I am a little less than a year into taking my writing career seriously. I have about twelve stories that I consider marketable, two of which have been published already. Although my goals and ambitions change daily, I have slowly developed my own writing system.
My rules for writing:
- My goal is 1,000 words a day, which I achieve about fifty percent of the time.
- If I start a short story, I must finish it in seven days (this includes editing, research, corrections, and re-writes).
- I submit my work about every two weeks. More if possible.
- Do something every day that will help my writing career. Writing is the obvious thing. But if I can’t write I read books, research markets, glance at writers’ magazines, make outlines, work on blog, etc.
- Always be nice to the people at the post office. You will be spending a lot of time and money there. It never hurts to have friends.
- Always type out mailing labels for your submission envelopes. It just looks professional. And that’s how you want to be seen—as a professional.
At this point, I feel like my rules suit my needs. Everyone is different, and you have to discover your own way to get your stories out. I hate it when people say there is only one way to do something. A perfect example of this is comments concerning the time of day people write. Many people claim “real writers” write during the day. Or get up at 5 AM and write for two hours before work. Ugh, that ain’t going to happen my friends! I have a day job. Besides, I really, really like to sleep. I can only write at night. After the kids go to bed is my magic time. Sometimes on weekends, when my daughter is napping, I can get some great paragraphs, but not much. I’m a night person. My best work comes out with the moon.
On this note, it is time to go. The moon is out and I need to form paragraphs that will turn into stories. Although this post is about 380 words long, I still need to pound out 620 more to get my daily quota. How many more words do you have to write?