Now that we’re in Back-to-School mode, are you eager to get back to writing? Same! My kids don’t need new pencils anymore, but ever since A Boob’s Life was released, my work life has been a blur of promotion. I missed the typical pre-pandemic book tour, but it was a dream come true to be featured in People Magazine and on podcasts and papers around the world. I could wear pajama bottoms during interviews! There was no traffic enroute to Zoom wall!
But for months, I was prepping, primping, and promoting. Rarely did a day go by I didn’t have to be charming and “on.” I was my own makeup, hair, and fashion crew, the official set decorator, and the entire lighting, sound and camera crew. I was always wary of too much coffee or not enough and whether I had lipstick on my teeth and if the internet was working. But the biggest challenge of all? Talking OUT LOUD to real people.
Don’t get me wrong, I love talking about boobs! I plan to continue, with speaking events and eventually, the TV series. But the promotional activity is absolutely opposite from what writers crave: writing. Ours is a quiet pursuit. We talk to imaginary people in our heads.
We let them do the talking. We work alone, with our favorite snacks, and we don’t have to smile at the camera. We put our passion on the page, where the voices in our head are translated into words that can speak for us. We prefer playing with sentences to saying them out loud.
But people need to know about our books in order to read them. Now more than ever, promotion is part of our job. That leaves less time to write.
So I can’t help but be relieved that the calendar is opening up. I’m excited to get back to characters left hanging in limbo for the last six months. Oh, I’ve kept in touch, visited a few pages now and then. But it takes time and focus to move fully into that story world. It feels like Back to School. Time to sharpen some pencils.
We all have things that keep us away from writing. But if you are ready to get back to it, here are my top tips.
1. Get your butt in the chair.
2. Think of your story before you go to bed at night.
3. Keep a notepad and pen by your bed. (It’s faster than your phone.)
4. Make an appointment with yourself to write. Keep it.
5. Read! Other books will inspire you.
6. Prepare snacks first so you have no excuse to get up.
7. If a word count helps, great. But don’t beat yourself up! Thinking is the hardest part.
8. Get your butt in the chair. (Yes, I said that twice.)
Ready? Let’s get back to writing.