Becoming a professional author is a dream of many who sit pen in hand (or more likely, fingers poised over their keyboards), you may have a great story to tell and have always longed to get it out to the public, but for whatever reason haven’t made that leap.
So, if not now, when?
There are lots of reasons why people don’t follow through on their dreams, it can be lack of time, fear of failure, lack of resources, lack of confidence (again, fear), too many distractions and lack of motivation. But if this is important to you (and I assume it is), why would you waste time in not moving forward with your goal?
For many, the primary reason for not working towards your goal is fear, fear of failure has stopped many people and robbed the world of some amazing books, services, ideas and businesses. This fear ensures that you give weight to the many reasons why you shouldn’t proceed, not having time, not having the resources, that you need to learn something else before making a start etc.
Fear WILL hold you back and if you don’t recognize this you WILL let it.
When you think about writing a book and then publishing it, many will worry about rejection, this could be from a publisher, reader or even a critic, you can think that you’re simply not good enough and that once your book is completed you’ll be called out as a fraud. This ‘Impostor’ syndrome is held by countless authors, many of which are highly successful and regarded as great writers, it is far more common to think like this than you may realize, knowing that pretty much everyone else feels the same should help you to realize that you’re not alone.
If you are thinking of writing a book, the best way to do so is to simply stop thinking about it and start doing it. If you’re waiting for the perfect time to start, understand one thing…. It doesn’t exist.
Having said this, some planning will help, those excuses as to why you ‘can’t’ write your book right now should be addressed. So look at them individually:
I don’t have the time right now
if you haven’t the time to write, look at where you spend each hour of your average day, then look at your average week, how much time do you spend on Facebook/social media, how much time do you give to watching TV? Could you cut back by just one hour per week on staring at your phone or TV? When you review an average week, you will normally find a small chunk of time that you can use to write, if it’s just an hour per week, that’s great, your book may take a little longer to write but no one said it was a race.
I don’t have the resources
You can start with a pencil and a sheet of paper, just go to your local dollar store, you can technically write a book on a tablet and Google’s Chromebooks start from $150. The point is, you don’t need a top of the range MacBook Pro to write a book.
There are too many distractions
If you are writing from home (and you don’t have kids), turn off your internet, TV and phone, only for the period that you’re writing, the less temptation the better. Or if you live with others, can you get out and write in a café for an hour? This is how J.K. Rowling wrote her first book, and it worked out very well for her. If you do have kids then the only time you may have will be when they’ve gone to bed or are at school, remember, you’re not trying to write the entire book in one day, even if you can just spare 30 mins per week, it’s better than not writing at all.
I haven’t written for awhile and can’t seem to get back into it
Just open up Word on your laptop or grab a notepad and pen, and now just write. Write anything, it really doesn’t matter, free-writing is great in helping you to blow the cobwebs away and begin to slowly get your creative flow back. You don’t have to keep what you write (unless you’re really happy with it), the focus here is in just getting some words down.
Regardless of what’s holding you back right now, there is always a way to achieve your creative goals, so finally, what’s stopping you?
Book cover designers.