Dear Future April
Hey there, future me. I thought I’d just check in and share a few thoughts. I want you to read this later carefully whenever you’re having one of your ‘moments’. Read, take heed, and step away from the brink.
So, hopefully you’re still carrying on with 1000 words a day. It certainly works for you, and even if sometimes you get stuck, you can write some random stuff just to hit your word count. Most days it’s not a challenge, but some days it is, and having that 1k target keeps the wheels turning.
Because I know you really well, I KNOW you will have toyed with the idea of writing more, of pushing yourself harder. You know, like those super-fast indies you hear about. But, dear April, do you not remember the time you published seven books in one year and burned yourself to a crisp? Do you not recall your tattered mental health and inflamed wrists? Well, I do. And so should you.
Furthermore, I’ve done the maths, and if you want to publish even one more book a year (three instead of two), you’ll need to write 1600 words every weekday and cut your editing time from three months to two. That’s a big leap, April. You can write 1000 words every day no bother, but 1600 is 60% more. Will you be able to take the time you need to really think about the story if you’re pressing yourself 60% harder? Yes, maybe two books a year won’t be enough, but you need to at least try before attempting to do more.
Here’s the thing: you don’t respond too well to pressure, April. Your Muse tends to shrivel up and then you panic, which only scares the Muse more. Without pressure, you can take your time with the story – while publishing two books a year. That ain’t too shabby, April. Not shabby at all.
Also, take your bloody dictaphone with you whenever you go out. It’s better to record an idea and not use it than forget it completely.
Also also, you are a headlights writer. Stop trying to be something you’re not. You’re not a super-organised planner or a crazy pantser. You’re a headlights kinda gal. You need to take some time to think out the next couple thousand words or so. It makes the writing fun, and so much easier.
Last but not least, keep doing yoga, April. Seriously. Your back needs yoga. And maybe drink a little less. No? Okay, I knew that one was a long shot.