There are many things that hinder us from writing. However, most of them can be prevented or overcome. Below are the top 10 obstacles for writers that stop us from writing the next best-seller.
A major obstacle for writers is a lack of confidence. If you don’t think you’re a good writer or you don’t think you’ll ever get published, you won’t have the confidence to write in the first place. There are about 130 million books available right now – do you think those writers got to where they are because they didn’t think they could do it? No. They believed in themselves, just like we have to.
Have you ever tried writing, or concentrating on anything for that matter, when you haven’t had enough sleep? It’s not easy. Have you ever tried writing in a noisy environment with kids yelling and dogs barking? That’s not easy either and writing is hard enough as it is, we should be making it easier on ourselves – not harder. A healthy lifestyle and quiet space to write are essential to our success as writers.
Creating the perfect sentence, paragraph, chapter, or book is impossible. Perfectionism is not a goal, published is. Now, you should definitely do your best and let others help you to do your best (like editors) but if you stress yourself out over every word you write, you’ll never write. Let go of the fact that everything you write down is permanent. The best version of your book will come from the editing and revising steps of the writing process anyway, but you won’t get there unless you start writing in the first place.
If you’ve never written before and give yourself a task of writing a book, you’re going to struggle. Writing is a skill that needs to be practiced. If you’re wanting to write a fiction book, start with writing short stories. You have to get the basics of story structure down first before taking on an entire novel. If your goal is to write a nonfiction book, then start with essays and work your way up. Practice makes published.
The major obstacle to creativity is stress. Find something that mellows you out and make sure to have it on hand. You need to increase the release of dopamine in your brain right before you start writing so your brain associates writing with being pleasurable. This way, even if your life is stressful, writing won’t be!
There is more than one writing process. If you are using a basic template and it isn’t working for you, try something different. Every writer has a different process that aligns with their strengths and weaknesses. You can’t use another writer’s plan to a tee and expect it to work for you. Create your own template for writing.
Distractions are the enemy to creativity. This is one of the common obstacles for writers. It’s so easy to pick up our phone and get sucked into social media or have to google something and end up online shopping instead. When you are sitting down to write, make sure there is nothing that will distract you from writing.
Eliminating distractions during your writing time is important, but if you don’t have a specific time set aside to write, when would you know to prevent distractions? You have to make writing a priority in your daily schedule. It’s as simple and as difficult as that.
A very common obstacle for writers is fighting procrastination. We’re always writing a story in our heads, but we put off writing it down on paper because it’s hard. People always put off difficult tasks until they can’t anymore, it’s human nature. However, we have to grit our teeth and pick up our pen (or keyboard or typewriter, etc) because if we don’t we will never accomplish our goals and the worst thing for a writer to do is die without ever telling the stories we have inside ourselves.
Last but not least, sticking to a writing habit is essential to finishing your book (or whatever other project you’re working on). It’s hard to write at the same time everyday depending on your schedule, but it is very important, and a huge obstacle for writers. If you don’t see where you have an hour to write everyday, start waking up an hour early or break up the hour into 30 minute or 15 minute sessions. However you schedule, you have to stick to it. Having a habit of writing is what will get your book from the beginning to “The End”.