Yesterday was the last day of a thing we rarely see in the UK: a Bank Holiday Weekend. We generally get two in May and one in August. That’s it!
I bet any of you who slave away at a job and have to fit their writing into the edges of the day can appreciate the gravitas of this information.
Three guaranteed long weekends in the year. Writing time, right?
Exactly what I thought, too. Three days to sit and write and finish things. It even started well. I met one of my local writer friends for coffee at the Little Man Coffee Co. right here in Cardiff City Centre.
It was not a beautiful day but I treated myself to a taxi ride and after 2 hours of awesome, motivational author-chat, I walked on air and couldn’t wait to sit down and finish the second draft of Part 1 of my current YA project.
And I did it! Drifting to sleep that night, I felt great. But…of course it didn’t last.
The next morning I woke up to the nasty face of the resistance. It was right there, sitting on my duvet and making fun of my second draft already.
“Better can it and start over.” it mocked.
My self-doubt was back. Motivation jumped out the window and got run over by a delivery truck. I didn’t write another word for 48 hours feeling guilty as hell.
Then, this morning, I dictated 1000 words on my Dragon app (making a start on the second draft of Part 2 of my current YA project) …and it felt great.
But back at my office desk and halfway through the day, I am already mentally picking my writing apart and convincing myself that it’s unusable.
And here’s why you will never…and I mean NEVER…finish your book…unless you act now:
The resistance has got it in for you. And if you let it, it WILL take you down and all your author dreams, too…like it tried with me yesterday and the day before.
Sorry if you find this harsh, but it’s true. Don’t believe me? I recommend Steven Pressfield’s The War of Art. It explains the issue fabulously.
However, I am sure that most of you are nodding to this statement already.
If you have started doing the work…I mean…if you are actually putting words on pages (or screens) instead of exclusively dreaming about it you will have encountered the resistance and the power is has over our poor souls.
And — SPOILER ALERT — it’s not letting up!
So if you are intending to write a book (or a short story, script, collection of poems, or complete any other creative work) you need to answer one question: how will you defeat the resistance?
You need a strategy…and a back-up strategy for when the original strategy has been beaten to pulp by the resistance. It will happen.
If you don’t have an answer to this question (or if you can’t come up with a working strategy): you will NEVER write a book.
Yesterday I was ready to give up. But after a good binge watch of How to Get Away With Murder I am back and ready to fight the resistance like never before.
What are your experiences with the resistance and how do you fight it? Are you going to write a book this year…or does it look like you’re gonna get beaten down? Let me know in the comments below!