Do You Really Have to Write Every Single Day?
Pick a writer’s resource, any resource. Someone (or several someones) will tell you to write every single day. Set a time. Never miss it. If you do, you might as well quit now.
Fuck. That. Shit.
In the time I’ve spent with and around sex bloggers and writers, I know how easily we beat ourselves up over every single thing. Did we use the correct pronouns? Were we inclusive enough? Are we promoting safety without yucking on anyone’s kink? And that’s before we worry we’re not having enough of the right kind of sex.
Wondering whether you’re writing enough, and worrying you’re not doing enough just adds to the list of worries, anxieties, and fears many of us have. You’ll only make yourself a basket case – and if you’re like me, you don’t need any more help with that.
The More You Write, the Better You Get
Let’s be very clear and very honest here. The more often and more words you write, the better you’ll get. Writing one day a month doesn’t help you develop your skills like writing a few times a week will. Writing 100 words in six weeks doesn’t build your creative muscles the way that 1000 words over a week will.
If your goal is to get better at what you do and one day build a career as a writer, writing a lot is useful and good. Oh, and I haven’t met a writer yet that doesn’t spend at least some time thinking we can barely string two words together. Thinking you suck isn’t an experience thing – it’s a creative person thing.
All of your writing efforts count. Providing an in-depth answer by email to a reader question is writing. Blogging your sexual fantasy is writing. Carefully crafting the perfect social media post down to the last word…yep, that’s writing. How? Because you’re stringing words together to exchange information and to make sure you’re understood. That’s the very definition of writing and it all counts.
If you have a regular blogging habit or you’re pitching a few articles a month, you’re writing more than you realize. For me, I don’t focus on how often I write. I focus on the word count and I even track it (because I’m a nerd like that).
For clients, I write about 45,000 words a month (yes, really). Between my blogs, I write about 25,000 words a month. Yes, I’m an outlier because writing is my career. But what do you think matters most? Writing every single day or writing 70,000 words in a month? I’m going with 70,000 words.
Please don’t compare yourself to me. But use the same method. How many words did you write this week, month, year? How many more will you write next week, month, year? If you write 5000 words this week, does it really matter that you wrote it over three days instead of seven? I don’t think so.
The more you write, the better you get.
Write When You Can
Part of me hates telling you to “write when you can” because I know what it means to be a procrastinator and have a month pass before you write a single word. Writing when you can isn’t necessarily the same as “write when you want.”
What I mean is that if all you have is 15 minutes to write, write. When you get an hour or more, savor it and write. If you’re like everyone else in the world with a busy life of work and family and a thousand other interests, you may never have the big chunk of time you dream of.
The smaller blocks of time all count. And if you’re really determined to write every single day, 15 minutes at a time would be a more realistic way to reach that goal.
I used to tell myself I couldn’t write until I had four or five hours of uninterrupted time to focus.
Bwahahahahaha! What was I smoking?!
The last time I had multiple hours in my day to focus on a single thing, I think I was about 16 or 17. Yeah, it’s not happening. Telling myself that’s what I needed was just a way to call myself a writer without having to do the work. If I was honest with myself, I knew I’d never have that kind of time. Worse, I walked around feeling guilty and awful because I wanted to write but never “could.”
There will never be enough time. Write when you can.
Stop Beating Yourself Up
(She whispers to herself…)
Truly, the only reason I no longer worry about how often I write is because I do it for a living. If I wrote every single day, I’d burn out in a month. You might not be there yet, but let me offer this advice…
Stop beating yourself up over your perceived flaws and faults, including how many days in a row you’re writing. You’re not the only writer or creator in the sex blogging world who thinks you’re fucking it all up. Most of us think we could be better writers, write more often, and find that one thing that will make us into the Perfect Sex Blogger.
We’re all flawed. We all wonder if everyone else has it figured out more than we do. And the vast majority of us don’t think we’re writing enough or as well as we’d like.
Trying to improve your writing habits and abilities is a worthy goal. I want you to work towards that, if it’s what you want. But mentally berating yourself because you didn’t write for a day or two (or in a crisis, a week or two) isn’t helpful. In fact, it’s harmful. Be kinder to yourself. Go back to what I said early: write when you can, even if it’s only for 15 minutes.
Get Realistic and Just Write
Set more realistic goals with your writing. Two blog posts a week. Twenty minutes a day. One Saturday night with Netflix turned off. Once you get into that kind of habit, you’ll find it’s easier to keep writing. You look for other bits of time where you can fit it in. You feel less guilty when you don’t write for a day or two.
And if you do it long enough, one day you’ll look up and realize you’ve written hundreds or thousands of blog posts and tens and hundreds of thousands of words. Somewhere in that time you’ll stop worrying whether you’re writing often enough because you’ll be too busy fucking writing.