

  3. A big thank you from me, Jessica. I’m a pantser surrounded by methodical plotters.
    Ha! I embrace this.
    Now to make my process successful…

  4. Oh my, I was just having breakfast with a nonwriting friend this morning and complaining about how scattered my process is. Guess I’ve been called out. Thanks for this.

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