All words are pegs to hang ideas on. —Henry Ward Beecher

Are You Worrying About Words?

I know, I know. You like to check your word count. I do, too. I like to know how far I’ve gotten in a project, and I like to see those words piling up. That’s why the hardest part of any writing project is, for me, the part where the words are not piling up. Unfortunately, it isn’t a part I can skip.

Every project hits a point at which you must step back and start staring out the window. This can be the wool-gathering moment at which you begin to wonder about your characters, and why they make the choices they make. Or it can be the point at which you realize that there is a mystery in someone’s past--a mystery that you need to solve. Or it can be the moment at which you realize that your story has gotten off track. There are many moments at which you must stop, reassess, think, and wonder. These are some of the most important moments in your work. These are the days in which you might produce eighteen words—and they might end up being the eighteen most important words in the entire piece.

When Less is More

At these times, it’s important to refrain from forcing yourself to produce pages. Instead, if you can, simply produce thoughts. Produce ideas. Bookflow is designed to help you capture every random idea that comes to you—whether it applies to your theme, your characters, or your plot--in a way that’s easy to return to.

If you’re feeling like you’re ready to shake off the winter and dive back into your work, here’s a recent blog that I wrote about starting small:

Remember that the My Progress Calendar will show how many days you’ve logged in. Focus on your input—returning to the work when you have time—not the output. Eventually, the words will begin to pile up again. But you can’t have a fire if you don’t have a spark.