Posted in 🌻 Blog & Writing Life 🌻, πŸ“š Writing Tips πŸ“š

Bad Writing Habits (And How to Break Them)

Hello, fellow writer! πŸ‘‹ This year I’ve fallen into (and have gotten myself out of) a few bad writing habits, and it’s only April! I can’t wait to see what procrastination method I’ll pick next πŸ˜‰

Hahaha Of course, I kid, because we all fall into bad writing habits from time to time. But despair not! Any bad habit can be undone. Here are 5 habits I’ve fallen into and gotten out of, and my tips for you ~ in case you find yourself in this bad habit place.

1. Bad Habit: Over-editing Chapter One

Chapter one is an important one. It is a major introduction. It includes a hook for your readers, your protagonist, your tone and style, and the inception of the conflict of your plot. That’s a lot for a first impression.

Solution: Just write it and let it be… for now.

It’s easy to want to polish your chapter one into perfection, but hey… easy now. You have the whole rest of the book to write! If you find yourself over-editing chapter one, my advice is let it go for now. Write the rest of your draft. Let it simmer.

When you’re done with your first draft, you will actually have more ideas on how to start your story, because you already know the end.

2. Bad Habit: You Keep Editing as You Go

Edit-as-you-go is like one step forward, two steps back. One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever read is this: separate creative writing from editing. Separate the artsy from the technical. They are two different animals, and they don’t match.

Solution: Write creatively for as long as you can, then LATER come back and edit.

Don’t stress! Separate!

It’s totally okay if your page is full of typos and bad grammar. Your artsy side is a wild child that wants to play without limits! Let that child play! You can always come back later and fix the spelling, move sentences around, and do the less-creative albeit important part of writing.

3. Bad Habit: Writing Only When Inspired

Yes, you need inspiration. Motivation. Perspiration. I know, I know. But you can’t just sit around waiting for the muse to come visit! One of the best things college did for me was force me to sit down and write~ because I had serious deadlines.

Solution: Schedule your writing time~ and stick to it.

And I discovered something awesome: You can get inspired AFTER you sit and begin working. Once you start reading over what you wrote the day before, moving scenes around, thinking about your characters… boom! You become inspired. It’s pretty awesome.

And hey, if you’re totally uninspired, you can always do some less creative stuff, like checking spelling and grammar.

4. Bad Habit: Getting Distracted When Doing Research Online

You know how it is… you’re not sure if you’re using the right word, or you want to look up a detail, and the next thing you know, you’re neck-deep in cat gifs and memes. Ack! The internet!

Solution: Use a website blocker and/or lump your online time away from your writing time.

BlockSite extension for Google (what it looks like)

I love to use BlockSite to stay focused. I also schedule my online time, about 30 minutes during lunch, then not online again until the evening (when everyone is off work). Scheduling and lumping my online time keeps me from stopping every 15 minutes to check email or YouTube. I just don’t even think about it until those times.

Well, that’s all I have for you today 😊

Did I miss a habit? What are your helpful tips, especially for new authors?
Let us know in the comments!

Take care and write on,

YariGarciaWrites

🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜🌸 🌜

Author:

I'm an indie author sharing my journey of creativity and faith.

12 thoughts on “Bad Writing Habits (And How to Break Them)

  1. I think I’m #2 and #3…

    trying to write poetry… I have an idea of where I want it to go with it, but the words might not cooperate and I get to where I think everything sounds the same.. I usually leave them be, and come back later.

    I only write when inspired! I have to feel something or I can’t go any further. Just don’t think my heart is in it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I must say I am guilty of all. So many times, I edit and edit until I’m discouraged at the words I have left.

    About deadlines, I’m finding it pretty difficult to keep these days. Anyways, God is my strength.

    Thanks for sharing the details about Blocksite. I should try it soon.

    Your article was worth the read.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Totally agree with separating writing and editing! When I write a blog post, I tell myself to keep typing and going even if I know it sounds less-than-perfect. If I try to edit while I write the first draft, I tend to get stuck.

    Like

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