WHEN YOU'RE WRITING NEVER:
10. Stop Reading: After a long day of reading your own work it the last thing you want to do is pick up someone else’s but do it! You will stay motivated. I learn something new with each book I read.
9. Rely on Inspiration: Don't waste a day waiting for inspiration. Sit down, get to work, and inspiration will come calling.
8. Neglect Genre: It’s tempting to want to walk in between genres. What would be better than a science fiction, erotic, mystery right? But remember, if you want to find passionate and engaged readers, you have to find the genre that you most want to write and stick with it.
7. Get Bored: If you’re bored, chances are your readers will be to. If you find yourself becoming bored, or your main character is skating through the plot with ease, throw some roadblocks in the way. Conflict moves stories.
6. Rely on Pretty People: Men don't always have to be fearless and women don't always have to be sexy. Your readers will spend a lot of time with your characters so make sure there is something going on in their heads and their hearts. Readers love characters for their imperfections and shortcomings just as much as their looks.
5. Lose the Through Line: Remember who's story you’re writing and what the point is. Veer off the path and you lose your readers.
4. Be Afraid to Cut, Cut, Cut: Cut close to the bone. Make the tough choices and take out the things you really love. They may be great but only if they move the story forward.
3. Throw in the Towel: Too many people have half finished books, or books without an ending floating around on their hard drives. The easiest thing in the world is starting a book. The hardest thing is finishing one.
2. Let your Characters Off Easy: Just because you love your characters doesn’t mean you have to go easy on them. Let them struggle and sometimes fail. Anything that you put in your characters' gives the readers greater insight into their lives. Give them a goal to work towards, make it hard to get and you can’t go wrong.
1. Beat Yourself Up: The book isn’t shaping up the way you want it to? Someone read a chapter and didn’t care for it? Feel like jumping off a cliff? No worries. Those days happen, but remember that every day that you’re thinking, “woe is me,” is another day that you could be finishing a chapter or polishing a plot point. You can spend your time beating yourself up or beating your characters up. I do a lot of the former but am trying to stop.