Writing a book is both a wonderful and a stressful experience. Hours upon hours you spend on coming up with ideas, plot points, characters, and worlds. Then more hours on writing your very first draft.
And the work doesn’t end there.
Then it’s time for revisions, revisions, and more revisions. And slowly you start to wonder: where does it end?
Luckily, there are several steps you can take that will help you to stop being overwhelmed by this giant task of writing a book.
Take some time off
Sometimes the best thing you can do is step away for a while. And if you’re really stressed, try to look up some strategies to alleviate your stress, such as meditation or yoga.
Use your writing time to do something else. Go for a walk, for instance. It will give your mind some time to rest, which will lead to better ideas for your book. Who knows, inspiration might strike you as you’re walking outside.
Get professional help
There can be nothing more gnawing than wondering whether your book is good enough. Getting professional help from an editor can help you with this. For instance, and editor can read through your entire manuscript and give suggestions for improvements. Or you can send one chapter, and they can give you feedback on your writing. This will help you to improve your skills and craft a better story, so you’ll feel more confident to put it out into the world.
And certainly, don’t forget to have a copy editor or proofreader go over your manuscript to take out any stray grammatical errors. Having a professional take care of this will give you more peace of mind and time to focus on drafting more stories.
Regain a positive attitude
Writing a story is a very personal thing. Putting it out into the world can be a very scary feeling, leading to stress. You may start to become convinced that you’re not good enough, no one will even like your book, so what’s the point in continuing?
Know that this self-doubt is normal. But you don’t have to let it stop you from writing and putting your book out in the world.
Learn how to overcome your self-doubt by reading articles, participating in a course, or seeking out a therapist.
Create a planning with achievable goals
Having a planning when you’re writing a book is essential. However, often when we create a planning, we tend to underestimate the time something will cost, and as a result, our planning won’t be realistic.
So, when creating your plan, first set your large goal. For instance, finish the first draft of your book, which will have around 80,000 words. Then, think about how much time you truly have in a day to spend on your writing. Is it 1 hour? Or perhaps even just half an hour?
Then, think about how many words you can write in that timeframe. To do this, time yourself for the time period you set, and start writing. Note the number of words you were able to write, and multiply it by 0.75. This is then the amount of words you’re roughly able to write each time you sit down to write.
Divide your total word goal by the number of words you can write. How many days will it take you to finish that first draft? Probably longer than you initially thought, right?
Also consider how much free time you’d like. Would you like a day each week where you don’t write at all? And what about holidays? Add those days to the total. Now, you know how many days you’ll need to finish your first draft and how many words you’re able to write each week and each month.
Put that all down in your plan. Now, you have a big goal and intermediate goals that are achievable. This will reduce the amount of stress you have about writing the book.
Some final thoughts
I hope these simple tips will help you to stop being stressed about writing your book. You’re creating something wonderful, and it should be an enjoying, positive experience.
Take some time to try these tips above, and surely you will be enjoying writing again in no time!