The First 2 Main Obstacles To Writing My First Book That Really Messed Me Up
I mentioned earlier that I wrote for my first chapter a total of 3060 words; what I didn’t tell you was how long it took me – and it’s a little shameful.
To write the first chapter of my book it took me 8 months and 4 days. What?!!
Why so long?
There are 2 factors that I narrowed it down to, which are:
Let me explain…
- Not taking the writing game seriously
- Mixing the two functions of “Writer” and “Editor”
Obstacle #1: Not Taking The Writing Game Seriously
Ok, so yes I do have a full-time job which can be a little tiring, and as I’m writing a book for the first time I don’t have any additional income to allow me to become a full-time writer.
So the “time-factor” of having less time to write because I have a full-time job could seem to be an obstacle to writing. However, looking more closely I realised I was actually treating the writing game as a hobby.
Although I enjoy writing and it seems to come naturally to me, I am not thinking of it as a serious endeavour. If you just play at something and not take it seriously then all you will get is a half-hearted outcome with no real product at the end.
If I want to become a successful writer
then I’m going to need to become serious about the whole writing game. And when I mean “serious” I don’t mean in a way that is miserable and not fun; but what I do mean is being very dedicated
. You can be serious (very dedicated) and have fun at writing your first book at the same time.
Writing should be fun!
Obstacle #2: Mixing the 2 Functions of “Writer” and “Editor”
Now you may or may not know this (I had to find out the hard way) that writing and editing are two entirely separate subjects (or functions) when it comes to book writing, or any other type of writing in fact.
A major mistake I made with writing the first chapter of my first book was to mix the jobs of writing and editing as I wrote. This is a BIG MISTAKE any new or first-time author can make.
Writing and editing have two different purposes and should not be mixed. A writer writes and an editor edits (corrects spelling, grammar, etc.). Simple!
I made the BIG MISTAKE of writing a few lines and then going back over them to check for spelling etc. I basically was being a writer one minute and an editor the next.
What is wrong with self-editing as you go?
If you’re a writer you seriously interrupt your flow of thought and writing. You interrupt your creativeness which is what a writer needs to have flow.
As you will see (with how long my first chapter took) I have wasted so much time on writing my first book simply because I kept stopping every few sentences to make sure the grammar and spelling was ok. I then had to re-read what I had written to get back into the flow of the story again; to regain my train of thought.
This was damaging to my creative flow and extended my writing time ENORMOUSLY.
So don’t write and edit at the same time. Editing should be done at the end of writing; maybe at the end of a day’s writing, or the whole book. Whatever you decide. Just as long as the editing doesn’t interrupt your creative writing flow.
At any one time; either be a writer, or be an editor – don’t be both!
Have Your Say
Have you written a book? How did you feel about writing a book for the first time (if you have) and what obstacles did you first encounter? Let me know below.