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10 Quick Tips to Get Your Writing Back on Track!


With all of the demands on your schedule, especially with the upcoming holidays, writing can sometimes slip into the backseat of your life. When it happens (or even if you want to keep it from happening) use any or all of these techniques to get yourself back in the writing groove. Make sure to read the last bonus tip to get you back on track as of right NOW!

1. Go on an Idea Walk. Grab your phone with its note-taking app, or a digital recorder, or a pen and note cards, and take a walk. Movement will get your creative juices flowing and your muse singing, so be sure you have something to jot down ideas.

2. Find the joy in your creative journey. If you are like me, writing is more to you than putting words on paper. It is an important part of your creative journey. Getting into the techniques and work of writing can drain all of the joy out of it. So find your joy again. Whether that’s doing some research, meeting with other writers for a write-in, or journaling for fun (see Get Your Mojo Workin’ for prompts to re-energize your writing) just do it!

3. Print out motivation quotes or writing affirmations and tape them to your computer so you will see inspirational words every day. We all can use a cheering section. Make your own.

4. Keep track of your writing time. A log of your writing time is a great way to feel accountable. Keeping track has several rewards: a log will inspire you to write AND keep writing time in your focus. Plus you will get an honest overview of your writing time.

5. Plan a few writing sessions. As long as you are beginning a log, plan some writing time in your week. If you have a busy life, you will never “find” time to write. So stake out a little time (see where you can get away or have the quiet you need or where a writing session will fit) and you are much more likely to actually sit down to write. And that’s what it’s all about.

6. Collage your book or your writing goals. Visuals can be inspirational and bring a different motivational aspect to your writing. Don’t like glue stick? Have you tried Pinterest? It’s more than pinning recipes. I use Pinterest to make WIP boards. This one comes with a warning. It can be a huge time drain, but only if you let it. Just be sure to set a timer and limit your time on the site, and stick to your WIP board. Later, as a reward for writing, give yourself a little “fun” Pinterest time.

7. Make a writing sound track. Whether it’s for a specific book or just music that inspires you to write, make the soundtrack and play it! And write.

8. Set a timer for ten minutes and write a journal entry about what writing means to you. Inspire yourself by putting words on a page and remember what writing brings to your life. Remember why you love to write and write about it.

9. Hook up with a critique group or partner. Being accountable is a terrific motivator and a deadline every week  (or even every month) will keep your eyes on the prize, as they say. A group or partner will force you into writing consistently, and before you know it, sitting down to write will be second nature! This one keeps providing motivation, long after you’ve begun.

10. Hook up with a motivational partner. Critiquing is an important part of writing, but hook up with a motivation partner as well. This is the month of Nano, so there are many people available, in person or on-line. Keep each other on track and inspired! Inspiration and connection with another writer…what could be better?

Bonus Tip: RIGHT NOW! Set a timer for ten minutes, sit down right now, and write. There. Ten minutes. You are, as of this very moment, back on track.

Kathy Steffen is an award-winning novelist and author of the “Spirit of the River Series:” “First, There is a River,” “Jasper Mountain,” and “Theater of Illusion,” available online and in bookstores everywhere. Additionally, Kathy is also published in short fiction and pens a monthly writing column, “Between the Lines.” She writes from a log home in the woods of southwestern Wisconsin that she shares with her husband and three cats. Find out more at”
  1. Thanks for the advice, and a Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Thanks Kenzie!

  3. Leila Wilson says:

    Thank you so much Kathy. I found your excellent articles today through my Karen Woodward mails. I can honestly say they are the most thorough and helpful ones I have ever read. On the strength of them all I have ordered your first book – “First There is a River” and look forward immensely to receiving it. I’ve also signed up to receive future articles. As a 76 year old widow and an aspiring writer with small successes up to now in short stories and poetry….. I really can’t thank you enough! Absolutely first class!

  4. Thank you Leila, and big cheers for you! Good luck on your writing…sounds like you going strong! So glad you found some of my posts helpful. Write on :)


  1. Link Feast For Writers, vol. 31 | Reetta Raitanen's Blog - [...] 10 Quick Tips to Get Your Writing Back on Track by Kathy Steffen [...]

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