Since publishing my first book I have had people ask me “what was the hardest part?” To be honest; just starting.
I have the ideas in my head already. I know I have the capabilities to create something entertaining. But getting started is always the hardest part for me. When I say getting started I literally mean sitting down at the computer and typing out that first word.
It’s not hard in the sense that my brain needed to work hard, or that I wasn’t sure what word I wanted to type. It was hard in the sense that once I started I would need to finish.
If you have ever made yourself a new years resolution; for example to start eating healthier. The hardest part is starting. First you have to get rid of the junk food that is already in your cupboards. Then you have to find healthy recipes. Then you need to shop for the ingredients that you need. Then, then, then…. Once you get started you know that there is more to come.
It is the same for me with writing. Once I start writing something new I will need to make the time to finish it, which means other things may need to wait. Those other things usually aren’t that important, or they are other ideas for more stories. But because of the way that my brain works (all of our brains work differently) I can get overwhelmed at the idea of starting. Once I start though I feel better and accomplished (even with just the first sentence typed).
I have had to come up with strategies to get me through the overwhelm of the idea of starting. Some of these may work for you:
- Just do it! This sounds silly but sometimes I just need to force myself to open up the computer, open up Word, and type a sentence. Just one sentence which leads to the next and next.
- Set a timer. When needing to get work done I usually tell myself ‘just 20 minutes’. That way I won’t be overwhelmed with the idea of an amount of words or pages to finish. Usually I end up going longer than 20 minutes but if I tell myself just 20 minutes then I don’t get discouraged.
- Talk it out. If I have an idea that I am just dying to write about but feeling the overwhelm of what that will entail I will talk through the idea with someone I trust. Once the idea has been spoken aloud it feels easier to get it down on the computer.