February 10, 2017

#LifeWritten: How to Find Motivation for Writing

I am often asked how I find the motivation for writing and posting new blog content so often. My answer, always? "I love to write, so it's only natural." But, presumably, every other person out there who's publishing content on the Internet loves to write, too. So, in today's post, I'm attempting to break down how and from where I find the motivation to write— both blog content and novel content.



This post is sort of an extension of this post, which is more of a "how to," whereas this one is more of a "from where" and "why." If that doesn't make sense, it should soon.

Where do I find the motivation, and why does that source motivate me?

+ I use writing as an incentive.


If I have to get schoolwork done (priorities, unfortunately), I'll reward myself with writing a blog post or wrapping up my weekly newsletter. I love creating content and putting my ideas into words, so being able to use this as a means by which academic work gets accomplished is a huge bonus.



+ I ask myself what I need help with.


Blogging and maintaining an online presence can be difficult, if not frustrating at times. There are a lot of questions that I don't know the answer to and that aren't easily answerable because everyone has a different take on how to blog and what you should and should not be doing as a blogger.

That "different take" is what motivates me to write, to craft a blog post with solution(s) to a problem that I'm facing. 


In that post, I try to answer a question or resolve an issue the best I can, in the hopes that my strategies will work not only for me, but also for another creative. If anything, documenting a struggle can prove extremely useful to me and to my readers because we all can learn from my mistakes and wins.


+I ask myself what I expect/want from others in the creative community.


To me, there's little that's more disappointing than clicking to read a post that ends up being two paragraphs. Depending on the content, this isn't always a problem, but if the title of the post suggests that a big issue is going to be tackled, then I expect a thorough and useful post that, well, tackles the issue.

My idols in favorite members of the creative community, and, in turn, the ones whose content I consistently look forward to reading and/or to whose email lists I am subscribed, are those who post regularly and share content that is both unique and applicable. Creatives who come to mind immediately are Kayla Hollatz, Melyssa Griffin, and Nesha of Nesha Designs.

I want others to expect from me the same sort of content and dedication that I've come to expect from those I look up to in the creative community.


For me, that means consistent and convertible posting. What does that mean for my brand and LS? It means that you can catch a new blog post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and that I took time to write each post in the hopes that someone will read it and find it helpful.

All of this is well and good, but it's just one aspect of finding the motivation to write. 


So, where do I find motivation for writing novel text?


The above is what motivates me to write blog content. Not novel content. Honesty hour? I'm afraid to open the document that is the first draft of my first (yes, I'm writing two) YA novel because I have absolutely no clue what to do with it. My book still needs many chapters and fictional information— chapters and information that I could probably free write non-sequentially— to fill it, but all I can concentrate on is the dead end that I've left it at.

In pretty much everything, I focus more on the endgame than on the individual pieces that lead up to it. 


I need to know what's next before I can fill in the details. I've left my book at just shy of 30,000 words. My protagonist and another main character are standing on a city sidewalk following a tense meeting. And... I have no idea what they're supposed to do next. I'm so intimidated by the possibility that I won't be able to come up with anything that I'm afraid to try.

Hey, Alexa, aren't you the writing coach who's supposed to have all the writing answers and wisdom? Ha. No. Let me make the necessary distinction: I am my worst critic, so the progress I make in my own writing is entirely different from the progress I can help someone else make in their writing. I'm full of tips and guidance for other people, but seeing your own work in a clear and unbiased way isn't so easy. I'm the first to admit that, which is partly why I wanted to dig into writing coaching.

When it comes to creative writing, sometimes you can't wait for the motivation because it might never come. 


You'll continue to make excuses for your lack of motivation and put off the project time and again. If that's not unproductive, I don't know what is. My biggest piece of advice when it comes to finding motivation for writing? Make like Nike and just do it.

4 comments

  1. um. It's super awesome that you're writing a book! That's sort of a goal of mine but I'm afraid to even start! So I wouldn't get down on yourself after hitting a wall at 30,000 words. You're doing great!

    Amanda Rinehart | MotherhoodandConfetti.com

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    1. I so appreciate your kind words, Amanda! My advice to you, per the post, would be to make like Nike and just do it haha. Start free-writing and see where it takes you. Best of luck!

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  2. I love this!! I struggle with blog motivation a lot here lately. Thanks for the tips! Good luck with your book too, I think that's so awesome!

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    1. Thanks, Ariana! Finding blog motivation is a tricky balance of figuring out what your priorities are/have to be with writing and sharing content because you want to. Good luck!

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